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COVID-19 Updates

[Last updated January 16, 2021: 10:15am 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, 2021.

Air Canada

  • One-time change fee waived for all new or existing bookings made through February 28, 2021 for original travel between March 1, 2020 and February 28, 2021.
  • Can convert previously cancelled booking (for original travel between March 1, 2020 and February 28, 2022) to an Air Canada Travel Voucher that is fully transferrable 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.

Air Miles 

  • No change fees for flights up to February 28, 2021.
  • No cancellation fee for hotel bookings up to February 28, 2021, if cancelled between 5-14 days before the check-in date.
  • Elite status members will have their current status (i.e. earned from 2019) extended until December 31, 2021.

Air North

  • Business as usual for the most part.
  • One-time $0 fee waiver for cancellation and change fees for all bookings made prior to July 31, 2020. Modifications to itineraries must be made at least 24 hours prior to scheduled departure. Fare difference applies if the new booking is at a higher fare than the original fare purchased (no refund or credit will be given if the new fare is lower than the original fare purchased)
  • All cancellations will be processed as customer credit valid for 2 years from original travel date.
  • Extension for all unused segments on 2019 Aurora Air Passes for travel until November 30, 2020.

Air Transat

  • Bookings made as of October 1, 2020, with Eco Flex, Club Flex or Option Flex Extra are eligible for a refund for a cancelled flight.
  • Refund available for a flight cancelled by Air Transat on or after December 1, 2020.
  • Refund 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 March 31, 2021 for travel through February 28, 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.
  • No points expiry policy.

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 August 31, 2021.
  • A voucher is given for cancelling a booking for all bookings made from March 3, 2020 onward for trips to have been completed by August 31, 2021.
  • Elite status extended by 12 months from expiry.

Canadian North

  • No change fee (need to pay any difference in price) for all bookings made before July 20, 2020.
  • One time change fee waiver for all bookings made after July 20, 2020.
  • For non-refundable fares, the refund will be issued as a travel credit voucher that will be valid until December 31, 2021 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 March 31, 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 and Marcy 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 March 31, 2021. The ticket can be extended to rebook for travel until December 31, 2022.
  • 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.
  • No miles expiry policy.

Flair Airlines

  • Business as usual.
  • All passengers on the affected flights in January and February of 2021 can be provided a full refund or will be rebooked.

Greyhound Canada

  • No change fees, but new travel must be made before January 31, 2021.
  • One-time complimentary reissue to postpone travel and rebook for a later date.
  • No cancellation fees. If travel dates are unknown, passengers will receive an eVoucher for the value of the ticket to be redeemed 1 year of issue date.
  • Any changes or cancellations must be made at least 1 day prior to scheduled departure.

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 rollovered to 2021.
  • All current elites statuses extended through March 31, 2022
  • Points expiration paused through December 31, 2021.

Hyatt

  • No cancellation fee for existing reservations booked before July 1, 2020.
  • 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 March 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 Marcy 29, 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

  • For flights departing after November 1, 2020, the standard terms and conditions apply to changes and cancellations.
  • No cancellation fees. Cancelled flights will be issued travel credits for departures, depending on departure dates:
    • Flights with original departure dates between March 17, 2020 and May 31, 2020, travel credits issued are redeemable up to June 20, 2022.
    • Flights with original departure dates between June 1, 2020 and August 31, 2020, travel credits issued are redeemable up to August 31, 2022
    • Flights with original departure dates between September 1, 2020 and October 31, 2020, travel credits issued are redeemable up to October 31, 2022.
  • 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

  • No change or cancellation fee for flights until March 31, 2021.
  • 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.
  • No miles expiry policy.

VIA Rail

  • Full refund and no cancellation fee any time before departure for travel through March 31, 2021.
  • No points expiry policy.

WestJet

  • No fee to change or cancel  flights booked before February 28, 2021.
  • 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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