COVID'19 Travel Update

COVID'19 Travel Update

Last updated: 27 March 2020

As you would be aware, the coronavirus has had an enormous impact on the travel industry around the world. Despite this, Universal Traveller, and our parent company, Flight Centre Travel Group, currently is, and will continue to work through all upcoming bookings in order of departure date. We are prioritising customers who need to return home from overseas, and any travel booked between now and end of April, so please bear with us.

A message from Graham "Skroo" Turner, CEO Flight Centre Travel Group. Read more.

Message for existing customers

If you are currently travelling and need to return home, or have upcoming travel planned and have booked with Universal Traveller, please read the below Booking FAQs for what you need to do. This has information on Universal Traveller's own change and cancellation policy, noting supplier terms and fees may apply, as well as instructions for customers who are currently overseas.

We are working closely with our suppliers to ensure that customers’ travel plans are rerouted, rebooked or offered a travel credit for a future date where possible.

FAQs

Q: I am currently overseas and am concerned about how I will get home. What can I do?

A: Booked with a Store (Over the phone or in person)
Please only contact your UTrav Agent of your UTrav Store. Alternatively, please complete this form online if you are not travelling within the next 48 hours and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked in Store

Booked online and travelling within the next 48 hours?
Please call 1300 733 867 or +61 7 3 170 7886.

Booked online
If you are NOT travelling within the next 48 hours, please complete this form online and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked online.

If you are in a country that has closed their borders or introduced travel restrictions and you are unable to leave, please follow the advice of local authorities.

Q: Who do I contact to change or cancel an existing booking?

Booked with a store (Over the phone or in person):
Please only contact your UTrav Agent or your UTrav Store. Alternatively, please complete this form online if you are not travelling within the next 48 hours and we will respond as soon as possible: Booked in Store.

Booked online and travelling within the next 48 hours?
Please call 1300733867 or +61731707886.

Booked online
If you are NOT travelling within the next 48 hours, please complete this form online and we will response as soon as possible: Booked online.

What will happen to the credit or deposit that I have with Flight Centre?
Regardless of where you made your original booking, the credit or deposit lies with Flight Centre Travel Group and will be accessible through any Flight Centre store for your future bookings.

Q: Can I put my booking value towards a future credit?

A: Yes, we are happy to offer our customers the option to either rebook their travel, alternatively, we can place the value of their booking (less supplier fees) into a credit for travel within 12 months of cancelling. If you keep your money on file, we will waive our standard cancellation fee. However supplier fees may still apply as this is out of our control.

We recommend rebooking if the option is suitable for you, as many airlines and other suppliers currently have more flexible change conditions than usual, including waiving fees.

Q: What if my international booking/cruise has been cancelled or can I cancel my international booking?

A: If you have paid in full you have two options:

Your airline or travel provider e.g. tour or cruise company, may have offered you a credit with them. If this is the case, that credit sits with the airline or travel provider and not with Universal Traveller. We can assist you in rebooking using that credit, in accordance with that airline or supplier's credit and booking Terms and Conditions when you are ready to travel.

If you are not offered, or do not take, a credit with an airline or travel provider your options are:

  • If you choose to keep the full amount of your booking (less any supplier fees) on file with Universal Traveller to spend on travel within 12 months of cancelling, we will waive our own cancellation fees.
  • For cancellation that is either forced (by the supplier) or voluntary (you are choosing to cancel your holiday), we will apply our standard $300 cancellation fee per person, as per Flight Centre's Terms and Conditions. Please note that the supplier fees will also apply.

Please note that supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ. No refunds can be issued until we have received final refunds from our suppliers.

We appreciate that these are difficult times for our customers. Should you be at all concerned with any of our policies, here is the ACCC's website referencing cancellation policies within the travel and event industries.

Q: What if my domestic booking has been cancelled or I cancel my domestic booking (including Trans Tasman)?

A: Your airline or travel provider e.g. hotel, cruise or tour operator may have offered you a credit with them . If this is the case, that credit sits with the airline or travel provider and not with Universal Traveller. We can assist you in rebooking using that credit, in accordance with that airline or supplier's credit and booking Terms and Conditions when you are ready to travel.

We will waive Universal Traveller's $30.00 per person domestic and Trans Tasman change fee if the airline or supplier is also waiving their change fees.

Where a domestic or Trans Tasman booking is cancelled and a credit is not offered by the airline or supplier or you have chosen not to take the credit offered by the airline or supplier your options are:

  • If you choose to keep the full amount of your cancelled booking (less any airline or supplier fees) on file with Universal Traveller to spend on travel within 12 months of cancelling, we will waive the Universal Traveller $50.00 per person cancellation fee. Please bear in mind that the majority of domestic and Trans Tasman airfares and many travel products are non refundable so a credit with the airline or supplier is likely to be your best option if offered.
  • If you want a refund for cancellation that is either forced (by the airline or supplier) or voluntary (you are choosing to cancel your holiday), we will apply our standard $50.00 cancellation fee per person, as per Flight Centre's Terms and Conditions.

As above, please note that the majority of domestic and TransTasman airfares and many travel products are non refundable so a credit offered by the airline or supplier is likely to be your best option if offered.
For all domestic bookings paid in full our normal cancellation fees apply. Supplier fees may also apply. Please note that Supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ. No refunds can be issued until we have received final refunds from our suppliers

Q: I've made a booking but only paid a deposit. What are my options?

A: All deposits are non refundable however, where supplier conditions permit, we will retain the value of the deposit as a credit on file for use within 12 months of cancelling.

Q: How long can my travel credit sit on file?

A: 12 months from the date of cancellation.

Government Travel Advice

For Coronavirus travel advice please see details released by SMARTRAVELLER.

If you are currently travelling or have just returned to Australia, please read recommendations by the Australian Department of Health.

Call Centre Wait Times

We know that you are experiencing extremely long wait times when trying to call us. Due to official advice and regulations implemented for Coronavirus – and for the health and safety of our employees – we have staff who are unable to come into the call centre, therefore we have a smaller workforce during this time.

Flight Centre is Australia's biggest travel company. We have supported our customers through similarly difficult situations before, and will continue to do so in the future. We are here to make sure that you and your family are safe in any travel plans and we will of course be here for you when you are ready to travel again.

For our full booking terms and conditions please click here.

Please note: Supplier cancellation terms and fees may differ. Refunds may take up to 12 weeks and cannot be issued until we have received final refunds from suppliers.

Impact on Travel (Summary)

Each of Universal Traveller suppliers have their own policies regarding refunds and cancellations. Suppliers have been updating their policies frequently as the global situation has evolved. Universal Traveller will assist our customers with changing or canceling their reservations based on each supplier’s current policy. Here is the latest information we have from each supplier:

Touring

Airlines