Singapore Airlines and SilkAir have extended their complimentary rebooking benefit for newly-issued tickets, meaning you can continue to make new bookings or redemptions through to 28th February 2021 for any future travel date and have the option to change your travel plans for no fee, even if your original flight goes ahead as planned.
This window for complimentary rebooking, which applies to all tickets issued from 5th March 2020, has been progressively extended by SIA as the COVID-19 situation has become prolonged.
“This gives customers the flexibility to adjust their travel plans without incurring change fees amid the Covid-19 outbreak.”Singapore Airlines
How it works
You can now make unlimited changes to your travel dates with all change fees waived, depending on when you make the change.
|Date of change||Eligibility|
|On or before 28 February 2021||Unlimited complimentary rebooking|
|After 28 February 2021||One-time complimentary rebooking|
Any booking change must be made within a year of your ticket’s date of issue, and any cancellations will be subject to the ticket’s fare conditions.
To change the origin or destination in your original booking, you’ll have to contact Singapore Airlines for assistance.
If you have purchased tickets through a travel agency or a partner airline, you’ll have to contact them directly for assistance.
Fare differences are still payable
If you change to a more expensive flight, you will still have to pay any applicable fare differences, despite the change fee itself being waived.
Top-up fees may still apply for fare differences in the new itinerary.Singapore Airlines
For example, let’s say you book this return flight to London for February 2021 under the current travel waiver with complimentary booking change (normally US$200 for Economy Lite bookings, which is around S$270 each way on this routing).
If you change to a flight later in the year, you will save that c.S$270 fee per person per sector.
Unfortunately you’re still on the hook for the S$350 fare difference per person (S$1,393 instead of S$1,042), since the flights you are moving to are now (or always were) more expensive.
What about award tickets?
Award tickets are also covered by the policy, so if you lock in a redemption between now and the end of February 2021, for any future travel date in the schedule, you can shift it to a later date without paying the US$25 admin fee for a Saver award.
You’ll get unlimited date changes before 28th February 2021 then one complimentary date change after that.
For Advantage awards, there is no date change fee, so you’re not saving anything here since you could always do this.
Change fee waiver for award tickets only applies if you’re booked on a Singapore Airlines or SilkAir flight. Rebooking is dependent on award space on a future preferred date. If you later have to cancel the award, the usual US$75 miles redeposit fee (US$50 for Advantage awards) still applies.
Do be aware of some fees that are not waived under this policy for award bookings:
- A change of route, cabin class or award type (between Saver and Advantage) is not covered by the policy and will still attract the usual US$25 fee on processing.
- Any changes for partner airline bookings and cancellation / miles redeposit fees are not covered by the policy, and will still attract the usual fees.
- No show fees are not covered by the policy. So if your award flight was last week and you didn’t cancel it, then failed to show up for it, but you now wish to shift the itinerary to July 2021 for example, you’ll still pay the no-show fee (e.g. US$300 for a Business Class award), however the usual US$25 date change fee will be waived in this case.
This isn’t the same as the travel waiver
If you booked your Singapore Airlines ticket on or before 15th March 2020, for travel up to 31st March 2021, you are still entitled to a full refund or bonus travel credits under SIA’s latest travel waiver policy.
The complimentary rebooking benefit is for those who booked more recently, or now wish to book.
How to change your booking
If you booked your tickets directly with Singapore Airlines you can make changes to your itinerary via the Manage Booking portal.
If you booked your tickets through a travel agency or partner airline, you’ll have to contact them to arrange the changes, though these tickets are also covered by the complimentary rebooking policy.
A cancellation fee still applies, but don’t jump the gun
For cancellations, refunds are still in accordance with the fare conditions shown when you make your booking.
Remember though, you’ll still get a full refund with no fees paid if Singapore Airlines subsequently cancels your flight.
For example, if you book this flight to Manchester in April 2021 and it is subsequently cancelled, which is relatively likely, you’ll be entitled to a full refund with no fees payable.
If you voluntarily cancel the flight while it remains in the schedule, however, you’ll be hit with the S$130 cancellation fee, so it’s definitely better to wait and see whether the flight will actually go ahead before cancelling, as there’s a chance you’ll be able you avoid that surcharge.
An inevitable extension of SIA’s fee waiver policy, which was previously applicable only to tickets issued between 5th March 2020 and 31st December 2020.
This two-month extension means the benefit will apply to any tickets booked by 28th February 2021, with further extensions still likely while travel restrictions remain in force.
For award tickets it’s still good news, as you’ll be able to avoid the usual US$25 fee when switching a saver redemption across to a future date on the same route.
For cash fares it’s a little more complicated, since you’ll still be subject to the fare difference applicable when rebooking.
(Cover Photo: MainlyMiles)