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Are we expecting crazy insurance prices next season?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Got an interesting email from Snowcard today. Reading between the lines and the actual lines, it seems to indicate that travel insurance is going to be a lot more expensive next season/year ( and/or very soon). They were suggesting to renew as early as possible!

I hadn't really thought about that until today. Going to be a tough couple of years I think Confused
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Interesting, my annual insurance is due for renewal on 4th of April : do I stick or twist ?? -- dilemma..
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Our annual policy renews early December - never claimed on it (or any other travel insurance) but as the ramifications of all this should be clearer by then, I think likely it will go up sharply.
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Well, probably not if policies exclude holiday cancellation and pandemic illnesses. Especially after 1.1.21, it'll be mainly for accident - covering the cost of heli-evacuation from remote areas, local hospitalisation and expensive repatriation or local surgery and recuperation. What people have found with many existing policies is that 'cancellation' refunds were trumped by force majeure and similar exclusions already:

The 'and you're covered for holiday cancellation as well' really meant 'and you're covered for cancellation provided it's a sufficiently improbable set of circumstances not already covered by various other liabilities, which you have to have exhausted through protracted email conversations first, before claiming from us. And even then, don't bother if it's something like a pandemic or Act of God.'

When I was young, comprehensive (or perhaps not so comprehensive, as it turns out) travel insurance didn't exist. You had to make a contingency for paying out costs involved in accidents and treatment and had to swallow the loss of a cancelled holiday if there was a strike, natural disaster etc. I think it'll be like that: you'll get cover for isolated, personal events, but nothing more general.


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Wed 1-04-20 8:12; edited 1 time in total
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I would expect it to either be a lot more expensive, or to have much tighter terms. Possibly both.

The trips I've already had cancelled will more than wipe out all premia I've paid over 20 years. I expect that a large proportion of the insured population of the UK will claim on their travel insurance this year.
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I am more expecting lots more exclusions and only a relatively small price increase.

I reckon this tactic as if insurance prices are too high people won’t bother (they will decide to “self insure”), where as lots of people fail to read the small print and hence will believe they have more cover than they have and the insurance companies will then get the money coming in but with less risk / liabilities from them.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@BMG, I received that email too, thought it was very premature and tbh didnt say much, don't know why they sent it other than trying to drum up enquiries (and/ or mild panic in some) which imo is a bit insensitive in the current climate.....perhaps they should issue refunds for the periods that folks can't use their insurance, I think probably not!
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
albob wrote:
Interesting, my annual insurance is due for renewal on 4th of April : do I stick or twist ?? -- dilemma..


I would study t&c carefully! Especially if you have existing trips booked you could potentially loose cover by changing insurers
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
I think anyone renewing their annual policy now or in the very near time frame, irrespective of what the price will be in a couple of months needs to factor in the fact that they aren't going anywhere in the near future to get much value out of it. (unless of course it covers trips already booked that haven't yet been cancelled)

Stating the bleeding obvious I know.
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My understanding (check the ABI website):
"...trips already booked abroad under existing policies remain unaffected. Travel insurance for non-COVID19 related risks also remains available."
My italics. => if you did not book before the risk materialized, you can't insure against it.

I also know from personal contact that ski-industry business insurance is no longer possible against Covid-19, as you'd perhaps expect.

=>Your insurance may or may not cost more next time, but it won't cover Covid-19.
That will make it fairly challenging for operators trying to sell inventory for next season.
I'm not sure what the status is with credit/debit card advance payments, but I can't see how they could be expected to cover an entire industry and survive themselves.

=>Next season, if it happens at all, is likely to be a last-minute job for most people.
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The simple answer is no.

The more complex answer is that there will be variations in prices and exclusion clauses.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I listened to a piece on Radio Four recently. A person who owned a boarding kennel and actually had business interruption insurance which (unusually) included losses caused by "infectious diseases". His agent initially assured him (and Radio Four) that he was indeed covered for the current outbreak.

In the end, however, the underwriter turned him down, on the basis that "infectious diseases" only covered those that were known and listed in some official form, and priced in, at the time the policy was taken out. They said that Covid 19 was novel, therefore the risk had not been not been priced in, and thus it was not covered.

