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COVID-19 Updates

[Last updated April 9, 2021: 3:50pm PST]

Below are the current (date and time mentioned above) updates to solutions offered by frequent flyer, hotel and other retail loyalty programs to deal with any COVID-19 related matters mostly relevant to Canadians. We also included hyperlinks to the specific pages related to COVID within each respective websites for quicker access.

Since this post is continuously updated, older information is deleted. So if you are curious to see how things have progressed over time, here is a list of our previously archived posts that you can refer to at a specific point in time: March 17, 2020, March 23, 2020, April 10, 2020, April 16, 2020, April 23, 2020, April 28, 2020, May 10, 2020, May 14, 2020, June 6, 2020, August 2, 2020, October 4, 2020, November 29, 2020, January 16, 2021January 24, 2021January 29, 2021February 12, 2021February 19, 2021February 22, 2021April 9, 2021.

Air Canada

  • One-time change fee waived for all new or existing bookings made through May 31, 2021 for original travel between March 1, 2020 and May 31, 2022.
  • Can convert previously cancelled booking (for original travel between March 1, 2020 and May 31, 2022) to an Air Canada Travel Voucher that is fully transferable and never expires or to Aeroplan points with an additional 65% bonus Aeroplan points.
  • Elite status earned in 2019 for 2020 are extended through December 31, 2021. In addition, automatic extension of 2021 status extended through December 31, 2022.

Air Miles 

  • No change fees for flights up to June 30, 2021.
  • Business as usual for hotel bookings. Cancellation policy based on the rules at the time of booking.
  • Elite status members will have their current status (i.e. earned from 2019) extended until December 31, 2021.

Air North

  • Business as usual.
  • All cancellations will be processed as a customer credit, which is valid for 2 years from original travel date.

Air Transat

  • All flights will be suspended until June 14, 2021.
  • Refunds available for a flight cancelled by Air Transat on or after December 1, 2020.
  • Refunds available for certain routes indefinitely suspended.
  • All other cancelled flights will receive travel credits with no expiry date.

Alaska Airlines

  • No cancellation or change fee for tickets purchased between February 27, 2020 and April 30, 2021 for travel through March 31, 2022.
  • In both cases, passengers will receive a credit certificate for future travel, but new travel must be completed within one year from the original travel date.
  • Elite status earned in 2019 for 2020 are extended through December 31, 2021.

American Airlines

  • One time change fee waived for all bookings.
  • Elite status earned in 2019 for 2020 are extended through January 31, 2022.
  • Miles expiration paused through June 30, 2021.

Best Western

  • Flexible cancellation policy. Check individual booking for detail.
  • Elite status earned in 2019 for 2020 are extended through January 31, 2022.

British Airways

  • No change fee (need to pay any difference in price) for all bookings made from March 3, 2020 onward for trips to have been completed by April 30, 2022.
  • A voucher is given for cancelling a booking for all bookings made from March 3, 2020 onward for trips to have been completed by April 30, 2023.
  • Elite status extended by 12 months from expiry.

Canadian North

  • One time change fee waived for any flights booked between November 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
  • For non-refundable fares, the refund will be issued as a travel credit voucher that will be valid for 12 months from date of issue.
  • Extension of Aurora Concierge benefits member status period through March 31, 2022.

Cathay Pacific

  • Unlimited ticket changes for tickets purchases before June 30, 2021 for travel until December 31, 2021.

Choice Hotels

  • Policies that were in place at the time of booking will continue to apply to reservations.
  • Points expiry paused for elite status members until December 31, 2021.

Cineplex

  • Limited locations opened with limited capacity across the country. Check local venues as it varies depending on the location.

Delta Air Lines

  • No change fee for tickets originally purchased between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021, for travel up for up to a year from the date it was originally purchased.
  • No change fee for tickets purchased before April 17, 2020, travelling between March 1, 2020, and April 30, 2021. The ticket can be extended to rebook for travel until December 31, 2022.
  • Receive an eCredit when passengers cancel a flight before departure.
  • All Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) from 2020 are being rolled over to 2021 to qualify for 2022 Medallion status.
  • Elite status earned in 2019 for 2020 are extended through December 31, 2021.

Flair Airlines

  • Business as usual.
  • $25 processing fee and fare difference (if applicable) for unlimited itinerary changes are available.

Greyhound Canada

  • No cancellation fees for tickets through June 15, 2021 for requests made at least 1 day prior to the scheduled departure date. A voucher will be given based on the value of the ticket. So any fare difference is the responsibility of the passenger for a rebooking. Vouchers need to be redeemed within 1 year of issue date.

