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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 Dec 27, 2020, 6:12 am
  #5191  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: LHR
Programs: BA Silver/ows, CX AsiaMiles (not even GR anymore!) missing my GO days
Posts: 1,581
Apologies in advance, I'm quite sure this will have been covered already but I'm having trouble searching on my phone:

I've flown the outbound of a round-trip avios redemption booking but now would like to change the return (IAD-LHR) to delay a bit in light of the situation in the UK that has evolved since my departure. I'm pretty certain the scheduled flight will still operate, so nothing in it to hope for a cancellation. Is BA offering any flexibility on this ticket that would normally be non changeable at this point or should I suck it up and either return on schedule or lose the unflown portion and book a new one way.
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 6:30 am
  #5192  
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 3,061
Originally Posted by KARFA
I can't find it either in the usual places, but it was noted by an FT'er here https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/32902286-post349.html

I don't know if Confus has any additional information on that policy which may help?
Unfortunately I donít know whether the policy is still in effect, but it wouldnít surprise me if itís already been switched off, itís really only designed to be used in the critical early phases of mass disruption events. I will do some digging and report back if I find out itís still in operation.
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 6:40 am
  #5193  
dnw
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
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Infuriating run around today. Flight for tomorrow cancelled, informed by text last night and confirmed by Flight Status on ba.com. MMB hasn't caught up (15 hours later) and still shows it operating but has disabled all the change functionality due to the "potential disruption" notification. 0800 is currently hanging up, after stating to go online to change cancelled flights...
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 6:46 am
  #5194  
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Originally Posted by Confus
Unfortunately I donít know whether the policy is still in effect, but it wouldnít surprise me if itís already been switched off, itís really only designed to be used in the critical early phases of mass disruption events. I will do some digging and report back if I find out itís still in operation.
Thanks
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 6:49 am
  #5195  
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Originally Posted by just_starting
Nice one, thanks. I was debating to book a back-up trip through BA Holidays to somewhere slightly safer in case our (fully planned) South America trip falls through. I could live with a £1k FTV for a bit, but rather not with a £5k one...

It doesn't look like the hotel terms are easily accessible/comparable between the various resorts... Are there many hotels that are non-cancellable a few weeks before, and would that money then be lost completely and not even turned into an FTV? I had always naively assumed a travel agent would have very flexible terms, especially in a time where pretty much every hotel offers very generous cancellation terms!
This is probably an extremely dumb question, since lots of other queries seem to be from people wanting to do the same thing as you in some form or another, but wouldn't it make more sense to wait until the situation with the pandemic is a little clearer (perhaps in 2 months time)? The pressure on hotels and flights is downwards, not upwards and BAH bookings can be made with 48-72 hours notice.

But regardless of that, it's usually 3 weeks notice needed, with non-cancelleable hotels not being refunded, but BAH trips that start from the UK have further protection via ATOL and changes to government restrictions. Moreover, regardless of what the hotel says at the time of booking, some hotels still actually give flexibility to rebookings at least. So it's quite complex with multiple moving parts. I know some people have simply booked BAH to get the deposit / regular payment method and therefore book the cheapest shack or banger going. Said shack could always be upgraded nearer to departure.
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 10:22 am
  #5196  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 447
Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
This is probably an extremely dumb question, since lots of other queries seem to be from people wanting to do the same thing as you in some form or another, but wouldn't it make more sense to wait until the situation with the pandemic is a little clearer (perhaps in 2 months time)? The pressure on hotels and flights is downwards, not upwards and BAH bookings can be made with 48-72 hours notice.

But regardless of that, it's usually 3 weeks notice needed, with non-cancelleable hotels not being refunded, but BAH trips that start from the UK have further protection via ATOL and changes to government restrictions. Moreover, regardless of what the hotel says at the time of booking, some hotels still actually give flexibility to rebookings at least. So it's quite complex with multiple moving parts. I know some people have simply booked BAH to get the deposit / regular payment method and therefore book the cheapest shack or banger going. Said shack could always be upgraded nearer to departure.
I guess I'm still in the mindset of having to book during a BA sale. Our flights are in April (originally February, but we moved that), but I just can't imagine we'd get a good deal on flights just a few days out...
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 10:39 am
  #5197  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 458
My family tomorrow should return from OSL on BA676 instead of yesterday which flight was cancelled.
If they cancel again they will be in trouble so my question is if BA let them travel on QR which is possible in theory.

Do people need covid test to travel on QR if they just transit and destination country don't require test?
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 10:45 am
  #5198  
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Originally Posted by Garimi
My family tomorrow should return from OSL on BA676 instead of yesterday which flight was cancelled.
If they cancel again they will be in trouble so my question is if BA let them travel on QR which is possible in theory.

Do people need covid test to travel on QR if they just transit and destination country don't require test?
I can't see it being cancelled now, but hypothetically if it is they will be rebooked onto SK.
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 2:09 pm
  #5199  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: BNE / LHR
Programs: QF Gold
Posts: 1,603
Hi all.

So with the chinese govt not allowing direct flights to the UK. What is happening with passengers on BA169?

I have a chinese national who was booked for 31 Dec. This was just listed as cancelled today.

They booked via OTA (small one), at quite a helfty (900 pound) price. The cost of alternatives is now 2-3k.

How could we get the re-routed/taken care of by BA.

They are homeless after the 10th of January. They have no EU entry papers.
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 2:35 pm
  #5200  
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Originally Posted by davem4
They booked via OTA (small one), at quite a helfty (900 pound) price. The cost of alternatives is now 2-3k.

