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Airline Change and Cancellation Fees for Cash Tickets — And How To Avoid Them!

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Changing or canceling flights is probably not your idea of a good time. Who wants to cancel a flight, especially if it’s taking you on vacation?! But when plans change, knowing your options for updating flight plans is key.

To make flight changes a little easier, we’ve outlined vital information about changing or canceling flights with some of the most popular airlines for cash tickets. We’ve written about award flight cancellation and change fees, too.

Airline Change and Cancellation Fees (Cash Tickets)

The vast majority of airlines require you to pay to change or cancel flights, even when you have paid for your ticket. And each airline has its own rules, so it’s easy to get confused about what you’ll pay.

What Are Change and Cancellation Fees?

Most airline tickets are nonrefundable, especially if you’re taking a vacation.

Refundable tickets are much more common for business travelers whose schedules change more often; they also pay a premium for these tickets.

If you have to change a flight because of an unforeseen event, you’re in luck — many airlines have adjusted their change policies because of the COVID-19 pandemic. A cancellation charge likely applies if you need to cancel a trip. These fees vary by airline, so we’ll discuss the specifics below.

Quick Tips To Avoid Cancellation or Change Fees

  1. The U.S. Department of Transportation requires airlines to allow customers to cancel or change a ticket at no cost within 24 hours of purchase if the ticket is purchased at least 7 days prior to departure.
  2. Under some special circumstances, you can get change and cancellation fees waived. If you experience the death of an immediate family member or your travel companion or have jury duty, you might qualify for a fee waiver.
  3. Use schedule changes to your advantage. Make sure you know the schedule change policy of the airline you are flying. If your departure or arrival time changes, you might be eligible for a free change or cancellation. With the chance of a schedule change, you should consider waiting to cancel until the deadline to do so. Just remember to cancel before the deadline!
  4. Know which airlines will allow you to fly standby on the day of your flight so you don’t end up paying to change flights.
  5. Sometimes, it’s better to dump your reservation and book a new flight rather than pay the fee to change the original ticket.

Bottom Line: There are many pitfalls when trying to change or cancel a flight. Make sure you know your options before booking!

Which Credit Cards Have Trip Cancellation Insurance?

Cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card have trip cancellation insurance that can help recoup the cost of airfare if you or a family member become ill.

If you’re interested in a card with trip cancellation insurance, you may also consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card.

Change and Cancellation Policies and Fees by Airline

The following are change and cancellation fees and policies by airline. Note that these can be subject to change, and agents have the ability to waive some fees in certain situations (so always be nice to your customer service agent!).

This list does not cover baggage fees, which are covered in a separate series. You may also be responsible for the difference in fare in many cases.

Hot Tip: Following the ever-changing change and cancellation policies due to COVID-19? Check out Airline Cancellation Policies Due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Everything You Need to Know.

Aeromexico

Change Fee:

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Fare Type/RegionAsia
Europe
South America
U.S.
Canada
National
Central America and the Caribbean
Europe Except France, NetherlandsFrance/NetherlandsLH (Brazil, Argentina, Chile)SH (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru)
BasicChanges not allowedChanges not allowed

Changes not allowed

Changes not allowedChanges not allowedChanges not allowedChanges not allowed

Classic

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $2,700 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $700 (8+ days before the flight); Mex $1,000 (0-7 days before the flight)

Name Change: Mex $1,160

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Flexible ClassicUnlimited changes at no cost
AM+

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Me $2,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $2,700 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $700 (8+ days before the flight); Mex $1000 (0-7 days before the flight)

Name Change: Mex $1,160

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Flexible AM+Unlimited changes at no cost
Premier

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $2,700 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Change: Mex $700 (8+ days before the flight); Mex $1,000 (0-7 days before the flight)

Name Change: Mex $1,160

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Flexible PremierUnlimited changes at no cost

Premier Light

Change: Mex $700 (8+ days before the flight); Mex $1,000 (0-7 days before the flight)

Name Change: Mex $1,160

Flexible Premier LightUnlimited changes at no cost
Premier One

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $5,400 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $3,000

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

(For LAX & JFK)

Change: Mex $3,600 

Name Change: Mex $2,000

Flexible Premier OneUnlimited changes at no costUnlimited changes at no cost

Cancellation Fee: 

