Coronavirus Travel & Business Update

Last updated: 6th April 2020

As you would be aware, the coronavirus has had an enormous impact on the travel industry around the world. Despite this, Flight Centre currently is, and will continue to work through all upcoming bookings in order of departure date. We are prioritising customers who need to return home from overseas, and any travel booked between now and end of April, so please bear with us.

A message from our CEO, Graham ‘Skroo’ Turner Read more.

Flight Centre Travel Group Update

On Monday 6 April, 2020 we announced an important development that will help the Flight Centre Travel Group overcome the challenges currently being faced in relation to the coronavirus. We have secured $900 million in additional funding to help ensure that FCTG is strongly positioned for the future. Read more.

Business Update

At present, due to government limitations, we are temporarily unable to operate in a normal manner. This has led to the stoppage of the vast proportion of work previously carried out by our employees.

We have made the difficult decision to stand down a considerable portion of our workforce for an indefinite period of time. This decision was made in response to an unexpected stoppage of work, capacity and demand within the travel industry domestically and internationally. The business will also gradually over the coming months move to close just under 30% of our stores nationwide across several of the Flight Centre Travel Group brands.

Message for Existing Customers

If you are currently travelling and need to return home, or have upcoming travel planned and have booked with Flight Centre, please read the below Booking FAQs for what you need to do. To learn more about our store closures, please read our Store Closure FAQs.

We are working closely with our suppliers to ensure that customers’ travel plans are rerouted, rebooked or offered a travel credit for a future date where possible.

Our Change & Cancellation Policy

Flight Centre's own change and cancellation policy is also outlined in the FAQs, noting supplier terms and fees may apply. Given the constantly changing nature of supplier policies we can only advise you in relation to supplier terms and conditions as they stand at the time of consultation. Should supplier terms and conditions change, subsequently the updated terms and conditions will be valid.

Store Closure FAQs

Gradually over the coming months we will move to close just under 30% of our stores nationwide. This represents roughly 250 stores across our store network, spread across our family of travel brands including Flight Centre, Universal Traveller, Travel Associates and Travel Money Oz. Customers with bookings in those stores will be notified once this happens. 

You can rest assured that your booking is safe within the Flight Centre Travel Group and can be serviced by any of our agents. Click here to find your nearest store.

Your booking is safe within the Flight Centre Travel Group and all of our agents will be happy to assist you with your booking and any future travel plans.

Your travel agent and store may have been impacted, however we still have a network of agents and stores committed to helping you with your booking and future travel plans.

Flight Centre made the difficult decision to stand down a considerable portion of its workforce for an indefinite period of time, and for the immediate future. The decision was made in response to an unexpected stoppage of work, capacity and demand within the travel industry domestically and internationally as a result of the current global climate. Stand down means that there is no work for employees to do at the moment. This is for the reasons already mentioned which are outside of Flight Centre control.

 

Booking FAQs

Please read the below FAQs for information on Flight Centre's own change and cancellation policy, noting supplier terms and fees may apply, as well as instructions for customers who are currently overseas.

Booked with a Store (Over the phone or in person)
Please only contact your Travel Agent or click here to find a store near you. Alternatively, please complete this form online if you are not travelling within the next 48 hours and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked with a Store.

Booked online and travelling within the next 48 hours?
Please call 1300 733 867 or +61 7 3 170 7886.

Booked online
If you are not travelling within the next 48 hours, please complete this form online and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked Online.

If you are in a country that has closed their borders or introduced travel restrictions and you are unable to leave, please follow the advice of local authorities.

Booked with a Store (Over the phone or in person)
Please only contact your Travel Agent or click here to find a store near you. Alternatively, please complete this form online if you are not travelling within the next 48 hours and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked with a Store.

Booked online and travelling within the next 48 hours?
Please call 1300 733 867 or +61 7 3 170 7886.

Booked online
If you are not travelling within the next 48 hours, please complete this form online and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked Online.

What will happen to the credit or deposit I have with Flight Centre?
Regardless of where you made your original booking, the credit or deposit lies with Flight Centre Travel Group and will be accessible through any Flight Centre store for your future bookings.

A: If you have paid in full you have the following options:
Your airline or travel provider e.g. tour or cruise company, may have offered you a credit with them. That credit sits with the airline or travel provider and not with Flight Centre. We can assist you in rebooking using that credit, in accordance with that airline or supplier's credit and booking Terms and Conditions when you are ready to travel.

If you do not accept a credit with an airline or travel provider your options are:

  • If you choose to keep the full amount of your booking (less any supplier fees which can be up to 100% of the booking value) on file with Flight Centre to spend on travel within 12 months of 1st July 2020, we will waive our own cancellation fees.
  • If you want a refund for cancellation that is forced (by the supplier), we will apply our standard $300 cancellation fee per person, as per Flight Centre’s Terms and Conditions. Please note that the supplier fees will also apply.

