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Offline unhappy

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Travel Insurance
« on: July 16, 2020 »
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To all members a note of caution, my wife & myself were caught up in the flight cancellation problems in March this year & after contacting our Travel Insurance Company & explaining that we were stranded in Tenerife & they said that's OK you are covered but keep your receipts, which we did

We booked our accommodation from the 03/01/20 to 02/04/20 and our one way outward flight for the 03/01/20, when the Pandemic started we booked our return flight early on the 27/02/20 for March we then had 2 flights cancelled & were left stranded in Tenerife.

Although we caught the first flight that flew back to the UK on the 01/05/20 it has cost us about £1500.00
to pay for extra accommodation, medication, & taxis to get home.

The WARNING is because we did not book a return flight when we flew out on the 03/01/20 the Insurance company have now declined our Insurance claim for these costs, saying it is classed as curtlaling our holiday. ( work that one out)

I am sure there are many owners like us, when we owned our own property over there & went over for long periods, only booked a one way flight so we could fly home anytime that suited us but it appears we are NOT Insured if we do this

Offline Georgie

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2020 »
The best thing is write to the financial services compensation scheme part of the regulatory Fca

See what happens then

Offline angiebabes

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2020 »
Thatís just ridiculous Unhappy. Can you get onto your lawyer and challenge this? You took first available flight. Where does it state in your policy that you must book a return flight for cover to kick in? Seems insurance look for any loophole.  I had insurance for a cruise that was cancelled in May due to virus, they too tried to say they werenít responsible and no refund, but I replied that I was and would take further action, seven days etc.... and next thing there was a refund in my bank account.

Offline will

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2020 »
This happened to my friend a number of years ago.She fell ill and was in hospital for a week, and the insurance paid for the stay in hospital and all the treatment.
She arranged her own flight home and was told to keep all receipts, to claim on her return to the UK.
Her policy was a 90 day cover, but after claiming the insurance would not pay and demanded the hospital fees back.The reason was she was on a one way ticket and could have stayed more than the 90 days, therefore the policy was invalid.
She was lucky because my friend had rang and told them she was on a one way ticket but would be returning before the 90 days.The advisor told her this would be fine, but she only had her telephone bill confirming she had rang, it still took a solicitor to sort it out and she still did not get the refund for flight tickets and other expenses.

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2020 »
I took out travel insurance in June with Nationwide so, after reading this thread, I phoned to check if we needed to book return flights before departing.  The agent said he had never been asked the question before and thought it was definitely NOT required.  I explained what I had read (on this forum) so he went off to check the policy book and his supplementary information.  After some time he came back to confirm that there was no mention of the requirement so it was definitely safe to assume that we could travel out without booking a return.  Great, I thought, but I then asked him to send me an email to confirm what he had told me.  He said he couldn't send emails but our conversation was recorded so no problem. He then decided to check with his team manager.  The result....NO, I would not be covered unless I booked a return flight before departure.  And they wonder why we don't trust insurance companies!

Offline Georgie

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2020 »
Madness

Offline nophead

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2020 »
I think the reason is if you have booked both ways then the airline has to get you back either by flying you or finding you another airline and paying the cost. If you have only booked a single flight their duty of care ends when they get you there.

If you subsequently book a return flight as another single they can just cancel it and as they haven't taken you anywhere yet (as far as that flight is concerned) they don't need to bring you back.

So insurance companies would end up picking up the cost, rather than the airline.

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2020 »
On the other hand, nophead, if I book a return then have to return early in an emergency, Nationwide agreed that they would have to pick up the cost of the new ticket, whereas if I did not have a return pre-booked they would have no liability. So it is to their advantage for me NOT to book a return flight.
With regard to the airline's responsibility for repatriating passengers with return tickets, try explaining that to Ryanair! We were dumped by them in March and never received the applied for and promised refund. Our credit card provider eventually reimbursed us after 3 months.


Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2020 »
A further twist to my Ryanair experience.  My card provider has advised me that Ryanair have disputed my claim for reimbursement of the return portion of our tickets.  They say we were "no shows" for the flight which THEY had cancelled 8 days previously (without offering any alternatives)!

