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Workaround found! How to trigger an online British Airways flight refund using Google Chrome

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EDIT Monday 30th March – Some people are reporting today that this workaround is not working for them. If it does not work as described, it is probably not your fault!

Our main article today is about BA’s unwillingness to let you claim an online cash refund for an Avios flight.

We have now found a way of triggering a cash refund – as opposed to a voucher – without calling British Airways (and waiting hours in the queue …..)

This next chunk of text is for getting a refund of your taxes on Avios bookings which have not yet been cancelled by BA. 

For a refund on a CASH or Avios BA flight booking which has been cancelled, scroll down this page and read the PS. at the bottom.

If you have a CASH BA flight booking which is NOT showing as cancelled, do NOT follow any of the advice on this page.  You are not yet able to get a cash refund.  You either need to accept the British Airways travel voucher offered or wait until your flight is cancelled and then follow the steps above.

To be clear:

Got an Avios booking which is not yet cancelled?  Read on

Got an Avios booking which is cancelled?  Go to the PS at the bottom

Got a cash booking which is cancelled?  Go to the PS at the bottom

Got a cash booking which is not yet cancelled?   Sorry, there is no way of getting a cash refund.  You need to accept the BA voucher or wait for your flight to be cancelled.

How can you stop British Airways forcing a flight voucher on you?

A IT-savvy reader, Antonio, has found the solution.

In summary ….. if you turn off JavaScript in Google Chrome then ba.com will take you to the full cancellation page.

Here’s proof it works:

How to trigger an online Avios flight refund using Google Chrome

This is how to do it, using the Google Chrome broswer.

Go into ‘Manage My Booking’ on ba.com and select ‘Cancellation options for this booking’.  You must be logged in and using the BA account of the person who booked, ie the person who is named on the confirmation email.

You are taken to the ‘consent’ screen:

How to trigger an online Avios flight refund using Google Chrome

Do NOT continue the process, as you will only be taken to the ‘Future Travel Voucher’ page which you don’t want.  In order to cancel, you need to first disable JavaScript in Chrome.  (If you are not using Chrome, you need to find out how your browser handles JavaScript.)

This is how you do it:

Click the ‘three dots’ in the top right corner of Chrome

Scroll down to ‘Settings’ and click – this opens a new ‘Settings’ page

Click ‘Privacy & Security’ in the left menu – this brings the ‘Privacy & Security’ section to the top

Click ‘Site Settings’ in the ‘Privacy & Security’ section

Scroll down to the ‘Permissions’ section and click ‘JavaScript’

Turn off JavaScript by toggling the ‘Allowed’ button

Do NOT close the window as you need to turn it back on later.  Switch back to the window where you have the ba.com ‘Consent’ page open.  Tick the ‘Please tick here’ box and click ‘Continue’.

You will now be on the standard cash cancellation screen.

Turn JavaScript back on.

You can cancel your booking for a full cash refund of your taxes, and with your Avios returned.

But don’t forget …..

You will be still be paying the £35 per person cancellation fee on a long-haul booking.  If you want to avoid this, you need to wait until BA cancels your flight automatically, assuming it does not operate.

If you paid for seat selection, you LOSE this money if you cancel.  You may prefer to take the travel voucher as I believe the seat selection value is retained, either as part of the voucher or as a credit for free seat selection when you rebook.

PS.  How to get a refund for a CASH British Airways booking

If you are looking to refund a CASH booking which has already been cancelled, this is an alternative set of steps:

1) Go into Manage My Booking on ba.com and select the flight shown as cancelled

2) Go into your browser’s settings and disable JavaScript – for Chrome, follow the instructions I outlined earlier in this article for cancelling an Avios booking

3) Go back to ‘Manage My Booking’ and click on the ‘Cancel and Refund’ button which is just under the cancellation notice

4) Confirm that you now see the correct cash refund form and not the voucher refund form

5) Turn JavaScript back on in your browser settings

6) Click on the “Yes” radio button to select that you are a person in the booking

7) When nothing happens press “Enter” on your keyboard. (this works in Firefox and Chrome). The page refreshes and shows an error at the top of the page “email address invalid”

8) Click on the “Yes” radio button again

9) Complete and submit the form

You will see this screen:

British Airways cancellation

For absolute clarity, do NOT cancel a CASH flight if you have not received an email from British Airways saying that your flight is cancelled.  If your flight is still showing as operating, cancelling means you lose EVERYTHING except a nominal amount in taxes.

