Old Mar 17, 2020, 1:00 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: oliver2002
Air France's rebooking policy: https://www.airfrance.nl/NL/en/common/page_flottante/hp/news-air-traffic-air-france.htm?_ga=2.60869669.82286185.1584471569-101309917.1487618201 KLM's rebooking policy: https://www.klm.com/travel/nl_nl/prepare_for_travel/up_to_date/flight_update/index.htm

Worksheet/flowchart for Travel Agents: http://image.email.bluebiz.info/lib/fe9013727c62017f75/m/4/575524f1-d29b-4548-b393-eb5ab0eee26b.pdf

European Commission EC261/2004 guidelines in context of COVD-19 dated 18 MAR 2020 US DoT Enforcement Notice regarding refunds dated 3 APR 2020.

Some additional information:
1) North American ticket holders can typically request chargebacks from their banks.
2) Furthermore, for flights that touch US soil, they may also file complains with the US DOT.
3) American Express in France and in the Netherlands reportedly refuse to open chargeback disputes for cardholders. Unclear whether other banks are following this policy.
4) At this stage, 14 EU member states out of 27 support amending EC261 regulation (which mandates airlines give the consumer the choice of a refund) for the duration of the crisis. Some of these member states have already suspended the enforcement of the regulation with respect to the obligation for a refund. Air France/KLM supports the proposed amendment.

Statement by 12 of these 14 EU member states: https://www.aviation24.be/miscellaneous/passenger-rights/coronavirus-twelve-eu-member-states-ask-commission-to-amend-regulation-ec-261-2004-to-allow-issuance-of-vouchers-in-lieu-of-refund/


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COVID-19: AF/KL rebooking/refund policy

Old Jun 29, 2020, 11:59 am
  #826  
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Posts: 1
I have a flight to SFO in August with KL which has now been canceled, and I therefore called KLM to rebook it until next year according to the information on the website, see below.

Was your flight cancelled by the airline?

Different policies are in place, depending on when your flight was cancelled by the airline. Not sure when your flight was cancelled? Please check the date on which you received our e-mail informing you about the cancellation.

You can change your booking until 30 June 2021, but it would be especially helpful to us if you would do so before your original travel date.


I read the above as a rebooking would be possible until 30 June 2021, but was denied by the agent due to the fact that my flight was booked in early March and that it can only be rebooked to a date within 12 months from purchase.

Does anyone now if that is correct during these circumstances? Or should I try calling again?

Thankful for any help here
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Old Jun 29, 2020, 2:45 pm
  #827  
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Originally Posted by gkl
I'd like to share my experiences with rebookings at the Platinum hotline. I had quite a couple of bookings for Q2 which obviously were all cancelled.
I fully understand that for persons with tight working schedules the current offering (often only one daily flight f.e. ZRH-AMS, ZRH-CDG) does not provide much flexibility. I'm in the good situation that I have some flexibility when flying and can somehow arrange around the offered flight schedule which seems to be stable now for July/August. Within these given restrictions, I must applaud the Platinum hotline for the flexibility which they provided to me. I looked up my desired new flights before I called and they booked these without any problem, but they even went beyond this (what I was anyway entitled to). 2 very positive examples:
- In two instances the flights for July or August were not cancelled by the airline, but I wanted to change the date. I was prepared to pay the fare difference, but the Platinum hotline just rebooked me into Z and D even though the original booking was in O. Thank you for this flexibility which saved me some money!
- in another example, a rebooking for my specific desired date would have required an overnight stay in CDG connecting to the morning flight to ZRH. I was prepared to pay for the hotel because it was the only date when I could fly. The agent proactively offered me a routing through VIE on OS which allowed me to return to ZRH same day. This is really not something which I would have expected or what I was entiteld to and I was very positively surprised about this flexibility.

Given these very positive experiences which I made with them, I'm happy to keep my future business with AFKL. These are not easy times for both, the airline and the passenger, and when both show some flexibility, solutions can be achieved.
Great experience indeed. Kudos to AF for this.
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Old Jul 1, 2020, 2:02 am
  #828  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Paris, France
Programs: FB Gold
Posts: 87
A quick data point: The flights for my family's annual summer trip back to Canada were cancelled. Finally decided yesterday not to try to rebook and request vouchers since Canada extended their quarantine order. The tickets for me and my kids were booked through the AF website, so I made the voucher request and received them via email in minutes. My wife's ticket was booked on the KLM website, so requested her voucher there, and so far just have an email confirming the request and saying that it may take several weeks to get the voucher.
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Old Jul 1, 2020, 4:34 pm
  #829  
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Programs: Flying Blue Silver
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Originally Posted by HeartFist
I received the refund confirmation yesterday and the refund letter this morning. So the overall processing time was not too terrible - request May 27th, refund letter June 15th. I wonder if it was accelerated because I inquired about the status recently on FB.

