With news from the government that holidays in some countries are now allowed, we need to make sure we are up to date with our insurance policies. Since March 2020, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advised people to remain in the UK. This has now all changed.
Under the new guidance, Brits are welcome to travel abroad for holidays. Despite not having to self-quarantine for 14 days, you will still be facing some significant risks. Most Travel insurance policies will not cover coronavirus related claims.
A lot of insurers stopped selling travel insurance since March, which meant there was a very small number of providers that would cover you for travel. Recently many of them have returned to selling but now the majority will have a covid-19 related exclusion on what they cover.
Most available policies can be put into two different groups. Those that don’t cover anything related to coronavirus, and those that cover emergency medical expenses and repatriation if contracted abroad. That, however, doesn’t cover any cancellations or disruptions.
Essentially, what this means is that in almost every case, your policy won’t cover you if you must cancel your holiday due to catching the illness or self-quarantining before you leave. If you do arrive at your destination and are turned away, due to that country’s restrictions, you will not be able to claim. Nor if your destination enters lockdown whilst you’re there.
When looking for travel insurance this year, make sure you consider –
Coronavirus medical cover. This will cover you if you do become infected whilst being away.
SAFI (Scheduled airline failure insurance) If your airline goes bust then this will protect you.
Travel disruption and cancellation cover. This could be tricky to come across now insurers are changing their policies, but it will cover if you do need to cancel for a specific list of reasons. This won’t be outlined as a reason down to coronavirus.
Covid-19 has left thousands out of pocket this year. If you had a trip booked, that you couldn’t take then you might need to make a claim yourself. Before you do get in touch with your insurer, be sure to attempt getting a refund from the travel and accommodation providers first.
Insurers will only pay out for cost that cannot be refunded. If you approach them with a claim before even looking into being refunded, then they will just direct you to request a refund first. This will just slow the whole process down.
Next, make a list of all the nonrefundable cost you want to claim back. This is much more than just hotels and flights, but this can be transfers, tours and excursions. Once this is all outlined, you can contact your insurer.
For full government advise on travelling abroad, please look here > https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-countries-and-territories-exempt-from-advice-against-all-but-essential-international-travel