Failure of Low Cost Holidays

Current advice regarding the failure of Low Cost Holidays which will apply to all MAPFRE underwritten schemes.

EHICPlus, EHICPlus Expand, ANZPlus

July 2016: Failure of Low Cost Holidays

On 15 July 2016, it has been confirmed that Low Cost Holidays went into liquidation.

Low Cost Holidays, Spain, S.L. registered address C/ada Byron, S/N, 07121 Parc Bit, Balears, Spain.  Its registered company number is CIF B57813248 is an Appointed Representative of Cover-More Insurance Services, PO Box 9180, Chelmsford, Essex CM1 9AG, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to transact general insurance business. Cover-More Insurance Services FCA Registration.  The underwriter is ERV.

Customers may wish to use these details to assist with any assistance they may require.

If you have booked a holiday with Low Cost Holidays and need to change the dates of your cover on your policy, due to changing your trip arrangements, we can change this to cover your new holiday providing the new trip is within three months of your original departure date, is for the same (or no longer) duration and is to the same geographical area.  If your trip is cancelled and you are being fully refunded by your holiday company and so have no claim to make under this insurance, we will also consider the cancellation and refund of your existing policy.  Please note that this will only apply to Single Trip policies for specific trips covering the dates concerned.

The insurance policies do not provide cover for situations of this nature.  In most cases, we would advise you to contact your travel company to help you make alternative arrangements.  We understand that in this instance it is the travel company that has gone into liquidation.

Customers should refer to their terms and conditions for full details of their travel insurance cover.

  • Medical expenses – The failure of the travel company will have no bearing on the medical expenses cover.
  • Repatriation – The failure of the travel company will have no bearing on the medical expenses cover.
  • Cutting short your trip – There is no cover under the policy for cutting short your trip as a result of the failure of the travel company.
  • Cancellation – There is no cover under the policy for cancelling your trip as a result of the failure of the travel company.
  • Travel delay – The failure of the travel company will have no bearing on the delayed departure / travel delay cover.
  • Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance (SAFI) – As described in the section this only applies where a scheduled airline has gone into liquidation, which does not apply on this occasion. So no claims can be considered under this section.
  • Supplier Failure – This cover is not available, as it only applies where elements of your trip are booked independently of a package with a travel company and only refer to the failure of the following:
    • short let holiday accommodation providers (including hotels),
    • car hire operators
    • ferry operators
    • coach operators
    • train operators

As we are sadly, therefore, unable to offer any cover in this instance, we can only advise customers already abroad to contact the travel company, or the local British Embassy, for assistance in returning home.

Please note that our advice remains valid until further notice.

For information on your local British Embassy in the country you are currently in, please go to the following website address and locate the relevant British Consulate / Embassy for assistance:

https://www.gov.uk/government/world/organisations

Further to the information above, MAPFRE have advised that if a customer booked their trip with Low Cost Holidays and paid for this using their credit card, as long as this was more than £100 they should be able to contact their credit card provider to seek a refund under their protection program.

Brexit does not affect your EHICPlus policy

We want to reassure all our customers that our policy (EHICPlus or EHICPlus Expand) is not affected by the Brexit vote.

We can confirm that cover remains in place for emergency medical treatment in the EU as normal, including private facilities, provided that the admission has been authorised by the medical assistance company.

The EHIC card remains valid within the EU and our insurance offers cover in both private facilities as well as the EHIC state Facilities.

Emergency Travel Information: Mali

Advice regarding the situation in Mali – the following applies to all MAPFRE underwritten schemes.

ANZ Logo 2 - new strapline

On 20 November 2015, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) changed their advice regarding Mali.  https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/mali

Whilst the hostage situation is now over (as per 5.30pm GMT) advice still remains to be cautious if in the location.

If you’re currently in Bamako, Mali, please contact your holiday company as soon as possible as they should be able to help make arrangements for you to return home.

