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BA Gold Upgrade Voucher Discussion and Wiki Thread

Old Sep 16, 2017, 2:32 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: Prospero


Summary
This is a guide to gold upgrade vouchers which BA issues. In the wiki there are a number of frequently asked questions, and in the posts below there is a lot of detail and information on these vouchers.

Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is a Gold Upgrade Voucher?
Gold Upgrade Vouchers are awarded when you reach certain Tier Point levels and allow you to an upgrade to the next travel class.

Q: How do I qualify for a Gold Upgrade Voucher?
You will be awarded a Gold Upgrade Voucher for Two (GUF2) when you reach 2,500 Tier Points. Two Gold Upgrade Vouchers for One (GUF1) are awarded when you reach 3,500 Tier Points. You have the option to choose another two GUF1s at 7,000, 8,000 and 9,000 Tier Points.

Q: When will I know I have a voucher?
The voucher will appear on your BAEC homepage when you hit the required Tier Points in the same place as any Amex 241s that you may have.



Q: How long is the voucher valid for?
The voucher is valid for 12 months must be redeemed within one year of its issue.

Q: Do I have to travel by the expiry date?
No. You must book your ticket by the expiry date so you can travel up to 355 days after.

Q: Can the voucher be extended?
If you do not redeem the voucher within twelve months you can request an extension. Extensions are usually granted for a further six months.

Q: Where can I use the voucher?
You can use the voucher for a one class upgrade on any BA published fare on flights operated by BA.

Q: Can I use the voucher for a one way ticket?
Yes. The voucher can be used for a one way booking. FT opinion may say that this is not a good use but your individual circumstances will influence this.

Q: Where can I upgrade to?
You can upgrade to the next cabin on any BA flight:
  • Euro Traveller to Club Europe
  • World Traveller to World Traveller Plus
  • World Traveller Plus to Club World
  • Club World to First (where fitted on the aircraft)
Q: What cabin would an economy booking upgrade to?
As the voucher will upgrade you to the next available cabin, an economy (Euro Traveller / World Traveller) booking would upgrade you to Club Europe (from ET) on the short haul flight and World Traveller Plus (from WT) on the long haul flight.

Q: I havent got a companion. Can I still use a GUF2?
Yes. You can use a GUF2 on your own for a single or return journey. GUF2 can be divided to two GUF1 meaning that if you want to use it as a solo traveller, ask first through customer service to divide it.

Q: Does the voucher have to be used in conjunction with a paid fare?
No. Gold Upgrade Vouchers can be used either with a paid fare or a journey booked with Avios.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher with an Amex 2-4-1 voucher?
Yes. You can combine a GUF with a companion voucher (also known as a 2-4-1). This is a great way to really get a really good value use for the voucher as you will save a very large amount of Avios.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher with a Lloyds voucher?
No. A Lloyds voucher cannot be combined with a Gold Upgrade voucher.

Q: Can I UuA a ticket and then use my GUF voucher?
No. Tickets can only be upgraded using the Gold Upgrade voucher or Avios, not both.

Q: Are bookings made with the Gold Upgrade voucher flexible?
Only if the underlying ticket is in a flexible bucket. For example a J ticket upgraded to First will be flexible according to the original ticket rules. The same applies to redemption tickets.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher on another oneworld airline?
Yes, currently only with AA when certain conditions of use are fulfilled.

Q: Is the voucher valid on franchise operated flights?
Yes. Gold Upgrade vouchers are available for British Airways and franchise operated flights only.

Q: Can I use the voucher on an itinerary that includes non-BA flights?
With a booking direct with BA this is fine. For a TA booking you cant include non-BA flights. However, there are the occasional reports of a few slipping through where some Travel Agents have managed to apply a GUF to a booking which includes both BA and non-BA flights on BA codeshares.

Q: Can I upgrade an existing booking?
Yes. Please call the BA Service Centre to do this. If you have booked with a Travel Agent then the voucher must be used at the time of booking. Additional taxes and fees may apply. UPDATE - As of January 2018 the restriction to TA bookings no longer applies so if you book with a TA you can apply the GUF at any time by contacting BA directly up to 24 hours before your flight to process the upgrade - see post 3 for more details.

