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Covid-19 BA Rebooking/Cancellation/Refund HELP & ADVICE *No Speculation etc*

Old Mar 14, 2020, 4:58 pm
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Last edit by: corporate-wage-slave
BA Covid-19 Rebooking / Cancellation / Refund Help & Advice

If your flight is cancelled by BA:
Commercial booking: Your options are: cash refund OR Future Travel Voucher (FTV) OR rebooking OR Avios credit
Redemption booking: Your options are: full refund of cash and Avios OR FTV OR rebooking.
BA Holidays booking: You should be given a refund pro-actively.

If your flight is cancelled by BA - any flight in the PNR - you can get a full refund so long as you booked directly with BA. You can only get a refund by telephoning BA. Refunds are taking between a few hours to a few weeks to be repaid, depending on the sort of booking made. If you don't wish to travel you can opt for an FTV or eVoucher valid for travel until 30 April 2022, though flights more than 355 days away are not currently bookable - flights are enabled at 355 days before departure. Vouchers such as 2-4-1 are also thereby extended. You can do this even if the flight is operating. The best advice we can give is to delay opting for an eVoucher options until the last moment, since if BA cancel your flight you have more options. BA have also adjusted the Standard Customer Guidelines so that if BA cancel the flight you can be rebooked to anytime in 12 months after you originally bought the ticket, so long as there is space in the cabin - there is no need to have a fare bucket available or Avios availability. If you choose the Avios credit you will get between 108 to 126 Avios per GBP of your fare. Note older posts in this thread may now be inaccuarate since the current policy has been amended several times.
===
If your flight is not cancelled but you don't wish to travel
Commercial booking: If you are eligible for Buy with Confidence, you can have an FTV valid until April 2022. Rebooking may lead to a fare recalculation but no change fee.
Redemption booking: Your can do the normal Avios refund, with the redeposit fee capped at GBP 35 per person. Alternatively for the same fee you can rebook to new dates subject to availability. Alternatively you can have an FTV.
BA Holidays booking: You may be get a refund proactively, otherwise you are looking at an FTV for at least the flight component of your trip, maybe for all components.

If all of the flights in your booking are still scheduled and you don't wish to travel then you best wait until a few days before departure in case there is a cancellation. As you can see above, a cancellation gives you better options. You are in scope with Buy with Confidence if you are flying between now and completing travel before 31 August 2021, also if you bought your ticket after 3 March and due to complete all flights before September 2021. The BA web page on this is:
ba.com/confidence
===
Below are some of the options / workarounds being suggested in order to obtain a refund as opposed to a Future Travel Voucher, but they probably no longer work:

Refund of Cancelled Flights:
  • Call BA (no longer a requirement to be travelling in the next 72 hours, you may need to make repeated calls to get through). Telephone numbers are in this thread, but you can also find them on BA.com at the bottom left of the website, under Help and Contacts.

Paid Seating Refund:
Bookings made using Lloyds Upgrade Voucher
You should expect to receive:
  • Full refund of Avios and money paid
  • A new voucher issued, which has validity for 6 months (from the date of issue, i.e. when you request the 'refund')

Lloyds Upgrade Voucher Notes
  • Flights can be used within 12 months, so it will be good for travel up until the end 6 months plus 12 months if you book just before the new expiry
  • It's been advised to take the voucher instead of rebooking as it gives me more flexibility.
  • The original expiry date of the voucher was irrelevant because the booking was cancelled.
  • You must book within 6 months of the voucher being issued and the ticket has 12 months validity so you can change flights after, provided the new flights are within the 12 month window.
  • You won't receive any email, only the refund and the miles.
How to find out the status of your voucher and the amount it contains Future Travel Vouchers versus eVouchers
  • See posts 3052 and 3151 to understand the difference. FTVs cannot be used online (and are not really vouchers), whereas eVouchers, issued for simple bookings, can be used online.
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Covid-19 BA Rebooking/Cancellation/Refund HELP & ADVICE *No Speculation etc*

Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:05 am
  #196  
Moderator, Iberia Airlines, Airport Lounges, and Ambassador, British Airways Executive Club
 
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Originally Posted by paulaf
Surely they're not going to take tourist pax out there, is it just rescue flights or Spaniards trying to get home?
Mainly tourists I would say, there are plenty of tourists out in the departure area as far as I can tell. That said, many of course will either be expats or those Brits who choose to spend long periods in Spain.
corporate-wage-slave is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:07 am
  #197  
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
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Information for bookings with Avios and 241 vouchers.
I just called BA and had it confirmed for tickets traveling between 14th March and 31st May booked with Avios & 241 vouchers you can take the voucher option and tavel will be suspended for 12 months. This will allow you to rebook for future dates to any destination within 12 months as long as there is Avios availability on the flights. If the new seats were to cost more Avios then you could pay the difference in Avios. The agent could not confirm if you would get refunded the Avios if you were to book new seats which cost less Avios than the original booking. The booking would remain open on the system for the 12 months and you would need to call them to make the date or destination changes.