If you have booked a holiday to Bamako, Mali, that is due to depart very soon, please contact your holiday company as soon as you can as they should be able to either rearrange your holiday for another time or offer you a full refund. If you have a travel insurance policy with us, we can change this to cover your new holiday providing the new trip is within three months of your original departure date, is for the same (or no longer) duration and is to the same geographical area.  If your trip is cancelled and you are being fully refunded by your holiday company and so have no claim to make under this insurance, we will also consider the cancellation and refund of your existing policy.  Please note that this will only apply to Single Trip policies for specific trips covering the dates concerned.

We have also updated the advice regarding what cover we can offer you if you’re currently in Mali below (updates in brackets):

  • Medical expenses – Any medical claims arising as a result of any attacks are fully covered under the policy terms and conditions.
  • Repatriation – Both holiday companies and the British government are looking to repatriate those in Mali. If, for any reason, you’re unable to be repatriated by either of these then we will provide cover for this in line with your medical needs.
  • Cutting short your trip – If you have chosen to end your holiday and no refund is available from your holiday company, then we will refund up to £1,000 per person for the cost of your lost holiday upon receipt of clarification from your holiday company as to why they will not reimburse this to you. This is extra cover that is not detailed in the policy terms and conditions, therefore the limits set out in the policy booklet do not apply in this case.  If you are currently in Mali and have made independent arrangements (i.e. do not have a holiday company that can assist you with extended accommodation (room only) costs that you need to incur after your planned return date), we will allow claims to be submitted under this section, within the £1,000.00 limit provided, to assist you with these costs that you cannot get back from any other source.
  • Cancellation – If you’re cancelling a holiday to Bamako, Mali, in the first instance, you should speak to your holiday company, as most are offering a full refund/change of destination. However, if you find that these are not available to you, we will look at these on a case-by-case basis and will, again, be subject to clarification from your holiday company being provided as to the reason why this will not be refunded.
  • Travel delay – if you have travel delay cover this will be covered for delays over 12 hours, in line with the benefit on the policy (please note that if you are in Bamako, Mali, you can claim additional room only hotel costs or travel delay, but not both).
  • Baggage claims – any baggage claim associated with this incident will be considered. If any delay or loss occurs if the government arrange for its return, claims should initially be submitted to that government Authority before being submitted to us for consideration.

Cover under customers ‎policies will automatically extend if they are unable to return home as planned.

Please note that our advice remains valid until further notice.

If you have any queries, please get in touch with us.

FCO Advice:  https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/mali

 

    1. BRITISH EMBASSY:

Address: Bureau De Liaison de l’Ambassade de Grande Bretagne. Enceinte de l’Ambassade du Canada. Route de Koulikoro. Hippodrome. BP 2069. Bamako. MALI

Phone:+223 44 97 69 13

  1. FOREIGN OFFICE NUMBERS FOR RELATIVES OF THOSE IN MALI:

Phone number in the UK: 0207 008 0000

Emergency Travel Information: Brussels, Belgium

Current advice regarding the current situation in Belgium which will apply to all MAPFRE underwritten schemes.

EHICPlus, EHICPlus Expand, ANZPlus

March 2016: Zaventem Airport, Brussels possible terrorist bombing

Further to this, ABTA have provided the following instructions:

“Following explosions in Brussels on 22 March, travellers in Brussels are advised to follow the instructions of Belgian security authorities. People who are due to travel should contact their airline or travel company for information about travel to and from Brussels.”

Just as in the UK where the terrorism threat level is severe, travellers should remain alert and vigilant, especially in places where there is a high concentration of people, as advised by the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO). The FCO also recommends that travellers should follow the advice of local authorities and respect security controls and that people in Brussels should stay away from crowded places and avoid public transport at this time.

November 2015: Brussels terrorist attacks

On 20 November 2015, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) changed their advice regarding Brussels, Belgium, following a serious and significant threat of a terrorist attack in the city. They are now advising against all but essential travel to the entire country, and are making arrangements to bring any Brits currently there home.  https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/belgium

If you’re currently in Belgium, please note that your policy will provide full cover in the event of an incident.

