We recently covered the news that British Airways was planning to break up Future Travel Vouchers, returning the underlying cash, Avios and vouchers to the holder, in order to reduce pressure on its call centres.
In the last few hours this has started to happen. There is some good news though.
British Airways has decided to extend the life of 2-4-1 vouchers wrapped up in Future Travel Vouchers.
Here is the email being sent out to some holders of Future Travel Vouchers:
“You accepted a Future Travel Voucher for this booking, however, we know there are some issues with vouchers associated with Reward Flight bookings, so to offer you maximum flexibility we’ll be cancelling it and refunding you in full.
“You don’t need to do anything. We’ll automatically credit the Avios back to your account and refund the money to your original form of payment. We expect this to take approximately 4 weeks and it means you’ll be able to use your Avios as you wish.
“If you used a Companion Voucher on this booking, we will add it back to your Executive Club account with a new expiry date of 30 September 2023. If your original Companion Voucher had an expiry date beyond 30 September 2023, that same date will apply when we add the voucher back to your account. This will be done automatically by us and added back to your Executive Club account once your refund has been completed. Please allow approximately 4 weeks.”
This email represents a change of heart by British Airways. The original messaging was that Companion Vouchers would be returned with their original expiry dates, or expired if that date had already passed.
This may be down to HfP pressure, since we had been actively encouraging readers to turn their expiring 2-4-1 vouchers into Future Travel Vouchers in order to keep them alive. There would have been a lot of frustrated customers if those Companion Vouchers had been expired.
What can you do about an expiring 2-4-1 voucher if it wasn’t wrapped in a Future Travel Voucher?
Nothing, unfortunately. You are going to lose it if you don’t use it. British Airways started expiring 2-4-1 vouchers again on 1st October 2021 and it won’t stop now.
It is too late now to turn it into a Future Travel Voucher. As we covered last week, BA is no longer accepting Future Travel Voucher requests for flights which contain an American Express voucher. You will automatically receive a full refund instead which won’t change the 2-4-1 expiry date.
BA has done the right thing by extending 2-4-1 vouchers wrapped in Future Travel Vouchers. These people had taken advantage of a loophole, albeit one created by BA, to extend their Companion Voucher and it would have been wrong to withdraw it.
By cashing in these Future Travel Vouchers, the pressure on BA call centre will be sharply reduced – it takes around 20 minutes to make a booking using a Future Travel Voucher – which will benefit everyone.
How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (May 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. 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.
The Platinum Card has doubled its sign-up bonus to 60,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert to 60,000 Avios, if you apply by 1st June 2022.
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 10,000 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.
(Want to earn more Avios? Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)