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U.S. airlines begin waiving change fees for Europe travel following coronavirus spread

Feb. 27, 2020
3 min read
U.S. airlines begin waiving change fees for Europe travel following coronavirus spread
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The coronavirus situation continues to escalate around the world — now, U.S. travelers are reconsidering their plans to visit countries throughout Europe, with cities in northern Italy falling under even greater scrutiny following a recent outbreak near Milan.

As a result, U.S. airlines are issuing their first travel waivers covering travel to Europe, focused specifically on Italy — for now, at least.

Currently, American Airlines is waiving change fees for tickets booked by Feb. 27 to, from or through a variety of Italian cities, including Bologna, (BLQ), Florence (FLR), Milan (BGY, LIN and MXP), Naples (NAP), Pisa (PSA), Turin (TRN), Venice (VCE) and Verona (VRN). Customers must be scheduled to travel by March 15 in order to take advantage, and all fees will be waived when rebooking in the same cabin and between the same cities for travel by April 3. These changes can be made on American's website — just look for the "change trip" option, and fees should be waived. Meanwhile, change and cancellation fees will also be waived for travel beyond April 3, but a difference in fare may apply. For those adjustments, contact American reservations at (800) 433-7300.

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Related: Complete guide to traveling during the deadly coronavirus outbreak

Delta Air Lines is offering customers with flights booked on or before Feb. 26 to or from Italy between now and March 15 the ability to make a one-time change without any penalties. Head over to My Trips on Delta's website, click "Modify flight" and "Start Flight Change" to change your dates. As of now, all fees will be waived before checkout as long as you plan to travel by April 3 — Delta will waive the change fee to travel beyond that date or to another destination, but a difference in fare may apply.

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Meanwhile, United Airlines issued a waiver covering cities in Northern Italy, including Bologna, (BLQ), Genoa (GOA), Milan (BGY, LIN and MXP), Trieste (TRS), Turin (TRN), Venice (VCE) and Verona (VRN). Tickets must have been purchased by Feb. 26 for travel dates by April 30. United will waive the change fee, and fare difference for travel between the original cities departing by April 30 — passengers flying after that date or between different cities than originally booked will have the change fee waived, but a difference in fare may apply. As with Delta, affected customers should be able to make changes by pulling up their reservations online.

We'll continue to update this page as the situation evolves — in the meantime, if you're still considering a trip, be sure to check out our detailed guide to traveling during the coronavirus outbreak.

Featured image by Getty Images/Westend61

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  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
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3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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  • Intro Offer
    For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

    Earn 80,000 ThankYou® points
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  • Annual Fee

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  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
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Why We Chose It

The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

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  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
  • Points transfer to 16 airline programs, from JetBlue to Virgin Atlantic.
  • World Elite Mastercard benefits, extended warranty, damage and theft protection.

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  • $95 annual fee
  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases