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Got a British Airways eVoucher? You may be able to demand a cash refund

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British Airways, perhaps in an attempt to see off legal action, has made a change to its policy on eVouchers for certain passengers.

Anyone who received an eVoucher for a cancelled flight between 9th March and 19th November 2020 can now insist that the airline refunds it in cash. has the details here.

This is because British Airways was deliberately encouraging people to take a voucher during this period, removing all online methods of requesting a – legally allowed – cash refund.

British Airways refunds of evouchers

Perhaps I’m being cynical, but British Airways seems to be making the process more complicated than is necessary.

For a start, you cannot cash in your eVoucher until two years from the date it was issued. This is a totally arbitrary rule as far as I can tell.

Secondly, it is important to note is that your flight must have been cancelled. If you voluntarily chose to take an eVoucher for a flight which was operating, you are not entitled to cash in your voucher.

(What is not clear is what happens if you voluntarily chose to take an eVoucher at a point when your flight was still operating, but the flight was later cancelled.)

Thirdly, anyone whose flight was cancelled after 19th November 2020 does not qualify. This is because:

“At the time of your flight being cancelled you would have been offered the choice of a refund through or an eVoucher for future travel. Prior to 19 November 2020 we couldn’t offer all the usual channels for a customer to request a refund.”

To be honest, I can’t remember how difficult it was to access a cash refund via after 19th November 2020. Let’s be honest – if you had gone on to and been give two options:

  • a full cash refund, straight into your bank account within a few days, or
  • a Future Travel Voucher which will expire in April 2023

….. I would assume 99% would have taken the cash. Were passengers really given the two options like this, side by side?

On the upside, for anyone who cannot cash in their eVoucher under these rules, British Airways eVouchers are fully transferable. If you don’t think you will be able to use it before 30th September 2023, you can always sell it to a friend or on eBay. The only snag is that you can’t use them to pay taxes and charges on Avios redemptions.

Intriguingly, if you used Avios to part-pay for your flight or to pay for seat reservations, BA is now saying that you will get your Avios back. The previous policy had been to refund the full original cash price (ie before you reduced it with Avios) and not return the points.

Anyone who booked via a travel agent or tour operator is not able to participate in this scheme. You must contact the company who handled your original booking.

You can find out more about cashing in your eVouchers on here.

PS. None of this has any impact on Avios bookings because no Avios bookings were refunded in the form of eVouchers. You would have received a Future Travel Voucher instead. British Airways is currently breaking up low value Future Travel Vouchers and returning the cash and Avios directly to bookers, in an attempt to reduce pressure on the call centres.

PPS. Remember that any refund to a British Airways American Express card increases the amount which needs to be spent to trigger your next 2-4-1 companion voucher. The ideal time to request a refund would be in the gap between triggering your current voucher and the end of your card year. If you don’t, you will need to spend more than you think to receive your next voucher because it requires £10,000 or £20,000 of NET spending.


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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:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

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Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

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You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 13th June, the sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card is doubled to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – and you get £200 to spend at Amex Travel too! Apply here.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

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The Platinum Card from American Express

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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.

EDIT: Applications for this card are temporarily suspended due to IT issues with the British Airways On Business SME loyalty scheme.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

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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.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (39)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • buchanan101 says:

    I’ve applied – have two evouchers; whether I am entitled, I don’t know, as I partially used my first one (so got a further voucher), and then partially used that one and got a euro value one for the balance.

    So, just easier to apply (which is very easy) and see what happens!

    Wonder if the application process stops them being used in the meantime – as I may use one tomorrow depending on Avios v cash price when buying some tickets 355 days out…

  • Sarah says:

    I have an evoucher from Feb 2021 and I was definitely not given cash refund option.

  • Paul says:

    The administrative and operational chaos continues! Flyertalk again full of tales of woe from T5 this weekend with massive queues for both arrivals and departures.

    • NorthernLass says:

      They can either give out refunds OR pay the number of staff needed to operate efficiently, not both! Just be thankful you don’t have to combine this with the security experience at MAN …

  • moody says:

    What happens to an eVoucher if you only use part of it? Does the refunded portion have an extended expiry date or does the same expiry date persist?

    • Rob says:

      All vouchers have a 9/23 expiry date now. Yours may say something different if it was issued a long time ago but it has been extended regardless. Any ‘change’ will also have 9/23 as the expiry date.

  • xcalx says:

    I have a flight booked with avios which BA have cancelled. Online only offers FTV have been trying every 30 mins for the last 3 days to get through to cancel the booking for a cash refund and have not got past the “too busy call back ” Ringing 03444930747 any other number worth a try (no status) Thanks.

  • pigeon says:

    EC261 says that a refund for a canceled flight can “with the signed agreement of the passenger, [be] in travel vouchers”. So if BA hasn’t got you to sign anything – can’t see how they can refuse a cash refund.

    • Lady London says:

      “Can’t see how they could have refused a cash voucher”.

      Exactly. If passenger wants a refund for a cancelled flight legally BA was supposed to refund within 7 days.

      Anyone taking cash now for a voucher from at least 2 years ago, which is just a subsection of the vouchers BA owed cash at the time for, should demand at least 8% statutory interest pa, compounded for at least the 2 years, to be added to the refund passengers were denied by the deliberate removal of the previously longstanding functioning ability to click on a button to request this. I certainly wouldn’t accept just the pure amount back because it’s value has bern reduced by close to 20% (adding bank rate %) in the 2 years BA has been holding it.

  • M R says:

    I tried to cancel a 2-4-1 booking today online and only option was an voucher expiring in Sept 2023 (from memory!). Its a flight that BA have cancelled. No cash option even today. Im going to have to call…

    • Rob says:

      If you select the voucher, you will be told that you can’t have one (as its an Avios booking) and you will get a clean refund instead.

      • xcalx says:

        MIne was an avios booking so took your advice. Here is the reply

        “Thank you for completing your voucher application. We confirm that we have received your form and will begin processing it.

        You’ll receive your voucher code and details on using it by email within 7 days.

        Do not cancel or make any changes to your booking in the meantime.”

        Not what I was expecting

        • Rob says:

          Wait and see – they have definitely stopped offering FTVs on Avios bookings.

          • xcalx says:

            Your right again Rob, I just received this
            “We’re sorry you couldn’t travel on your Reward Flight booking reference XXXXXX. To offer you maximum flexibility we’ll be cancelling your booking 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, to book a new trip on or however you choose when you are ready to return to the skies.

            If you used a Companion Voucher and/or a Gold Upgrade Voucher on this booking, we will add it back to your Executive Club account with its original expiry date. This will be done automatically by us.

            We look forward to welcoming you on board again soon.

            Warm regards,
            British Airways”

        • gordon says:

          You should get the refund plus avios etc a lot sooner than 4 weeks that’s just an estimate. I received the avois after 2 days and cash after week….

          • mecrash says:

            I’ve been waiting over 2 weeks for my refund.
            Neither cash or avios returned yet

  • AR says:

    Regarding “fully transferability” – if you use someone’s eVouchers please bear in mind, that if the flight you purchased is cancelled and you apply for a full refund, than eVoucher part (which was full ticket cost in my case) will be refunded to the original card associated with eVoucher (or chain of eVouchers).

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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