Previously, you could simply book your vacation, purchase your travel insurance, pack your bags, and hit the road (or the airplane). Since COVID-19, how we travel has changed, and so has what our travel insurance policies will cover.
This article will summarize how Covid-19 has changed travel insurance in 2022. As always, consult your insurance broker or provider or read your policy wording to see which applies to you.
Yes, however, your insurer may not cover cancellations due to COVID. This largely depends on when you purchased your travel insurance. You may still be covered if you bought it before COVID-19 became a foreseeable danger.
If you’ve purchased an insurance policy anytime in the past 2 years (since it was declared a pandemic), there is likely COVID-19-specific wording that excludes this as a reason for trip cancellation or interruption.
Similarly, if you cancel or end your trip early due to “fears” of COVID, most policies will not provide any reimbursement for this non-critical reason for cancelling.
You may be able to purchase additional insurance that allows you to cancel for any reason, including fear or sickness due to a pandemic. This coverage is designed to compensate you for any situations not covered in a traditional travel insurance policy.
Adding this coverage in addition to or in place of traditional travel insurance can be more costly, though. You’ll likely want to budget an additional 40-60% more for your insurance and be prepared to only receive 50-75% of your claimed amount back if you make a claim under the policy.
In most cases, yes. If you get COVID before you depart on your trip, you are likely to be covered under a standard travel insurance policy. This would be a claim due to an “illness” that prevents you or a member of your group from travelling. But check your specific policy to ensure this is covered.
Your travel insurance may cover trip interruption if you leave home healthy but get the virus while travelling. Check the wording on your policy to learn if that applies to you.
If you need medical care to treat COVID-19 while travelling and have travel medical insurance, check the exact wording on your policy. Some policies will cover medical care for the virus, and others may cover only a portion or none.
Many credit cards or even your employer may provide you with travel insurance. However, these generally won’t include reimbursement for COVID-related cancellations, delays, trip interruptions or other medical expenses. Call your credit card provider or ask your travel insurance broker to help you decipher your policies.
The news cycles have been a buzz lately with reports of busy airports and people missing flights (or luggage) due to airport delays and additional screening procedures. Most policies will not reimburse you if you miss a flight due to airport delays.
We suggest arriving several hours before the recommended airport check-in time to avoid this. Better to be early and hang out in the departure hall with a coffee than risk missing your flight.
If the airline cancels or delays your flight in Canada, you may be entitled to a refund directly from the carrier (not through your insurance). This refund is usually between $125-1000. Your refund will be based on the airline’s size and how long your delay was (based on your actual arrival time at your destination).
The airline must also provide alternate travel arrangements, free of charge if your “flight is cancelled and for flight delays of three hours or more.”
This reimbursement only applies if the delay is the airline’s fault. If circumstances beyond their control delay the flight, no compensation through the carrier is required. In this case, you may seek compensation under your travel insurance if your policy allows it.
If you wish to claim compensation from the airline, you have one year to submit your claim.
Insurance policies vary depending on the insurance provider. Make sure you have coverage for 3 key areas:
If you’re worried about COVID-19 impacting your upcoming travel plans, there are a few things you can do to minimize any infection or impact on your plans:
As COVID health recommendations are ever-changing, always follow the World Health Organization (WHO) COVID-19 guidance to minimize the spread of the virus at home and abroad.
If you have questions about your travel insurance policy and what is/isn’t covered, you can discuss it with your insurance broker. At AP Insurance, we help you understand the legalese in insurance policies, so you know what you are buying and what you have coverage for.
Our job is to make it easy. Tell us what’s most important to you in your insurance policy, and we’ll find the best one to meet your needs. AP Insurance is your insurance broker in Surrey and beyond. We’d be happy to create a travel insurance quote for you.