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Fare Type/RegionAsiaEuropeSouth AmericaU.S.CanadaNationalCentral America and the Caribbean
Europe Except France, NetherlandsFrance, NetherlandsLH (Brazil, Argentina, Chile)SH (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru)
BasicNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundable
ClassicNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundable
Flexible ClassicFully refundable

AM+

NonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNon-refundable
Flexible AM+Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0MEX $0
PremierNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNon-refundable
Flexible PremierMex $0Mex $0Mex $0Mex $0MEX $0
Premier LightNonrefundable
Flexible Premier LightFully refundable
Premier OneNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundable
Flexible Premier OneFully refundableFully refundableFully refundableFully refundableFully refundable
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Voluntary Changes/Cancellations: Classic Fare, AM Plus, Flexible Fare, Comfort, and Clase Premier passengers may change the route/date free of charge or may cancel their ticket for a cash refund or a voucher worth 100% of the value of the ticket. This does not apply to Basic fare tickets or to flights within Mexico.
    • Involuntary Changes/Cancellations (Canceled Flights or Government Restrictions): All fares may change the route/date free of charge and without a fare difference in some circumstances. Passengers may also cancel their ticket for a cash refund or a voucher worth 100% of the value of the ticket.
    • For flights from the U.S. to Mexico, the first change is allowed free of cost for modification of flight, date, time, and destination (except Basic fare).

Air Canada

Air Canada Aeroplan Family Points Pooling
Image Credit: Air Canada

Anytime Change:

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Destinations/Fare TypeBasicStandardFlexComfortLatitudePremium EconomyBusiness Class
U.S.Not permitted$100Fare difference onlyFare difference onlyFare difference only

Flexible: Fare difference only

Lowest: $100

Flexible: Fare difference only

Lowest: $100

InternationalNot permittedA fee appliesA fee appliesFare difference only

Flexible: Fare difference only

Lowest: A fee applies

Flexible: Fare difference only

Lowest: A fee applies

Same-Day Airport Change:

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Destination/Fare TypeBasicStandardFlexComfortLatitudePremium EconomyBusiness Class
U.S.Not permitted$150 ($100 for flights between Toronto Pearson (YYZ) and JFK, LaGuardia (LGA) and Newark (EWR) airports)$75IncludedIncluded

Flexible: Included

Lowest: $75

Included
InternationalNot permitted$100$100Included

Flexible: Included

Lowest: $100

Flexible: Included

Lowest: A fee may apply

Cancellation Fee:

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Destination/Fare TypeBasicStandardFlexComfortLatitudePremium EconomyBusiness Class
U.S.No refundNo refundNo refundRefundableRefundable

Flexible: Refundable

Lowest: No refund

Flexible: Refundable

Lowest: No refund

InternationalNo refundNo refundA fee appliesRefundable

Flexible: Refundable

Lowest: A fee applies

Flexible: Refundable

Lowest: A fee applies

For change and cancellation fees of flights within Canada and to Sun Destinations, refer to the fare charts here.


Air New Zealand

Change Fee:

  • Global Sale and Global Saver Fares:
    • Economy & Premium Economy: NZ$50 for each one-way journey per person (infants excluded)
    • Business Premier: NZ$100 for each one-way journey per person (infants excluded)
  • Global Flexi Fares: No fee

Cancellation Fee: 

  • Global Sale fares: Nonrefundable
  • Global Saver Fares: Refundable (if canceled one day or more before departure)
    • Economy: NZD $150 cancellation fee for each one-way journey per adult
    • Premium Economy: NZ$200 cancellation fee for each one-way journey per adult
    • Business Premier: NZ$250 cancellation fee for each one-way journey per adult
    • F class (grabaseat) fares are nonrefundable
  • Global Flexi Fares: Fully refundable, provided you cancel before departure 

Exclusions/Waivers:

  • You can cancel within 24 hours after your purchase and receive a full refund with no fees, provided the reservation is made 1 week or more prior to the scheduled departure.
  • If you’re not making the change online, a service fee of NZ$60 per change per seat applies for changes made by phone from within New Zealand. Otherwise, the service fee depends on the country you’re calling from.
  • If you buy a Global Sale or Global Saver fare and later upgrade it to a Global Flexi fare, the original cancellation fees apply.

