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The annual "Annual Insurance" thread. This time with added Covid-19.

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I think the cost of heli-evac isn't affected by covid-19. That's the same as it always was. The prolonged treatment without EHIC is the main issue for the EU stuff in my view.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Weathercam, if you’re legally residing in an EU country on 31/12/20, your EHIC card will continue to cover you - at least that’s my understanding. My wife and I intend to rely on reciprocal health cover (probably S1, rather than EHIC), coupled with the mountain rescue cover that comes with membership of the A.A.C.
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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?
@philwig What I meant was more about situations that result in complete removal of cover. Or rather, drifting into this situation without realising it. I can take the hit for things like short hospital treatment, pharmacy costs, and even the cost of another person coming over or using our apartment to convalesce in. But heli-evac runs at about £100 a minute and obviously, ICU costs can be dramatic, along with surgery. At the moment, once you start elaborating the potential scenarios, it can be quite uncertain as to whether a Covid-related event might trigger complete removal of insurance cover. I think this might actually get worse: because insurers do want people to renew, and they do want to win customers from competitors. Indeed, they may have to to survive. But already this has pushed some into a 'COVID-wash' where their advertising tag line doesn't really match expectations of what most people would like, or think the policy covers. We can discuss here what we think our policies cover, but the claims landscape is littered with cases of otherwise intelligent and informed people simply interpreting policies wrongly, or getting statements from insurance reps that aren't sustained through to an actual claim: just look at force majeure. And apologies - I know I'm probably just stating what everyone already knows: that things are uncertain and we're unlikely to get clarity about travel insurance in a Covid world for a while yet.
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Thanks @lynnecha, for spending that hour on the live chat. Does sound like in your situation and mine, the MPI + Insurefor combo might cover things affordably. I will revisit Insurefor tomorrow and see what their cost will be with skiing excluded.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@bobski62, what are your requirements, age duration of trip etc ?

Just that I've been through that MPI long stay start date 1st Dec to May 31st and adding winter sports to it and ages 62 & 66 and it came out at circa £1,100 and as that's full cover not just Winter Sports holiday etc and Covid etc that should suffice for Visa purposes as well.

I did change the age out of interest to one of us being over 70 and it did bump it up another £550.

I'm not pulling the trigger just yet as see how things develop
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You'll need to Register first of course.
@Weathercam, Does MPI cover you for Covid if you travel against FCO advice?
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@cad99uk, Not according to their website:
Quote:
MPI now covers Emergency Medical Expenses if you contract Coronavirus Overseas

All current and new MPI policies will now include cover under the Emergency Medical Expenses section, which includes hospital costs, ambulance costs, additional accommodation costs (if you are unable to travel home as originally booked) and repatriation if it’s medically necessary.

For policies issued after 13th March 2020 5.30pm - there is no cover under any other section (in particular, the FCO warning* under cancellation or curtailment) for claims caused by the Coronavirus. This includes any preventative containment or delay measures.

...

*Our policies will not provide any cover for COVID-19 if the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) are advising against all but essential travel to your destination due to the virus. In the present circumstances as the FCO advice on foreign travel is susceptible to rapid and significant change, we strongly recommend that you visit the FCO website to check the up to date advice against your actual or potential travel plans before purchasing travel insurance.
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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!
Hi @Weathercam, requirements similar to yours and to @lynnecha's: early Nov through mid-April; 58yo with no pre-existing; off piste, touring, backcountry, with or without a guide, all wanted. I have indeed used MPI the last few seasons and if pricing remains reasonable will do so again. But, as @cad99uk, and others point have highlighted, unless the Govmt. changes its mind between now and the end of next month we would all be travelling to France (presumably) against FCO guidance. That means that MPI and most other insurers will happily continue to insure us for all other risks but not for catching Covid while in France and needing some TLC from the doctors and nurses there. So... @lynnecha and I are considering topping up with Insurefor just to get Covid cover - which they seem willing to provide, FCO notwithstanding.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
How does having two policies running simultaneously work? Is it allowed as it were? I assume that would only become a question in the event of a claim. I have been struggling to find one to suit, yet a combination of two I have looked at might be ideal. Do you have to tell both from the outset? If you claimed on something covered by both policies how do they divvy up the liability? Specifically I have been looking at single traveller, single trip season type products.
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
@toyah807, they will likely ask if there is cover elsewhere. One pays out then they sort it out between themselves.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Do any of the experts here know whether travel to France would be covered under the Nationwide policy?

