This morning I detailed Qatar Airways generous new booking flexibility plans, which include both past and new bookings. TLDR – they’re great, and allow you to accept miles, a boosted voucher or even re-booking to another destination. When eyes shifted to the re-booking rules, there was a glaring option, which stated flights could be re-booked to any other destination within 5,000 miles?!

Considering you could buy a ticket to Singapore, and then immediately swap it for a ticket to Australia, or to New York, and swap for Sao Paulo that seemed WAY to good to be true. After reaching out to Qatar Airways, I can confirm that it is not (too good to be true)…

Qatar Airways Confirms 5,000 – Not 500….

I never want to lead readers astray, so I noted that the Qatar Airways website states 5,000 miles, but I was pretty sure they meant 500, and would assume that to be the case. Not wanting to deprive anyone of a great deal, I did then get in touch to confirm “did you really mean 5,000, or is it actually 500?”

After my email stating…

Your new “travel with confidence” policy states tickets can be reissued for any destination within 5,000 miles of original ticket. Surely it’s meant to be 500? If it is 5,000 please do let me know.

Qatar Airways reverted back to me this morning with the following…

Dear Gilbert, 5,000 miles is the correct figure indeed.

Well then…

I won’t dive into the numerous possibilities this creates for bookings both past and present, but they’re very interesting to say the least. Could a Singapore ticket become Australia or New Zealand? New York become Sao Paulo? The devil is in the details here, and Qatar Airways policy currently states…

“You can change your travel date or destination free of charge, as often as you need. You can change your origin to another city within the same country or any other destination we fly to within a 5000 mile radius of your original destination.”

The terms and conditions go on to specify…

  • Rebooking fees will be waived if reservations are amended before departure (for travel on/before 31 December 2020).
  • Rerouting is possible free of charge on Qatar Airways operated flights only from the same country of origin and/or within 5000 (five thousand) miles radius from the original destination booked.

The big question is whether any fare difference, or fees would apply.

The answer seems to be no (pdf), but only for travel completed by the end of 2020. Multiple readers have confirmed successful re-booking where no fare difference applied, so long as the new trip was also for 2020. One managed to change a ticket to Hong Kong to a ticket for Sydney with no issue.

After that – aka 2021 travel – all typical fare differences and so forth would apply, but the 5,000 mile radius does exist.  It would be wonderful to have a kind reader give it a whirl on the phone, and see what they can find out, since this applies to previously booked tickets as well.

This makes me believe beyond most reasonable doubt that there are some really interesting options out there for people holding, or hoping to book Qatar Airways tickets. It’s all almost like a game within itself, and as the airline which previously launched quite a few “golden fare” promotions, perhaps this is their newest iteration.

I must say, I couldn’t believe my eyes when they confirmed five thousand means 5,000, not 500.

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