Virgin Australia passengers with domestic and international flight bookings for travel until June 30 2020 can now change their travel dates – or even their destination – without paying the airline’s usual change fees.
Those with tickets on international flights who don’t wish to travel, such as because they’ll be subjected to 14 days of self-isolation when they return home, or even upon arrival overseas in places like New Zealand – can also cancel their journey and have the value retained in credit, to be used towards a future booking.
Here’s what you need to know.
Free changes for Virgin Australia domestic flights
All passengers with existing bookings for domestic travel between March 15 and June 30 2020 – as well as those who make new bookings to fly before June 30 2020 – can make one free change to their ticket, even if the fare type booked doesn't normally permit changes.
Travellers can change their flight dates and/or their destination as part of that one free change, for which the airline’s usual change fees will be waived.
For example, a passenger booked to fly from Sydney to Melbourne could simply move those flights to a new date, or could choose to visit a different destination instead: whether on the same date as originally booked, or a different date.
However, any fare difference versus the journey originally purchased remains payable – ditto any change in taxes, fees and charges as can vary when changing a journey to a different airport.
These free changes cannot be made online. Travellers should instead call Virgin Australia’s Guest Contact Centre on 13 67 89 to make their request. If your travel dates aren’t imminent, consider calling later in the week as the airline is currently reporting very high call volumes.
Passengers who booked their flight via a travel agent should instead contact their travel agent to request the change.
Free changes, cancellations for Virgin Australia international flights
Complimentary flight changes are also available for Virgin Australia passengers travelling internationally before June 30 2020.
As with domestic flights, passengers with an international booking can change their departure dates, destination, or both, without paying the usual change fees, including on fare types that aren’t otherwise flexible.
Any fare difference remains payable, along with any increase to taxes, fees and charges. However, international passengers get two free changes – just in case the flights you’ve rebooked onto are again unsuitable, or you’d still rather not travel at that time.
Passengers who booked their Virgin Australia international flight on or after March 12 (for travel before June 30) can make these changes via the Manage Booking section of the Virgin Australia website.
Bookings made before March 12 for international travel until June 30 can instead be changed via the Virgin Australia Guest Contact Centre (call 13 67 89).
Alternatively, international passengers can cancel their journey entirely and receive the value of their ticket as a ‘Travel Bank’ flight voucher, which can be applied towards a new booking down the track. This option is not available to domestic-only passengers, unless permitted under normal fare rules.
Bookings made a travel agent, however, can only be changed or cancelled by contacting that travel agent.
Virgin Australia had already begun cutting domestic and international flights late last week in response to the coronavirus pandemic, with further reductions flagged for New Zealand flights after the NZ Government announced new self-isolation restrictions on all international arriving passengers.
With Australia now implementing those same restrictions on all international arrivals – including returning citizens – a further reduction of international flights is to be expected across all airlines.