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Master thread COVID-19/Coronavirus; travel waivers, route changes, AC impacts

Old Jan 27, 2020, 3:42 pm
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Last edit by: Adam Smith
Key points of AC COVID change/cancellation policy [as of December 10, 2021]:
(see this page under "Changes and cancellations")

Unlimited changes. No change fees. Until December 31, 2021, if you want to change your flight, we'll waive the change fee. After December 31, 2021, you can make one change at no extra charge. If your new fare has a higher price, you only need to pay the difference from your original fare.

If Air Canada changes the time of your flight, you make a change for free.*
*Within 3 days for North American destinations and 7 days for international and sun destinations.

If your flight is cancelled, you get a refund If your flight is cancelled for any reason and we dont rebook you on another flight that departs or arrives within three hours of your original departure or arrival time, or if we add a connection to your itinerary, you can request a refund.

Need to cancel? Save the value for future travel If you need to cancel a booking, the full value can be transferred to an Air Canada Travel Voucher, which never expires and is fully transferrable, or converted into Aeroplan points with a 65% bonus. Refundable tickets are always refundable.

Flexibility with Aeroplan bookings Until December 31, 2021, if you want to change your Aeroplan flight reward, we'll waive all change fees. After December 31, 2021, you can still make one change without a fee.
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Master thread COVID-19/Coronavirus; travel waivers, route changes, AC impacts

Old Apr 22, 2020, 4:38 pm
  #1501  
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: YYZ
Programs: AC SE
Posts: 183
Originally Posted by username
I am sure this is buried somewhere in the thread. AC's fineprint for the credit says one can use the credit "24 months of your flight cancellation date".

Does this mean 24 months from the day the flight is cancelled? Or, it is 24 months from the original travel date?
As per the AC website...it is 24 months from when you cancel the ticket:
'If you made a flight booking for travel on or after March 1, 2020, and you want to cancel it, you can. The cancellation fee will be waived and you will receive full credit, which you can use towards future travel that must be completed within 24 months of the cancellation date.'
t_rex is offline  
Old Apr 22, 2020, 5:05 pm
  #1502  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 17,603
Originally Posted by dangersquid
I never accept a voucher if I can avoid it because in the past I've had too much trouble with:

1) The future flight might be significantly more expensive, so the voucher won't necessarily cover the new cost.

2) Often when you go to use the voucher there will be cheaper flights on alternative airlines, but of course the voucher can't be used with them.

3) You usually don't get any residual value back if the new ticket costs less than the value of the voucher.
All three of these are generally true, but subject to exceptions.
I accept price changes as a part of the landscape. As long as I'm getting the full amount I paid as a credit, the fact is if I'm taking the trip next year, I don't expect to be assured of this year's price. I agree that the pay the difference for an increase, but lose the difference for a price reduction is cheapskate crap. But it's AC, and I'm not expecting much from them in this regard. Especially since...
This particular route, non-stop SMF-YVR, isn't offered, nor likely to be offered, by anyone else, regardless of price. If AC drops the route, meaning they no longer fly out of SMF, I'll likely want a refund, but even then, I'm okay with using the credit on an alliance partner that does fly out of here.
Thus my actual concern isn't really any three of your reasons, valid as they are in general, but that I'm going to end up not only having to pay for a flight on a different airline, but I'll end up spending all day getting to Vancouver instead of a convenient two hour non-stop.
rickg523 is offline  
Old Apr 22, 2020, 5:25 pm
  #1503  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 264
I initiated a charge back with TD Visa on Monday for my two cancelled AC flights. The customer service rep. seemed optimistic. I will report back if it’s successful or not.

There are just too many annoyances with the AC vouchers:

1. You have to call and speak with an agent to use it and book a flight.
2. Amy remaining balance is forfeited.
3. Vouchers cannot be combined.
4. You still have to pay the taxes/fees on the new airfare; only THEN do you get a refund for the taxes/fees on your original purchase.
mykel67 is offline  
Old Apr 22, 2020, 8:05 pm
  #1504  
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Programs: AC E35K, NEXUS
Posts: 4,368
I did on one occasion have a cancelled flight credit that I needed to use. As I famously cannot call, what I did was book the itinerary I wanted, and then communicated with AC over Twitter DM providing both PNRs, and they replaced that booking with the one using the cancelled flight, and I went back in and took the same seats. It took, like seven transactions to credit all the purchases because all the taxes are all separate and they double refunded one and had to charge it to me two months later when they figured it out. (And I had a bear of an expense report to do, twice.) But it all worked out. I would not go out of my way to get a voucher if I could have a refund, but it would; not be the end of the world.
flyquiet is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 9:16 am
  #1505  
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: YVR
Programs: AC SEMM
Posts: 2,075
Originally Posted by yyz_consulted
Has anyone had luck reaching out to customer relations to extend eCoupons given as compensation for past poor flight experience?

I have two that expire in late April and had plans to use them for a wedding but that looks more and more uncertain due to COVID-19. I called in the main line and they said they have authorization to extend ACCredits but not eCoupons and I would have to email customer relations. Just wondering what my odds are here and response time, or whether I should just roll the dice and book the flight.

Relevent policy here: https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/...-vouchers.html
Has it been confirmed that Expiring eCoupons are being extended by one year? I heard of this from a concierge two days ago but wondering if anyone has also had this confirmed to them. Cant see any announcement of this online.
Argonaut1000 is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 9:29 am
  #1506  
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Vancouver
Programs: AC SE100K 1MM, FB Platinum, Bonvoy Platinum Elite, IHG Gold Elite, Hilton Gold
Posts: 1,627
Originally Posted by Sailor-man
Has anyone been successful in claiming the $300 cancellation fee on their credit card trip cancellation insurance. I took the refund option with $300 deducted as a cancellation fee vs the 24 month conditional credit. In the process of trying to claim the $300 so Im not out of pocket.

