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TravelHow to book WestJet flights using points and miles

How to book WestJet flights using points and miles


While frequent travelers are most likely familiar with Air Canada and its loyalty program, Aeroplan, one under-the-radar carrier that you may want to become acquainted with is WestJet. Though WestJet is not affiliated with any airline alliance, Canada’s second-largest airline currently has 20 codeshare partners. With WestJet’s partnerships, you can easily earn the airline’s currency, WestJet dollars (equivalent to 1 Canadian dollar), when flying on partner airlines. WestJet dollars can then be used to book flights or vacation packages through the airline.

So, why would you want to fly with this particular carrier?

As some may deem WestJet a “budget” Canadian airline, the carrier soars above U.S.-based carriers Frontier Airlines and Spirit Airlines. Operating routes within the U.S., Canada, South America and Europe, WestJet may be a good (and sometimes cheaper) airline alternative.

Aside from finding great deals — like the round-trip, nonstop flight I booked from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) to Calgary International Airport (YYC) in Alberta for just $292 — you can also use your points and miles to book WestJet flights. Keep reading to learn more about how you can book WestJet flights using your points and miles.

Book WestJet flights using a travel portal

Unlike other airline loyalty programs, you cannot transfer your transferable credit card rewards to your WestJet account and book flights using points and miles. However, there are a few ways to use your hard-earned rewards on WestJet flights.

GABRIELLE BERNARDINI/THE POINTS GUY

Book WestJet flights using the Chase Travel portal

Though it will not get you the best redemption on your Chase Ultimate Rewards points, you can book WestJet flights through the Chase Travel℠ portal. TPG values Chase points at 2.05 cents apiece when transferring to partner airline and hotel programs. When you redeem through the travel portal, you get a fixed value of 1.25 or 1.5 cents per point, depending on which Chase credit card you have.

Since I have the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, I can book WestJet flights through the travel portal at 1.5 cents apiece.

For example, this round-trip flight from FLL to YYC is currently $593 in basic economy when booking through the Chase Travel portal. Since my Ultimate Rewards points can be redeemed at a fixed value of 1.5 cents per point, it will cost me 39,501 points.

CHASE.COM

With WestJet’s dynamic pricing model and this trip being nonrefundable, I suggest you shop around and/or wait for a better redemption (i.e., the price of the ticket decreasing) if you want to save money.

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Related: Who are the Chase transfer partners? Everything to know

Book WestJet flights using the American Express Travel portal

Similar to booking with the Chase Travel portal, you can book WestJet flights using the Amex Travel portal. TPG values Amex points at 2.0 cents per point when transferring the points to partner hotels and airlines. When you redeem your points through the Amex portal, you get a fixed value of 1 cent per point. Therefore, you may not be maximizing your Amex points by booking via the travel portal.

For example, if I wanted to book this round-trip WestJet flight, it would cost me $719.50 or 71,950 Membership Rewards points.

AMEXTRAVEL.COM

Related: Best American Express credit cards

Book WestJet flights using Delta SkyMiles

One potentially valuable way to book WestJet flights using points and miles is through the Delta SkyMiles program. While most partner airlines booked with SkyMiles price dynamically, WestJet itineraries still follow a fixed price: 12,500 miles each way for flights from the U.S. to Canada (or vice versa).

Even better? Availability tends to be quite good.

For example, here’s a one-way search for four passengers from Orlando International Airport (MCO) to Toronto Pearson Airport (YYZ) from mid-July to mid-August.

DELTA.COM

And here’s the same date range in the opposite direction.

DELTA.COM

These flights can be quite pricey, so you may see redemption values significantly higher than our current valuation of Delta miles at 1.2 cents apiece.

This weeklong trip from Orlando to Toronto in June would set you back 25,000 SkyMiles plus $62.18 per passenger. The same flights through WestJet would be $681.91, giving you a redemption value of nearly 2.5 cents per mile.

These prices even hold for connecting flights — like this one from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) to Kelowna International Airport (YLW) in British Columbia’s wine country.

