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Coronavirus: Virgin Atlantic waives flight change fee

Will Georgiadis
4 Mar 2020
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Customers who purchase tickets this March are entitled to fee-free flight alterations until September

Virgin Atlantic is changing its policy on flight alterations in light of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. The firm posted a Tweet today explaining that customers who buy tickets during the period 4-31 March will have the option to change their flight date at/to any point until 30 September 2020 without paying a change fee.

To clarify, Virgin Atlantic is not removing the change fee for all flights. The new policy only affects customers who purchase tickets this month, and who are actually travelling between March and September of this year. This applies to all Virgin Atlantic flights from London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Manchester, Glasgow and Belfast airports, as well as flights booked through any of Virgin Atlantic’s joint-venture partners: Delta, Air France and KLM.

If you were planning on booking a holiday with Virgin Atlantic this March, you now have the option to contact the firm on 0344 8747747 (UK) or 1800 862 8621 (US) at any point between the date of purchase and 30 September to rearrange your flight for free.

Or free-ish, anyway: Virgin Atlantic points out that if the original booking class (i.e. business or coach) is fully booked on the new flight, a fare difference may apply.

Originally, these new rules only applied to customers flying to Italy, where the coronavirus has taken hold relatively severely. As of today, however, Virgin Atlantic is widening the net to include all international flights.

So far, there’s been no word from Virgin regarding customers who purchased tickets prior to the announcement; obviously, those customers are more likely to be stung by coronavirus-related travel upset, as the situation was less serious when they booked. In any event, it seems unlikely that the airline will widen the net further still to include existing bookings.

You can find out more about this announcement and others via the Virgin Atlantic news page.

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