It’s one of the biggest questions being asked in the travel world right now: “Do I have coverage against covid-19 with my travel insurance?”
The answer is both yes and no, depending on when you purchased your policy, which travel insurance provider you are with, and what country you are traveling to.
To make this article as helpful as possible, we are answering the following frequently asked questions with what the majority of policies include.
What if I contract coronavirus during my trip? Is my medical care covered?
In most cases, you will be covered for medical related expenses if you happen to contract coronavirus during your trip, as long as you don’t travel to a country with a ‘do not travel’ advisory in effect, after the advisory had been made.
What if I caught coronavirus in my own country before my trip and I cannot travel?
Is the cancellation or rescheduling of my trip covered?
Some of the major travel insurance providers have a ‘trip cancellation’ clause, which allows a claim to be made if you contract coronavirus before your trip and have to cancel/reschedule.
What if a country I am planning to travel to suddenly issues a ‘do not travel’ advisory? Is the cancellation of my trip covered?
This really depends on the type of policy you have, as some policies will cover the costs and others won’t. However, if the insurance provider doesn’t offer coverage for this type of travel interruption, the airlines most likely will. Almost every major airline is offering cancellations and changes with no penalties because of coronavirus.
What if I am just afraid to travel and I don’t feel safe taking my trip any longer?
Unless you have a beefed-up policy with an extra ‘cancel for any reason’ clause, most travel insurance providers will NOT cover cancellation or rebooking of a trip simply because of the fear of travelling due to coronavirus.
What are some of the big travel insurance providers covering?
Here is more information on the official terms and conditions for popular travel insurance providers on what they are offering their policy holders in terms of ‘coronavirus coverage’.
Allianz is one of the largest providers of travel insurance in the world. Many credit card providers use Allianz for the travel insurance they include for their card holders.
Claims due to known, foreseeable, or expected events, epidemics, or fear of travel are generally not covered, and coverage can vary by state. However, until further notice, although not covered under most plans, we are currently accommodating claims for:
- Under Emergency Medical Care and Emergency Medical Transportation Benefits:Emergency medical care and emergency medical transportation for a customer who becomes ill with COVID-19 while on their trip.
2. Under Trip Cancellation or Trip Interruption Benefits: Trip cancellation and trip interruption if a customer becomes ill with COVID-19 either before or during their trip.
3. Under Trip Cancellation Benefit: Non-refundable, non-transferable trip cancellation expenses for customers who purchased their plan prior to January 22, 2020 for trip components in Mainland China, South Korea, or the Lombardy or Veneto regions of Italy and departing prior to April 1, 2020.
The above list is strictly applicable to COVID-19. This is only available for customers whose plan includes the applicable benefit. All other terms, conditions, and exclusions of the plan apply as normal.
PLAN REFUND INFORMATION
Customers may change their plan’s effective dates to cover a new or rescheduled trip. Alternatively, for a temporary period, we are offering refunds for the cost of your travel protection plan to customers who wish to cancel their travel protection plan if the customer’s travel supplier canceled the customer’s trip due to COVID-19, so long as no payable claim has been filed under the plan. Please call us at the number listed on your plan and we will be happy to assist you.
Safetywing is a very popular insurance for nomads, world travelers, and people who are gone from home so long, they might not have health coverage back in their home country.
We personally use SafetyWing because we can buy insurance while a trip is currently IN progress, we don’t need to return to our home country at any given point, and the premiums are very affordable.
Safetywing coverage for coronavirus follows the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) travel warnings.
It works like this:
When a location (typically country or a city) reaches a level 3 (or higher) travel warning because of the virus:
- If you ARRIVE there after the warning has been published (or within 6 months after it has been withdrawn), you are not covered for treatment of coronavirus contracted while there.
- If you are already in a location that receives a travel warning, you have 10 days to evacuate (and you are covered during this time). In a lot of cases, we cover the evacuation itself (typically safe neighboring country, or home country). To be covered for evacuation, you need to call +1 800 605 2282 (free from Skype) within 10 days of a government issued travel warninglevel 3 or higher. If you choose to remain there beyond the 10 days, you are no longer covered for treatment of coronavirus.
Note that even if your coronavirus coverage lapses because you choose to stay in a country with a CDC level travel warning, you are still covered as normal by the rest of the policy for other eligible expenses, just not treatment of the virus.
If you’ve booked travel to a place and it gains a level 3+ travel warning before you go – you cannot claim the cost of not going there. This is up to the airline. In most cases relating to coronavirus, airlines are offering very flexible cancellation and change policies and will likely accommodate your request.
World Nomads is another major travel insurance provider for world travelers, especially adventure seekers.
Is COVID-19 covered by World Nomads travel insurance?
Unlike other companies, World Nomads does not have an endemic or pandemic exclusion for policies purchased by U.S. residents, which means that you may make claims arising from the COVID-19 for the benefits specified in your policy.
These benefits include emergency medical and trip interruption coverage for you personally or a travel companion who contracts the COVID-19 or goes under quarantine when traveling. Things you may get reimbursed for include doctors’ visits and hospital stays, and any pre-paid travel arrangements that get disrupted as a result of the infection.
If you unexpectedly catch COVID-19 at home before you leave for your trip, you may also be eligible for trip cancellation coverage, which represents compensation for any pre-paid non-refundable travel expenses such as flights, hotels and excursions.
What about fear of traveling or cancelled events due to coronavirus?
Fear of travel is never a covered reason for any type of coverage. In no instances can you get reimbursed for canceling your trip because you’re worried about how coronavirus may impact your trip.
World Nomads plans also don’t provide coverage for events surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak for which you aren’t directly affected by the sickness. Examples: a conference you were planning to attend was canceled; flights out of your destination were shut down; you changed your mind about having your honeymoon in Italy.
Here are some other major travel insurance providers and their direct link to their individual coronavirus coverage:
Generali Global Insurance – see coronavirus info
Seven Corners Travel Insurance – see coronavirus info
TravelEx Insurance – see coronavirus info
AIG and Travel Guard Insurance – see coronavirus info