Travelers who had booked trips or are considering them must now face difficult questions, partly because their health and safety could be at risk and partly because their investment in a vacation may be threatened. Here’s what we know so far:
Question: Are such outbreaks as coronavirus covered by regular travel policies?
Answer: Doubtful. “Unfortunately, there is limited cancellation coverage [for coronavirus] under most standard travel insurance policies,” Kasara Barto of Squaremouth.com, a travel insurance comparison site, said in an email. “Virus outbreaks do not fall under the standard cancellation reasons on most travel insurance.”
Q. But didn’t the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tell travelers they should “avoid non-essential travel” to China?
A. Yes, but in terms of insurance, Squaremouth noted, travelers “are not prevented from” going.
Q. Doesn’t the State Department say you should not travel to China, especially Wuhan, the center of the coronavirus outbreak?
A. The State Department on Thursday raised its threat warning, saying you should not travel to China. Previously the threat level was a 3, which means “reconsider,” except for Wuhan, which was a 4 (do not travel).
Q. The World Health Organization said Wednesday that the outbreak is an international health emergency. Does that change the dynamics of insurance coverage?
A. No, insurance experts say, because now coronavirus is not unexpected. The risk is there and not a surprise.
Read the full LA Times article online here: https://www.latimes.com/travel/story/2020-01-30/travel-insurance-coverage-coronavirus-china