British Airways customers across the UK have seen their holiday plans for 2020 ruined thanks to coronavirus. As with all airlines, BA has been forced to ground the large majority of its flights due to government advice not to travel. What is the latest travel advice for those with August and September flights booked?
Travellers whose flight has already been cancelled, or who are due to travel between now and July 31st can claim a voucher to the value of their booking.
Those hoping for a cash refund will have to call the airline on 0800 727 800 (within the UK only).
Customers should be warned though that they will face a long wait on the phone.
BA have said: “Call volumes are extremely high at the moment due to the unprecedented circumstances so please bear with us if it takes some time for us to help with your booking.”
However, anyone who has a flight booked after the July 31st date may be wondering what to do – as lockdown restrictions around the world are unlikely to be eased anytime soon.
British Airways does have a Book With Confidence policy, details of which are on their site.
Frustratingly, there is no clear advice on what to do if you have a flight booked for after the July 31st cut off date.
There is some information for anyone who booked their flights between March 3rd and May 31st, with a departure date up to December 31st 2020.
These customers can change their booking dates as part of this policy.
But anyone who booked outside of these dates, or whose flight is after December 31st 2020, will have to wait for a cancellation to make a change or request a refund.
When are airlines – including BA – going to start flying again?
Currently, the advice from the UK Government is not to undertake any travel, except for essential reasons.
This was first implemented until mid-April, however now has been extended “indefinitely”.
This has meant airlines have cancelled the majority of their flights, and some airlines have cut jobs in a bid to recuperate costs.
Holidaymakers are advised to get in touch with their travel provider to arrange refunds, change dates or come to an agreement if their trips have been cancelled.
Airlines have so far not confirmed when they will once more take to the skies – however, when flights do resume, social distancing measures may be implemented.
Chief executive of Heathrow John Holland-Kaye Social has said distancing on planes would reduce capacities by more than 50 percent and mean “prices would shoot up”.
He told PA: “Social distancing does not work in any form of public transport, let alone aviation.
“The constraint is not about how many people you can fit on a plane, it will be how many people you can get through an airport safely.
If you’ve ever been on holiday from Gatwick, you cannot imagine going through there and socially distancing in the summer. It’s just physically impossible to socially distance with any volume of passengers in an airport.”