So, apparently, the new Aeroplan Pay With Miles Program, that began today, April 1st, is unsurprisingly a rip off. Guess we're the April Fools if we take advantage of the program.
I tried 3 different flights today.
While there may be glitches or sweet spots (if you wish to call it that--before Aeroplan "fixes" the sweet spots), the ratios are the following:
Toronto-San Juan--1.1763 Aeroplan points per cent charged in taxes and fees
Toronto-La Guardia--1.1753 Aeroplan points per cent charged in taxes and fees
Toronto-Tel Aviv--1.1764 Aeroplan points per cent charged in taxes and fees
For example, a flight to Tel Aviv (this summer, some Market Fare flights are on sale for less than Fixed Mileage for 88400AP miles, and with Black Distinction Status, only 74250AP miles), the taxes and fees are $696.26--which they want 81912AP points in lieu of the cash.
American Express Membership Rewards FlexPoints, when NOT on a sale ratio, charges 1 Membership Rewards (MR) point per cent, 17% cheaper, at 1-to-1. Therefore, charging you Gold or Platinum AMEX card for the transaction, and then using your MR points to pay for it would cost you 69,626 MR points, a savings of 12286 points, so you're better off using MR points to pay for the taxes than Aeroplan points, which is yet another reason to get the AMEX Gold or Platinum card!
Now, overall, one should NOT use their MR points to pay for taxes unless there's a sale on FlexPoints, that allow you to pay for your taxes or airline tickets with your points--even then, if you have the cash available, it's better to use your MR points to convert to Aeroplan or Avios rather than using them to pay for your taxes/ticket, but in a pinch, if you didn't want to pay the cash, or had so many points you didn't know what to do with them (ahh, that would be nice), you'd clearly be better off using MR points to pay for your ticket/taxes than Aeroplan's new Pay With Miles program.
For more info on the AMEX Platinum, click here.