Emirates has updated its COVID-19 travel waiver policies making it easier to rebook and get refunds on tickets issued in all its global markets.

“The travel and airline industry have complicated rulebooks for how fares, re-bookings or refunds are applied, which also differ depending on market regulation. We understand that explaining and unravelling all of that is confusing and frustrating for customers. The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented for everyone, and we’d like to thank our customers and trade partners for their patience, understanding and support as we worked through this period to ensure our policies are not only customer-friendly but also in line with regulatory requirements,” says Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Chief Commercial Officer.

“We sincerely hope that our customers will choose to rebook and fly with us again at a later time, and that is why we’re offering up to two years validity on their current tickets, or travel vouchers which can be redeemed for any Emirates product or service. Any fees for making a change to the tickets will be waived for tickets issued till 31 May 2020 for travel up to 31 August 2020. However, if they would still like to opt for a refund, we will process that. We would just like to seek our customers’ understanding that refunds will take time as we have a significant backlog to manage,” adds Kazim.

Emirates is offering three options. All Emirates tickets booked before May 31, for travel up to August 31, will be automatically extended for 760 days.

Whenever they are ready to travel again, within two years from the day their ticket was originally issued, they can reschedule their flight. Their ticket will be accepted for any flight to the same Emirates destination or to another city within the same Emirates region with no fees for changes. Those who wish to rebook their ticket to travel to another region can also do so, Emirates will not charge reissuance fees, only any applicable fare difference.

For those who want a travel voucher, they are valid for one year from date the voucher was issued, and can be extended for a second year. The voucher can be used for any Emirates product or service, which means customers can use it to offset charges for flights to any destination in any cabin class, or other services. No change fees apply to this voucher, so customers will have more flexibility to reschedule when they are ready to travel again.

Customers who have opted to keep their ticket or opted for a travel voucher can still apply for a refund, if they are unable to travel. There will be no refund penalties.

In addition, Emirates announced they’re resuming limited service to the U.S., bringing U.S. citizens and residents back to the U.S. via Chicago on Saturday, April 18. As of now, Chicago is the only U.S. gateway to which Emirates is announcing service.

Emirates has also implemented new standards and regulations for consumer travel that include:

–          All passengers must wear masks in flight

–          Social distancing measures implemented at terminal, gates and on board aircraft

–          No carry-on luggage with the exception of a laptop bag / diaper bag

–          No charges for overhead luggage that now needs to be checked

For help, with refunds, Emirates has created a form that can be accessed here. For more information, go to emirates.com.

For more updates on cancellations related to COVID-19, visit Recommend’s Coronavirus Updates Center.