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Coronavirus: How COVID-19 could affect your travel plans

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Coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) is all over the news, but it can be confusing trying to figure out the details of what you would be covered for when many different providers have different policies.

 

We spoke to Ancile, the travel insurance provider we refer customers to, in order to get some clear guidance on exactly what to do if you or your holidays are impacted by Coronavirus.

 

Please note, Fish Insurance do not provide travel insurance directly, but instead point people towards Ancile Insurance. If you have any queries about your Ancile travel insurance policy, please get in touch with Ancile directly by calling 0333 331 3969.

 

The information below is applicable to those with a travel insurance policy provided by Ancile Insurance.

Am I insured if I travel against the advice of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO)?

No, none of Ancile’s policies provide cover in the event that you travel to a country after the FCO have advised against travel.

 

Will my policy cover medical treatment for the Coronavirus? And will repatriation (getting back home) be covered?

If you catch Coronavirus or require medical treatment, then cover will be in place for emergency and necessary treatment.

 

Remember the policy is not a private medical insurance, meaning that there will be no cover for any medical expenses incurred in a private medical facility.

 

Please contact Ancile’s Assistance Team if you require medical treatment or require repatriation.

 

Ancile’s policies will provide cover for repatriation (bringing you home), if it’s medically necessary. Their Assistance Team will liaise with your treating doctor(s) about your treatment plan and if required obtain a ‘fit to fly’ certificate. They also liaise with you in order to put suitable repatriation plans in place in order to get you home as soon as it is medically safe to do so and achieve your optimal recovery. Ancile’s team are unable to make arrangements to repatriate you where it is against local advice, where travel is restricted, or where you would pose a risk to other passengers.

 

Am I covered for cancellation due to the Coronavirus?

Ancile can confirm that they will not provide cover in the event of cancellation of your trip due to the FCO advising against travel to your destination. Please contact your Tour Operator or booking agent in order to obtain a refund.

 

In the event that you are unable to move the trip to an alternative destination, and are offered a refund from your travel agent or tour operator, Ancile are happy to offer a full refund of premium on the understanding that no claim is to be made against the policy. This does not apply to Annual policies.

 

If you are not able to amend your trip and have a medical justification for having to cancel, Ancile would be happy to discuss your situation on a case-by-case basis.  Please contact the claims company.

 

If I am stuck abroad due to the Coronavirus and cannot come home on my planned return date, will my travel insurance be extended to cover me until I can get home?

Yes. If you are unable to return home on your planned date for a reason beyond your control, the policy will automatically extend to continue cover until you are able to return home.

 

The policy will not provide cover for additional accommodation and travel costs unless they are medically necessary.

 

If you have purchased Ancile’s Epidemic and Pandemic Travel Restriction Cover, you may be able to claim a daily benefit which would help cover additional costs for food and accommodation.

 

If I am quarantined due to the Coronavirus, what cover is in place?

Please contact Ancile’s Assistance Team if you are admitted to hospital.

 

If you are confined to your trip accommodation and are unable to return home on your planned date your travel insurance will automatically extend cover, until you are able to return home.

 

The policy will not provide cover for additional accommodation and travel costs unless they are medically necessary.

 

If you have purchased our Epidemic and Pandemic Travel Restriction Cover, you may be able to claim a daily benefit which would help cover additional costs for food and accommodation.

 

What happens if I arrive at my holiday destination and they refuse entry due to the virus?

If you travel to an area which the FCO advise against travel to, there would be no cover under the travel insurance policies as this would be considered as a known event.

 

If you travel to an area and the FCO advice changes after leaving home, you should contact your travel agent or tour operator for information on availability of flights or refunds in the first instance.

 

If you are refused entry at passport/border control, you should contact your airline or transport provider to arrange changing your return ticket to allow you to come home early.

 

Will I be covered if I want to cut my trip short due to the Coronavirus?

No, the policy will not provide cover in this instance.

 

If you have booked a package holiday to a destination affected by the viral outbreak and you’re looking to cut your trip short, Ancile advise that you contact your travel agent or tour operator for information on availability of flights in the first instance.

 

If you’re travelling independently from a tour operator or travel agent, you should make your own arrangements to leave by either altering return tickets or booking onto an alternative commercial flight or mode of transport. Claims for independent travellers’ additional expenses in returning home earlier than planned, where medically justified, will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

 

The policy would not provide cover if you are cutting short a trip due to the “fear of an epidemic, pandemic, infection or allergic reaction”.

 

Am I covered for travel disruption caused by the Coronavirus?

If you are unable to return home on your planned date the policy will automatically extend. However, the policy will not provide cover for additional accommodation costs unless they are medically necessary.

 

If I go out on an excursion for the day and then am not allowed back to my travel accommodation (or cruise ship) due to quarantine, what cover do I have?

You should follow any instructions issued by the local authorities as it is more than likely that you will have to enter some form of quarantine.

 

Travellers should contact their travel agent or tour operator for assistance in the first instance.

 

The policy will provide cover if you require additional accommodation and travel costs where it is deemed medically necessary. Please contact the emergency Assistance Team in this instance.

 

If I have a stop-over in an area which the FCO advices against travel to, am I still covered?

Ancile would suggest that if you have not started that part of your journey, you should contact your airline and change your travel plans to move on to the next part of your itinerary.

 

If you arrive at your stop-over airport and entry is denied due to the virus, you should contact your airline and change your travel plans to move on to the next part of your itinerary.

 

Can my policy be changed to suit a ‘new/different’ holiday or trip?

If you are offered an alternative destination and or dates from your travel agent, Ancile are pleased to advise that they will shift your insurance policy to fit the new trip without any administration charges, providing the new trip is for the same duration and to the same location or geographical area. If the duration or geographical area is different please be aware there may be an additional premium in this instance.

 

Where can I find more information about travelling and the Coronavirus?

There is a wealth of information on the internet being updated by the minute as we get more guidance from official sources. Useful information can be found on the following websites:

ABTA – Coronavirus Advice for Customers

Gov UK – Foreign Travel Advice (search the name of the country you’re travelling to and find all the latest guidance)

Gov UK – Travel advice: Coronavirus (COVID-19)

NHS – Coronavirus Advice for Travellers

World Health Organisation (WHO) – Coronavirus Travel Advice