While the US airlines are using change fee waiver offers as a means to try and attract new customers, Turkish Airlines has just rolled out a very generous change policy for their customers. This change policy applies to new tickets and tickets already purchased!
Turkish Airlines Generous Change Policy
Update on March 15 – The Best Way to Reach Turkish Airlines to Change Your Flight
I have tried this myself and heard from others as well – if you want to reach Turkish Airlines to change your flight and do not want to wait on hold, call a number such as the sales office in Istanbul. If you are calling from the US (adjust for calling from your own country), call 011 – 90-850 333 0849. I tried this myself and was able to get through in just 2 minutes.
If an agent tells you that you this policy only applies to countries on their coronavirus list, remind them that they have two policies – one for those flights and one for flights booked before March 12. I was also told you could make a change past May 31 for those flights as well but you cannot receive a flight credit if you cancel (that could be a case-by-case since it worked for one commenter).
They actually changed the policy a bit over the weekend. At first, it was similar to other policies in only covering new flights booked. Now, they are extending that change policy to previously booked tickets as well.
Here is the Turkish Airlines change policy:
For tickets* to be purchased between March 6 and March 24 (*excluding tickets for domestic flights within Turkey and to/from Ercan Airport), we remove the change fee. If you’d like to change your ticketed flight, your first change request will be applied free of charge.
Moreover, For tickets* purchased before March 5, 2020, for flights taking place up to December 31, 2020 (*excluding tickets for domestic flights within Turkey and to/from Ercan Airport) your first change request will be applied free of charge, provided that the change is completed by March 16, 2020.
- For tickets purchased on and before 5th of March 2020, valid only if the change request is done before 16th of March 2020
- Valid for tickets to be reserved and purchased between March 6 and March 24, 2020.
- Valid on flights operated by Turkish Airlines until the end of 2020.
- Passengers can make a change request up to 5 days prior to their flight.
- Domestic flights in Turkey and to/from Ercan Airport are not included.
- Fare differences that may be incurred due to the change request will be collected from our passengers.
- Change requests can be made through the Turkish Airlines Sales Offices and agencies from which the ticket was purchased.
Unless you hold a domestic Turkish Airlines ticket, you can make a change to it. If you booked before March 5, 2020, you need to make that one-time free change before March 16. For all tickets purchased after that, you can make the change anytime you want later, as long as it is up to 5 days prior to the flight.
To find out about countries that Turkish Airlines flies to that are currently being affected by Coronavirus, check this link.
In contrast to the US airlines, I think this Turkish Airlines change policy is quite friendly to the millions of customers who had booked before Coronavirus became the international thing it is today.
While you would have to pay a difference in fare, Turkish Airlines actually has some very good prices all the time so just check various dates using Google Flights to find the best prices around whatever new dates you want to book.