Forget No Change Fees, Qatar Airways Makes All Tickets Refundable

Doha-based oneworld carrier Qatar Airways has been among the most creative during the pandemic. They’ve let customers get more credit than the value of their ticket if willing to forego a refund, they’ve offered to let customers convert flight credits into miles. They’ve even improved their award chart, reversing a past devaluation.

Now Qatar has announced that all tickets purchased by April 30, 2021 are refundable. And since they’d rather you not refund your tickets, there are no change fees to make an unlimited number of changes for travel through December 31, 2021.

They’ve learned their lesson though because while no change fees apply, you can change not just your travel dates but also your destination, they’ll charge you the difference in fare if you exchange your ticket for a more expensive one. No more cheap Kiev business class fares where you could change both your origin city and your destination to go anywhere else within 5000 miles.

This new policy is a reason to buy travel with Qatar over its competitors. To take advantage, you need a Qatar Airways ticket (157 ticket stock) booked directly through Qatar or a travel agent – though of course if it’s an agent-issued ticket, they’ll have to process the refund or changes for you.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. This is not quite as big of a deal as it would be for a US carrier. Almost all QR fares were already refundable, albeit with a fee. Rather than totally changing the fare structure (as AA, DL or UA would have to do) they are simply dropping the fees, which were typically only a couple hundred dollars.

  2. This is awesome – thanks for reporting Gary. I’m seriously considering switching to an Asian/ME carrier for my ultralonghaul flights. UA, where I’m 1K is just not cutting it.

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