Amex Travel Launches New Any Reason Cancellation Payment Options – Forbes Advisor

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Even though travel has come a long way back, one thing Covid-19 has made clear: Flexibility is paramount. The launch of American Express’s Trip Cancellation Protection Program – “Cancellation for Any Reason” protection – helps travelers protect themselves from uncertainty when booking flights through

What is a flight cancellation guard?

Trip Cancel Guard is an optional new addition when booking flights through Amex Travel. This feature will allow you to cancel your flight for any reason and get a 75% refund, as long as the cancellation is processed at least two full days prior to the scheduled flight. If your flight is scheduled for July 15th, for example, you’ll need to cancel your flight no later than 11:59 PM on July 12th to allow July 13th and July 14th two calendar days in between.

Although American Express has long offered optional flight protection when booking travel, this easy and flexible option is entirely new and designed to meet the evolving needs of travelers.

Eligible Trips include prepaid, non-refundable fares purchased on the website. You will need to pay for your flight in full with an American Express card and choose to add to Trip Cancellation Protection during check-out. You will not have the option to add this feature later. Customers will have the option to pay with points through Amex Travel but flights booked by transferring Membership Rewards to partner programs are not eligible.

Trip Cancel Guard is priced as a percentage of the total cost of your trip, which means that more expensive trips will correspond to a higher benefit cost.

How is Trip Cancellation Guard different from other travel insurance?

Unlike travel insurance, Trip Cancel Guard only covers the costs of the trip. You’ll need to protect any other non-refundable travel costs, such as hotel reservations or tour deposits, with alternative insurance. You also won’t be covered for any incidental expenses that come up during your travels, such as medical treatments or stolen items.

However, if you’re traveling to a destination where your primary medical insurance will still cover you, and your hotels have flexible cancellation policies, you may find that Trip Cancel Guard gives you the little extra coverage you need.

Because Trip Cancel Guard is more limited than travel insurance, the cost can be more reasonable than buying a comprehensive insurance policy. On the other hand, some credit cards include Trip Protection benefits at absolutely no cost when you purchase travel with that card.

Request reimbursement through Trip Cancellation Protection

American Express designed this feature with convenience in mind. Not only are there no strings attached as to why you decide to cancel the flight and get a refund – assuming you do so at least two full days before departure – but the payment is also simple and straightforward.

First, you will need to officially cancel your flight. This can be done directly with the carrier or through American Express Travel. In most cases, this can be done online with a few clicks. After that, you will need to request reimbursement through the American Express Digital Claims Center within 30 days of the cancellation. Again, this can be completed online, though phone reps are available if you run into any difficulties.

Once approved, you will receive reimbursement of up to 75% of the cost of the protected trip. The Trip Cancel Guard is not refundable.

Is the flight cancellation guard worth it?

Many airlines are now adopting flexibility on their flights, which means you may not need to purchase a separate cancellation feature. However, even airlines that allow you to cancel your flight at no cost treat refunds as a credit or voucher with an associated expiration date.

The Trip Cancellation Protection Program allows you to get cash back instead of an airline voucher. It can also be purchased on tickets that are otherwise inflexible, such as basic economy fares, or on airlines that don’t allow changes at all. The downside is that you’ll need to cancel your ticket two full calendar days in advance to take advantage, while other options may allow for more last-minute cancellations.

When comparing options, you’ll need to decide if you’d prefer a 100% refund of the ticket price in the form of an airline credit (when you purchase qualifying flights) or if you’d prefer to receive 75% cash back plus an upfront fee for American Express benefits. You may also want to compare the cost of purchasing a more comprehensive policy — although CFAR insurance can be very expensive.


Any kind of extra flexibility is always a welcome option for customers, especially since there is still a fair amount of uncertainty when traveling at the moment. Trip Cancel Guard makes refunds easier and more flexible than what airlines offer (if they offer anything at all) and can be more affordable than purchasing alternative travel insurance policies. While this feature won’t make sense for all flights, it’s an innovative option to help protect your purchase.

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