Trailfinders claims to offer “the most extensive Covid-19 policy available”. It covers cancellation prior to departure if you or a close relative tests positive for Covid, if you’re told to self-isolate by the official NHS test and trace app, or if a family member you’re going on holiday specifically to visit contracts the virus. Medical expenses overseas for coronavirus are covered, as is an accommodation extension if necessary because you’ve been told to quarantine while on holiday. If you have to cancel pre-booked excursions due to being told to self-isolate, these are also covered. However, you’re not covered in the event that your local area or indeed the whole of the UK goes into lockdown before the trip.
AllClear has added coronavirus cover to its Clear Gold, Gold Plus and Platinum policies free of charge. It covers up to £15m in emergency medical expenses, including repatriation, plus cancellation and curtailment up to £25,000. The latter includes: if you contract Covid-19 before you travel; if your travelling companion(s), people you live with, or people you’re staying with on holiday are diagnosed with Covid-19 within 14 days of travel; if you’re denied boarding with a positive Covid test; if a close relative becomes ill with coronavirus and you need to return home early; if you’ve been told to self-isolate by the NHS at the time of your departure; and if a family/household member is diagnosed with Covid-19, meaning you have to self-isolate.
Cover for countries on the high-risk list
Nearly all travel insurance policies are automatically invalidated if you go to a destination the FCDO is advising against travelling to. At the moment, this warning has been applied to most countries, barring those on a dwindling “low-risk” list. Holidaymakers’ favourites including Spain, France and Italy are all deemed too dangerous by the government.
But all is not lost – there are some tailor-made policies out there that will cover you, even if you decide to go against FCDO advice.
Battleface has long been selling policies to war torn countries on the Foreign Office’s no-go list, and has pivoted neatly to cover less extreme climates since the pandemic started. Policies are still valid if you visit a country the FCDO is advising against all non-essential travel to; they include cover for medical expenses incurred while on a trip caused by or resulting from Covid-19. However, there’s no cover relating to cancellation, curtailment or lock-down/quarantine expense coverage and policies are only available to those aged 59 or under.
Insurefor.com recently launched new insurance products, including single-trip policies that cover you when travelling against FCDO advice to European countries. As well as medical expenses while abroad as a result of coronavirus, it also covers policy holders for cancellation in the event that they, their travelling companion or people they are due to stay with on holiday are diagnosed with Covid-19.
Tour operators and travel agencies
Some tour operators are getting in on the action too.
Of course, if they cancel the trip, the customer is entitled to a full refund. But if the customer needs to cancel, or if they fall ill while on holiday, some brands are offering complimentary cover or the option to include coronavirus insurance as an add-on.
Thomas Cook offers holiday insurance that includes Covid-19 protection via its partner, Holiday Extras. It provides cover if you, or anyone insured on your policy, contracts Covid-19 prior to travelling, plus up to £10,000,000 cover if you require emergency treatment abroad and offers repatriation if required.
All Club Med guests are entitled to free Covid-19 cover until 30 April 2021. If a holidaymaker contracts the virus while travelling, medical expenses will be covered as part of the holiday package, including Covid-19 testing, transportation costs to testing facilities, GP appointments and medical expenses in case of hospitalisation. If a lockdown or quarantine is required, housing will be provided for guests and, if they cannot fly home, new flights will be provided once it’s safe for them to travel.
Covid Cover is automatically included for all customers travelling on any TUI holiday and applies to all new and existing bookings. Customers can amend their holiday for free if they contract Covid-19 or are officially required to isolate prior to travel, or if their local area goes into a regional lockdown over their departure dates. It also covers medical assistance if a customer contracts Covid-19 while on holiday, plus costs associated with an extended stay and a new return flight home if customers are asked to self-isolate.
EDreams ODIGEO, which owns online travel agencies eDreams, GO Voyages, Opodo and Travellink, has added Covid-19 coverage to its insurance offering. It will cover customers when cancelling their bookings because they have been infected by Covid-19, or because they have been officially required to quarantine prior to departure. In addition, overseas medical and assistance expenses are covered, alongside expenses incurred at a destination due to customers needing to quarantine as a result of infection.
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