Q: Do I have to travel myself when I use the Gold Upgrade voucher like the Amex 2-4-1?
If you book with BA you can use the voucher for any other person or persons. However you must pay for the booking yourself either through your account on ba.com or through the Service Centre. If you book through a TA then the voucher owner must travel on the booking.

Q: If I cancel the booking will I get the Gold Upgrade voucher back?
If you cancel more than 24 hours before departure then the voucher will be reinstated to your account if the original validity has not expired. If you cancel within 24 hours then the voucher will not be available for further use. Any refund on the other part of the ticket will be subject to the original fare rules.

Q: Does there have to be Avios availability in the upgraded cabin to use the Gold Upgrade voucher?
No. There only needs to be discounted revenue fare availability in the cabin you are upgrading to (A for First, I for Club and T for WT+).
It used to be the case that you had to book through a Travel Agent to achieve this, and that direct bookings with BA required Avios availability in the cabin you are upgrading to. With changes to GUF2 made in 2019, this is no longer the case.

Q: Can I book the outbound leg using an Amex 2-4-1 and GUF2 and then add the inbound when it becomes available?
Yes. This can be done in the same way as adding a return leg to a booking using the Amex 2-4-1 voucher.

Q: Can I use the Gold Upgrade voucher on flights that do not originate in the UK?
Yes. Flights do not have to originate in the UK. A GUF can be used on an ex-EU booking - there is no requirement to start and finish in the UK or your Executive Club resident country.

Q: Can I use two GUF1s to upgrade two classes?
No. Nice try

Q: Can the Gold Upgrade voucher be used by anyone in the Household Account?
Any Household Account Member who earns Gold Upgrade vouchers must redeem them personally. Gold Upgrade vouchers are not part of the Household Account pool and cannot be redeemed by another Member of the Household Account. Household Account Members who earn Gold Upgrade vouchers are subject to applicable Household Account redemption rules, whereby the Gold Upgrade vouchers can only be used for members within the Household Account. These upgrades cannot be allocated to Executive Club Members under age 18. An upgrade earned by a member under 18 is allocated to the Head of that Member's Household Account, but the head must be a gold card holder. If the head is not a gold the voucher is effectively lost since it cant be allocated.

Q: Will I earn Tier Points and Avios with the Gold Upgrade voucher?
Yes. You should earn tier points and Avios in line with the original selling class of the booking and not based on the cabin you upgraded in to - although sometimes mistakes do seem to happen and you do end up earning based on the cabin you upgraded to. As a reward booking doesnt earn any tier points or Avios you wont earn anything from a reward booking to which you had applied a GUF.

Q: I have more than two people in my booking. Can I just upgrade two of them?
No. A GUF cant be applied to a selection of passengers on a booking, and has to cover all of them - you cant end up with a booking for four people where two are still in CW and the other two are upgraded to F. If necessary you can as BA to split the booking so that those not being upgraded are under one booking reference, and those being upgraded by the GUF are in a new separate booking reference.

Q: Does an infant use an available upgrade?
No. If an upgraded booking contains an infant travelling on an infant fare, the infant will be automatically upgraded with the adults. Child fares will be subject to the same rules as adults.
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BA Gold Upgrade Voucher Discussion and Wiki Thread

Old Feb 1, 2018, 3:25 am
  #76  
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Originally Posted by chazman189
I've got a flight to/from Vegas and LA, wanting to change the outbound to JFK keeping the return from LA

I'm being told that because JFK is a different zone, I can't do this, and moreover I can't use it on a LCY flight.