Please note that supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ and can be up to 100% of the booking value. No refunds can be issued until we have received final refunds from our suppliers.

Where you have purchased a non-refundable travel product there will be no funds to apply towards a Flight Centre credit or to receive as a refund. A supplier credit will be your only option.

We appreciate that these are difficult times for our customers. Should you be at all concerned with any of our policies, here is the ACCC's website referencing cancellation policies within the travel and event industries.

A: If you choose to cancel future bookings and you have paid in full you have the following options:
Your airline or travel provider e.g. tour or cruise company, may offer you a credit with them. That credit sits with the airline or travel provider and not with Flight Centre. We can assist you in rebooking using that credit, in accordance with that airline or supplier's credit and booking Terms and Conditions when you are ready to travel.

If you are not offered or do not take a credit with an airline or travel provider your options are:

  • If you choose to keep the full amount of your booking (less any supplier fees which can be up to 100% of the booking value ) on file with Flight Centre to spend on travel within 12 months of 1st July 2020, and we will waive our own cancellation fees.
  • If you want a refund for cancellation that is voluntary (you are choosing to cancel your holiday), we will apply our standard $300 cancellation fee per person, as per Flight Centre’s Terms and Conditions. Please note that the supplier fees will also apply and can be up to 100% of the value of your booking.

Please note that supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ. No refunds can be issued until we have received final refunds from our suppliers.

Where you have purchased a non refundable travel product there will be no funds to apply towards a Flight Centre credit or to receive as a refund. A supplier credit will be your only option.

We appreciate that these are difficult times for our customers. Should you be at all concerned with any of our policies, here is the ACCC's website referencing cancellation policies within the travel and event industries.

Yes, we are happy to offer our customers the option to either rebook their travel with the airline or supplier or place the value of their booking into a credit with Flight Centre.

Rebooking with the Airline or Supplier.

The most likely resolution an airline or supplier will provide to you is to place the value of your cancelled booking into a credit for future use. If this is the case, that credit sits with the airline or travel provider and not with Flight Centre.

We recommend this option if is available to you as many airlines and suppliers have more flexible change conditions than usual.

We can assist you in rebooking using that credit, in accordance with that airline or supplier's credit and booking Terms and Conditions when you are ready to travel. Airline or supplier fees and any applicable price difference will need to be passed on to you and we will mirror the airline or supplier's position in respect of fees; if the airline or supplier waive their fees, we will waive our change fees and if the airline or supplier apply their fees, we will apply our change fees.

How can I use my airline or supplier credit
You will be able to make your new booking through any of our retail stores however, if you booked online, you will need to contact our Online Customer Service team on 1300 733 867 to rebook.

Flight Centre Credits

If you choose to keep the full amount of your booking (less any supplier cancellation fees) on file with Flight Centre to spend on travel within 12 months of July 2020, we will waive our own cancellation fees. No fees will be charged when you rebook using your credit.

What will happen to the credit or deposit I have on file with Flight Centre?
Regardless of where you made your original booking, the credit or deposit lies with Flight Centre Travel Group and will be accessible through any Flight Centre store, for your future bookings.

How long will I have to use my Flight Centre credit?
Your credit will be available for you to apply for a period of 12 months from 1st July 2020. We will continue to review this date as we evaluate the continuing impact of Covid19.

If you wish to cancel your booking and request a refund or credit, please contact either the store or online team who made your original booking. You can refer to the Who do I contact if I have an existing booking? section for these details.

To avoid any fees, we recommend customers choose to keep the value of their booking as a credit, either with the supplier or Flight Centre, rather than requesting a refund.

To request a refund or credit:

  • If you Booked in store, your Travel Agent will be able to process this for you.
  • If you Booked online, please complete this online form.

Once we have received funds from the supplier, your Travel Agent will be in touch with you to finalise your refund. Please note that the time to issue a refund varies per supplier and may take up to 12 weeks and cannot be issued until we have received final refunds from suppliers.

Due to the exceptionally high volume of refund requests, Flight Centre has centralised this process to ensure all customers are being treated fairly, consistently and reasonably. As we have received such a significant amount of refund requests it is taking some time to work through this refund process, however, we are actioning all requests as quickly as we can in this current environment.

A: On 24 March 2020, the Prime Minister announced a ban on Australians travelling overseas for leisure under the Biosecurity Act 2015.

Your airline or travel supplier may have offered you a credit with them. That credit sits with the airline or travel provider and not with Flight Centre. We can assist you in rebooking using that credit, in accordance with that airline or supplier's credit and booking Terms and Conditions when you are ready to travel.

