The current escalation of confirmed COVID-19 coronavirus cases in the United Kingdom and across the world is adding to what is already an incredibly difficult and uncertain time for us all.
The following advice is subject to your policy’s individual terms and conditions.
PLEASE NOTE THAT NO COVER FOR COVID 19 RELATED CLAIMS APPLIES TO POLICIES ISSUED AFTER MIDNIGHT 16 MARCH 2020.
1. Are policyholders covered if they decide to cancel a trip when the FCO or other local/national govts have not advised against travel to the destination?
No. This is still regarded as disinclination to travel and therefore would not be covered by the policy.
2. Are policyholders covered for cancellation if the FCO or other local/national govt’s advise against travel to the destination?
No. This scenario still isn’t covered by travel insurance. Any refunds should come direct from the tour operator / travel provider / accommodation provider. The Package Travel Regulations make the travel firm duty bound to refund 100% of holiday payments.
3. Are EXISTING policyholders covered if they contract COVID-19 coronavirus whilst on an insured trip?
If there were no travel restrictions at the time of travelling, then yes. Normal cover under the Medical & Other expenses section would apply. PLEASE NOTE THAT NO SUCH COVER APPLIES TO POLICIES ISSUED AFTER MIDNIGHT 16 MARCH 2020.
4. What happens if travel restrictions, etc. are announced to the trip destination mid-trip?
As per Point 2 above. The tour operator/travel provider/accommodation provider would be expected to make arrangements to bring the passengers/policyholders back in conjunction with the advice of the applicable local and/or national health services. Refunds for any lost days of the trip would be expected to be made by the tour operator/travel provider/accommodation provider.
5. What if excursions are affected by those destinations being put into quarantine by the local authorities?
Policyholders would not be able to claim against the policy for this. This is not covered by travel insurance in general.
6. Are EXISTING policyholders covered for cancellation if they contract or are suspected of contracting COVID-19 coronavirus before travelling?
Yes. Cover would apply under the Cancellation section subject to the doctor service advising you to cancel your trip. PLEASE NOTE THAT NO SUCH COVER APPLIES TO POLICIES ISSUED AFTER MIDNIGHT 16 MARCH 2020.
7. Are EXISTING policyholders covered for cancellation if they are advised to self-quarantine at the time their trip was due to start?
There is cover under the Cancellation section for policyholders under quarantine. The Government has issued advice for returning travellers and if they fall within the criteria set out they are asked to self-isolate, for the purposes of the policy this would be considered as quarantine. In the event of a claim the policyholder would need to evidence the need to self-quarantine, e.g. if the policyholder has recently come back from a country where the Government have advised travellers to self-quarantine.
Self-quarantining claims would only be considered if the departure date falls within the quarantine period, so for instance if a policyholder has been advised to self-quarantine for 2-weeks and they are departing on a trip in 3-weeks, a claim for self-quarantine would not be considered.
PLEASE NOTE THAT NO SUCH OVER APPLIES TO POLICIES ISSUED AFTER MIDNIGHT 16 MARCH 2020.
8. Are policyholders covered for cancellation if their doctor advises them against travelling as a pre-emptive measure due to their pre-existing conditions?
No, this is not covered under the Cancellation section of the policy.
9. Are EXISTING policyholders covered for additional travel and accommodation costs if the trip is extended due to compulsory quarantine?
If it is medically necessary for the policyholder to stay beyond the scheduled return date cover is provided for additional accommodation and travel. In determining whether quarantine is “medically necessary”, the key is whether the insured is quarantined on the say so of the local authorities; where the local authorities want to quarantine it will be because they believe it is “medically necessary” to do so to minimise any spread. PLEASE NOTE THAT NO SUCH COVER APPLIES TO POLICIES ISSUED AFTER MIDNIGHT 16 MARCH 2020.
10. Will the policy duration be extended if the trip is extended due to compulsory quarantine?
The policy duration is automatically extended if the policyholder has to stay in resort longer than planned due to being quarantined.
11. Can a claim be made for curtailment if the policyholder is quarantined during the trip?
In this situation claims are considered in the same way as if policyholders had curtailed their trip with the calculation based on when they were quarantined. PLEASE NOTE THAT NO COVER APPLIES TO POLICIES ISSUED AFTER MIDNIGHT 16 MARCH 2020.