British Airways Launches 72-Hour Hold Option

by on August 21, 2014 · 11 comments

in British Airways

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British Airways has launched a new hold option that allows potential customers to buy a little time when considering flights for purchase. For a $10 deposit fee, you can now lock in the fare on a flight and put it on hold for 72 hours. If you purchase your flight within those 72 hours, your hold deposit is refunded.

British Airways launched a new price hold option for $10.

British Airways launched a new price hold option for $10.

This hold option is part of a joint project with British Airways and Iberia, and allows for a bit of breathing room when you need to confirm other travel arrangements before committing to a flight. Seats can be held up to 21 days in advance of your travel date, and the names of all party members can be added to the reservation.

If you have good intentions to book a flight, this hold option is a good deal, since the $10 fee is refunded upon purchase. It’s important to point out that the hold fee for long-haul flights are based on the local currency for the departing city – $10 from the U.S., €10 from Europe and £10 from the U.K.

United offers FareLock

United offers FareLock

British Airways isn’t the first airline to allow customers to lock in a price before they book. United offers FareLock, in which itineraries can be held for either 72 hours or seven days at a cost of around $20, depending on the flights and length of the hold. The price of your itinerary is guaranteed for the entirety of your chosen hold period.

From the airline’s perspective, these hold options are a win-win for them. The ultimate hope is that you’ll decide to return and book the flight(s) you’ve put on hold, but even if you don’t, the airlines will still pocket $10-$20 in fees.

Have you ever used United’s FareLock, and/or do you plan to use the new British Airways hold feature? Feel free to share your experiences below.  

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  • Shane W

    I think I’d sooner use the 24 hour cancel option.

  • RB

    Does this apply to Award Bookings?

  • Alan

    I was going to ask the same thing.

  • septrack

    Does the 24 hr cancel option apply to all airlines? Does it apply to award tickets? TIA

  • thepointsguy

    This is for only paid bookings at this time.

  • Alan


  • Jason

    I currently have a 7 day lock on a united saver award from FCO to EWR on Saturday, September 6th. I used the lock in the hopes that a flight to Italy opens up at the saver lever so I don’t have to cancel the award and pay the $200 redeposit fee. Although a little steep at $30 for the lock, I think it is a small price to pay to lock in award space.

  • OhyesOhyes

    Why did they do this?

  • BR

    Great point – courtesy cancel should cover this. you would just have to pay up front and then get refund if you didn’t want it, but no $10 fee that way.

  • Brice

    I’m a big fan of United’s 7 day FareLock. I handle all the flight planning but want to confirm them with the wife before committing and the 24h courtesy window just isn’t long enough.

  • Anthony

    Qantas has had $25 hold bookings for a while. No hold for award sadly.

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