Emirates has announced it has updated its COVID-19 travel waiver policies as coronavirus continues to sweep the globe. The policies have been concentrated into one simplified approach for rebooking and refunds on tickets issued in all its global markets, in the carrier’s latest travel advice. So what does this mean for those with Emirates flights booked?
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Emirates is offering three options to its customers affected by flight cancellations and travel restrictions.
Emirates explains these options are as follows:
1 – Keep your ticket:
All Emirates tickets booked before May 31 for travel up to August 31 will be automatically extended for 760 days.
Customers holding such tickets can be assured their tickets will be honoured, and they can rebook when they decide to travel.
Whenever they are ready to travel again, within two years from the day their ticket was originally issued, they simply need to contact Emirates or their travel agents to reschedule their flight.
Their ticket will be accepted for any flight to the same Emirates destination or to another city within the same Emirates region with no fees for changes.
Those who wish to rebook their ticket to travel to another region can also do so – Emirates will not charge re-issuance fees, only any applicable fare difference.
2 – Request a travel voucher:
Travel vouchers are valid for one year from the date the voucher was issued and can be extended for a second year.
The voucher can be used for any Emirates product or service, which means customers can use it to offset charges for flights to any destination in any cabin class, or other services.
No change fees apply to this voucher, so customers will have more flexibility to reschedule when they are ready to travel again.
3 – Refunds:
Customers who have opted to keep their ticket or opted for a travel voucher can still apply for a refund if they are unable to travel. There will be no refund penalties.
Emirates has also made it easy for customers to request these options online through a simple form.
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Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Chief Commercial Officer said: “The travel and airline industry have complicated rulebooks for how fares, re-bookings or refunds are applied, which also differ depending on market regulation. We understand that explaining and unravelling all of that is confusing and frustrating for customers.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented for everyone, and we’d like to thank our customers and trade partners for their patience, understanding and support as we worked through this period to ensure our policies are not only customer-friendly but also in line with regulatory requirements.
“We sincerely hope that our customers will choose to rebook and fly with us again at a later time, and that is why we’re offering up to two years validity on their current tickets, or travel vouchers which can be redeemed for any Emirates product or service.
“Any fees for making a change to the tickets will be waived for tickets issued till May 31 2020 for travel up to August 31 2020.
“However, if they would still like to opt for a refund, we will process that. We would just like to seek our customers’ understanding that refunds will take time as we have a significant backlog to manage.”
The news comes as Emirates announced it is offering more flights for foreigners stranded in the UAE.
The airline is planning to operate further services to other destinations.
The new passenger services will be running to Jakarta, Manila, Taipei, Chicago, Tunis, Algiers and Kabul.
Emirates already has operations running to London Heathrow and Frankfurt.
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