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If you are a British Airways frequent flyer, you have probably accumulated a few e-vouchers (or Future Travel Vouchers for Avios bookings) over the last 22 months. Whether by choice – such as this fun travel hack from August 2021 – or by necessity, you surely made a few cash bookings that required cancellation.
With e-vouchers available to you, you might have even made some speculative bookings. For example, on an autumn 2021 trip to London I booked more than one return flight to Spain, safe in the knowledge that BA’s “Book with Confidence” policy would allow me to cancel the excess flights for a new voucher. I was even able to cancel and rebook a couple of times when I saw that the fare on my preferred flights had decreased.
Voucher in… voucher out… so ultimately I was just playing around with British Airways “Monopoly money”, rather than send any more cash in the direction of British Airways. A little bit of fun travel hacking, all done online…
Book with Confidence
If you read the e-mail that British Airways sends you with any e-vouchers, you will see quite clearly that these e-vouchers are valid until 30 September, 2023.
However, you must visit the harder-and-harder-to-find “Book with Confidence” webpage in order to read the full policy.
Don’t Get Caught by the “Travel Before” Deadline
Which brings me to the reason for this article. A British Airways frequent flyer – better left nameless, but not yours truly – booked some travel for October 2022 using some of his stash of BA e-vouchers. Before long, he changed his mind about the date and destination, only to find that his request for a refund in the form of yet another e-voucher was denied.
Because his travel dates fall outside of BA’s current “Book with Confidence” policy, he is unable to cancel his booking in exchange for an e-voucher – the purchased ticket rules now apply. It doesn’t matter that he paid with an e-voucher valid until September 2023.
One of the few upsides of the pandemic, especially with British Airways, is that we have been mostly able to ignore ticket rules that normally rule out cancellation or free flight changes. A London-based frequent flyer is not going to unduly stress about being able to use up BA e-vouchers before September 2023. And, even then, I doubt that British Airways wants the Daily Mail banging on about COVID e-vouchers expiring unused, so I would expect that date to be extended.
But… if you forget about the August 2022 “travel before” deadline… you might get caught out and find that your booking isn’t quite as flexible any more…