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2020 »
Hi everybody & thank you to those that replied to my original post, I now have an update & a decision from my travel/holiday Insureries.

Ater a lot of forwards & backwards from the 23/02/2020 when we realized we were going to be Stranded/Abandoned by the Airlines & our Government & when we contacted our Insurers & were informed that as we had taken out the correct Insurance prior to any Coronavirus or Pandemic we were fully covered under our Travel/ Holiday Insurance, I will add a Company that we have had this kind of Insurance with for many years

Today after many months of not agreeing with their Incorrect & stupid definition,  that we curtailed our holiday, when we were left stranded & abandoned for a further month abroad after our holiday had finished.

They have finally seen the light, & this is before we took legal action or contacted the Financial Ombudsman & they are now going to pay our claim in full.

How stupid they have been, they have now also agreed to compensate us for their stupid inefficiency, the compensation now covers our return flights, a cost we had never claimed in our original claim, because we would have had to pay to get home anyway.

People may say the Travel Insurers are under a lot of pressure to pay claims that Airlines & Tour Operators should be paying, that is their problem to sort out, but to refuse paying legitimate claims is taintermont to fraud,

I don't here these Insurers saying how many Millions they have saved when there was virtually no cars on the road, so very little car accident claims, or homes being occupied all day so leaving the gas on when you went to work & returning to find your home burned down or burglaries just did not happen.

They need to get their act together & pay legitimate claims from the " little people " who pay their premiums in good faith, thinking they are covered, & go after the Corporates who are bending the rules to suit themselves at our expense.

I will let you know when the payment hits our bank & no doubt a nice bottle of bubbly will be opened to celebrate. 

Offline pilgrim

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2020 »
Well done! and good for you - for fighting back!!

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2020 »
Thanks Pilgrim, just a further update today I received an email from them with a further apology & also increasing my compensation.

My advice to anybody if you beleive you are in the right & no matter how big the Company is, fight them.

Offline angiebabes

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #12 on: August 12, 2020 »
Unhappy,please advise which company you took your insurance out with.

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2020 »
I will supply the name of the Ins Comp, I am just waiting for our claim payment to hit our bank.

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2020 »
Hi everybody & again thank you for your comments, I can now disclose who the Insurance Company concerned is, but just to add how inefficient they have been they have now not only paid our claim in full but have over paid the compensation they promised us. ( "of course we will inform them ") .

The company is UK Insurance, the problem is they are owned by RBS & supply Insurance to a plenitude of  Companies like other banks, building societies, supermarkets etc so be aware.

We will now be looking for a sole travel Insurance company on renewal.

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #15 on: August 27, 2020 »
It was UK Travel Insurance who I renewed with through my Nationwide FlexPlus account (£13/month).  As I reported earlier on this topic, they were confused over whether I would be covered if I booked a one way flight.  They said "yes", then retracted and said "no".  So I wrote to them and explained the possible difficulty in  booking a return flight for 90 days in the future.  They phoned me and said they had reviewed the situation at the highest levels and now understood the situation.  They assured me that it would not be a problem provided I booked a return flight asap after arriving at my destination.  I asked for this in writing which they refused, but assured me there was a note on my file plus a recording of our discussion.  So it remains a bit vague, but acceptable. 

I think the UK Travel Insurance deal I have through Nationwide is excellent (other banks and groups have similar deals).  "Free" worldwide travel insurance but plus £65 for being of a certain age and another £108 for extending to 90 days. (I also have to extend my UK property insurance for 90 days unoccupancy - worth remembering this).  Plus I have free car breakdown/recovery insurance throughout UK and Europe (saving me over £100 on my usual cover) and mobile phone insurance. It's reassuring to know that I can have this insurance regardless of age and they seem to be very reasonable on medical surcharges.

It will be interesting to hear from you Unhappy regarding your efforts to obtain insurance from a specialist company.  I tried several for annual multi-trip insurance and all had restrictions on the period (mostly 30 - 45 days), age (mostly 75-79). or total  number of days per year (120).  I had decided to take single trip insurance, which was available but expensive, when I was recommended to Nationwide.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2020 by Tanemera »

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2020 »
We also obtained our travel insurance through our Nationwide accounts & also paid at extra premium for over 30 days which is the norm the same with our home insurance with Lloyds bank.