If you take the other option to do a normal cancellaton of the booking up to 24hr before travel then the Avios + cash and 241 voucher would be refunded but the 241 voucher end date would remain unchanged. There would also be 35pp cancelation charge applied.
Highfly76 is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:12 am
  #198  
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Originally Posted by cosmo74
Just had the email saying our flight to Miami is due to operate as normal, and offering the voucher if we want to change plans and switch to an alternate date or destination. This is an Amex 2-4-1 booking in F. Just wondering if there is any thought on whether the voucher would allow rebooking onto any flight, regardless of Avios availability, in which case it may be a better option than cancelling and taking the Avios back (don't think we'll be able to go due to the US travel ban)?
The eVoucher would refund you cash expenditure, you would also get the Avios and 2-4-1 returned. It won't allow you to generate Avios availability. You would frankly be better doing the standard cancellation at T-24 hours (or better, a few hours before that) to get a cash refund, minus the 35 per person redeposit fee. The eVoucher offer allows you to avoid the 35 penalty. If there is a cancellation then that is when you can rebook regardless of Avios availability but you would need to provide a viable date at that point.
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:13 am
  #199  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
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HI,
I'm due to fly to ORD next week with a friend. I am flying on a BA holiday booking (inc hire car) in F/J and he is flying on a flight only in Y.

I've had an email saying "We are sorry to advise that this means we are unable to provide your British Airways Holidays arrangements as originally booked" and that "We will be processing a full refund of your British Airways Holidays", but he has had an email saying the flight is running but offering him a voucher.

Could I clarify that this means for my flight that I will get a full refund of the amount paid for the flight and hire car, or merely the hire car? The email is clunkily worded and doesnt seem to make clear what the situation is. Any help would be much appreciated!
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:14 am
  #200  
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
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Originally Posted by paulaf
But it can't operate as its within the 15 days lockdown in Spain! Others with later departure dates have had the refund option.
The flight certainly can operate, technically. Some travelers may be returning nationals and residents who can absolutely put themselves into quarantine upon arrival.

You're confusing 'banned from flying' with 'restrictions upon arrival'. Spain hasn't banned all incoming flights from the UK, just made it unattractive for holidaymakers such as yourself because of the quarantine/self-isolation orders.

Until BA themselves pull the flight, or Spain prohibits the inbound flight, you either
  • take the voucher
  • cancel under the usual terms and conditions, getting back only the taxes and fees element (unless on a fully-refundable ticket)
  • wait and hope that the flight is cancelled by the airline before departure, in which case a full refund in cash will be possible
  • fly and get stuck in lockdown
Your call.
southlondonphil is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:25 am
  #201  
 
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Originally Posted by OddJobMan
I've just had the same for one of my bookings. Is it worth holding fire in case it gets cancelled? My flight is 8th April to Lyon.
Absolutely, if you'd rather have the full amount in cash rather than as a voucher credit. As I understand it, for a cash booking cancellation options are possible right up until Check-In closes (normally 1 Hour before scheduled departure), although the cancellation deadline for Avios bookings (and 2-4-1) is, I think, when Check-In opens, i.e. 24 hours before departure.

I have a flight to Dubrovnik due on Wednesday which, due to self-isolation mandates I have no intention of taking, but I'm waiting to see whether BA pull it today/tomorrow before going for the voucher option.
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:26 am
  #202  
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Originally Posted by xenole
My OSL-LHR flight on Saturday, before my connection to LAX, is now showing as cancelled and I should call BA.