Has anyone been successful going this route.
I have had discount codes extended by contacting Customer Care.
EdmFlyBoi is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 10:32 am
  #1507  
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: YVR
Programs: SE 100K
Posts: 945
Originally Posted by EdmFlyBoi
I have had discount codes extended by contacting Customer Care.
Same for me.
CanadianMike is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 12:41 pm
  #1508  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: SFO
Programs: AC SE MM, BA Gold, SQ Silver, Bonvoy Tit LTG, Hyatt Glob, HH Diamond
Posts: 44,514
https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/...-goodwill.html

Hadn't seen that page with a formal statement of how credit-based FPs are being extended.

2020 expiry are now April 30. Early 2021 expiry have been extended 3 months.
canadiancow is online now  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 12:59 pm
  #1509  
Moderator, Air Canada; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: YYC
Programs: AC SE MM, FB Plat, WS Plat, BA Silver, DL GM, Marriott Plat, Hilton Gold, Accor Silver
Posts: 16,837
Originally Posted by canadiancow
https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/...-goodwill.html

Hadn't seen that page with a formal statement of how credit-based FPs are being extended.

2020 expiry are now April 30. Early 2021 expiry have been extended 3 months.
I still think it's ridiculous that someone with a pass expiring in, say, October 2020 is getting an extra 6+ months, whereas my pass expiring January 2021 is getting only exactly 3 months (and expiring before that October 2020 pass). It's chintzy.
Adam Smith is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 1:22 pm
  #1510  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Canada
Programs: Marriott Plat; Air Canada E75K; Westjet Platinum
Posts: 1,161
Evaluating the Pros and Cons between these 2 options - 1) Credit card charge back vs. 2) Claim through credit card insurance - for AC canceling my flight.

1) Credit card charge back - AC doesn't get the money, quicker resolution for me.

2) Credit card trip cancellation Insurance claim - I heard that some cards have maximum claim limit like $1500 and does not cover passengers under 18 years old? AC gets to keep the money, insurance company takes the financial hit, long term impact might be credit card insurance claims will become very strict after COVID, also a longer process before getting my money back.

Anything else I haven't thought about in terms of impact of various stakeholders in these scenarios? Assuming both options will make me whole, it is interesting to look at the pros/cons of these 2 options. Which option will you choose? And why?
Sunny Day is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 1:43 pm
  #1511  
Moderator, Air Canada; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: YYC
Programs: AC SE MM, FB Plat, WS Plat, BA Silver, DL GM, Marriott Plat, Hilton Gold, Accor Silver
Posts: 16,837
Originally Posted by Sunny Day
Which option will you choose? And why?
Chargeback, hands down. Quicker, no issues with limits, anything like that. It's superior in every way. I would only go to cancellation insurance if the chargeback failed.
Adam Smith is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 1:54 pm
  #1512  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Canada
Programs: Marriott Plat; Air Canada E75K; Westjet Platinum
Posts: 1,161
We weren't thinking clearly and my wife just started the online insurance claim process yesterday - submitted the documentations etc. It could take a while for them to get to it. Should we contact them and cancel the claim and tell them we are going the charge back route first?
Sunny Day is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 10:49 pm
  #1513  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: YSC (and all its regularly scheduled flights)
Posts: 2,539
Originally Posted by EdmFlyBoi
I have had discount codes extended by contacting Customer Care.
Drat. Didn't even think about that. I was worrying about the ticket 'refund'/coupon and forgot about out VDB coupon. I guess some day soon I'll have to spend some hours on the phone.

Dr. PITUK
painintheuk is offline  
Old Apr 23, 2020, 11:10 pm
  #1514  
Moderator, Air Canada; FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: YYC
Programs: AC SE MM, FB Plat, WS Plat, BA Silver, DL GM, Marriott Plat, Hilton Gold, Accor Silver
Posts: 16,837
Originally Posted by Sunny Day
We weren't thinking clearly and my wife just started the online insurance claim process yesterday - submitted the documentations etc. It could take a while for them to get to it. Should we contact them and cancel the claim and tell them we are going the charge back route first?
I don't know if you have to cancel the claim, but it seems wise to contact them and let them know the situation. Whether they cancel it or put it on hold or something like that, perhaps leave it up to them. But probably better to be transparent so that no one accuses you of trying to commit insurance fraud.
Adam Smith is offline  
Old Apr 24, 2020, 7:06 am
  #1515  
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Posts: 1,206
Originally Posted by Sunny Day
We weren't thinking clearly and my wife just started the online insurance claim process yesterday - submitted the documentations etc. It could take a while for them to get to it. Should we contact them and cancel the claim and tell them we are going the charge back route first?
Go the chargeback route, don't hold your breath about insurance coverage.

Your trip cancellation insurance will probably not pay given that you've been offered a credit.

Insurance companies have ganged up and decided they shouldn't be liable for the burden placed on them by airlines and tour operators who refuse to refund:
https://www.clhia.ca/web/clhia_lp4w_...25853D0063886C

Originally Posted by char777
How brazen. Have people had any success filing DOT complaints and chargebacks? Seems like such a hassle, and I probably could figure out a way to justify using a credit if that's all I get, but I'd rather just have the money. I've never set foot on an AC aircraft before.
Don't let Air Canada push you over. AC is hoping many people will give up and just take the credit. Exercising your recourses is worth it given the restrictions placed in the credits

Last edited by hoipolloi; Apr 24, 2020 at 7:34 am
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