Alaska Airlines

  • Change or Cancellation Fee:
    • All fares excluding Saver tickets: Free; fare difference may apply
    • Saver tickets: Changes are not permitted. For flights booked on or after July 19, 2023, a credit for 50% of the ticket value can be issued for flights cancelled at least 14 days to departure of the first flight on the ticket.
  • Same-Day Change Fee: $50 ($25 for travel within California and on shuttle flights between Anchorage and Fairbanks, Spokane and Seattle, and Portland and Seattle)
    • MVP Gold or 75K members receive complimentary same-day changes
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • The same-day change fee is waived for passengers booked in first class (J) or coach (Y), MVP Gold Mileage Plan members, and American AAdvantage ConciergeKey, Executive Platinum, and Platinum Pro members (and companions on the same reservation).
    • Guests traveling on a vacation package booking are not eligible for same-day confirmed changes. If this change is necessary, the passenger must call 1-800-445-4435.

Allegiant Airlines

  • Change Fee: $25 per person, per segment, plus any applicable airfare increase. Changes must be made at least 7 days before departure.
  • Cancellation Fee: $25 (must be made at least 7 days before departure)

Hot Tip:If you purchase Allegiant’s TripFlex at the time of your booking, change fees and cancellation fees are waived for amendments made up to 1 hour before departure.


American Airlines

  • Change Fee: Fee varies depending on the fare
    • Main Cabin
      • Flights originating in North or South America: Free
      • Outside of North or South America: Up to $750
    • Premium Economy
      • Outside of North or South America: Up to $750
    • Business
      • Flights originating in North or South America: Free
      • Outside of North or South America: Up to $750
    • First
      • Flights originating in North or South America: Free
      • Outside of North or South America: Up to $750
  • Same-Day Change Fee: Starting at $50 (Main Cabin); free (business/first class)
  • Cancellation Fee: If you cancel a nonrefundable ticket, American will not give you a refund except under certain circumstances, including canceling within 24 hours of purchase, a schedule change of 4 or more hours (or a change of 90 minutes or more within 72 hours of departure), military orders, or the death of the passenger or traveling companion.

All Nippon Airways (ANA)

  • Change/Cancellation Fee: Fees vary based on the fare and may be up to $500. Check your ticket’s terms and conditions.

Asiana Airlines

  • Change Fee: Check your terms and conditions at the time of booking.
  • Cancellation Fee: Check your terms and conditions at the time of booking.
  • Exclusions/Waivers: 
    • There are no standard change and cancellation fees. Fees will depend on the fare type and the journey taken. Refunds for Preferred Seating, Economy Smartium, and Royal Business tickets can be refunded up to 48 hours before the scheduled flight departure.

Avianca Airlines (TACA)

  • Change Fees:
    • XS, S, and M fares
      • Within Colombia: COP 110,000 (~$25) plus fare difference
      • Within Ecuador: $28 plus fare difference
      • International flights within South America: $170 plus fare difference
      • International flights to/from Europe, North America, Central America, Mexico, and the Caribbean: $200 plus fare difference
    • L and XXL fares: Free; fare difference may apply
  • Cancellation Fees:
    • XS, S, and M fares: Nonrefundable
    • L and XXL fares: Refundable
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • For ticket purchases prior to May 3, 2023, regardless of flight date, changes to the XS fare are not permitted.

British Airways

British Airways publishes general ranges of change and cancellation fees, but they are intended as a guide only. The British Airways website or staff will inform passengers of specific charges at the time of changing or canceling a ticket.

  • Change/Cancellation Fee: Free (online); $25 (phone); $35 (at an airport ticket office)
  • Same-Day Change Fee: Free for domestic short-haul; international ticket fees depend on the situation and fare class
  • Cancellation Fee: Some fares are nonrefundable. Check your fare details. Administrative fees apply: $10 (online); $25 (phone); $35 (at an airport ticket office).
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Notice of 1 hour is required to make a same-day change.
    • Free same-day changes are not available if your itinerary has a connection or is a long-haul flight.

Hot Tip: If you need to cancel or change a British Airways flight, do it online. Administrative fees for changes online are free, but cancellations are $10. Remember that there may also be other charges depending on your fare type. 


