Travel Insurance – How Cancel For Any Reason Works, COVID, Political/Security Evacuation

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Insurance – How Cancel for Any Reason Coverage Works

Some are unsure if they are traveling to certain destinations, how travel insurance can help in these situations.  Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) insurance can provide coverage for a number of events that may not be covered under standard Trip Cancellation insurance. There are several instances that may impact travelers and how CFAR works could be valuable.

What is Cancel for Any Reason Coverage:  CFAR coverage is an optional upgrade that can provide up to 75% reimbursement of your trip cost if you have to cancel for any reason at all prior to 48 hours before your trip scheduled departure.  In order to be eligible for Cancel for Any Reason coverage, you must: Purchase your insurance coverage within 21 days of your initial trip deposit; insure 100% of the cost of all travel that is subject to cancellation penalties or restrictions by the travel supplier; and Cancel your trip 48 hours or more before your scheduled departure date.

Suspect reasons for not traveling to a destination:  Those who are thinking of planning a trip to a specific destination, as well as those who have already planned their trip, but may be hesitant to travel there.  This is not a covered reason under the standard Trip Cancellation benefit. However, CFAR offers coverage even for events such as this, even when they do not fall under standard Trip Cancellation. A reminder – you are only eligible to purchase CFAR coverage if it has been no longer than 21 days since your initial trip deposit date.  If you wish to still travel but want to change your destination in light of the unfortunate events, you can notify us of the change in destination or travel dates. We will need this information in order to update your travel insurance policy. These changes to your policy are at no additional cost unless trip cost or trip length changes.  Please note, however, that fees from airlines, hotels, or other common carriers that occur as a result of the changing trip plans are not eligible for coverage under travel insurance in this instance.

Shark Attacks in the Caribbean:  Several accounts of shark attacks on tourists in the Bahamas have left many travelers uneasy about taking trips there. It is important to remember that the likelihood of an unprovoked shark attack is very rare, and that cancelling a trip due to fear of shark attacks is not a covered reason under standard Trip Cancellation. However, CFAR can provide coverage if you choose to cancel your trip due to concerns about getting into the water. While shark attacks are rare, and plenty of Americans travel to and from the Caribbean without incident, there are other benefits of travel insurance that can help if you or a traveling companion experience an unfortunate event.

Medical Coverage:  In the unlikely case that you experience a medical emergency, Arch RoamRight could be able to provide medical coverage. Our travel insurance plans can include emergency medical, medical evacuation and trip interruption benefits. In the unfortunate case that this happens while on your trip, having travel insurance can help with outstanding medical fees, allowing you to get the care you need while on your trip.  Beyond providing coverage in the event of a medical emergency, all Arch RoamRight insureds have access to a 24/7 emergency assistance line which puts trained emergency travel assistance providers at your fingertips. They also can help you find quality, local medical care and provide translation services if needed.

Repatriation of Remains:  In the unfortunate event that you or a traveling companion passes away while traveling – regardless of your destination – Arch RoamRight’s repatriation of remains benefit will help prepare and return your remains home. Alleviating this concern can be a tremendous relief for loved ones who are grieving and trying to navigate the logistics of international repatriation.

Cancelling out of fear of something happening can only be covered by CFAR:  Cancellation can only be covered if you have Cancel for Any Reason coverage. Cancellation over fear of something happening – like fear of a shark attack – is not a covered reason for trip cancellation under the benefit in the standard Arch RoamRight travel insurance plan.  While purchasing CFAR is always a decision you have to make on your own, there are a few other times when it might need to be considered.

Coronavirus and Travel Insurance

Viral outbreaks occur every few years, understanding how travel insurance coverage works when there is a viral outbreak is important.  Note: As of January 21, 2020, the Coronavirus is a known event. Quarantine is no longer considered unforeseen for Trip Cancellation and Trip Interruption for policies purchased after 1/21/2020. However, coverage is still available for medical and emergency medical evacuation expenses in the event that a traveler contracts the disease while on their trip.

