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If you are planning on travel during Covidtimes, what is the score regarding insurance?
It’s a sticky conundrum. Even the ‘to-be-or-not-to-be’ whether to go ahead with travel in the first place. The FCO advice is probably where it is most helpful right now. FCO is the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and for example is recommending the following for New Zealand – ‘The Foreign & Commonwealth Office currently advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Travel to some countries and territories is currently exempted.’ The FCO site has an easy ready reference tool to just tap in the country or territory and you get instant information back from an A-Z checklist. It is good to start here first.
Insurance policies will be in place relating to FCO advice. The MoneySuperMarket website has stated that: “If you’ve already bought insurance and the FCO changes its advice, then you might be covered but you’ll need to check with your insurance provider.” This is very much on a case-by-case basis. It will therefore be difficult to find travel insurance for any countries that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) are still recommending against ‘all but essential travel’ to. And what is essential travel anyway? A grey area. A good website which deals with this issue is https://fullfact.org/health/coronavirus-essential-travel/ – but – the guidance was issued in May this year and a lot has happened since – such as the closing of the Spanish airways for many as a result of the second wave of the virus impacting the country and many being recalled to their homelands.
Any insurance claims related to coronavirus are now not likely to be part of a travel insurance policy, as Covid is considered to be a ‘known event’ that travellers are aware of before opting to travel. Insurers often won’t provide any cover in relation to Covid, while others only offer only coverage for emergency medical costs and repatriation in the event that you catch coronavirus while you’re on holiday. However, as Which points out, the majority of policies won’t cover Covid-19-related cancellations. The travel industry is suffering, and this is largely the reason. There were, however, at the time of writing, at least five exceptions to this rule: the following insurance providers – Coverwise, Insurefor.com, Trailfinders and Southdowns and Journeys travel insurance.