A couple of days ago Qatar Airways released their latest initiative to stimulate bookings amidst the Coronavirus Pandemic. They have entitled it Travel With Confidence and it is by far the best re-booking policy to emerge during this travel downturn. The airline is offering unprecedented change and rebooking options for flights that are completed in 2020. That’s the key to this deal – the minute bookings are for 2021 you won’t get as sweet as deal as this!
First we’ll explore Qatar Airways Travel With Confidence guarantees:
- Hold on to your ticket
Keep your ticket and use it when you are ready with our extended ticket
validity, now valid for 2 years from the date of ticket issuance for
- Unlimited changes
You can change your travel date or destination free of charge, as often
as you need, for travel until 31 December 2020. You can change your
origin to another city within the same country or any other destination
we fly to within a 5,000 mile radius of your original destination.
- Swap for Qmiles
Swap your ticket for Qmiles and redeem them towards reward flights, extra
baggage or cabin upgrades when the time is right. For every 1 USD, you
will earn 100 Qmiles that are valid for at least three years, so you can
have the flexibility to choose how, when and for whom to redeem them.
- Exchange for future travel
You can exchange your ticket for a future travel voucher with 10%
additional value. Vouchers are now valid for two years from the date of
- Refund your ticket
Qatar Airways will refund your ticket to the original form of payment if your flight gets cancelled.
All of the above do provide a lot of confidence for travel in 2020 and if you are willing to give it a shot the point that is getting the most buzz is number 2 – unlimited changes. If you read it you may at first not believe it but it is true and Qatar is abiding by what they state. You can book any flight for travel until December 31 and change it as much as you want to any destination within 5,000 miles of your originally booked flights. Yes you read that right – 5,000 miles! And you can even change your origin as long as it is in the same country although that’s not really useful for us seeing that Qatar only flies to Montreal and nowhere else in Canada. However they do have several U.S. departure points that you can look into and that’s where the biggest buzz comes from. One Mile at a Time shows that you can fly from Philadelphia to Kiev in business class for around US$1,600 and if you take a 5,000 mile radius from Kiev you have most of Africa, Asia and Europe covered where you can choose to change your ticket to. There are other examples that have been brought forward from bloggers showing New York to Kiev as a low price option as well. The route to Kiev is the one you’d want to book first since it prices out the cheapest and then you call to change to the actual city or cities you would want to visit. Basically you’d be looking at paying US$1,600 to fly business class to cities like Seoul, Delhi, Hanoi and so many others. A real steal of deal!
But if you don’t want to go the route of travelling via the U.S. (getting a positioning flight etc.) you can look at Montreal departures. Here is just one example we found that doesn’t price out too bad at all:
Montreal to Mumbai for $2892.45
Once booked you could then switch to cities like Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo or even Perth. Of course you have the beautiful Indian Ocean island nations to pick from as well. We checked out Perth on the same dates as above and it prices out at over C$6,500 so by booking a ticket to Mumbai first and then changing it to Perth you would save yourself over 50% of the ticket price.
If you do choose to book some flights to try to take advantage of this generous policy I recommend putting the purchase on The Platinum Card from American Express as it earns 4 points per dollar spent on travel until July 20. If you take the Mumbai example above you would earn 11,568 Membership Rewards points on the purchase and if you take into account their double redemption value at 1,000 points to $20 you would essentially be earning $231 cash back on the flight purchase.
Now you do have a couple questions that you’ll have to ask yourself before taking advantage of this offer:
- Do I want to travel in 2020? If you have any hesitation about travelling outside our borders don’t move on this offer.
- Do I wait to see how and where the world goes in the next few months before booking? This one is tough to answer and I would say not to wait. Even though they say it is good for tickets purchased up to September 30 that could change at anytime. The reason why is this policy and subsequent amazing deal to switch flights is being posted on so many miles & points and travel blogs around the world! It is very possible the demand along with so many flight changes may overwhelm Qatar Airways and force them to cut the policy short.
Should you choose to go ahead and give it a shot we’d love to hear from you and have you document and write about it for the Rewards Canada community. Let us know in the comments below or send us an email!
Learn more about the policy and book your Qatar Airways flights here
Title image via Qatar Airways