I suspect this sort of stipulation might apply to personal policies also. And given the way viruses mutate, you have to wonder if they could count any particular strain as "novel".
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
It occurs to me that what would help is government legislation, with statutory, clearly-defined and consistent levels of cover, so we all knew where we were. Like for car insurance, with its 3-rd party vs comprehensive etc. This would need something of a U-turn in government policy, although there have already been so many of those that this would be trivial by comparison.

I'm sure the insurance industry would not like this. The current environment - as we've seen - lets them pare-down similar-sounding policies so that they undercut competitors: but only by excluding all sorts of cover you'd reasonably expect in the circumstances. You only find out what their Ts&Cs really mean when you make a claim and have it, or a part, rejected.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
LaForet wrote:
Well, probably not if policies exclude holiday cancellation and pandemic illnesses. Especially after 1.1.21, it'll be mainly for accident - covering the cost of heli-evacuation from remote areas, local hospitalisation and expensive repatriation or local surgery and recuperation. What people have found with many existing policies is that 'cancellation' refunds were trumped by force majeure and similar exclusions already:

I would be happy with that approach. For me, and I appreciate that this isn’t eveyone’s view, I want holiday insurance cover for unexpected additional costs e.g. rescue from the slopes, medical events/treatment, repatriation etc. Although not wanting to throw money away, the cost of the holiday is a sunk cost i.e. the money has already been spent. Yes, I will miss the holiday experience but that is an intangible and there is always next year which in most cases would be an additional rather than replacement cost/experience.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@jtr, This
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@jtr, Agreed.
However if we lose ehic cover and covid19 is excluded from insurance what happens if you contract it while away and need hospital treatment.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I have been very surprised by how relatively easy it has been for me to claim back the costs of my forthcoming holiday to Canada. I took out MPI annual multi trip insurance early in January. I took out standard cover and accepted that in the event of cancellation then the cover would fall far short of the costs of my impending trips but since I couldnt imagine circumstances underwhich I would cancel unless something so catastrophic occurred to myself or my husband that a lost holiday would be the least of our worries. We were due to expedition cruise in the Chilean Fjords in March so I read the policy and saw no exclusion for cruises and also checked with MPI. Yes they said cruises are covered but there are cruise specific risks which are not which you might like to think about like "missed ports" etc. No problem with that I thought, if we dont get into a number of ports then so be it. So, off we went. The tale of our return from Chile is currently still slightly politically "sensitive" and we still await our bags but we had most of our trip and we are home. So then to review heli skiing in April in Canada. Lodge closed, no issue with Pure Powder (Canadian Mountain Holidays), full refund within a few days. Advance purchase train tickets from Cornwall to London and return were a little more difficult at first the Great Western website said no refund no advance tickets but a week or so later relented so there is a claim in to them. Hotels in Canada pre and post heli lodge, no problem cancelling, refund from one, no money taken from card for the other, airport to Banff transport, again refund promised (due on to card any day now). British Airways, a bit more difficult as the website says if you want a refund you must phone but they have closed their call centre in India so that will take a little longer. I will call later in the month. Now for the "biggie". Thinking about my MPI policy and conscious that the initial premium for two over 70s for world wide annual cover (including small amount of skiing) was huge anyway but to add six days heli skiing had required an endorsement and a significant additional payment I contacted MPI and asked if, since we would no longer be heli skiing, the dates for the relevant endorsement had not yet arrived and the risk was not going to arise, they would consider a refund of the additional premium. Delighted to say that within ten minutes of my initial enquiry I was advised this would be looked at and within two hours the refund was being processed. Insurance companies ....... sharks? I dont think so. My hat goes out to MPI for prompt, decent, pleasant and effective management and for a thoroughly well managed enquiry with a very positive outcome.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
cad99uk wrote:
@jtr, Agreed.
However if we lose ehic cover and covid19 is excluded from insurance what happens if you contract it while away and need hospital treatment.


I would expect it to be covered for treatment but not for cancellation
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@FFIRMIN, everything I hear about MPI is positive.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@holidayloverxx, Reassuring, thanks. That will do me.


