Your fare type and route will determine how American Airlines cancellation policy will apply in your situation. If you purchased a non-refundable ticket, you will be charged a cancellation fee in most (but not all) cases. But if you purchased a refundable ticket, you will not be charged any cancellation fee.
The cancellation policy states that if you don’t show up for your flight within the allotted time, it will be treated as a No Show and the value of your ticket will be forfeited, regardless of whether its refundable or not.
Under some conditions, you are eligible to cancel your flight and get a refund under American Airlines cancellation policy.
You are eligible to cancel a ticket and claim a full refund if:
- You purchase a ticket at least 2 days before travelling and cancel it within 24 hours.
- American Airlines cancels your flight.
- The timing of your flight changes by 61 minutes or more and you had booked well in advance.
- A schedule change results in an overall delay of at least 4 hours.
- Your nonstop flight is rebooked to an itinerary with a flight connection.
- Your ticket is refundable.
- A close family member/co-passenger is critically ill or dies.
- You receive a sudden military deployment order.
- You’re an American Executive Platinum member holding an award ticket.
- An emergency situation that impacts your travel—but solely at American Airlines’ discretion.
American Airlines 24-Hour Cancellation
According to American Airlines’ 24-hour cancellation policy, if you purchase a ticket at least 2 days before departure but cancel it within 24 hours, you are entitled to a full refund. The 24-hour cancellation window holds good for all types of tickets, including Basic Economy, but does not apply to group reservations.
You will be issued a full refund minus service charges and non-refundable taxes (if any).
If you purchased your ticket from a travel agency or another source, contact them directly for a refund.
American Airlines COVID-19 Cancellation Policy
American Airlines COVID-19 cancellation policy allows you to do both of these things free* of charge:
- Cancel your ticket online (incl. Basic Economy)
- Rebook it later
*Caveat. The zero-change fee applies to all tickets purchased till March 31, 2021. If you purchased a non-refundable ticket after this date, cancellation charges will apply (unless your flight in cancelled due to a freshly imposed sanction because of COVID).
American Airlines Cancellation Policy—Basic Economy Tickets
Per American Airlines cancellation policy, you are not allowed to cancel a Basic Economy fare unless you cancel within 24 hours and you had purchased it at least 2 days before departure.
However, you can request a refund in the following situations:
- If your flight schedule is affected by 61 minutes or more
- You have a sudden military deployment order
- If your family member/travelling companion is critically ill/dies
American Airlines Cancellation Policy—Non-Refundable Tickets
Per American Airlines cancellation policy, if your ticket is non-refundable and doesn’t qualify for cancellation under any of the circumstances mentioned above, a cancellation fee of USD 200 will be charged on your paid fare for domestic flights, and up to USD 750 of your paid fare for international flights (depending on your fare type).
After you have cancelled your ticket and the cancellation fee has been deducted from the fare you paid, the unused value of your ticket will be credited to your account. You use this credit later for future travel, but no longer than 1 year from the ticket’s original issue date.
American Airlines Ticket Cancellation—Refundable Tickets
Per American Airlines ticket cancellation policy, if your ticket is refundable and you cancel it, no cancellation fee will be charged and the value of your ticket will be refunded to your original payment method. The only condition is that you cancel your flight.
American Airlines Cancellation Policy—Award Tickets
If you’re an American Executive Platinum member, you can cancel your award ticket free of charge or redeposit fees. The value of your award ticket will be credited back into your account for future use.
American Airlines Cancellation Fee
The cancellation fees charged by American Airlines are as follows:
- Basic Economy ticket Cancellation not permitted* after 24 hours
- Non-refundable ticket Domestic flights—USD 200*
International flights—USD 200–750
(depending on fare type)
- Refundable tickets USD 0
- Award ticket USD 0
*unless the refund conditions apply, as listed under the section titled American Airlines Cancellation Policy.
