Having promoted the endless benefits of the hemp plant over the past 10 years, we'd long desired to visit the hemp fields in China since a majority of the world's hemp fibers, specifically used for textile, currently comes out of China. This is also where our hemp textile distributor visits annually to check on the crop as well as to develop new fabric designs. For that reason, we had booked 2 business class flights with our American Express rewards points by way of ANA Airline last July but due to the recent CoronaVirus outbreak, we were fortunate to cancel the flight without penalty (3000 points per ticket) and I'll show you how since it's not listed anywhere that you can easily find.
To qualify for a refund...or exchange...
1.) the tickets had to be purchased before January 29th of this year. ANA airway is likely not allowing the cancellation for flights that were purchased on and after that date because the international warnings had already been given by then so if you had made the purchase after, you're likely purchasing at your own risk. Had you purchased the tickets w/o (or even with) awareness of the Virus, I'd call anyways to see what they can do.
2.) Your ticket had to be set to depart before the end of March 31, 2020. It's likely that way because ANA Air suspected that the CoronaVirus would be contained by then.
3.) Lastly, all flights flown into and out of China are qualified to be refunded, which also includes flights flown in and out of both Macau and Hong Kong. It's fortunate for us that they had included Hong Kong in the mix because that's the gateway in which we're traveling through to get to the inner parts of China where the hemp fields are located.
ANA Airways had indicated that flight tickets meeting all the above qualifications should start with the ticket # 205 if you had purchased direct from them but had you purchased your flight through an agent, you'd need to call the agent.
For those that booked directly through ANA airway like us, you can call them directly with the 1800 # below. We were put on hold for about 20 minutes but the moment we got through, they were able to process the refund almost immediately and the customer service rep had stated that the refund was without penalty so the full points (or cash) and tax paid would be fully refunded.
ANA Air International Customer Service: 1-800-235-9262
Know that ANA, like most airlines, are looking to resist cancelling flights as much as they can to preserve the revenues on those bookings. However, they're quite an ethical company so despite not meeting all the requirements above, I'd still persist in doing whatever you can to get your refund if the CoronaVirus is a real concern for you. Good luck requesting your refund and feel free to let us know below if there's any information that you feel would benefit others reading this post. Thank you!
thanks so much for this as I was still waiting for them to release an announcement regarding the free cancellation. Do you know how long it would take for them to refund the award points into my account?