Cathay Pacific

  • Change Fee: 
    • Date/Time: $50 (Standard Economy); $150 (Promotional, Economy Save, Premium Economy Standard, and Business Save)
    • Rerouting: $150
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • $150 (Unused and some partially used)
    • $200 (Expired)

China Southern Airlines

The following is a chart of change and cancellation fees for domestic flights.

Change Fee:

SCROLL FOR MORE
Voluntary ChangesFare TypeAt Least 168 Hours Before DepartureAt Least 48 Hours Before DepartureAt Least 4 Hours Before DepartureWithin 4 Hours of Departure
First ClassFFree5%5%10%
Business ClassJ
C5%10%10%15%
D5%10%15%20%
I
Premium EconomyWFree5%5%10%
S15%10%20%30%
S25%20%30%40%
S310%30%50%70%
EconomyYFree5%5%10%
B5%10%20%30%
M
H
U5%20%30%40%
A
L
E10%30%50%70%
V
Z
T
N
R

Cancellation Fee:

SCROLL FOR MORE
Voluntary RefundFare TypeAt Least 168 Hours Before DepartureAt Least 48 Hours Before DepartureAt Least 4 Hours Before DepartureWithin 4 Hours of Departure
First ClassF5%5%5%10%
Business ClassJ
C5%10%20%25%
D5%15%25%30%
I
Premium EconomyW5%5%10%20%
S110%15%30%40%
S210%25%40%50%
S320%40%70%90%
EconomyY5%5%10%20%
B10%15%30%40%
M
H
U10%25%40%50%
A
L
E20%40%70%90%
V
Z
T
N
R

Delta Air Lines

Family checking in at DTW Delta
Image Credit: Delta

Change Fee:

  • Domestic U.S. and Canada Flights:
    • Travel within Domestic U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands: $0 (excluding Basic Economy)
  • International Flights Originating Within North, South, and Central America and the Caribbean
    • Travel originating within the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean: No change fee (main cabin and above)
    • Travel originating in Mexico: $200 (main cabin and above)
    • From Central America to the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, or the U.S. Virgin Islands: $99 (main cabin and above)
    • From Central America to other international destinations: $200 (main cabin and above)
    • Travel originating in South America: $200 (main cabin and above)
  • International Flights Originating Outside of North, South, and Central America and the Caribbean
    • Travel originating outside of the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean: $0 to $400
    • Travel originating in Europe: No change fee (main cabin and above)
    • Travel originating in the U.K.: No change fee (main cabin and above)
    • Travel originating in Africa, India, and the Middle East: No change fee (main cabin and above)
  • Basic economy tickets cannot be changed; however, they can be canceled for a cancellation charge.

Cancellation Fee:

  • Domestic U.S., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands: No fee (main cabin and above)
    • Basic economy tickets: $99; the remaining value issued as an eCredit
  • International Flights Originating Within North, South, and Central America and the Caribbean
    • Travel originating in Mexico: $200 (main cabin and above); Basic economy tickets cannot be canceled
    • From Central America to the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, or the U.S. Virgin Islands: $99 (Main cabin and above); $99 (Basic Economy)
    • From Central America to other international destinations: $200 (Main cabin and above); $199 (Basic Economy)
    • Travel originating in South America: $200 (main cabin and above); $199 (Basic Economy)
    • Travel from the U.S./Canada to the Caribbean, Central America, and Mexico: $99 (Basic Economy)
    • Travel from the U.S./Canada to other international destinations: $199 (Basic Economy)
  • International Flights Originating Outside of North, South, and Central America and the Caribbean
    • Travel originating outside of the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean: $0 to $400
    • Travel originating in Europe: No fee (Main cabin and above); €200 (Basic economy tickets issued on or after February 23, 2023, €150 for tickets issued before)
    • Travel originating in the U.K.: No fee (Main cabin and above); £200 (Basic economy tickets issued on or after February 23, 2023, £150 for tickets issued before)
    • Travel originating in Africa, India, and the Middle East: No fee (Main cabin and above); $200 (Basic economy tickets issued on or after February 23, 2023, $180 for tickets issued before)

Same-Day Change Fee: $75. GoldPlatinum, and Diamond Medallion members are not charged for same-day changes

Exclusions/Waivers:

  • No change or cancellation fee for travel originating from Asia, Oceania (Australia, Bangladesh, China, Indonesia, Japan, Guam, Hong Kong, Mongolia, Nepal, New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand), or Israel

easyJet

  • Change Fee: 
    • More than 60 days before the flight:
      • Online: £25 (~$31)
      • Customer service team: £30 (~$37)
    • Less than 60 days before the flight:
      • Online: £49 (~$60)
      • Customer service team: £54 (~$66)
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • Within 24 hours of booking:
      • Online: £49 (~$60)
      • Customer service team: £55 (~$67)
    • After 24 hours of booking: Nonrefundable

El Al

  • Change Fee: May vary based on ticket
    • Passengers will also be charged a $50 admin fee per passenger for making a change via the Customer Service Center
  • Cancellation Fee: May vary based on ticket
  • Exclusions/Waivers: Passengers who purchased a ticket to or from destinations in the Americas up to October 31, 2023, are allowed to change or freeze their ticket for flights departing by October 31, 2024, or one year from the day of ticketing, whichever comes first, with no change fees or handling fees.

Emirates

  • Change/Cancellation Fee: Fees depend on fare type and route. Crowdsourced web comments have quoted prices anywhere from $50 to over $1,000.

Etihad Airways

  • Change/Cancellation Fee: Fees depend on fare type and route. Crowdsourced web comments have quoted prices anywhere from $75 to over $200.
  • Exclusions/Waivers: 
    • If changing a flight using a customer service agent, a fee of $20 to $30 (differs per country and where the fee was booked) may be added on top of the change fees.
    • Changes or cancellations made within 96 hours of flight departure incur an additional 10% fee.

EVA Air

  • Change/Cancellation Fee: Fees depend on fare type and route. Check your ticket for rules.
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Free changes and refunds are only permitted when a flight is canceled or rescheduled.

Frontier Airlines

  • Change/Cancellation Fee:
    • $0 at 60 or more days before departure
    • $49 at 59 to 7 days before departure
    • $99 within 6 days before departure
  • Same-Day Change Fee: $99
  • Exclusions/Waivers: Change and cancellation fees are waived for passengers who purchase the WORKS bundle. This includes Elite 100K members who receive the WORKS bundle as an elite benefit.

Garuda Indonesia

Change and cancellation are not disclosed by the airline. Check your ticket information or contact the airline for details on the policy.


Hainan Airlines

Approximate fees are below for a flight between China and the U.S. Check your ticket, as fees are route-dependent.

  • Change Fee:
    • Economy: $0-$200
    • Business: $0-$250
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • Economy: $0-$450
    • Business: $0-$400

Hawaiian Airlines

  • Change Fee: Free (for fares excluding Main Cabin Basic)
  • Restricted Refundable Fare Change Fee (No Refunds Are Permitted):
    • Neighbor Island: $25
    • North America: $100
    • International: $100

Iberia Airlines

Iberia business class
Image Credit: Iberia

Iberia Airlines publishes general ranges of change and cancellation fees, but they are intended as a guide only. The Iberia website or staff will inform passengers of specific charges at the time of changing or canceling a ticket.

  • Change Fee:
    • Economy Basic: €180 to €200 (~$217 to $241)
    • Economy Optimal: First change free up to 15 days before departure. Subsequent changes from €180 to €200 (~$217 to $241)
    • Economy Flexible: Free
    • Premium Economy Promotional: €150 to €200 (~$181 to $241)
    • Premium Economy Flexible: Free
    • Business Promotional: First change free up to 15 days before departure; subsequent changes €300 (~$361)
    • Business Flexible: Free
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • Basic Fare: Nonrefundable
    • Optimal Fare: Nonrefundable
    • Flexible: Free
    • Premium Economy Promotional: Nonrefundable
    • Premium Economy Flexible: Free
    • Business Promotional: Nonrefundable
    • Business Flexible: Free
  • Exclusions/Waivers: 
    • Passengers with flights affected by COVID-19 can change the date of the flight free of charge or request a credit to be used within 14 months. Changes can be made 15 days or less before the flight departure and apply under the following circumstances:
      • Entry restrictions at your destination
      • Lockdown or quarantine measures at your destination
      • Lockdown or quarantine measures at your place of origin
      • Positive passenger test for COVID-19

Japan Airlines

Date Change Fee: $100-$400 or CA$100-CA$400, based on the fare rules per transaction for travel from North/Central/South America to Japan/Asia. Some fares are nonrefundable, please refer to your fare conditions for details.

