The following information concerns the recent US and Canada Snowstorms.
All claims will be assessed in accordance with your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and your Certificate of Insurance. Your cover will depend on the type of plan you purchased and your particular circumstances.
If you entered into your policy before 12 midnight (AEDST) Friday 3rd January 2014:
If you are currently travelling:
- If you have started your journey and your transport is delayed, disrupted or cancelled due to the US and Canada Snowstorms, there may be provision to claim for reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses.
- If you have started your journey and your journey is delayed or cancelled due to the US and Canada Snowstorms, there may be provision to claim for Cancellation Fees & Lost deposits for unutilised prepaid travel expenses
- Limits, conditions and exclusions apply under your policy and for full details you should refer to the Product Disclosure Statement and Certificate of Insurance you received when you purchased your travel insurance.
If you have not yet departed:
- If your pre-booked travel arrangements are cancelled, delayed or rescheduled as a result of the US and Canada Snowstorms and you have not yet departed, you may be able to claim for cancellation or rearrangement of your journey (whichever is the lesser).
- It is recommend you contact your travel agent or travel provider regarding the best option in altering your trip. Some travel providers may provide penalty free options to amend travel arrangements and we recommend you contact them for further details.
If you entered into a policy after 12 midnight (AEDST) Friday 3rd January 2014:
- Virgin Money Travel Insurance policies do not cover claims for losses caused by something that you were aware of at the time of purchasing your policy. If you entered into a policy after 12 midnight (AEDST) Friday 3rd January 2014 it is expected that this may have been done with an awareness of the impending US and Canada Snowstorms. For these policies, they will not, to the extent permitted by law, pay any claim caused by or arising from or in any way connected with the US and Canada Snowstorms where you knew of the impending US and Canada Snowstorms at the time of purchasing the policy
What next steps should you take?
- You should take all reasonable steps to minimise your expenses and this includes rearranging your journey where possible. By reasonable it means appropriate and consistent – for example if you have been using two star or budget accommodation on your trip to date, then it is advised that the replacement accommodation you seek should be of a similar standard.
- Claims will assessed under the terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy. If you have a Cancellation only policy, your policy does not include cover for any additional expenses. If you have a Budget policy, please refer to your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) for the precise benefits covered.
- You will need to submit all receipts for any additional transport, food or accommodation expenses. If you are claiming cancellation or additional expenses you will need to submit all documents showing what your original planned pre-paid arrangements were, along with any receipts and documents showing your new arrangements and advice from the travel provider indicating the non-refundable portion of the journey.
- Any compensation and/or refunds you receive from a third party (e.g airline) for transport, food or accommodation will be deducted from any settlement if your claim is accepted.
- Finally, to help Australians avoid difficulties overseas, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
- (DFAT) maintains travel advisories for more than 160 destinations overseas via its website www.smarttraveller.gov.au. DFAT’s travel advice provides accurate, up-to-date information about the risks Australians might face overseas, assisting you to make well-informed decisions about whether, when and where to travel. We recommend that you stay up-to-date with its destination specific travel advisories for the country of your destination as your travel insurance cover may be affected if you travel to high risk areas or situations.
If you have any questions or queries, please call 24 hour Emergency Assistance on +61 7 3305 7499 – you can reverse charge the call.
For general policy or claims enquiries, please call 1800 134 419 – Monday to Friday during business hours.
Alternatively, refer to our full list of emergency contact details whilst travelling.