Coronavirus outbreak, Does travel insurance covers it?

The Coronavirus outbreak has been declared a global emergency by the World Health Organization. If you are traveling, regardless of the destination, you should always have comprehensive medical insurance that includes emergency evacuation and natural disaster coverage.

Travel health insurance can be tricky, but at Rene we do our best to make it as simple as possible. Here is what to look for when choosing the right travel health insurance plan:

The first thing is learning the difference between Trip Protection and Travel Health Insurance, the first reimburses you in case you need to cancel your trip due to specific reasons covered by your policy, while travel health insurance covers the costs of medical emergencies while you are abroad. 

It’s very important to make sure you have proper coverage for our trip. Pay special attention especially if you’re used to traveling with insurance provided by your credit card. In most cases, it is not as comprehensive as travel health insurance or trip protection bought from an insurance provider.

What happens if I get sick with Coronavirus while traveling? 

If you get sick abroad you’d be eligible for the benefits that your insurance company is providing, however, it’s important to check exclusions and make sure your insurance coverage includes pandemics and epidemics. 

At Rene we provide comprehensive coverage that includes Coronavirus infections.

I was planning on traveling to China, can I cancel my trip because of the coronavirus outbreak?

It depends, policies bought through hotels or airline websites usually cover only trip disruption for very specific reasons, in most cases the risk of being exposed to the virus doesn’t count as a reason for a trip cancelation. These types of policies might also not have comprehensive health coverage, so an infection related to the coronavirus (or other emergencies)  during your trip will most likely not be covered. Read about this tourist who was held in Mexico until he paid his medical bill. It’s also important to make sure that quarantine zones are included in your policy. 

There’s only one coverage that can get you a refund in case you want to cancel your upcoming trip and it’s the Cancel for Any Reason Coverage, this coverage usually has a high premium and reimburses you up to 80% of the cost of your trip.

Sometimes canceling a trip might not be an option, that’s why it’s important to remember that besides having a proper comprehensive health coverage, you should always follow any travel advisory rules, and avoid traveling to areas of high exposure, in this case, the World Health Organization has posted a travel advisory on Coronavirus that you can access through this link.

Published by Atilio Spaccarotella

CEO & Founder @ Rene I founded my first company at age 17 and worked in the healthcare industry for the past 13 years. I'm an expert in insureTech and international business. In 2016 I relocated to Mexico where I lived for 3 years after winning "The Bridge", a program sponsored by the Mexican Government to bring foreign talent to the country. In 2019 I started Rene to help travelers stay safe and healthy on their journeys.

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