Cancel Your Flight for Free Using the 24 Hour Rule

If you are looking for a flight (say, for your next long haul trip ), you need to know the details of the cancellation policy if you need to change or cancel after you have purchased your ticket. ticket.

While airlines can be strict, there is one piece of advice you may have missed: The Department of Transportation requires airlines to “keep their booked rate for 24 hours without payment, or allow cancellations within 24 hours without penalty,” while at least seven days before the flight date. This includes domestic and international carriers if you are flying to or from the United States.

However, you should beware of scamming airlines. This could include choosing to “defer” instead of “buy” for some airlines so you don’t get stuck with a ticket you thought you could return – technically they should only hold the price for 24 hours, or allow cancellations within 24 hours. hours. , not both.

Sometimes, however, you may be given more than one day of free cancellation, depending on where you buy your ticket (for example, if you buy your ticket on Friday, you may have all weekend to reflect on your decision and are allowed to cancel on Monday ). If you want guaranteed 24-hour cancellation, you need to book your ticket directly with the airline.

Business Insider notes that Southwest Airlines does not charge any rebooking fees, which could make it attractive to people who might have to change flights. Another thing worth mentioning about Southwest is that its flights won’t show up on search engines like Priceline or Google Flights, so you should also look for deals directly on its website. Delta and JetBlue also restrict third-party sites that display its flights.


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