Hilton

  • Most hotels have a no cancellation fee if they are made at least 24 hours before arrival day.​​
  • In 2021, members can earn status with half the nights, stays or base points required in 2021. All 2020 nights have rolled-over to 2021.
  • All current elites statuses extended through March 31, 2022
  • Points expiration paused through December 31, 2021.

Hyatt

  • With some very limited exceptions, no cancellation fees for reservations booked on July 1, 2020 or beyond for arrival dates through July 31, 2021. Cancellations need to be made at least 24 hours before scheduled arrival day.
  • Awards with 2020 Expiration: (i.e. all unused Free Night, Suite Upgrade or Club Lounge Access awards) with expiration dates between March 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 will be extended to December 31, 2021.
  • Awards with 2021 Expiration: (i.e. all unused Suite Upgrade and Club Lounge Access awards) with February 28, 2021 expiration dates will be extended to December 31, 2021.
  • All unused Free Night awards that were earned in 2020 with 2021 expiration dates will be extended to December 31, 2021.
  • Current elite statuses will automatically be extended to February 28, 2022.
  • Points expiration paused through June 30, 2021.

IHG Hotels and Resorts

  • Policies that were in place at the time of booking will continue to apply to reservations.
  • Current elite statuses will automatically be extended to January 31, 2022.
  • Points never expire for elite status members. For everyone else, points expiry are paused until June 30, 2021.

Marriott Hotels and Resorts

  • No cancellation fees for reservations made on or after July 6, 2020, for arrival dates through May 31, 2021. Cancellation must be done 24 hours before arrival date.
  • For all other reservations, the policies that were in place at the time of reservation, or as previously communicated, will continue to be honoured.
  • Suite Night Awards have been extended from December 31, 2020 to December 31, 2021.
  • Effective December 11, 2020, members with a Free Night Award with an original expiration date in 2020, or expiry before July 31, 2021, will be able to redeem it through August 1, 2021.
  • Current elite statuses will automatically be extended to February 1, 2022.
  • Points expiration are paused until August 1, 2021.

Porter Airlines

  • All flights cancelled until May 19, 2021.
  • Passenger who have cancelled flights will be contacted within five days and advised of their travel options.
  • One time change fee waived as long as they are made at least 24 hours before departure.
  • Points that were set to expire between March 19, 2020 and December 31, 2020 have been reinstated and extended until December 31, 2021.
  • Current elite statuses will automatically be extended to December 31, 2021.

Sunwing

  • All southbound flights to sun destinations are suspended until April 30, 2021.
  • One time change fee waived up to 4 days prior to departure for bookings made between February 1, 2021 and March 31, 2021 for travel between May 1, 2021 and October 31, 2021. Must be rescheduled within 12 months of original departure date.
  • Full refund in original form of payment for cancellations made 25 days or more prior to departure.
  • $250 in future travel credit with the balance to the original form of payment for cancellations made 15 to 23 days prior to departure.
  • $500 in future travel credit with the balance to the original form of payment for cancellations made 4 to 14 days prior to departure.
  • No action needed as the original booking number is the code to use for future travel credit.
  • Travel credit valid for 2 years from original departure date.

United Airlines

  • Change fees are waived through April 30, 2021 for Basic Economy tickets.
  • Change fees are waived through May 31, 2021 for all other standard and Economy and premium cabin tickets.
  • May be able to request a refund if flight has been affected by a significant schedule change or cancelled without another option.
  • Any travel credits are valid for 24 months from the day they were issue.
  • MileagePlus Premier statuses will be extended to January 31, 2022. Premier qualification requirements lowered by 50% for 2021 status.

VIA Rail

  • Full refund and no cancellation fee any time before departure for travel through September 15, 2021.

WestJet

  • One time change fee waived for changing or cancelling  flights booked before April 30, 2021.
  • For flights cancelled by WestJet after November 14, 2021 are eligible for a refund to original form of payment.
  • If a flight refund is requested, passengers will receive a travel credit in the form of a Travel Bank, valid for 24 months from the date of issuance.
  • Current elite statuses will automatically be extended to December 31, 2021.

Wydham Hotels and Resorts

  • Business as usual for bookings made on or after June 6, 2020 for stays after June 30, 2020.
  • Reduced requirements to qualify for elite status in 2021.
  • Current elite statuses will automatically be extended to December 31, 2021.
  • Points expiration are paused until June 30, 2021.

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Pointshogger aims to provide analysis and updates on earning loyalty reward points and maximizing the value of your points. We hope to inspire our readers to experience the joy of travel and make the most out of what they've already got!

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