However the refund amount was short of exactly 11 USD. Did you have the same issue? I already wrote back and requested the full amount.
It took AF almost another two weeks, but they confirmed that the missing 11 USD will be reimbursed as well.
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Old Jul 1, 2020, 6:18 pm
  #830  
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Originally Posted by HeartFist
It took AF almost another two weeks, but they confirmed that the missing 11 USD will be reimbursed as well.
That gives me hope , you received your refund faster than I would expect.
I requested a refund on June 11 and was told via Facebook messenger that it could take 8 weeks to process.
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Old Jul 2, 2020, 1:12 pm
  #831  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
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I've read the Wiki, and some of the posts here. Please offer my your (solicited!) advice:
I've got tickets purchased last December (2019) for a March/April trip: MSP-AMS-SIN return in cheap economy class. KL ticket, with some DL codeshares but all KL flight numbers.
Flights were all cancelled.
I know I can get it rebooked until 30SEP, or ask for a voucher good for a year, or ask for a refund.
My questions:
1) If I ask for a voucher, how long is it *actually* taking to actually GET the voucher? I assumed it was immediate, so I was looking around at KLM fares. Now I see it's "weeks/months" for people to get the stupid voucher??

2) For rebookings-- Is KLM still requiring a 30SEP deadline for travel on tickets purchased pre-Covid? At first, tickets to SIN had different rules, and it was quite confusing. My problem is that MSP-SIN is often (usually) $1800 but I got this when it was $1200. So if I rebook to December/January, since my countrymen are apparently too stupid to wear an effing mask, I'd have to pay $600 more with "no change fee" but fare difference is $600..... No can do.

3) For refunds-- I assume it's 3+ months still for the refund?

Thanks!
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Old Jul 2, 2020, 11:43 pm
  #832  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Originally Posted by kyushuman
I've read the Wiki, and some of the posts here. Please offer my your (solicited!) advice:
I've got tickets purchased last December (2019) for a March/April trip: MSP-AMS-SIN return in cheap economy class. KL ticket, with some DL codeshares but all KL flight numbers.
Flights were all cancelled.
I know I can get it rebooked until 30SEP, or ask for a voucher good for a year, or ask for a refund.
My questions:
1) If I ask for a voucher, how long is it *actually* taking to actually GET the voucher? I assumed it was immediate, so I was looking around at KLM fares. Now I see it's "weeks/months" for people to get the stupid voucher??

2) For rebookings-- Is KLM still requiring a 30SEP deadline for travel on tickets purchased pre-Covid? At first, tickets to SIN had different rules, and it was quite confusing. My problem is that MSP-SIN is often (usually) $1800 but I got this when it was $1200. So if I rebook to December/January, since my countrymen are apparently too stupid to wear an effing mask, I'd have to pay $600 more with "no change fee" but fare difference is $600..... No can do.

3) For refunds-- I assume it's 3+ months still for the refund?

Thanks!
I would say your best bet would be to stick with Option 2 as you consider you had a good fare and still considering to travel the same itinerary.
Because of Covid policy, you can keep you PNR active until June 30th 2021 (= you can make the rebooking of your flights until that date). However, when you know when you want to travel, you should find flights with the same booking class to avoid any fare difference. So if you have a cheap ticket, the best is still to book 3-4 months ahead as you did.

For the record, below are the information I got from AF on Messenger. My flights have also been cancelled and I am not ready to make a new booking right now (and do not want to lose the fare). Therefore, I am considering to postpone my 2020 summer trips to next summer.:
Spoiler
 
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Old Jul 3, 2020, 5:41 am
  #833  
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Originally Posted by canadavid
I would say your best bet would be to stick with Option 2 as you consider you had a good fare and still considering to travel the same itinerary.
Because of Covid policy, you can keep you PNR active until June 30th 2021 (= you can make the rebooking of your flights until that date). However, when you know when you want to travel, you should find flights with the same booking class to avoid any fare difference. So if you have a cheap ticket, the best is still to book 3-4 months ahead as you did.
One important detail; if you can fly before November 30, then there is no fare difference either. So you can pick any flight you like as long as there is availability in the cabin. I myself am planning to make use of this as it allows booking/selecting flights (very) last minute without additional fees.
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Old Jul 5, 2020, 4:47 pm
  #834  
 