What happens here?
Full refund, or do I still have to wait for the LAX flight to be cancelled, or take the voucher?
Take the voucher if it's handy, otherwise at some point when it is a bit calmer ring up and get a cash refund. Or do the Twitter thing (and GGLs can email too). The refund may happen automatically if you leave it a day or two. You don't need the LAX flight to be cancelled (and my guess is that this is a route BA is determined to run). One third option, thinking about it: because of the rebooking critera under the USA Guidelines are wide open, if you can give a specific replacement date which is viable in terms of current restrictions, then call up and get a free move to another date later on.
corporate-wage-slave is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:30 am
  #203  
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Originally Posted by jimlad48
Could I clarify that this means for my flight that I will get a full refund of the amount paid for the flight and hire car, or merely the hire car? The email is clunkily worded and doesnt seem to make clear what the situation is. Any help would be much appreciated!
Yes it is for the whole amount. There are full versions of that email upthread and it seems clear to me it is for the entire holiday cost, flight, car, hotel, transfer and experiences.
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corporate-wage-slave is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:32 am
  #204  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
Yes it is for the whole amount. There are full versions of that email upthread and it seems clear to me it is for the entire holiday cost, flight, car, hotel, transfer and experiences.
Thank you - their phrasing seems a bit odd and has left us feeling a bit confused. Good to hear that we'll get it all back!

Now to worry about my 2-4-1 voucher for late April, but thats another days problem!
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:35 am
  #205  
 
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Originally Posted by southlondonphil
Absolutely, if you'd rather have the full amount in cash rather than as a voucher credit. As I understand it, for a cash booking cancellation options are possible right up until Check-In closes (normally 1 Hour before scheduled departure), although the cancellation deadline for Avios bookings (and 2-4-1) is, I think, when Check-In opens, i.e. 24 hours before departure.

I have a flight to Dubrovnik due on Wednesday which, due to self-isolation mandates I have no intention of taking, but I'm waiting to see whether BA pull it today/tomorrow before going for the voucher option.
I'm actually hoping to rearrange the trip for later in the year if/when things settle down a bit. As I understand it, it would be better if BA cancelled the flight in that case.
The booking in question is my positioning flights for an ex EU trip to the US which I can now not take.
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 5:56 am
  #206  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
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Avios 2-4-1

Sorry, but I'm still not 100% clear on the voucher and Avios 241 bookings.

We are scheduled to go to Tokyo on April 6th in First using a 241. The 241 voucher would expire on April 30th 2020 if not used.

If I cancel using the standard process, I'd lose 35pp, but wouldn't be able to change the dates beyond April 30th.

If I take the voucher option, do I basically get to F seats at my date of choosing?

Ideally, we still want to go to Japan, but at a later date. I don't want to call BA as I'm not 3 days away from flying, but when I tried to change the dates online, I couldn't and MMB stated I'd have to call.

Would appreciate some advice please.
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 6:02 am
  #207  
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You CAN'T take the voucher on an Avios booking. Your ONLY option is to cancel, pay the 35 and get your Avios and taxes back in CASH.

If you wait until BA cancels your flight, you get the lot back in cash and don't pay the 35.
Raffles is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 6:03 am
  #208  
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Originally Posted by stephenjc
If I cancel using the standard process, I'd lose 35pp, but wouldn't be able to change the dates beyond April 30th.

If I take the voucher option, do I basically get to F seats at my date of choosing?
If you take the eVoucher, you can travel on it to anywhere, and potentially I would hope that the 2-4-1 could be extended. There are some anecdotes this is happening but no official word on extensions (yet). But you won't get an F seat, there would need to be Avios availability. If the flight is cancelled, you can potentially rebook to new dates, without need Avios availability. If your flights operates, my suggestion is to do the normal cancellation before T-24, you would loose the 35 but it would be in hard cash, which is more negotiable than an eVoucher in every sense of the word. If the flight is cancelled then rebook if you can give new dates. You would still need to apply for your 2-4-1 to be extended.
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corporate-wage-slave is offline  
Old Mar 16, 2020, 6:06 am
  #209  
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Originally Posted by Raffles
You CAN'T take the voucher on an Avios booking. Your ONLY option is to cancel, pay the 35 and get your Avios and taxes back in CASH.

If you wait until BA cancels your flight, you get the lot back in cash and don't pay the 35.
I don't think that is quite right. If you are on a route were BA have sent out emails pro-actively, you can use the eVoucher for the cash component of redemptions, get the Avios back and retain the 35. But I would certainly agree that cash is king and 35, perhaps reclaimable from insurance if it's an ABE country, is not a bad outcome.
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Old Mar 16, 2020, 6:12 am
  #210  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
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Would anyone with more knowledge of the industry be able to advise on the following? We have a pair of return flights London to South Africa outbound on the 21st March. We have travel insurance via Amex, and as the FCO is advising against all but essential travel, should be covered. We've been offered the vouchers by BA, but don't think we should take them because this would stop us getting the money back as cash either from insurance or BA depending on if it is cancelled or not; I'm also concerned that us "cancelling" the booking may make the process of claiming for other elements of the holiday harder with insurance. Thanks for any help.
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