How travel advisories affect your travel insurance.
COVID-19 has impacted the entire world. As such, when it’s safe to travel again, Canadians should always consider purchasing travel insurance and never leave home without any coverage. It’s also important to understand the significance of travel advisories and how they may influence your coverage.
When you’re covered.
Depending on the travel insurance plan you’ve purchased, your policy may cover medical costs if:
- There wasn’t a Level 3 or 4 travel advisory in place before your departure date
- There wasn’t a Level 3 or 4 travel advisory in place for your destination at the time of your departure
- The sickness or injury-related expenses you’re seeking compensation for are not connected to the reason for the travel advisory
Example: If you break your ankle and need care, you will still be covered even if there is a Level 3 travel advisory in place due to COVID-19.
- The travel advisory was issued after the date you left for your trip
- You weren’t participating in or voluntarily exposing yourself to a risk (like a riot or civil disorder)
When you’re not covered.
The two highest risk levels of travel advisories, “avoid non-essential travel” and “avoid all travel,” can affect your travel insurance, depending on when the travel advisory comes into effect.
Most travel insurance companies may not cover your claim if:
- At the effective date of your policy, an official travel advisory was issued by the Canadian Government stating “avoid non-essential travel” or “avoid all travel” for the country, region or city you’re travelling to.
Example: The Canadian Government issued a Level 3 advisory on March 13, 2020, for every country in the world due to COVID-19. This meant that if you travelled after March 13, 2020, you would not be covered for any medical costs associated to COVID-19.
COVID-19 would be considered a known issue and therefore a general exclusion within the policy.
Note: This exclusion does not apply to claims for an emergency or a medical condition unrelated to the travel advisory:
Example: If you sustain an injury that was not related to COVID-19 like a broken arm or leg, you would still be covered.