First, what exactly do we mean by “cancellation insurance”? It is a guarantee, either automatic or taken out by the traveler, which allows him to be reimbursed for the costs already incurred for a stay, if the latter is cancelled. If the valid reasons for cancellation are more or less broad according to the contracts, one condition is retained for all: the guarantee only intervenes for a reason or an event provided for in the contract, unforeseeable and unintentional.
Clearly, the cancellation of your trip must be beyond your control.
The reasons for having your plane or train trip reimbursed
Among the valid reasons: an illness, the death of a loved one, a natural event or disturbances in the country of destination. Nevertheless, make sure that the contract is clear on the conditions of a possible cancellation or postponement of your trip free of charge, because the terms of reimbursement vary from one contract to another.
If cancellation insurance is automatically provided when paying for a stay with certain bank cards (such as Premium or Gold), it can be taken out when purchasing a ticket or booking the trip. Sometimes, cancellation insurance is included in specific insurance that you can benefit from elsewhere. However, the amounts are sometimes capped, and may not cover all the expenses related to a cancellation, so be sure to read your contract carefully.
Before subscribing to this type of insurance, also be aware that due to the health context, some airlines provide flexible booking conditions, which allow you to modify your flight or obtain a credit note in the event of an impediment before departure. . The SNCF applies a certain flexibility, until August 29: all train tickets are “exchangeable and refundable up to 3 days before departure”. Note that cancellation insurance can amount to up to 5% of the total amount of the stay.
The specific case of “Covid insurance”
Since the start of the pandemic, travel agencies have offered their customers the option of taking out additional “Covid insurance”. Its goal ? Cover the range of situations related to Covid-19, for example if you contract the virus before or during the trip, if you find yourself in contact and must be placed in isolation, or finally if your temperature is too high to board in a train, plane or on board a boat.
Please note, if you are in contact, registration as such with the Health Insurance may be necessary. Some contracts even consider covering your medical expenses, if you are infected with Covid-19 during your trip – this can go as far as medical repatriation.
Covid-19 travel insurance mandatory in some countries
In addition, some countries require tourists or visitors to take out “Covid-19 travel insurance” to enter their territory, with the mention “Covid”. Good to know: most credit card travel insurance covers medical expenses in the event of an epidemic!
However, some countries are asking for the possible reimbursement of costs in the event of imposed confinement. On the list of countries concerned by compulsory Covid-19 travel insurance, there are many tourist destinations, such as:
In general, you can check on the government website if the destination you want to go to requires this Covid-19 insurance.
Free cancellation insurance to entice travelers
Cancellation free of charge, extremely rare before the pandemic, has become a real plus today, and the players in the sector have understood this! It is now a common option, as at Club Med, which offers modifiable stays free of charge until the day of departure in the event of an unforeseen event linked to the epidemic. There is also paid insurance that guarantees reimbursement of your entire stay in the event of a positive test.
Sometimes it is the destinations themselves that ride the wave of cancellation insurance: until December 31, 2021, the Spanish region of Andalusia offers all international travelers free coronavirus insurance with Europ Assistance, and this without age limit, for stays in regulated establishments (hotels, bed and breakfasts, inns or lodges.) If you contract the coronavirus on site, medical, surgical and hospitalization costs are covered by the insurance for the patient and accompanying family members. The extension of the stay of the insured and his entourage after hospitalization or due to a required quarantine is also guaranteed.
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