Where a domestic or Trans Tasman booking is cancelled and a credit is not offered by the airline or supplier or you have chosen not to take the credit offered by the airline or supplier your options are:

  • If you choose to keep the full amount of your cancelled booking (less any airline or supplier fees which can be up to 100% of the value of your booking) on file with Flight Centre to spend on travel within 12 months of 1st July 2020, we will waive the Flight Centre $50.00 per person cancellation fee. Please bear in mind that the majority of domestic and Trans Tasman airfares and many travel products are non-refundable so a credit with the airline or supplier is likely to be your best option if offered.
  • If you want a refund for cancellation, we will apply our standard $50.00 cancellation fee per person, as per Flight Centre's Terms and Conditions.
    As above, please note that the majority of domestic and TransTasman airfares and many travel products are non-refundable so a credit offered by the airline or supplier is likely to be your best option if offered.

For all domestic bookings paid in full our normal cancellation fees apply. Supplier fees may also apply. Please note that Supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ. No refunds can be issued until we have received final refunds from our suppliers.

A: All deposits are non refundable however, where supplier conditions permit, we will retain the value of the deposit as a credit on file for use within 12 months of cancelling.

A: If you want a refund of your cancelled booking:
As you have not benefited from your PDP voucher, we will happily issue you a refund on your Captains Package fee. Your Price Drop Protection voucher will be cancelled. As with all refunds you will be charged our standard cancellation fee.

If you want to keep the amount of your booking on file as a credit to use at a later date:
If you choose to keep the full amount of your booking on file (less any supplier fees) to spend on future travel, we will waive the cancellation fees.

Your travel credit on file will include the amount the supplier refunds us, as well as your Captains Package fee and Price Drop Protection voucher. This will remain available to you for 12 months as a travel credit for a future booking.

A: If you want a refund:
The refund will be processed for the total value post the PDP voucher applied, less our standard $300 cancellation fee. This is also subject to Supplier cancellation conditions and fees. The Captains Package fee will not be refunded as the benefit has already been received.

If you want to keep the amount of your booking on file as a credit to use at a later date:
The refund value of the cancelled booking at the amount post the Price Drop Protection being applied will be kept on file as a travel credit for a future travel booking (subject to Supplier cancellation fees).

The $300 pp cancellation fee and Captains Package fee will also remain on file and be added to your travel credit available to use.

The Captains Package fee will not be refunded as the benefit has already been received.

On Monday 6 April 2020 the Flight Centre Travel Group announced a development that will help overcome the challenges currently being faced in relation to the coronavirus. The company has secured $900 million in additional funding to help ensure that FCTG is strongly positioned for the future. For more information on this you can read the ASX announcement here.

Flight Centre's management and people throughout the world are determined to ensure the business overcomes the significant challenges that it currently faces and, with the support of our customers, we hope to be ready when conditions eventually normalise.

Flight Centre is undertaking steps including the additional funding, to ensure we retain a robust balance sheet and liquidity position to enable us to manage through the current crisis. The company is well progressed in pursuing relevant initiatives and will update the market in due course.

As a result, we have implemented a three-point plan to help the business tackle the downturn in demand. These plans include measures to:

  • Immediately and significantly reduce costs globally
  • Where possible, preserve cash; and
  • Access additional liquidity in the short-term, which has commenced as per the 6 April announcement

Government Travel Advice

For Coronavirus travel advice please see details released by SMARTRAVELLER.

If you are currently travelling or have just returned to Australia, please read recommendations by the Australian Department of Health.

Call Centre Wait Times

We know that you are experiencing extremely long wait times when trying to call us. Due to official advice and regulations implemented for Coronavirus – and for the health and safety of our employees – we have staff who are unable to come into the call centre, therefore we have a smaller workforce during this time.

Flight Centre is Australia's biggest travel company. We have supported our customers through similarly difficult situations before, and will continue to do so in the future. We are here to make sure that you and your family are safe in any travel plans and we will of course be here for you when you are ready to travel again.

For our full booking terms and conditions please click here.

Please note: Supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ. Refunds may take up to 12 weeks and cannot be issued until we have received final refunds from suppliers.

Impact on Travel (Summary)

Each of Flight Centre's suppliers have their own policies regarding refunds and cancellations. Suppliers have been updating their policies frequently as the global situation has evolved. Flight Centre will assist our customers with changing or canceling their reservations based on each supplier’s current policy. Here is the latest information we have from each supplier:

The cruise industry has put strong measures in place for the health and safety of passengers. Most cruise lines are cancelling departures right across the globe. If your cruise has not yet departed, your travel consultant will contact you if there are any major changes or cancellations to your booking. All Cruise Lines have their own change and cancellation policies in place. Please refer to supplier table below for further cruise line information and contact your Flight Centre travel agent.

Similar to the cruise industry, Tour Operators are putting strong measures in place for the health and safety of travellers. Many Tour Operators are also electing to cancel departures and/or modify itineraries across the globe. All Tour Operators have their own change and cancellation policies in place. Please refer to supplier table below for further information and contact your Flight Centre travel agent.

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