Cancellation Fee: $200-$500 or CA$200-CA$500, based on the fare rules per transaction for travel from North/Central/South America to Japan/Asia. Some fares are nonrefundable, please refer to your fare conditions for details.

A $50 or CA$50 administrative fee may also apply to changes and cancellations (fees depend on the country of booking).


JetBlue Airways

  • Change/Cancellation Fee:
    • Blue, Blue Plus, Blue Extra, and Mint: Free (fare difference applies)
    • Blue Basic
      • Routes in North America, the Caribbean, and Central America: $100
      • All other routes: $200
  • Same-day Change Fee: $75
    • Same-day change fee is waived for Mosaic members, and Blue Extra fares
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Administrative Fee: $25 for changing or canceling with a JetBlue customer support agent. No administrative fee applies online.

Hot Tip: If you are a TrueBlue Mosaic member and traveling with others, you can change or cancel flights for everyone on the booking for free.


Korean Air

  • Change Fee: Fare-dependent; refer to your fare rules
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • International Flights:
      • $30 service charge is applicable on top of the refund penalty
      • Refund Penalty 91+ days: Free
      • Refund Penalty 61 to 90 days: ₩30,000 (~$22)
      • Refund Penalty 15 to 60 days: ₩50,000 to ₩300,000 (~$27 to $222)
      • Refund Penalty 4 to 14 days: ₩60,000 to ₩360,000 (~$44 to $267)
      • Refund Penalty within 3 days: ₩80,000 to ₩450,000 (~$59 to $334)
      • No-Show/Partial Refund: ₩50,000 to ₩300,000 (~$37 to $222)
    • Domestic Flights:
      • Prestige: ₩3,000 (~$2)
      • Standard: ₩5,000 (~$4)
      • Saver: ₩7,000 (~$5)
  • Exclusions/Waivers: 
    • Fees depend on the specific fare type, so be sure to check your fare’s terms and conditions.
    • Refunds processed 91 or more days from departure and originating in South Korea are exempt from refund fees.

Norwegian Air

  • Change Fee:
    • LowFare and LowFare+: $75 plus fare difference.
    • Flex: Free
    • Changes made by phone or at the airport cost $25 per person each way. Changes can be made up to 30 minutes before departure.
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • LowFare and LowFare+: Not permitted
    • Flex: Free

Qantas

Change/Cancellation Fee:

Flights From the U.S. to Asia, Australia, New Caledonia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea:

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 EconomyPremium EconomyBusinessFirst
 SaleSaverFlexSaleSaverFlexSaleSaverFlexSaleSaverFlex
Change$199FreeFree$500FreeFree$600FreeFree$600FreeFree
CancellationNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refundNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refundNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refundNonrefundable$2,500Full refund

Flights from the U.S. to Fiji:

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 EconomyBusiness
 SaleSaverFlexSaleSaverFlex
ChangeNot PermittedFreeFree$600FreeFree
CancellationNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refundNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refund

Flights from the U.S. to French Polynesia:

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 EconomyPremium EconomyBusiness
 SaleSaverFlexSaleSaverSaleSaverFlex
ChangeNot PermittedFreeFreeNot PermittedFreeNot PermittedFreeFree
CancellationNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refundNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableNonrefundableFull refund

For other routes, refer to Qantas fare rules.

A service fee of $40 will be charged for passengers changing international flight bookings.


Qatar Airways

  • Cancellation Fees: Fees depend on the fare type and the cabin class and are displayed online during the booking process.
  • Change Fees: Fees depend on the fare type and the cabin class and are displayed online during the booking process.
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Tickets canceled or amended through the call center, at an airport ticket desk, or at a Qatar Airways ticket office are subject to a nonrefundable service fee of $25.

Ryanair

  • Flight Change Fee: €45 to €60 (~$48 to $63)
  • Name Change Fee: 
    • Online: €115 (~$121)
    • Phone: €160 (~$169)
  • Cancellation Fee: Nonrefundable
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Fees are waived if made within 24 hours of the booking.

