How long does it take British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Lufthansa to refund a cancelled flight?
Over the last few weeks I have had to cancel seven long-haul redemptions, racking up over £250 in cancellation fees.
Four were booked via British Airways with Avios, one with Virgin Flying Club miles and two with Lufthansa Miles & More miles.
British Airways did an excellent job processing all the refunds. Not all of the flights could be automatically cancelled online, but however it was done I always had the money back on my credit card within three days.
Lufthansa is not as good. One refund hit after around 9 days. I am still waiting on the second, with tomorrow being Day 7 since I cancelled. The cancellation system is also a little odd – you must call and you must pay the cancellation fee separately before they will process the refund.
Virgin Atlantic has been poor. 10 days after my cancellation, I haven’t seen my money yet. I also had to call to cancel as it was a Delta flight (BA lets you cancel partner redemptions online).
In all seven cases, my miles were returned very quickly. It’s ‘only’ the money – £300+ each time – that often drags on. Well done to BA for getting this right.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (December 2022)
As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!
In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.
You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:
There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:
You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.
Run your own business?
We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.
You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.
There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.
Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.