But nothing in the terms and conditions mentions either of those things. Can anyone clarify please?
Is this a reward flight? You can't do a change unfortunately if in means changing zones i.e. would cost a different level of avios. NYC and LAS are different I think it is covered by this section of the terms.

https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb...and-conditions

16.2. The route or date applicable to a Reward booking may be changed provided that the new route or date selected would, as at the date the change is requested, require the redemption of the same amount of Avios points as was redeemed in making the original booking. Route changes are only permitted for Reward bookings which are purchased using Avios points only (other than for the payment of taxes, fees and charges).
In terms the LCY-JFK flight you can do that as a reward booking. Did you do a reward WTP booking and apply a GUF to CW? If so that's not possible for LCY-JFK since there is no WTP to upgrade from.
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Old Feb 1, 2018, 3:26 am
  #77  
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Originally Posted by chazman189
On both?
Sorry, having seen the word "zone" in your original post, I thought that I was in a different thread. So I ought to ask: Was this an award booking to which a GUF has been applied?
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Old Feb 1, 2018, 3:28 am
  #78  
 
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Originally Posted by Globaliser
Sorry, having seen the word "zone" in your original post, I thought that I was in a different thread. So I ought to ask: Was this an award booking to which a GUF has been applied?
Yes, it was
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Old Feb 1, 2018, 3:29 am
  #79  
 
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Originally Posted by KARFA
In terms the LCY-JFK flight you can do that as a reward booking. Did you do a reward WTP booking and apply a GUF to CW? If so that's not possible for LCY-JFK since there is no WTP to upgrade from.
Currently I'm in F out to LAS... want to go to NYC instead (I don't really care if BA1 or not)
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Old Feb 1, 2018, 3:29 am
  #80  
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Originally Posted by chazman189
Yes, it was
in that case see my post above for details, what you have been told is correct
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Old Feb 1, 2018, 3:31 am
  #81  
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Originally Posted by chazman189
Currently I'm in F out to LAS... want to go to NYC instead (I don't really care if BA1 or not)
you can't change a reward booking between zones. the only way you can do it is keep your current booking and have a separate cash/reward booking between LAS and NYC, or cancel and start again with a new booking.
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Old Feb 3, 2018, 11:53 pm
  #82  
 
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Originally Posted by rather_be_on_a_griffin

I genuinely expected nothing and I am pretty positively surprised. The glass half empty in me now expects my ticket reissue to go horribly wrong and the whole trip derailed but who knows it might just work.
Quick update: the first change did indeed go wrong because they rebooked me on the wrong date (immediate connection to Bombay rather than a break of a day). Another call to India and they told me they would sort it, which they did.

I got an op-up on the first sector so the whole thing was in F.

First time in the CCR in months and I am firmly in the camp of thinking the sofas look better in real life, in fact I think they look great.

This has definitely motivated me to make a slight push to hit the 3,500 TP. I know people are worried about losing the conventional TA booking approach for GUF1/2 but for me this is a really huge improvement.
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Old Feb 4, 2018, 12:02 am
  #83  
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Originally Posted by rather_be_on_a_griffin
I know people are worried about losing the conventional TA booking approach for GUF1/2 but for me this is a really huge improvement.
Yes, we are indeed worried about that. I currently sit on 10 GUF1s and don't have enough jokers to use them with BA, so if the avenue of using my fave TA is gone, they will go unused...
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Old Feb 9, 2018, 2:12 pm
  #84  
 
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So I have a booking class question when applying a GUF1 via a travel agent, at the time of booking.

Let's say I want to book CPH-LHR-JFK and I'm going to upgrade from a T class fare. On a regular revenue booking with an "I" class fare basis, only "I" class needs to be available on the LHR-JFK segment, and the CPH-LHR can book into the "J" bucket.

When applying a GUF1, is the behaviour the same i.e. the TA should book into J and then I? Or does it have to be I class even on the feeder flights?
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Old Feb 9, 2018, 2:18 pm
  #85  
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Originally Posted by Dave_C
So I have a booking class question when applying a GUF1 via a travel agent, at the time of booking.

Let's say I want to book CPH-LHR-JFK and I'm going to upgrade from a T class fare. On a regular revenue booking with an "I" class fare basis, only "I" class needs to be available on the LHR-JFK segment, and the CPH-LHR can book into the "J" bucket.

