NEWS: Update to BRU/LUX fares & Brussels US pre clearance + BA & Qatar book with confidence extended!

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Update to BRU/LUX fares & Brussels pre-clearance

Yesterday I published a great fare from Brussels or Luxembourg to the US. I suggested that you could just pay a deposit by adding a hotel for one night or a car. For some reason on some forms, BA will not allow you to add a hotel to either. It would appear that BA Holidays are not available from Luxembourg. You can add a hotel but will have to pay in full. However, I have definitely managed to add a hotel for one night with a deposit only option to a Brussels flight using this form

Brussels will also be a better place to fly to the US from when the new Pre-Clearance facility opens (no timelines yet). The United States of America and the Kingdom of Belgium concluded an agreement yesterday to implement U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Preclearance operations at Brussels Airport (BRU).

Under the terms of the Preclearance agreement, CBP will station personnel at Brussels Airport to complete customs, immigration, and agriculture inspections of travelers before those travelers board direct flights to the United States. Precleared travelers will bypass CBP and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) security inspections upon arrival in the United States, saving valuable time as they proceed to connecting flights or their destination. This means you arrive as a domestic passenger which could make a huge difference especially somewhere like Florida at peak time where queues can be several hours for immigration. 

 

BA – Book With Confidence

BA’s Book with Confidence was due to expire tomorrow but they have just updated it. However, they have only extended the current policy until 13 October for new bookings. They apparently plan to do something after that, but there may be different terms and conditions. Personally, I would not risk waiting, in case it’s worse! If it’s better you can always get a voucher and rebook. 

 

For existing bookings

For bookings before 3 March 2020 you are covered for travel until 31 October 2020. This means you can cancel and get a voucher or change the dates for free but you may still have to pay a difference in fare. 
 

For new bookings

For new bookings that are made from now onwards, if they are ticketed by 13 October 2020 for travel up to the end of August 2021, you are covered under BA’s current policy to get a voucher or change dates. If you booked something on 14 October onwards, it might not be covered at all if they don’t extend it further for some reason or the terms could be different.
 
The official page is here but has not been updated at the time of publishing. 
 

Qatar – Travel With Confidence

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Qatar’s Travel With Confidence has also been renewed with new terms from 1 October so I would wait until then until booking. The new terms are very generous. 

The website says that 

  • It applies to tickets issued before 31 December 2020
  • For travel until 31 December 2021

Options:

Refund

This is possible in the case of flight cancellation for operational reasons and/or airport closures; schedule changes; travel restrictions imposed by governmental authorities; passenger testing positive for COVID-19.

Hold your ticket

  • If you have not used your ticket (i.e. you have not flown a single segment of the booked journey/itinerary), your ticket can be kept open and the value of the original ticket can be used within 2 years from the original ticket issue date.
  • If you have already used part of your ticket, your ticket can be kept open and the value of the remaining ticket can be used within 1 year from the first flown segment.

Unlimited date changes

You can change your travel date free of charge, as often as you need, for travel until 31 December 2021. 

Exchange for future travel voucher with 10% extra value

You can exchange the unused value of your ticket for a future travel voucher with 10% additional value. Vouchers are valid for two years from the date of voucher issuance.

Swap for Qmiles

Swap your ticket for Qmiles and redeem them towards reward flights, extra baggage or cabin upgrades. For every 1 USD, you will earn 80 Qmiles that are valid for at least 3 years, so you can have the flexibility to choose how, when and for whom to redeem them. Not a member? Simply join before you submit your request.

Unlimited destination changes

In addition to changing your travel date, you can change your destination free of charge, for travel until 31 December 2021

You can find the relevant page here. 

7 Comments on "NEWS: Update to BRU/LUX fares & Brussels US pre clearance + BA & Qatar book with confidence extended!"

  1. Doesn’t pre-clearance only work for flights that are direct to the US? So if flying with BA from BRU to say JFK you wouldn’t be able to use the pre-clearance facility.

  2. Hi – On the BA Holidays form linked here, I see the box to check for “I need a hotel for part of my trip,” but the box doesn’t prompt me to enter in the dates I need for the hotel, and the search function just gives me a hotel for the entirety of my stay. How can I actually select which dates I need for the hotel when they don’t match up with my flight dates?

  3. How can I set the dates for a hotel that I would only use for a portion of my stay? When I check the box in the link above, I’m not given the option to set a certain amount of dates and only offered the rate for the entire length of the time between my outbound and return.

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