Comments (1143)

  • Ganesh D says:

    What BA is doing is very unethical. I understand that they want to keep the money but they are ignoring that it is hard-earned money and passengers may also have financial hardship. I am surprised that the passenger coalition is not acting on it.

    Big thanks for posting this online. I feel for the 99% who may not be able to get their cash refund.

  • Bill B says:

    I replied to Shostring directly, but will post it here as well:
    The direct link to the BA refund page provided in Shoestring’s post of a couple of days ago worked for me.
    https://headforpoints.com/2020/03/19/how-to-trigger-an-online-avios-flight-refund-using-google-chrome/comment-page-22/#comment-440828

    Link: https://www.britishairways.com/travel/webforms/execclub/_gf/en_gb?eId=120002&wfpId=mmb_ticket_refund
    No need for any tricks with JavaScript.

    • Stoked says:

      Hi Bill, i tried the link from Shoestring last night but i haven’t received an email yet- just curious to find out if you got one? Thank you!

  • Terry S says:

    I have flights to Malta on the 29th which have been cancelled. However, there is no refund button it just says ‘call us to find out what your options are’

    Any ideas?

  • AMW says:

    Thank you for this vital information! It has been impossible for me to get in touch with BA on the phone, and I even tweeted and DM them numerous times, but still never got a response. I was afraid of not being able to get the refund before it would be too late! Now I have to wait and see if they do give me the full refund since not all of my flights were cancelled, but the initial flights to my destination were cancelled. Ugh, such a mess.

    • Simon says:

      I’m a bit worried by the T&Cs which say “we will calculate your refund total after you have submitted your form, when we process your claim. Once you submit the form, you agree to the refund amount we calculate”…do I trust BA on this?

      • Rob says:

        If your flight is cancelled, there is nothing to discuss. Full refund.

        My only concern is that someone who has NOT had their flight cancelled on a CASH booking (and a lot of flights ARE still departing, just virtually empty as they are mainly bringing people home) may not realise that they will lose everything except APD by doing this.

        • Simon says:

          We’ve had our return flight cancelled…the outbound flight (operated by American Airlines on 4th April) is still scheduled to fly…that was why I was a bit hesitant on how much they’d refund us.

      • Lady London says:

        No.
        Possibly on the amount you’re fine.
        But the fact is as there is a change even to a part of your booking under eu261 you are fully entitled to a full refund of your whole booking.
        That’s what they’re trying to avoid and not even advise you of

        Please take some time to read other posts on articles across this site past 1-2 days. (And longer ago, but we know you’ll probably think this is too much effort).

        In particular the article clearly titled how to use the ba website to force it to allow you to submita refund request, would help. Or try the link posted by Bill above. Otherwise phone them in which case see a few of my own posts for suggestions

  • Sarah says:

    Amazing. It worked perfectly, have no idea why. Just sorted out refunds for 4 cancelled return flights over Easter. Thank you so much.

  • WN says:

    Hi guys,

    I want to progress my refund using this method – which is an excellent find – but just want to check I’ve understood correctly…

    My booking is for a flight in 10 days to Vancouver, it cost me 12,500 avios + £228 in fees/charges (purchased during last years half price avios bookings).

    If I follow this process will i get 12,500 avios back in my account and £228 less a cancellation charge?

    Any help much appreciated

    • Rob says:

      Yes – there is a £35 fee if your flight is still operating, or £0 fee if your flight is cancelled and BA has emailed to tell you this.

  • Laura G says:

    THANK YOU! It seems to have worked, just got an email confirmation of my refund. Spent hours this morning calling disconnected numbers for BA before I found this. I will never fly BA after this.
    Thank you.

  • Clare Moss says:

    Yes! Thank you so much for this. I wouldn’t have had a clue otherwise 🙂