Last edited by Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do. on Wed 1-04-20 12:17; edited 1 time in total
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You'll need to Register first of course.
@cad99uk, lol...I'm not an insurer. I will be checking my own policy in due course
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@holidayloverxx, Realised that you were not an insurer. You do have a clear view of things though. If they refuse cover for treatment then we could be stuck unless immune or vaccinated.
Just looking for positives for next season.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
cad99uk wrote:
@jtr, Agreed.
However if we lose ehic cover and covid19 is excluded from insurance what happens if you contract it while away and need hospital treatment.

I guess that it would fall into the post departure classification and be covered within that (but pre departure cancellation would not be covered). There still will/would be the usual pre-existing medical conditions exclusions but that is all speculation at present.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@cad99uk, snowHead
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
I have been very surprised by how relatively easy it has been for me to claim back the costs of my forthcoming holiday to Canada. I took out MPI annual multi trip insurance early in January. I took out standard cover and accepted that in the event of cancellation then the cover would fall far short of the costs of my impending trips but since I couldnt imagine circumstances underwhich I would cancel unless something so catastrophic occurred to myself or my husband that a lost holiday would be the least of our worries. We were due to expedition cruise in the Chilean Fjords in March so I read the policy and saw no exclusion for cruises and also checked with MPI. Yes they said cruises are covered but there are cruise specific risks which are not which you might like to think about like "missed ports" etc. No problem with that I thought, if we dont get into a number of ports then so be it. So, off we went. The tale of our return from Chile is currently still slightly politically "sensitive" and we still await our bags but we had most of our trip and we are home. So then to review heli skiing in April in Canada. Lodge closed, no issue with Pure Powder (Canadian Mountain Holidays), full refund within a few days. Advance purchase train tickets from Cornwall to London and return were a little more difficult at first the Great Western website said no refund no advance tickets but a week or so later relented so there is a claim in to them. Hotels in Canada pre and post heli lodge, no problem cancelling, refund from one, no money taken from card for the other, airport to Banff transport, again refund promised (due on to card any day now). British Airways, a bit more difficult as the website says if you want a refund you must phone but they have closed their call centre in India so that will take a little longer. I will call later in the month. Now for the "biggie". Thinking about my MPI policy and conscious that the initial premium for two over 70s for world wide annual cover (including small amount of skiing) was huge anyway but to add six days heli skiing had required an endorsement and a significant additional payment I contacted MPI and asked if, since we would no longer be heli skiing, the dates for the relevant endorsement had not yet arrived and the risk was not going to arise, they would consider a refund of the additional premium. Delighted to say that within ten minutes of my initial enquiry I was advised this would be looked at and within two hours the refund was being processed. Insurance companies ....... sharks? I dont think so. My hat goes out to MPI for prompt, decent, pleasant and effective management and for a thoroughly well managed enquiry with a very positive outcome.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Another MPI success here as well, my wife spent 3 days in BstM hospital (France) non ski related and we received full payment for our claim within 14 days.
Worth noting that the Hospital bill was €2500. 70% (?) covered by EHic the rest by MPI. Great service but I do wish I had ticked the lower excess box!

Logically next year that full €2500 will be paid by the insurer so in simple terms the insurance claims will be 70% more expensive, so premiums will increase pro rata + ?
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Annual policy, no past claims. Recently renewed with an increase of just under 10%.

But not sure now if we will even be able to get out of the country in the next 12 months! Sad
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Insurers will just clause it out.

If you get the death plague, you're on your own.

Especially for old people over 40yo.

If 20% of skiers get C19 next season, and 5% of those end up in hospital for 1 month, and 1% die, your insurer is on the hook for millions and it will go bust.

Insurers will treat C19 like Ebola.

If you get it, only a niche insurer (expensive) or the state (slow) will bail you out.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
just got the booklet out for our annual travel policy to compare with this years renewal booklet as just renewed for4/4/20 and the policy is as far as I can see exactly the same, there is a slight £ increase on the policy but not a deal breaker though it is combined within our home and lifestyle policy .
however on closer inspection cant see it being of any use re future bookings wether skiing other or business unless the F.O. removes its travel advice against travelling to a country as that would be classed as a pre existing event .so atm looks like taking the risk of a pre bought cheap airline ticket( risking loosing it) and leaving the accom and transfer till much later or only booking via a free cancellation .Seemsbooking with a T O any time soon would be a no go on my policy
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