DELTA.COM

You can also use Delta miles on WestJet’s international flights, but they’re priced significantly higher than itineraries within North America. For example, round-trip flights from Toronto to the United Kingdom are priced at 84,000 miles plus $200, while round-trip, nonstop flights from Calgary International Airport (YYC) to Seoul, South Korea’s Incheon International Airport (ICN) start at 140,000 miles.

Remember that, as of Jan. 1, partner award tickets booked with Delta SkyMiles count toward earning elite status. You’ll receive 1 Medallion Qualification Dollar for every 100 miles redeemed — so a round-trip flight from the U.S. to Canada on WestJet would earn 250 MQDs. Sadly, these reservations aren’t eligible for the TakeOff 15 discount for booking Delta-operated award flights if you have certain Delta credit cards.

If you already have Medallion status, you’re eligible for several perks when traveling on WestJet, including priority check-in and extra baggage allowance. Gold, Platinum and Diamond Medallion members can even select preferred seats at no additional cost.

Use Capital One miles to cover your WestJet flight

Capital One has more than 15 airline and hotel partners, and one perk of holding a Capital One credit card is the option to redeem your miles to cover your recent travel purchases. Yes, you can book a flight with your Capital One credit card and then redeem your miles at a fixed value of 1 cent per mile.

If you want to redeem your Capital One miles for recent travel, click on “Cover travel purchases,” and you’ll be taken to a screen with all of your eligible travel purchases made within the last 90 days. Then, decide which travel expenses you would like to offset with your miles.

You can choose to either approve the redemption entirely or edit the amount of miles you would like to use to cover part of your travel.

Best credit cards to book WestJet flights

If you’re not a Canadian citizen, you cannot open a cobranded WestJet credit card. However, there are transferable rewards credit cards that you can use to book a WestJet flight. Here are a few of our favorite cards:

Chase Sapphire Reserve® ($550 annual fee):

  • Current offer: Earn 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 in the first three months of account opening.
  • Receive a $300 annual travel credit.
  • Earn 5 points per dollar spent on flights booked through Chase Travel℠.
  • Redeem Ultimate Rewards points on the Chase Travel portal for 1.5 cents per point.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card ($95 annual fee):

  • Current offer: Earn 60,000 Ultimate Rewards points after you spend $4,000 in the first three months of account opening.
  • Earn 5 points per dollar spent on flights booked through Chase Travel.
  • Redeem Ultimate Rewards points on the Chase Travel portal for 1.25 cents per point.

The Platinum Card® from American Express: ($695 annual fee; see rates and fees)

  • Current offer: Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $8,000 in purchases in the first six months of card membership.
  • Earn 5 points per dollar spent on flights booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel (on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year, then 1 point per dollar).
  • Redeem Membership Rewards points on the Amex Travel portal for 1 cent per point.

Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card: ($0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $150; see rates and fees)

  • Current offer: Earn 70,000 SkyMiles after you spend $3,000 in purchases in the first six months of card membership.
  • Receive a $200 Delta flight credit after spending $10,000 in eligible purchases in a calendar year (terms apply).
  • Redeem Delta SkyMiles for WestJet flights.

Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card: ($395 annual fee; see rates and fees)

  • Current offer: Earn 75,000 Capital One miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months from account opening.
  • Receive a $300 annual travel credit for bookings made through Capital One Travel.
  • Receive 10,000 bonus miles each year on your account anniversary.
  • Redeem miles as a statement credit at a rate of 1 cent per mile; therefore, you can pay for your WestJet flight using your miles.

Bottom line

WestJet may be a Canadian airline, but this carrier has routes across the U.S., Europe and even South America. Like most airlines, WestJet’s prices can fluctuate and are sometimes borderline abysmal. Luckily, you can use your points and miles to help cut the cost of the flight and even find deals that can get you to an international location for a fraction of the cost.

Whether you’re looking to head to a Canadian destination, such as Toronto or Calgary, or even fly to popular European cities like Dublin and Rome, WestJet is a carrier that should be on your radar. Plus, since you can redeem your Delta SkyMiles, reserve flights through a travel portal or redeem miles as a statement credit to cover your airfare, you can easily book your next travel adventure using your points and miles.

For rates and fees of the Delta Gold Amex, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum, click here.

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