How to Cancel American Airlines Flight
You can cancel your American Airlines flight:
- By phone (+1-844-903-1897)
- Online / mobile app
- Through your travel agent
A Step-by-Step Guide to Cancelling Online
You can cancel an American Airlines flight online if you purchased your ticket directly from American Airlines’ website, app, or sales office. Follow the steps below to cancel your ticket online:
Step 1. Go to American Airlines’ homepage, AA.com
Step 2. Access your trip by clicking on the Manage trips/Check-in and filling out your first and last name, your 6-letter confirmation code/record locator in the boxes, as shown below.
Step 3. After entering the required information, click on the Find your trip button.
Step 4. The flight you want to cancel will show up on your screen. Select it and click on the Cancel Booking button.
Step 5. On the next screen, you will be asked to confirm whether you want to cancel your flight booking. After you click on the Confirm button, your booking will be officially cancelled.
Flight cancellations can also be made by logging in with the AAdvantage number or with the mobile app.
After you cancel your flight reservation:
- Your flight booking will be cancelled.
- You will receive a confirmation email.
- You will receive a travel eVoucher for future use.
- If you want a refund, you must apply for it via the online refund request form (explained under How to Get a Refund on an American Airlines Flight).
- If the online refund is no longer possible, call an American Airlines Service Center in your area and ask for a refund (per standard refund deadlines as shown in your ticket’s fare conditions).
- If you booked from a travel agent, contact them directly for a refund.
How to Get a Refund on an American Airlines Flight
If you’re cancelling your flight within the 24-hour grace period, your money will be automatically refunded to your account. However, in other cases, the refund will not be credited unless you cancel your flight and apply for a refund.
You can cancel your flight online if you purchased directly from American Airlines. However, if you purchased from a third party, you must contact them directly to cancel your flight and ask for a refund.
As explained earlier, you can cancel your flight online (via Cancel trip) or by calling American Airlines. After that, you must fill out an online refund request form.
After clicking on the link, enter your ticket number and last name. You will be shown your itinerary and asked to mention the reason for requesting a refund. You may then be asked to select a travel voucher or proceed with the refund.
Your refund will typically be processed within 7 working days, but due to a heavy backlog, it could longer. You can always check your refund status via the same link (above).
Other Ways to Change or Cancel Your American Airlines Flights
If you can’t change or cancel your American Airlines reservations online, speak with a customer service representative on phone.
American Airlines Cancellation Number
Ticket Reservations, Changes, Cancellations +1-844-903-1897
(USA/Canada, toll-free, open 24/7)
How to Avoid Paying for Cancellations on American Airlines
- Use the 24-hour cancellation policy. The U.S. DOT mandates all airlines to provide a 24-hour window for passengers to change their minds. American Airlines allows you a full refund as long as you purchase at least 48 hours before your flight departs. This is applicable to all types of reservations, except group reservations.
- Book in advance. If you book your ticket well in advance and American Airlines changes its flight schedule by 61 minutes or more before the departure date, you are entitled to a full refund. The refund will be credited to your original form of payment. You also have the option to change your flight to a different date and/or time.
- Book a nonstop flight. If your nonstop flight is rebooked to an itinerary with a flight connection, you can cancel your flight without paying any cancellation fee.
- If your flight is significantly rescheduled, call the airline and ask what options you have to change or cancel your ticket.
- Use flight cancellations to your advantage. If your non-refundable flight gets cancelled, American Airlines will book you on a different flight. If the flight doesn’t suit you, ask for a refund or book a flight that suits you.
- Make use of your Elite status. If you’re an American Executive Platinum member, you can change or cancel your award ticket free of charge.
- Special circumstances. If special circumstances prevent you from catching your flight—such as a critical illness or death of a family member, your own illness, etc., ask American Airlines to reschedule your flight—it’s worth a try. You will need supporting documentation, however.
Frequently Asked Questions on American Airlines Cancellation Policy
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