How could we get the re-routed/taken care of by BA.
That's the Shanghai service. It remains the OTA's responsibiity to resolve this, but since Qatar doesn't fly to Shanghai, I can't see any easy options. The OTA liaises wtih BA to come up with solutions in this area, and the best I can think of is Hong Kong, and that isn't straightforward due to the need for a single PNR on connections.

They may want to apply for Exceptional Assurance now, and to keep the relevant emails to hand, to prevent problems. They should do this now, since if there is a solution then the EA won't be needed and all is fine.
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavi...y-uk-residents
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 2:45 pm
  #5201  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: BNE / LHR
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Posts: 1,603
Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
That's the Shanghai service. It remains the OTA's responsibiity to resolve this, but since Qatar doesn't fly to Shanghai, I can't see any easy options. The OTA liaises wtih BA to come up with solutions in this area, and the best I can think of is Hong Kong, and that isn't straightforward due to the need for a single PNR on connections.

They may want to apply for Exceptional Assurance now, and to keep the relevant emails to hand, to prevent problems. They should do this now, since if there is a solution then the EA won't be needed and all is fine.
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavi...y-uk-residents
They have a student visa until March. But their rental ends 10th Jan.

With the OTA Responsibility/BA responsibility I am worried they will rush to refund/cancel and not reaccomodate due to their not being Oneworld availability (there is a AY fligth on the 6th and 13th, but only J availability and a 17 hour connection overnight). It seems germany allows transit for chinese passport holiders without a visa. Would LH be an option?

Would they be able to do china southern etc? Extra luggage was purchased direct from BA via manage booking as well. I assume this is automatically refunded?

Last edited by davem4; Dec 27, 2020 at 2:52 pm
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 2:58 pm
  #5202  
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Originally Posted by davem4
Would they be able to do china southern etc? Extra luggage was purchased direct from BA via manage booking as well. I assume this is automatically refunded?
I went through the guidelines, and though China Southern was a valid option earlier in the crisis, the guidelines were reviewed a few weeks ago, I couldn't find a specific entitlement for flights to PVG at the moment, since their direct flights aren't operating either. This may be a case where further options will become available over the next few days, this has happened fairly quickly. The OTA should liaise with BA to see whether another routing works, but - well - it's not worth repeating really but using OTAs comes with well known disadvantages, the biggest of which is that if there are irrops then you may be stuck. LH is an option for short haul only.

If the traveller asks for a refund (and they should think carefully about this since they then become a former customer) then the extra baggage fee would be refunded too.
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Old Dec 27, 2020, 3:08 pm
  #5203  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: BNE / LHR
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Posts: 1,603
Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
I went through the guidelines, and though China Southern was a valid option earlier in the crisis, the guidelines were reviewed a few weeks ago, I couldn't find a specific entitlement for flights to PVG at the moment, since their direct flights aren't operating either. This may be a case where further options will become available over the next few days, this has happened fairly quickly. The OTA should liaise with BA to see whether another routing works, but - well - it's not worth repeating really but using OTAs comes with well known disadvantages, the biggest of which is that if there are irrops then you may be stuck. LH is an option for short haul only.

If the traveller asks for a refund (and they should think carefully about this since they then become a former customer) then the extra baggage fee would be refunded too.
Cheers.

I have advised the customer to not ask for a refund. Hoping to call the agency with them on Tuesday following the end of the holidays. Hopefully some additional guidance by then on options.

Thank you for looking!

I know the OTA problems. But they booked without consulting ahead of time!
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Old Dec 28, 2020, 3:17 am
  #5204  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
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Wonder if I can get some tips/advice on rebooking a cancelled trip, before I call up, so I know where I stand.

Booked a BRU-LHR-JFK-SFO for the last week in March, in J, with LHR-JFK upgraded to F with avios both ways. Booked via BA, on 125 tickets.
No cancellation email received, but last night I checked the booking, as I do periodically, and several flights have vanished altogether, and the return JFK-LHR showing as cancelled in MMB.

I can get the original routing to show, with slightly different flights, on the same dates on ITA Matrix but can’t get it to show on BA.com. BA.com will show the individual sectors, thus available, but won’t show the whole trip.
I can get better flights and times if I drop the BRU-LHR sector.

So I guess my questions are-
1. Will BA let me drop BRU-LHR and start the trip in LHR?
2. Will they let me keep the original routing through JFK, even if direct flights are showing as available? If I call up armed with exact flight numbers, that show seats available, might BA let me rebook onto them?
3. If they do honour the original routing, I assume they will honour the F cabin, regardless of avios availability.
4. If they won’t honour the routing via JFK, and insist on the nonstop, can I insist they honour the transatlantic F, or is that pushing it?

Thanks!
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Old Dec 28, 2020, 3:37 am
  #5205  
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Originally Posted by Jet Ranger
1. Will BA let me drop BRU-LHR and start the trip in LHR?
2. Will they let me keep the original routing through JFK, even if direct flights are showing as available? If I call up armed with exact flight numbers, that show seats available, might BA let me rebook onto them?
3. If they do honour the original routing, I assume they will honour the F cabin, regardless of avios availability.
4. If they won’t honour the routing via JFK, and insist on the nonstop, can I insist they honour the transatlantic F, or is that pushing it?
1. Yes. Just ask the agent to cancel that sector for a refund. This can only be done if you stick to the same travel day.
2. Yes, generally speaking. However if you were booked on codeshares on AA, given we have just gone over a Sunday, I'd leave it a while, maybe look at it in February, unless you are willing to keep mothering the booking until then.
3. Generally yes, but it depends on specific details.
4. If there is space available and you are travelling the same day, yes.

Be wary of maybe bookings, particularly if you aren't a USA citizen. You may want to do nothing at all so as to preserve your refund options. If you rebook then you lose flexibility.
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