How we travel after the pandemic is set to change in a number of ways. One thing that’s certain however, is that having a Covid-19 travel insurance policy in place will be even more essential to cover all the unknown factors and unpredictable twists that are now commonplace when travelling abroad.
These days, credit cards and airlines often offer insurance plans, but they’re not always adequate for complex individual circumstances. Paying a little more for insurance companies that tailor their plans to cover more of Covid-19’s complications can be a worthwhile investment, and provides that extra peace of mind. Insurance comparison sites like InsureMyTrip.com or SquareMouth.com can help navigate the crowded space of travel insurance policies, but to save you some time, we’ve put together a primer of some good companies to get started with.
When the pandemic kicked off in early 2020, Heymondo was one of the first providers to modify their conditions to be able to extend its coverage for things like Covid-19 medical expenses and flight cancellations. The company offers 24/7 worldwide medical assistance, including PCR tests, and additional hotel/accommodation costs for a medical quarantine if you test positive abroad. Travellers can also enjoy a cancellation guarantee if they, or someone they love becomes sick with Covid-19 before their trip.
They also have a very handy app that makes it a snap to make claims, chat with a doctor, or have your policies on documents on hand for quick reference.
Seven Corners also quickly adapted its policies to cover some the worst COVID-19-related scenarios. Depending on the plan you opt for, they cover everything from extra costs due to flight delays and missed connections, full medical expenses, and trip cancellations. In fact, for an additional cost you can include a Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) benefit that reimburses 75% of non-refundable trip costs if you choose not to travel – for any reason you may have (including fear of travel due to concerns over the virus).
Insurance giant Allianz makes a point on their website that “claims due to […] epidemics, government prohibitions, warnings, travel advisories or fear of travel are generally not covered.” But they also go on to note that they have since introduced the addition of a new Epidemic Coverage Endorsement, for pandemic-related emergencies, to some of their plans. This allows claims for emergency medical care due to Covid-19, and trip cancellation or interruption if you get sick with coronavirus either before or during your trip.
French insurer AXA has also rolled out some new policies in light of the pandemic, which apply differently depending on where you live. For anyone living in Hong Kong who contracts Covid-19 abroad, AXA covers medical expenses incurred overseas, as well as follow-up medical appointments for up to three months. The company will also automatically extend your period of insurance up to 10 days free of charge if you need to stay overseas longer than planned – highly useful in scenarios like last summer, when the Hong Kong government temporarily barred flights from the United Kingdom.