Travel red lists: My travel insurance no longer covers changes in Foreign Office advice. How can I protect my holiday?
15 February 2021
Many UK travellers are facing annual multi-trips renewals within their travel insurance policies at this time of the year. Consumers are concerned most policies no longer offering cover against a change Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office advice (FCDO).
In most cases, annual multi-trip policies renew with the same level of cover as before, possibly with a couple of minor changes. Renewing the same policy with the same provider is an easy and quick option for customers who are happy with their policy and insurer.
However, as multi-trip policies from last year come to an end, what many travellers have noticed is that some elements of cover around FCDO advice or pandemic cover have changed or been removed completely.
So why are travel insurers encouraging you to renew but without what seems the most important aspect of cover right now? Fiona Macrae, head of consumer awareness initiative, travelinsuranceexplained.co.uk has the answers.
Travel insurance is there to protect you against unknown and unexpected events. Unfortunately, the coronavirus is very much a known event, and restrictions as a result cannot be unexpected. Therefore, it is not something that insurers would cover.
The majority of travel insurance providers have tried, however, to introduce wordings to compensate for this by adding extra cover for cancellation, which could be linked to Covid-19. For example, if you or a member of your travelling party needs to cancel the trip as a result of contracting the virus before the departure date. Some insurers even will cover you for additional expenses incurred, such as accommodation or transportation costs, if you contract Covid-19 while on holiday and have to stay longer to isolate as a result.
But what additional steps can you take to make sure your holiday and finances are safe, should Covid-19 scupper your plans? Well, there are several steps holidaymakers can take to protect their trip.
- Firstly, when booking a holiday, travellers should book a package holiday with a tour operator that is financially protected by ABTA or ATOL and offers flexible cancellation or deferment options where possible. That way should the trip not go ahead as a result of a change in government advice, the holiday is protected under the Package Travel Regulations Act, and the tour operator is responsible for providing a refund or moving the holiday to a new date.
- Secondly, if travellers aren’t sure they’ll be having more than one or two holidays in the near future, they should consider taking out a single trip policy rather than a multi-trip. Not only is this often the cheaper option, but if the holiday is moved due to government restrictions, it is much easier to move the policy to suit the new travel dates. Travel insurers can often move the policy start and end dates completely free of charge and this means that the holiday continues to remain protected.
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Notes to editors:
Travel Insurance Explained is a multimedia awareness campaign that has been created to be an impartial voice to help you understand travel insurance, so should you need to make a claim you will be delighted with the outcome.
Our goals are:
- To help consumers understand what a policy can and cannot cover
- To explain insurance jargon in everyday terms
- To give consumers the tools they need to ensure they get the most appropriate policy
- To help reduce disputed claims and therefore increase consumers satisfaction
- To match the consumers’ requirements to ensure they are buying a suitable policy for their needs at an appropriate price.