Coronavirus: How Will It Affect My Holiday?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) have declared Coronavirus, or COVID-19, a public health emergency of international concern. This has left many holidaymakers concerned over their travel plans and unsure about what they can do to safeguard themselves and their finances. On 17th March 2020, the FCO advised against all non-essential travel abroad. This advice takes effect immediately.

What do I do if my travel is essential?

The FCO has created a checklist for people whose travel is considered essential. Please read this carefully to ensure that you’re fully prepared before you travel.

Can I still get travel insurance for my essential trip?

Some insurance providers have now stopped offering travel insurance entirely due to the outbreak of COVID-19. You may still be able to get a travel insurance policy for your trip but because the FCO has advised against all but essential travel, you will only be covered for travel changes due to coronavirus if you bought your policy before the advice was issued.

What advice has the UK Government given about travelling?

The UK government has advised against all but essential travel. If you have to travel it’s advisable to contact your insurance provider, carrier and accommodation to check how the virus could impact your cover and your travel arrangements. For up to date information on what areas and regions are most affected visit the FCO website.

Will I be able to get a refund if I cancel my trip?

As the FCO has now advised against all non-essential travel abroad, provided you bought insurance for your trip, you will be covered for cancellation. If you don’t have insurance, you should contact the company you booked your holiday with or the airline and hotel to see what can be done about the cancellation of your trip.

Will my travel insurance cover me if I go to an affected region

If you’re travelling to a destination that the UK government has advised against travelling to then it’s likely that you won’t be covered for claims related to Covid-19. To be on the safe side we advise you to talk to your insurer and keep an eye on the UK government website regarding travel restrictions to each country and region.

What type of cover do policies now offer

Most insurers won’t offer any coronavirus related cancellation or medical cover for countries that the UK government has advised against all essential travel. For all other medical or cancellation issues, your policy should cover you as long as they are not related to Covid-19.

Can I still buy travel insurance?

Yes, there is a selection of travel insurance providers where you can purchase travel insurance but be aware that the majority of these policies will not cover any related coronavirus issues.

When is the best time to buy travel insurance?

You should buy your travel insurance as soon as you’ve booked your holiday. This is key as your cover protects you from the minute you buy it, not from the moment you step foot on the plane. If you need to cancel your trip to due a bereavement or illness your cover will kick in.

Am I able to add disruption cover to my policy?

This will depend on your insurance provider. It’s best to contact them and check or check online for optional extras.

Do I need travel insurance for a UK based holiday?

This is really key question especially as many of us are choosing to holiday in the UK once lockdown is over. In terms of medical cover a travel insurance policy isn’t needed however it’s advisable to have cover for other elements of your trip such as your travel and accommodation costs. If we were to go into a second wave of the pandemic resulting in your trip being disrupted you may find you would be restricted on what you could claim for as it’s a known event.

What can I do to protect my future holiday?

Fully comprehensive travel insurance is a must when planning any holiday. In light of the recent events, it’s advisable to make sure that you purchase a policy with disruption cover to reimburse costs associated with delays and to protect you if you end up in quarantine. When comparing travel insurance providers, it’s important to consider more than the price. We’ve ranked travel insurance providers exclusively on product quality and customer experience so you can purchase a policy from a provider that you can rely on when you need them most.

Top three travel insurance providers

Staysure

Ranked 1 of 25

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Staysure

AXA

Ranked 2 of 25

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AXA