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Travel insurance may not cover swine flu

Cancelled trips to Mexico may not be refunded.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is advising against all but essential travel to Mexico because of the outbreak of swine flu.

Travellers who are planning on cancelling their trips to Mexico may find that their travel insurance won’t cover them.  

Graeme Trudgill, Technical and Corporate Affairs Executive at the British Insurance Brokers Association, says: ‘Not all insurance policies list pandemics and government directives not to travel as a reason for cancellation. 

‘In this situation, you’re technically not covered if you cancel your trip, although some insurers have told us that they will still pay claims. People should contact their insurer or broker to check.’ 

Those who have booked a package holiday to Mexico through an ABTA tour operator and are due to travel imminently will however be entitled to receive suitable alternative arrangements, or if that isn’t possible, a full refund from the tour operator.  More information is available on ABTA’s website.

Mexico cover

Now that the FCO has issued its advice, your travel insurance won’t cover you if you do travel to Mexico.

However, those who were already in Mexico, and contract swine flu, will be covered by their travel insurance for any medical treatment they need. 

Cover elsewhere

Your travel insurance policy won’t cover you if you cancel a trip to countries such as Spain and the US where cases of swine flu have been reported, as the FCO hasn’t advised against travel to these countries.  Keep an eye on the FCO’s advice relating to these and other affected countries by going to the FCO website

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