The CDC is closely monitoring developments around an outbreak caused by a coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Chinese authorities identified the new coronavirus, which has resulted in hundreds of confirmed cases in China, including cases outside Wuhan City, with additional cases being identified in a growing number of countries internationally.  This outbreak has affected travel, forcing many travelers rethink their travel plans.  Below are a few examples of how Arch RoamRight’s plans may work during the Coronavirus outbreak.

Coverage Options for Trips:  If you have a planned trip and want to cancel because of the coronavirus, you likely will not have coverage through most travel insurance policies. Cancellation due to the fear of contracting a virus is not covered under most Arch RoamRight plans. We encourage you to first contact your travel supplier directly to determine alternate options and arrangements.  It is therefore useful to understand that, if you already have a trip insured and contract any unexpected illness before you leave, you likely have coverage to cancel your trip.

Quarantine Coverage:  If you or your traveling companion is quarantined, including if you have been detained during your trip due to suspected illness, such as a wellness check at an airport, you may have trip cancellation coverage, if your policy was purchased after January 21, 2020.  If your destination is placed under quarantine after your departure date, you may have trip delay or missed connection benefits.

Cancelled Flights:  For cancelled flights, you may have coverage under most Arch RoamRight travel insurance plans, if the cancellation occurs on or after the scheduled departure date and you won’t be able to reach your destination before 50% of your trip has passed. If the flight cancellation occurs prior to the scheduled departure date, coverage is not available.

Itinerary Changes:  If a travel supplier changes a trip itinerary after the scheduled departure date, and that change results in you not being able to participate in a non-refundable, prepaid event or activity, there would be coverage for those expenses, provided that the event was prepaid prior to departure; the event was scheduled on the trip itinerary; and no comparable event or activity of equivalent cost was rescheduled during the trip.

Emergency Medical Coverage for Insured Travelers:  If you travel and have an Arch RoamRight travel insurance plan in place, you may be eligible for emergency medical coverage if you contract the coronavirus. This includes help finding a physician, emergency medical care, and – if necessary – an evacuation back home for care and treatment.  Travelers, such as those covered by Arch RoamRight, who are abroad and are feeling ill can contact their insurance company’s emergency assistance provider.

Trip Interruption Coverage for Sick Travelers:  Sick travelers may also be eligible for trip interruption coverage, which can reimburse for additional transportation expenses to take you home, as well as any unused, pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses.

Political or Security Evacuation

Arch RoamRight plans include coverage for political or security evacuations. This means what we may pay up to the Maximum Benefit Amount, for all reasonable evacuation expenses incurred for your transportation to the nearest safe haven, if you must leave Your Trip for a covered Political or Security Event. Such events include:  a Natural Disaster; civil, military or political unrest for which a formal written recommendation from the appropriate local government authorities, or the U.S. State Department, for You to leave a country is issued; or you are being expelled or declared a persona non-grata by a country You are visiting on Your Trip.  In order to use these benefits, you must use Arch RoamRight’s designated assistance provider as shown on your Arch RoamRight ID card.  However, it is extremely important to know that some destinations are excluded from coverage for Political and Security evacuations. Those countries are:

Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Chechnya, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iran, Israel West Bank, Israel Gaza Strip,
Ivory Coast, Lebanon, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, Syria

Exclusions to Know:  In general, travel insurance benefits are not payable for any loss due to war, invasion, acts of foreign enemies, hostilities between nations (whether declared or undeclared), or civil war. This would include emergency medical benefits, trip delay benefits, accidental death and dismemberment benefits, and others.  In addition, political and security evacuations are not covered when the evacuation is from the traveler’s home country, when the event occurs prior to the traveler’s arrival in the country, or when seven days have passed between the event and the traveler’s request to for assistance. There are other exclusions that may also apply.  If you are planning a trip to a volatile area of the world, make sure you understand your coverage limits and exclusions.

Cancel for Any Reason is available with Arch RoamRight’s Preferred, Elite, Pro and Pro Plus plans. You can learn more about Cancel for Any Reason and how it could provide coverage on TravelKatz website.

We use Arch RoamRight, a leading provider of travel insurance for Americans traveling domestically and abroad. If you are a traveler and have questions about your plan, or you are looking to purchase a travel insurance plan for an upcoming trip, contact TravelKatz at 352-277-7300 for information.

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