When applying a GUF1, is the behaviour the same i.e. the TA should book into J and then I? Or does it have to be I class even on the feeder flights?
The short haul is booked in J still if that's what the fare states (most I class exEU fares do). I can confirm this from one of my own TA GUF'ed I class fares. The availability of I class on the short haul flight should be irrelevant, if there is J it should be fine.
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Old Feb 11, 2018, 4:04 pm
  #86  
 
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Question Gold Upgrade for Two voucher

I've received a BAEC Gold Upgrade for Two voucher for spending too long on BA planes (or something like that).

The terms and conditions (from here) say:
  • 1 x Gold Upgrade for Two voucher can be earned by Gold Members when they earn 2,500 Tier Points and 2 x Gold Upgrade for One vouchers can be earned when they earn 3,500 Tier Points. Gold Upgrade vouchers are a single cabin class upgrade available on a single or return booking. ...
Three questions:
  1. If I use the voucher on a return booking for two, does it upgrade both legs (inbound and outbound) or only one leg? The above text seems to imply both legs, but is not a model of clarity.
  2. The above text does not say when upgrades would be available. Is it as simple as 'if there are seats available in the next class'? Or is it (e.g.) "if there are reward seats available in the next class'. How can I find out appropriate availability in (e.g.) business before I book in (e.g.) premium economy?
  3. My understanding is that I can upgrade any booking, no matter how deeply discounted the fare and whatever fare class (including reward bookings), so long as it's not part of a package holiday (unlikely!) or group booking, and so long as I haven't already upgraded it. So I could (e.g.) book LON->SYD return on Avios in Premium Economy and upgrade that to Business. Correct?
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Old Feb 11, 2018, 4:08 pm
  #87  
 
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1 - you can upgrade all legs, subject to redemption availability (unless you are GGL where you can unlock redemption availability using a joker)

2 - see above

3 - yes
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Old Feb 15, 2018, 9:23 am
  #88  
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Originally Posted by Dave_C
So I have a booking class question when applying a GUF1 via a travel agent, at the time of booking.

Let's say I want to book CPH-LHR-JFK and I'm going to upgrade from a T class fare. On a regular revenue booking with an "I" class fare basis, only "I" class needs to be available on the LHR-JFK segment, and the CPH-LHR can book into the "J" bucket.

When applying a GUF1, is the behaviour the same i.e. the TA should book into J and then I? Or does it have to be I class even on the feeder flights?
Originally Posted by KARFA
The short haul is booked in J still if that's what the fare states (most I class exEU fares do). I can confirm this from one of my own TA GUF'ed I class fares. The availability of I class on the short haul flight should be irrelevant, if there is J it should be fine.
Actually [MENTION=566057]KARFA[/MENTION] your reply is factually not covering the question here. GUFs on ex-EU WTP bookings, where a traveller is going from WTP to Club on long haul and ET-->CE on shorthaul go into I class on both short and long haul. The booking class codes usually associated with eu-EU I fares that book into J on shorthaul are irrelevant here. So, to the OP, you need I class throughout the itinerary if trying to upgrade WTP fare.
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Old Feb 15, 2018, 9:34 am
  #89  
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Originally Posted by nufnuf77
Actually [MENTION=566057]KARFA[/MENTION] your reply is factually not covering the question here. GUFs on ex-EU WTP bookings, where a traveller is going from WTP to Club on long haul and ET-->CE on shorthaul go into I class on both short and long haul. The booking class codes usually associated with eu-EU I fares that book into J on shorthaul are irrelevant here. So, to the OP, you need I class throughout the itinerary if trying to upgrade WTP fare.
Well done on spotting my deliberate mistake. It was a test of course
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Old Feb 15, 2018, 10:08 am
  #90  
 
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Originally Posted by nufnuf77
Actually [MENTION=566057]KARFA[/MENTION] your reply is factually not covering the question here. GUFs on ex-EU WTP bookings, where a traveller is going from WTP to Club on long haul and ET-->CE on shorthaul go into I class on both short and long haul. The booking class codes usually associated with eu-EU I fares that book into J on shorthaul are irrelevant here. So, to the OP, you need I class throughout the itinerary if trying to upgrade WTP fare.
Well, it got approved by BA into full J, on AY code-shares no less.
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