The policy document exclusion section says you are not covered to areas where the Foreign Office advises against "all travel" (their quotation marks). In the section about reasons for cancellations that are insured against, it lists separately advice on "all travel" and "all but essential travel".

Does that mean you would be covered for travel to France which is in the "all but essential travel" category? (I am happy to be excluded from cover in Syria). The FAQs on the Nationwide website aren't clear to me, a lot is about cancellation, and also says you wouldn't be covered for risks you knew about when booking so you would not be covered for treatment for Covid-19. But would you be covered otherwise, for example for breaking your leg or if luggage was stolen?
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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.
Cover with two policies isn't always as smooth as described. For example, Travel cover often overlaps with house contents cover. When I made a claim across both my travel (AA) and home (Ecclesiastical) insurers following a travel theft, the former took 15 weeks and immense to-ing and fro-ing to settle around £400 of payments and the latter took about 4 weeks to settle around £4,500 of camera equipment lost. The two operated independently and it was down to me to organise which bits I was claiming from whom. I also had a circular problem that each would only pay out once all issues were resolved with the other (of itself, reasonable enough), so the whole process got extended from 4 to 15 weeks because of protracted arguments with the AA's (outsourced, slow and not very competent) claims handlers around wear and tear on various items (how much wear and tear my pyjamas had suffered was a particularly memorable sticking point that consumed at least two of their additional 11 weeks).
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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
will be looking at MPI for cover, see what it looks like for a 4 week trip, as opposed to an annual travel insurance policy.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Isn’t all this insurance talk moot if France decides to close its borders given the current acceleration and record daily cases? Wondering also if the insurers that currently insure “against FCO travel advices” will continue to offer policies if EHIC is abolished due to Brexit and therefore eliminating the first level of expensive medical cover normally provided in an emergency - therefore greatly increasing their risk?

The good news is that EHIC cover will continue for all after Jan 1 for all trips started before or on Dec 31 even in the event of hard brexit.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Ozboy, where did you get that from?

As sounds too good to be true, for those fortunate enough to be planning on going out early and stay the season etc
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Yes if true that would be really good news for us, we are intending to go last couple of days in dec just incase of issues on the 1st, we were looking forward to.NYE in France but looks like it will be just the two of us.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Weathercam wrote:
@Ozboy, where did you get that from?

As sounds too good to be true, for those fortunate enough to be planning on going out early and stay the season etc


Here...
https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/apply-for-a-free-ehic-european-health-insurance-card/

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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?
Quote:

Here...
https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/apply-for-a-free-ehic-european-health-insurance-card/


Just don’t come back and you have free European health care for life
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The biggest issue as someone doing basic normal travel insurance (i.e. not seasonnaire, no existing health issues) is almost all Covid19 cover I have seen only covers you as an individual (or from posts here there are a few covering immediate relatives).

So if you book and either where you are from, or where you are going goes into general lockdown or requires quarantine on arrival you probably aren't covered.

Generally no insurer will cover this given it is a fairly high risk for them (moderate chance of happening and massively expensive because it hits every customer travelling... Yes rescue+injury is more expensive, but that only affects a tiny proportion of claims). If you think the risk is not being able to leave the UK on a trip is 30% with a 5k limit, then the insurer needs to charge ~2k just for cancellation on single trip cover...


Was looking at trying to do a touring course next season (in addition to off piste bash) but at the moment I daren't book because I am not willing to take the additional risk that I won't be allowed to travel and would therefore have to write off the cost, particularly given I suspect most of the providers I would use, though they refunded last season, I suspect can't afford to refund again this season regardless of how sympathetic they might be (and given it is a known risk, are far less likely to be required to do so as I expect the issues will likely be between EU/UK rather than bans in the area they operate). Equally several firms are setting deadlines for booking because they need to confirm numbers before they run courses/open chalets Crying or Very sad Puzzled



