If you’ve been given a voucher or a credit for cancelled travel plans, and you are happy with that, it’s important to understand the rules in BC when it comes to expiry dates. Here’s what you need to know.
BC’s gift card laws speak to when a gift card (or voucher) can expire and when it can’t. These rules apply if you live in BC or if the business you dealt with is in BC.
Can my travel voucher or credit have an expiry date?
Vouchers or credits that have a specific dollar amount on them are not allowed to expire. For example, a $850 voucher towards an airline or hotel cannot expire.
However, these types of vouchers/credits are allowed to expire:
- Vouchers that are for a specific good or service. For example, a voucher for one flight to Calgary or a two-night stay at a hotel.
- Vouchers that were sold at a discount. For example, if the voucher was given as a promotion or at a discounted rate.
Does your voucher have an expiry date when it shouldn’t?
If your voucher/credit with a dollar value on it has an expiry date, we recommend the following steps:
- Go back to the business and inform them that your voucher can’t expire using this form. Ask the business to reissue you a voucher/credit without an expiry date.
- If you still can’t resolve the expiry date issue with the business, you can file a complaint with us. Please try to work it out with the business first before coming to our office.
Looking for a refund instead of a voucher?
As a BC regulator, one of the other laws we oversee gives you cancellation and refund rights when you don’t receive the services you paid for online or over the phone. If you’re eligible, you may be owed a full refund (instead of a voucher/credit) under BC law.
Not everyone will be eligible to go through the process for a refund. We recommend you start by carefully reading this page for info on eligibility: COVID-19 and refunds for cancelled travel.
Other resources on this topic
About Consumer Protection BC
We are responsible for regulating specific industries and certain consumer transactions in British Columbia. If your concern is captured under the laws we enforce, we will use the tools at our disposal to assist you. If we can’t help you directly, we will be happy to provide you with as much information as possible. Depending on your concern, another organization may be the ones to speak to; other times, court or legal assistance may be the best option. Explore our website at www.consumerprotectionbc.ca.