It is a little unsettling that they will not put the return flight info in writing, thus giving them any excuse to refuse any claim like they did with us.

One other thing once you reach the age of 70 which we are now both over, free insurance via Nationwide / UK Insurance ceases.

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2020 »
Yes Unhappy, "free" insurance ceases but you only pay a small amount to extend this indefinitely.  I pay £65 as I am over 75.  They have clients over 100!

If you are concerned about the situation regarding return flight booking, give them a call on 0800 051 0154    and ask them if they would allow you a concession on this.  Make a note of the agent's name and time/date of the call and you should be OK as all calls are recorded.  They seem to be aware of the anomaly but changing the rules would be too complex, which is understandable as they probably work with several underwriters..

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #18 on: August 27, 2020 »
Tanemera, you must have got a good deal out of them, our premium is over £200.00 & my wife was 70 Dec 2019 & our renewal was Nov 2019.

We spoke to 5 different people at UK Ins & if it was not for one lady working there who did not agree with their own decision, I doubt that our claim would have been paid.

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #19 on: August 28, 2020 »
I don't understand why you are being charged so much, Unhappy.  As I said, I am over 75 (as is my wife) and the fee is £65 total for both of us.  Add another £108 to extend from 30 to 90 days.  Total £173 plus, of course, the £13/month fee for the Nationwide FlexPlus account.  Total £329 pa for worldwide insurance, age over 75, multiple 90 day trips.  Even if I could get this level of cover from a regular insurance company (which I can't) it would be significantly more expensive.

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #20 on: August 28, 2020 »
Tanemera, our cover for that £200+ is for European cover only, I am going to go back to them & ask them why we have been charged at all, my wife is the policy holder & when she renewed the policy she was only 69

Offline el presidente

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #21 on: August 28, 2020 »
Tanemera
The Nationwide FlexPlus Account insurance seems an excellent deal! Do you have to hold the account for a set time before you qualify for the insurance?
Thanks

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #22 on: August 29, 2020 »
No, El Presidente, you don't.  In fact I phoned the underwriter, UK Insurance, first on 08000 51 01 54 and explained that I wanted to take advantage of the Nationwide FlexPlus  travel insurance deal but that I did not yet have an account.  Allan went through all the details, quoted me for the age waiver and the 90 day extension, gave me a reference number and asked me to call back when I had a Nationwide account number.  I then opened my FlexPlus account on line, got an account number and called him back.  I charged my extras to my credit card.  I then arranged for £13/month to be transferred monthly from my normal bank account to my FlexPlus account and this was first debited at the end of the following month.

Offline unhappy

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #23 on: August 29, 2020 »
They also did a flex account with free Insurance, but they have stopped this for new customers.

You can now only get the flexplus account

Offline el presidente

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #24 on: August 29, 2020 »
Thank you Tanemera

Offline blarer

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #25 on: August 30, 2020 »
To get people travelling again wouldn't a simple solution be to make Governments make it mandatory for Insurance Companies to provide cover for people travelling against their Foreign Office advice. I wonder what percentage of people who take out travel insurance make claims, I suspect it's quite small. so the risk to the insurers would be small.

Offline nophead

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #26 on: August 30, 2020 »
Why would governments do that? The UK government doesn't want people to travel overseas and is making it as hard as possible.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2020 by nophead »

Offline Tanemera

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #27 on: August 30, 2020 »
I understood the Canarian government were guaranteeing visitors full medical cover for Coronavirus.  This is via the French company AXA  and runs until late 2021.

Offline LucyW

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OASIS
« Reply #28 on: August 30, 2020 »
The Oasis have posted a notice on their website to inform that they are closing the premises 2nd Sept. It would appear to be a permanent closure from the tone of the notice. A massive blow for LG tourism.

Offline blarer

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Re: Travel Insurance
« Reply #29 on: August 30, 2020 »
The Canadian Government are, but if you travel against the Foreign Office advice of only essential travel your travel insurance is null & void.