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Originally Posted by Xandrios
One important detail; if you can fly before November 30, then there is no fare difference either. So you can pick any flight you like as long as there is availability in the cabin. I myself am planning to make use of this as it allows booking/selecting flights (very) last minute without additional fees.
I agree that's the best way to go-- my issue is that there is no way I can get time off for a 10 day trip as a teacher before December 20th or so.
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Old Jul 5, 2020, 9:02 pm
  #835  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: BNE
Programs: QF, KLM, BA
Posts: 461
How long are KLM vouchers taking to issue?

I had a booking with AF for a May forward journey and July return journey. On 26th April, I received a voucher for that. I had a separate booking with KLM for which I requested a voucher. The booking disappeared from my Flying Blue account. I didn't receive an email then and I've heard nothing since. I sent KLM a message on Messenger two days ago, but all I got was an automated response saying they're very busy.

Is there anything else I should do? I don't mind if it takes time. But I have no way of knowing if it's a glitch in the system, in which case my voucher would never arrive.
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Old Jul 6, 2020, 12:26 am
  #836  
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Posts: 293
Originally Posted by weegraeme
How long are KLM vouchers taking to issue?

I had a booking with AF for a May forward journey and July return journey. On 26th April, I received a voucher for that. I had a separate booking with KLM for which I requested a voucher. The booking disappeared from my Flying Blue account. I didn't receive an email then and I've heard nothing since. I sent KLM a message on Messenger two days ago, but all I got was an automated response saying they're very busy.

Is there anything else I should do? I don't mind if it takes time. But I have no way of knowing if it's a glitch in the system, in which case my voucher would never arrive.
maybe a glitch... i have a voucher number but never received an email... i just had the voucher number because when you put the trip in the klm app it will say" this trip has been cancelled and voucher number 057........ has been issued...
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Old Jul 6, 2020, 12:45 am
  #837  
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: BNE
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Originally Posted by Wil973
maybe a glitch... i have a voucher number but never received an email... i just had the voucher number because when you put the trip in the klm app it will say" this trip has been cancelled and voucher number 057........ has been issued...
Thanks. I entered the details on the website and it didn't respond at all. I entered it on the phone app and it said the booking reference wasn't valid because I'd requested a voucher. It's saying it could take several weeks, even though we're now at several months. At least I know it's in the system.
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Old Jul 6, 2020, 9:21 am
  #838  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: PHX
Posts: 4,792
Does anyone have experience with voluntary cancellations of award trips and receiving the taxes back? I am thinking of making a speculative booking for June 2021 using miles and the taxes are about $550. The terms say that “issuance fees” are not refundable but elsewhere it appears this just means ticketing fees not taxes, which are refunded to the card used.

I am willing to risk the 50 euro redeposit fee if I decide to cancel but am curious what people ‘s experiences are with return of taxes on cancelled award bookings. I know that AF has been playing games. Are they trying to force vouchers in this situation or are people actually getting refunds on the award taxes and surcharges?
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Old Jul 9, 2020, 2:23 am
  #839  
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
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Originally Posted by irishguy28
Sorry, I overlooked the fact that your flight isn't for another 5 months...

I think you will need to wait much, much longer before it becomes clear what conditions will apply to your journey, if any deviations from the original conditions will ever apply.

(But given that your journey remained "possible" all through the peak of the pandemic, I don't think it's likely that your ticket for October will be cancelled)
Email this morning to say that my mid Oct flight KL705 (AMS - GIG) has been cancelled so no longer need to worry about a voucher.
I was surprised to see this one being the domino as from all my legs; DUB>AMS, AMS>GIG, SCL > CDG, CDG>DUB, the one that was cancelled is the only one that has operated (and continues to fly) throughout COVID.
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Old Jul 9, 2020, 2:27 am
  #840  
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Originally Posted by paulieccc
I was surprised to see this one being the domino as from all my legs; DUB>AMS, AMS>GIG, SCL > CDG, CDG>DUB, the one that was cancelled is the only one that has operated (and continues to fly) throughout COVID.
DUB-AMS was never suspended; throughout the entire period, there has been at least 1 scheduled KLM flight to and from DUB each day.
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