Regarding EHIC cards one thing to be careful of is you have to be a UK resident. Historically seasonnaires have been posted workers for a UK company, but after brexit that probably isn't possible, at which point you should be a local resident if working, with the requirements for that, which would invalidate an EHIC card anyway, and I expect if you start claiming on it in April 2021 having been in france since December, you may find they start checking ruthlessly... (and other fun may apply, for example crossing between EU countries may reset the visit dates... I expect them to want you to prove continuity of your trip before paying up and most of the admin capacity to have been reallocated, at which point you may have to pay and try to recover from the (broke) NHS...) (read, you should probably insure yourself on the basis it won't be practically usable if you are doing a season after January...)
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
So in general are providers providing cover for Europe if traveling again FO advice ?
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Some providers are offering cover for travel against fco advice but not covering the reason for the advice ie covid. So ok for most standard things on a policy but not a full on everything covered policy. Sounds weird to say read your insurance very carefully this year (because you should always have done so) but there are quite a few extra variations this year with the covid cancellation cover, covid whilst travelling aspect and the fco advice, current or subsequently changing, elements and whether it is your own or your host country affecting your trip. There was quite a good Which article comparing cover but I suspect even that is changing regularly
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
tatmanstours wrote:
Quote:

Here...
https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/apply-for-a-free-ehic-european-health-insurance-card/


Just don’t come back and you have free European health care for life


I'm sure you say that tongue in cheek but after 90 days, under normal circumstances, you need to return, get an extended visa or perhaps seek residency where you reside. I think the spirit of that EHIC rule was to allow people to finish off a holiday that started before 1st Jan, not to stay forever. Plus EHIC cards have an expiry date Laughing Good luck wafting it in 10 years time.

Although EHIC is biting the dust I think there will be reciprocal deals done with individual countries in the same way we have them with Aus/NZ. It would make sense to have deals with Spain and France for example. But that'll all come down the line once we are fully out.
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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!
@Pruman, yes, it was tongue in cheek.
Don’t hold your breath for this government to make reciprocal health care arrangements “because it makes sense”.
I feel that I’ve essentially been forced to apply for Austrian residency. The alternative of having to be restricted to 90 days skiing, and without EHIC cover, was unthinkable.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
tatmanstours wrote:
@Pruman, yes, it was tongue in cheek.
Don’t hold your breath for this government to make reciprocal health care arrangements “because it makes sense”.
I feel that I’ve essentially been forced to apply for Austrian residency. The alternative of having to be restricted to 90 days skiing, and without EHIC cover, was unthinkable.


Why would you be restricted to 90 days that is the visa free period, easy enough to get a visa if needed, and if you get austrian residency wont you have to contribute to their health costs in any case ?
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
@robs1, I haven’t seen or found anything about extending the 90 days by means of a visa. Would be interested in any link you can provide.
However, getting health cover is another problem, which would be solved by registering S1 certificates with Austrian health authorities.
As I’m sure you’re aware, being legally resident in an EU country on 31/12 salvages one’s right to unlimited stays, free health care, and pension uprating. The downside (probably the only one) is the higher income tax rate.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@robs1, seems a bit of ball ache! https://www.immihelp.com/how-to-extend-schengen-visa/
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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.
tatmanstours wrote:
@robs1, seems a bit of ball ache! https://www.immihelp.com/how-to-extend-schengen-visa/

The EU are bringing in a visa exemtion scheme a bit like the American one that lasts 3 years IIRC called the ETIAS, this begins in 2022 I believe, up till then I guess you may need a normal visa, of course a lot can and will change before the 1st of an next year, the political nonsense wil continue right up until the last minute, it always has with any EU decisions quite often going beyond the deadline. We aim to be in France on the 29th of Dec to avoid the nonsence that will be the border for few days
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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
@robs1, I think we’ll just bite the bullet and apply for Austrian residency. At least it’s reversible if we decide to return to the U.K. And at least the wine’s cheap. (We’ve actually signed up to buy a new house in Saalbach, so hoping we’re doing the sensible thing.)
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
tatmanstours wrote:
@robs1, I think we’ll just bite the bullet and apply for Austrian residency. At least it’s reversible if we decide to return to the U.K. And at least the wine’s cheap. (We’ve actually signed up to buy a new house in Saalbach, so hoping we’re doing the sensible thing.)