Singapore Airlines

  • Change Fee:
    • A $50 service charge may apply on top of a change fee per your purchased fare; check your fare’s terms and conditions.
  • Cancellation Fee:
    • Cancellations may only be made on refundable fares; only taxes will be refunded if you cancel a nonrefundable fare.
    • In some cases, a cancellation fee may apply.

Southwest Airlines

Southwest check-in kiosk
Image Credit: Southwest
  • Change/Cancellation Fee: Free
  • Same-Day Change Fee: Only permitted on Wanna Get Away+, Anytime, or Business Select tickets.
  • Exclusions/Waivers: Nonrefundable fares can be canceled and exchanged for future credit without incurring fees.

Bottom Line: Southwest Airlines makes changing and canceling flights easier than just about any other airline. When you cancel a flight, you receive a credit to your account from the original ticket holder.


Spirit Airlines

  • Change/Cancellation Fees:
    • Standard or Award Ticket
      • 0 to 6 Days From Departure — $119
      • 7 to 30 Days From Departure — $99
      • 31 to 59 Days From Departure — $69
      • 60+ Days From Departure — Free
    • Flight Flex (for changes only, not cancellations)
      • Up to 24 Hours Before Departure — Free
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Changes can be made up to an hour before the flight departure

Hot Tip: If you purchase Spirit’s Flight Flex at the time of your booking, you’ll be allowed 1 flight modification at no extra cost if done more than 24 hours prior to your flight.


Thai Airways

  • Change/Cancellation Fees: Fare-dependent. Check your fare details when booking.
  • Exclusions/Waivers
    • After travel commences, no refund will be issued. Changes must be made before ticket expiration to the same booking class and within the same seasonality of travel. Any fare changes will also be chargeable. Refunds must be requested no later than 90 days of ticket expiration.

Turkish Airlines

  • Change Fees:
    • Economy Promotion/Semi-Flexible Fare: Route-dependent
    • Economy Flexible Fare: Free
    • Business Promotions Fare: Route-dependent
    • Business Semi-Flexible Fare: Route-dependent
    • Business Flexible Fare: Route-dependent
  • Cancellation Fees:
    • Economy Promotion Fare: Nonrefundable
    • Economy Semi-Flexible Fare: Permitted before the flight, subject to defined deductions. After the flight, the refunded amount is the cost of the flight taken deducted from the total cost.
    • Economy Flexible Fare: Permitted before the flight, subject to defined deductions. After the flight, the refunded amount is the cost of the flight taken deducted from the total cost.
    • Business Promotions: Nonrefundable
    • Business Semi-Flexible/Flexible Fare: Permitted before the flight, subject to defined deductions. After the flight, the refunded amount is the cost of the flight taken deducted from the total cost.

United Airlines

  • Change Fee:
    • Economy, Economy Plus, and premium cabins: Free changes for flights within the U.S., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, between the U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean, and for international flights originating in the U.S.
    • Basic Economy: Route dependent
  • Same-day Change Fee: Route dependent
    • Waived for Silver, Gold, Platinum, and 1K members
  • Cancellation Fee: If you cancel a non-refundable ticket, you may return to the reservation up to a year after the issue date. Change fees may apply.
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • If your departure or arrival time is altered by more than 30 minutes because of a schedule change, you may change your flight at no extra cost or request a refund. Your new flight must depart from the same airport within 24 hours of the originally scheduled departure.

Virgin Atlantic

  • Change Fee: Fare-dependent, check your fare rules
  • Cancellation Fee: Fare-dependent
  • Exclusions/Waivers:
    • Flights booked on or after December 23, 2021, for travel any time up to December 31, 2022, are permitted to make unlimited date changes. Travel must be completed by December 31, 2023.

