Insurers reject claims amid travel chaos as consumer groups urge industry bosses to do more to help hard-hit customers
- Travel insurers could refuse to reimburse customers for holiday payments
- Businesses use fine print to deny claims related to Covid cancellations
- Unused accommodation, car rentals and excursions may not be covered
vacationers Thousands of pounds could be left out of pockets because insurers will not cover claims for the current travel chaos.
With the disruption now a “known event” from media reports, travel insurers may refuse to reimburse customers for monies wasted on unused accommodation, rental cars and excursions.
Others rely on Covid-related exclusions in the fine print to deny claims.
Martyn James of complaints website Resolver said: “Just because we know Covid is widespread doesn’t mean we can take flight disruptions for granted. Insurers cannot absolve themselves of liability.’
As experts warn the recent travel chaos could last for months, holidaymakers now face a minefield when buying cover for summer trips abroad.
Under UK law, airlines are required to refund customers for canceled flights or offer them alternative travel.
Passengers can also be entitled to compensation payments of up to £520 for delayed or canceled flights to or from a European destination.
Insurance companies could refuse to pay out holidays canceled because of Covid as this is now classed as a ‘known event’ in the fine print of some insurance plans
However, there is no obligation for travel companies to reimburse holidaymakers for the additional costs incurred as a result of the disruption.
This means travelers who have paid for hotels, hire cars and missed day trips could lose thousands of pounds if insurers refuse to cover their losses.
And since insurance is designed to cover unforeseen events, vacationers who purchase coverage now could find future claims being denied.
A major insurer, Admiral, said the flight cancellations by British Airways and EasyJet on April 4 became a “high profile event” after it was reported in the national press.
The company added that customers aren’t insured against disruptions anyway, as their policies include a “general coronavirus exclusion.”
Since airlines canceled flights because staff had contracted the virus, they would not be entitled to a payout.
Another provider said the insurance is not designed to cover losses caused by airlines failing to meet their obligations.
Tim Riley, managing director of True Traveller, said: “If they [the customer] have booked their flights, accommodation and car rental separately, then if their flight is canceled and there is no replacement, they will be charged the appropriate fees for the other travel arrangements.’
Virgin Money added that it would also not cover claims arising from airline cancellations of flights.
However, other insurers, including Aviva and LV=, said they do not currently consider these cancellations to be a “known event”.
Zurich said the same thing – unless the passenger already knew at the time of booking that their flight would be affected.
Experts last night urged the travel insurance industry to do more to reassure and help customers caught in the chaos.
A spokesman for the Association of UK Insurers said: “If your travel insurance covers a break in travel, it should cover costs you may incur as a result of travel delays or cancellations.
“First and foremost, refunds should be sought from the airline, accommodation provider or tour operator, or the provider of other services such as car hire, and any bookings made through a credit card may also incur a recoverable charge.
“If you are unsure, check with your travel insurer what is covered for you.”
When you are in a different country like Paris and want to roam freely without any bags in your hand, you can leave them at Vertoe locations. Vertoe services are safe and cover $5000 insurance for your bags. It is present near all major train stations and transit points in Paris. Check gare de Lyon luggage storage to find left luggage options nearby.
Insurers are rejecting claims amid travel chaos while consumer groups are urging industry bosses to do more
Source link Insurers are rejecting claims amid travel chaos while consumer groups are urging industry bosses to do more