Airlines

Covid-19: SIA waiving rebooking fees for all tickets issued by 30 April 20

Singapore Airlines will waive all rebooking fees for tickets issued up to 30 April 2020. Here's how it works.
This post has been updated with SIA’s latest rebooking policy. To track the latest changes, refer to their news page

Singapore Airlines has announced that they will be offering complimentary rebooking for all SIA and SilkAir tickets issued from 5 March to 30 April 2020.

This supersedes the previous policy, which waived all rebooking fees for tickets issued up till 31 March 2020.

As per the news release:

Singapore Airlines is offering complimentary rebooking for all SIA and SilkAir tickets issued from 5 March to 30 April 2020.

This gives customers the flexibility to adjust their travel plans without incurring change fees amid the Covid-19 outbreak. The new flight itinerary should be completed by 31 March 2021.

Top-up fees may still apply for fare differences in the new itinerary. For cancellations, refunds would be in accordance with the fare conditions.

Customers who booked their tickets directly with Singapore Airlines may make changes to your itinerary directly via the Manage Booking section on our website. Customers who booked their tickets through travel agencies are advised to contact their agents.

Despite this, the official travel waiver policy page has not been updated. It’s still reflecting the old policy, which refers to “tickets issued on or before 15 March 2020, with travel dates up to 31 May 2020”.

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This is bound to cause lots of confusion, so let’s hope they get it updated ASAP.

Update: Someone’s cued me in that the policy shown here refers to tickets already issued. The new policy applies to all new tickets issued by 30 April 2020, regardless of travel date. 

Customers can also choose to open-date their tickets, which doesn’t require them to select new dates just yet. Alternatively, they can retain the value of their ticket and apply it to a future booking (it could be to a different destination). In all cases, your new itinerary must be completed by 31 March 2021. 

Fare differences may apply

Do note that although there are no rebooking fees, you’ll still be required to pay any fare differences.

Consider this example: you’re originally flying from Singapore to Seattle, with travel dates on 10-21 May 2020. Subsequently, you decide to change your dates to 8-15 December 2020. This normally attracts a S$270 rebooking fee, but that will be waived. However, you’re still on the hook for S$697 of fare difference. 

Singapore to Seattle, Economy Class Return
Original Date:
10-21 May 2020
New Date:
8-15 Dec 2020
Fare S$703 S$1,400
Taxes S$142.20 S$142.20
Fare Difference   +S$697
Change Fee   S$270
Waived

Depending on when your revised travel dates are, fare differences can be much larger than change fees, so be aware.

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Based on my calls to customer service, the waiver of change fees also applies to award tickets. In other words, you won’t need to pay the usual US$25 change fees for Saver tickets.

Expect long wait times on the phone and at ION

It goes without saying that this is an unprecedented situation, and with so many flight cancellations and reschedules, Singapore Airlines’ customer service operation is swamped.

There’s a pop-up notice on the website warning of wait times of up to 4 hours at ION Orchard, and based on the comments on SIA’s Facebook page, wait times on the phones are equally daunting.

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Singapore Airlines is advising all affected customers to submit their requests via this form, rather than heading down to ION or picking up the phone.

If you must head to ION, remember that there’s a separate queue for First and Business Class passengers (including those on award tickets), so you might have better luck. Economy Class passengers should expect multi-hour waits.

Conclusion

Singapore Airlines will no doubt extend the waiver policy for bookings in May, if the situation isn’t resolved by then (it’d take a brave man to predict that).

In the meantime, do what you can by using the form and not clogging up the phone lines, unless your flight is due to depart within 72 hours.

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Aaron WongIndieCKCKMelv Recent comment authors
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A
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A

Good news for many. Thank you for reporting. Good on Singapore Airlines!

If award ticket was booked using United miles for SQ flight. Can SQ make free changes to tickets directly? Yesterday I spent $75 USD with United to change SQ award (booked through UA).

I have other SQ flights 90 days away which may need changing yet, and would be good to not have to pay United (shame on UA for not being flexible).

Worried
Guest
Worried

I’m trying for Scoot, based on their announcement 14 March 2020. Hope to get the full refund in Scoot vouchers…

Adam
Guest
Adam

Technically speaking, isn’t there a travel advisory for everywhere now?

E
Guest
E

I tried changing my flights online for my trip this Friday but they still had the rebooking fee so I think I’ll have to try my luck calling them & hoping I get through/fill up the form hoping they get back to me in time. Is it just me? They would save so much of our (and their) time if they just let us change it online…

Dan
Guest
Dan

Just a data point, although the validity for the ticket is extended to 31st March 2021, I was told I have to call in before 15th Sep to confirm a date of travel for my ticket

Jackie
Guest
Jackie

My flight in May from Tokyo was initially cancelled and I opt for a different timing instead of a full refund. That was last month. Now that Japan is on the SHN list, my family is thinking of cancelling the whole trip. Not sure if I still qualify for the full refund from SQ. Some of my miles would have expired if I opt for the refund… Would the Aviva insurance cover for the partial miles expiry? Given that this cancellation is opt by me? Also, half of my hotels are non-refundable and sadly, they are Accor hotels that still… Read more »

CK
Guest
CK

Have you contacted the particular hotel instead of Accor Customer Service? If the hotel fee has not been charged yet, they might allow you to cancel without any fee though. YMMV.

yuuka
Guest
yuuka

Presumably the change fee waiver also works if you want to change destination?

Jackie
Guest
Jackie

Maybe… But the other destination my family would like to visit (and have enough miles) would be Seoul… LOL! So, probably not the best travel location… Let me write in to SQ and see if I can get a full refund. And also write in the Aviva to confirm their compensation policy. ><

yuuka
Guest
yuuka

For once Scoot is doing something I wish SIA would, get a refund online in the form of a voucher.

Melv
Guest
Melv

Any news about redemption tickets? I booked a ticket some months back as the miles were due to expire. Will the miles be refunded? What about the miles which have since expired? Any idea?

Melv
Guest
Melv

Just got a reply from SQ. They said rebooking fees are waived though the ticket will expire one year from booking and I need to let them know when I want to rebook to at least 10 days before ticket expiry. I can cancel but fees apply and expired miles will not be recredited.

I thought that was fair except for that last bit.

Indie
Guest
Indie

What about redeposit miles for award flight booked before 30 Apr? Is that waive as well?

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