You only live once and with covid I think a lot of people are right in thinking that we all need to make the most of our time. I say its usually the things you dont do you regret not the things you do
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Quote:

I say its usually the things you dont do you regret not the things you do

Like buying in Austria when it was cheap as chips and the £ was worth something?
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
tatmanstours wrote:
Quote:

I say its usually the things you dont do you regret not the things you do

Like buying in Austria when it was cheap as chips and the £ was worth something?


Sad
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
robs1 wrote:
tatmanstours wrote:
@robs1, seems a bit of ball ache! https://www.immihelp.com/how-to-extend-schengen-visa/

The EU are bringing in a visa exemtion scheme a bit like the American one that lasts 3 years IIRC called the ETIAS, this begins in 2022 I believe, up till then I guess you may need a normal visa, of course a lot can and will change before the 1st of an next year, the political nonsense wil continue right up until the last minute, it always has with any EU decisions quite often going beyond the deadline. We aim to be in France on the 29th of Dec to avoid the nonsence that will be the border for few days


If it's like ESTA it doesn't actually achieve anything more as ESTA like the Waiver Travel that preceded it is only valid for 90 day stays. That caught me out when I was doing my first season in Canada and had booked flights which routed through the US there and back. Suddenly a couple of days before I was due to go a deepcover agent at the flight agency (who they subsequently denied existed) rang to ask did I have a US Visa. Much shenagins ensued as though I was not due to leave the airport in the US either way apparently because it was booked as a return trip in their system and the time between the legs was >90 days they were going to bounce me.
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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?
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
robs1 wrote:
tatmanstours wrote:
@robs1, seems a bit of ball ache! https://www.immihelp.com/how-to-extend-schengen-visa/

The EU are bringing in a visa exemtion scheme a bit like the American one that lasts 3 years IIRC called the ETIAS, this begins in 2022 I believe, up till then I guess you may need a normal visa, of course a lot can and will change before the 1st of an next year, the political nonsense wil continue right up until the last minute, it always has with any EU decisions quite often going beyond the deadline. We aim to be in France on the 29th of Dec to avoid the nonsence that will be the border for few days


If it's like ESTA it doesn't actually achieve anything more as ESTA like the Waiver Travel that preceded it is only valid for 90 day stays. That caught me out when I was doing my first season in Canada and had booked flights which routed through the US there and back. Suddenly a couple of days before I was due to go a deepcover agent at the flight agency (who they subsequently denied existed) rang to ask did I have a US Visa. Much shenagins ensued as though I was not due to leave the airport in the US either way apparently because it was booked as a return trip in their system and the time between the legs was >90 days they were going to bounce me.

Its valid for either three or five years, cant remember which but I think its five, you can come and go as much as you like, not sure if there is going to be a limit on the number of days per visit
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@robs1, I'd be interested in where you've got this from. I know that you can apply for a residency permit, valid for 5 years, provided that you're legally resident in Austria on 31/12/20. However I know nothing of any visa arrangement, allowing any third country national to apply to extend the 90 day in 180 limit, irrespective of exceptional circumstances.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
It's coming in 2022, as I said I'm not sure of the maximum stay per visit but its vslud for either 3 or 5 years cant remember which it was, and allows you multiple entries in that time, its quite easy to look up if you want the details.
It's very similar to the USA one. Online application etc
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
ESTA site says still limited to 90 days in 180. No gain but more form filling and having to pay. I think the best hope is that the countries with the biggest number of UK second home owners will eventually do deals to allow owners to stay longer and spend money in their countries.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
ETIAS registration (starting in 2022) will be valid for 3 years or until the associated passport expires. It will still only allow for 90 days in a 180 day period. See https://www.etiasvisa.com/etias-news/when-does-my-etias-expire.
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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!
Ozboy wrote:
Weathercam wrote:
@Ozboy, where did you get that from?

As sounds too good to be true, for those fortunate enough to be planning on going out early and stay the season etc


Here...
https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/healthcare-abroad/apply-for-a-free-ehic-european-health-insurance-card/



I am travelling out on the 31st Dec , arriving by 7pm, so I guess that will apply for the rest of my months stay ??
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@thunderer, that's exactly what it says
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@holidayloverxx, That how I read it !! but the wording " in the country you 'were' visiting on the 31 Dec 2020 was just a little confusing as I am arriving on the 31st.
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