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Airline Award Ticket Change and Cancellation Policies

Due to award availability, it’s often necessary to book award flights months in advance to secure your seat, particularly for business and first-class awards. With such a long period between the date you book and the date you fly, it’s easy for a change of plans to require alterations to an award, or worse, for you to cancel your flight and request your miles be returned to your account. In case you need to make a change, here’s a list of fees you can expect to pay.

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Can I Use Airline & Travel Credits to Pay Award Change and Cancellation Fees?

Most airline loyalty programs now charge award change or cancellation fees, with costs ranging from a reasonable $20/25 for select changes on KrisFlyer, Emirates, or Etihad, to a slap-in-the-face $150 per ticket for close-in changes or redeposits through Delta’s SkyMiles program. That’s cold hard cash you’ve paid to the airline for the privilege of not flying with them. But thanks to travel credits provided on some of our favorite travel rewards cards, that cash doesn’t have to come from your wallet. Instead, you can pay the award change or cancellation fee using your credit card, and have the charge wiped as a statement credit.