WestJet

Change/Cancellation Fee:

  • Flights Within Canada:
    • Econo, Premium, Business: CA$100 to CA$118 (~$73 to $86)
    • Econo Flex: No Fee
  • All Other Routes (Excluding Europe and Asia):
    • Econo, Premium, Business: CA$100 to CA$118 (~$73 to $86)
    • Econo Flex: No fee
  • Flights Between Canada and Europe:
    • Econo: CA$150 to CA$177/€99/£83
    • Econo Flex: No fee
    • Premium: CA$300 to CA$354/€228/£192
    • Business Changes: CA$500 to CA$590/€381/£321; Cancellations: CA$600 to CA$708/€396/£336
  • Flights Between Canada and Asia:
    • Econo: CA$150 to CA$177/¥15,794
    • Econo Flex: No fee
    • Premium: CA$300 to CA$354/¥31,587
    • Business Changes: CA$500 to CA$590/¥52,645; Cancellations: CA$600 to CA$708/¥63,174

Exclusions/Waivers:

  • For Basic fares, no changes and cancellations are permitted after 24 hours of booking.
  • Flexible fares (EconoFlex, PremiumFlex, and Business Flex) holders can change their flights for no fee; any fare difference applies.
  • EconoFlex fare holders can cancel their flight for no fee and get the refund credit in their Travel Bank account.
  • PremiumFlex and BusinessFlex fare holders can cancel their flight for no fee and get a refund to their original payment method.
  • Change and cancellation fees are charged per direction, per person, except for changes and cancellations on flights to and from Europe, where change and cancellation fees are charged per transaction, per person. 
  • Changes or cancellations must be made at least 2 hours prior to departure.
  • Reserved flights departing within 24 hours will have cancellation fees and fare. 

Change and Cancellation Policy by Online Travel Agency (OTA)

If you’re booking through an online travel agent, be aware of their change and cancellation policies.

Orbitz

If you book a nonrefundable ticket through Orbitz, you have 24 hours to cancel it without a fee. However, you won’t receive a refund of the Orbitz service fee (if you were charged one).

Airline change and cancellation fees will apply once you have passed the 24-hour cancellation window. Additionally, you will be responsible for a $30 fee paid to Orbitz.

As you will see above, many airlines waive change and cancellation fees that would also apply to your flights booked through Orbitz.

You must contact the airline to change or cancel a booking with a low-cost carrier.

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Low-Cost Carriers
AirAsiaFrontierSpirit
easyJetInterjetVivaAerobus
EurowingsJetstarVolaris
FireflyNorwegian 

Priceline

You have 24 hours to cancel bookings without a fee, but Express Deals are not changeable or refundable.

Beyond 24 hours, all applicable airline change and cancellation fees apply, plus Priceline charges a service fee (the amount depends on the flight booked).

Bottom Line: When booking with online travel agents such as Expedia, Orbitz, and Priceline, remember there’s a service fee on top of the airline’s change or cancellation fee if you need to make a change.

Final Thoughts

You can see how vastly different these carrier change and cancellation policies can be. Some are easy, like Southwest Airlines, while others (such as Spirit Airlines) are much stricter.

Hopefully, once you have booked a nonrefundable ticket you won’t need to make any changes. Your life will be much easier that way!

If you need to make a change for some reason, you now have all the info you need to prepare.


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Airline Cancellation & Change Fees (Cash Tickets)

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I make a refund request for my refundable ticket?

Call the customer service number of your airline to process your refund or log in to your booking in your online account, where you may be able to request a refund.

How much time do I have to put in a cancellation request on my airline ticket before I have to pay a fee?

U.S. law requires 24 hours from the time of purchase of an airline ticket to do a full refund without paying any fees, as long as you are booking more than 7 days out.

What is an airline change fee?

An airline change fee is a penalty charge for changing the date or destination of a flight. Some ticket types, such as flexible fares, waive change fees. When you change your ticket, almost all passengers are required to pay the fare difference.

How can I change my flight without paying a fee?

Some airlines allow free changes to be made within 24 hours of booking, while others waive changes for elite frequent flyers. Alternatively, you could purchase a fare type that allows free changes.

Can I cancel a flight and get a refund?

Flexible and premium cabin fares often allow free cancellations, but other fare types are usually nonrefundable or charge a penalty.

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About Spencer Howard

Always a fan of flying, it was only natural that Spencer was drawn to finding a way to improve the travel experience.

Like many, he started this journey searching for cheap flights to take him around the world. This was fun for a while, but Spencer was intrigued by the idea of flying in business and first class!

Throwing himself into what became an extensive research project, Spencer spent 3-4 hours per night learning everything he could about frequent flyer miles over the course of several months (he thinks this is normal). He runs Straight to the Points, an award-seat alert platform.

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