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Travel insurance unexpected event cover reviews

There have been numerous events in recent years that have tested travel insurance policies. Find out what you're covered for. 

In this article
What is unexpected-event travel insurance Which travel insurers cover unexpected events? What unexpected events do insurers cover?

What is unexpected-event travel insurance

The Icelandic ash cloud, civil unrest, strikes – it's not always apparent whether your insurer will cover you if you have to cancel or cut short your holiday for reasons well beyond your control. 

So you want to know which companies will cover you for the unexpected? The table below highlights providers that will cover you for six major unexpected events.

Find out more: Your rights if your flight is cancelled – find out where you stand and if you can get compensation

Which travel insurers cover unexpected events?

For a detailed definition of each unexpected event, scroll to bottom of this page.

This information is updated on a six-monthly basis - the next update is due in November 2018.

Provider Policy
name
Holiday
failure
Scheduled
airline failure
Strike
cover
Volcanic
ash cover
Civil
unrest
Terrorism
cover
Overall
policy score %
Postcard Premier Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 98%
Holidaysafe

 

More info

Strike cover: under travel delay and/or missed departure sections only. Volcanic ash: under cancellation section. Civil unrest and Terrorism cover: under medical expenses and/or hospital benefit and/or personal accident sections only.

Platinum Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 97%
Staysure Comprehensive Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 97%
Just Travel Cover Infinity Gold Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 95%
Just Travel Cover  Unity Gold Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 95%
Saga

 

More info

Civil unrest: cancellation and curtailment cover only applies if FCO advises against travel to that country.

Annual Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 95%
Insuredtotravel Gold Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 94%
NFU Mutual

 

More info

Strike Cover and Volcanic Ash: under travel delay and/or missed departure sections only. Civil unrest and Terrorism cover: under medical expenses and/or hospital benefit and/or personal accident sections only.


More infoMore in

Annual Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 94%
Just Travel Cover Beyond Gold Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 94%
BIBA Holiday Travel + Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 93%

What unexpected events do insurers cover?

The six elements of travel insurance cover shown above have all been identified by holidaymakers as being of particular interest over the past year, due to various events such as the Thailand uprising and the Icelandic volcano eruption. Here's a quick run through of what each means:

Holiday failure

Scheduled airline failure insurance emerged as an issue when airlines such as Zoom went bust, leaving travellers stranded abroad.

The recession led to other companies associated with the travel industry going under. Holiday failure insurance covers elements of a trip that may be cancelled, such as excursions, cruises and safaris.

Scheduled airline failure insurance (Safi)

Safi is increasingly popular due to the shaky prospects of smaller airlines. This protection covers you if you book a flight with a provider that goes bust before you fly.

Strike cover

Strike cover provides protection if your flight, and holiday, was delayed or cancelled due to industrial action.

Volcanic ash

In 2010, plumes of ash from the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in Iceland disrupted flights across much of Europe. It was an unusual event, and resulted in thousands of travellers having flight plans disrupted.

The Financial Ombudsman Service adjudicated that the volcanic ash episode was as a result of 'poor weather conditions', meaning many travel insurance policyholders got redress.

As a result, many insurers have added a provision to their policies that covers disruption caused by volcanic ash.

Terrorism cover

World events have made travellers more mindful of the possibility that their travel plans may be affected by acts of terror. Some insurers will cover this eventuality, but others won't.

Civil unrest

Riots and outbreaks of civil unrest have emerged sporadically in recent times. Some insurers now cover this eventuality, making it worth considering if you are travelling to a potential hot-spot.