Sensible to book long haul on points with potential for covid delays?

1 reply

Tom-125

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 13 Nov 2015

Total posts 14

Like many others I have half a gazillion velocity points, enough for a business class return to London once velocity redemptions on SIA (and hopefully points transfers) open up, and I want to do just that in June/July next year.

What do people think would be likely to happen with a points booking if I couldn't fly and had to delay a week for some reason, maybe a positive covid test, or a lockdown at one end? With a cash booking most airlines are offering free changes/cancellations though there would be a fare difference to pay probably, but you can get insurance against this. With a points booking would you be stuck as presumably there wouldn't be any award availability for the following week? Or would the airlines take pity on you?

Therefore is it sensible to book using points right now, it end up being an expensive mistake as the cash fares 6-8 months out are far cheaper than next week, if you did have to re-book with cash.

Interested in people's views.

Sibelius

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 06 Aug 2017

Total posts 124

I think it's probably as "sensible" to book with points now as it's ever going to be. Cancellation policies are still generous, and I don't share your pessimism about not getting last-minute rewards bookings if you need to change your flight for some reason.

One thing you could do to minimise your risk of getting stuck (I was doing this even before the pandemic): keep some of your gazillion points "in reserve" so you can make a last-minute booking if need be without having to wait for points to be refunded. Even better: have points with a Oneworld airline (eg. Qantas) as well so you're not stuck with a certain airline or alliance.

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