If you have booked a holiday to Belgium, please contact your holiday company as soon as you can as they should be able to either rearrange your holiday for another time or offer you a full refund. We currently are not providing cover for cancellation to Belgium, as a result of this threat, as no actual incident has occurred.

If you have a travel insurance policy with us, we can change this to cover your new holiday providing the new trip is within three months of your original departure date, is for the same (or no longer) duration and is to the same geographical area.  If your trip is cancelled and you are being fully refunded by your holiday company and so have no claim to make under this insurance, we will also consider the cancellation and refund of your existing policy. Please note that this will only apply to Single Trip policies for specific trips covering the dates concerned.

We have also updated the advice regarding what cover we can offer you if you’re currently in Belgium below (updates in brackets):

  • Medical expenses – Any medical claims arising as a result of any attacks are fully covered under the policy terms and conditions.
  • Repatriation –If, as a result of this threat or an incident, the British government choose to bring people home, customers should refer to both their holiday companies and the British government to get home. If, for any reason, customers cannot be repatriated by either of these then we will provide cover for this in line with your medical needs.
  • Cutting short your trip – There is currently no cover for choosing to cut short your trip as a result of the threat in place; however, if you have travelled and have been unable to undertake a prebooked and prepaid excursion as a result of the “lock down” in Brussels, we will refund up to £1,000 per person for these upon receipt of clarification from your excursion / holiday company as to why they will not reimburse this to you. This is extra cover that is not detailed in the policy terms and conditions, therefore the limits and excesses set out in the policy booklet do not apply in this case.
  • Cancellation – We currently are not providing cover for cancellation to Belgium, as a result of this threat, as no actual incident has occurred.

Please note that our advice remains valid until further notice, when we have been advised this restriction will be removed.

If you have any queries, please get in touch with us.

FCO Advice:  https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/belgium

1. BRITISH EMBASSY:

Address: British Embassy, Avenue d’Auderghem 10, 1040 Bruxelles, Belgium

Phone:+32 2 287 62 11

2. FOREIGN OFFICE NUMBERS FOR RELATIVES OF THOSE IN BELGIUM:

Phone number in the UK: 0207 008 1500

Emergency Travel Information: France

EHICPlus, EHICPlus Expand, ANZPlus

This information relates to policies sold by EHICPlus, EHICPlus Expand, and ANZPlus.

July 2016: Nice, France, Terrorist Attacks – evening of 14 July 2016

On the evening of 14 July 2016, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) changed their advice regarding Nice, France‎, ‎following the terrorist attack in Nice.

“We are in touch with the local authorities and seeking more information following an apparent attack on Bastille Day celebration in Nice. If you are in the area follow the instructions of the French authorities who are at present advising people to stay indoors at this time.”

If you’re currently in Nice, France, please contact your holiday company as soon as possible as if you wish to return home.

If you have booked a holiday to Nice, France, that is due to depart very soon, please contact your holiday company as soon as you can as they should be able to either rearrange your holiday for another time or offer you a full refund. If you have a travel insurance policy with us, we can change this to cover your new holiday providing the new trip is within three months of your original departure date, is for the same (or no longer) duration and is to the same geographical area.  If your trip is cancelled and you are being fully refunded by your holiday company and so have no claim to make under this insurance, we will also consider the cancellation and refund of your existing policy.  Please note that this will only apply to Single Trip policies for specific trips covering the dates concerned.

We have also updated the advice regarding what cover we can offer you if you’re currently in Nice, France below:

THE FOLLOWING ADVICE IS FOR THOSE CUSTOMERS WHO PURCHASED INSURANCE BEFORE THE EVENT OCCURRED ON 14 JULY 2016ANY CUSTOMERS WHO PURCHASED INSURANCE WHEN THE EVENT WAS KNOWN ABOUT ARE NOT COVERED.

Customers should refer to their terms and conditions for full details of their travel insurance cover.

  • Medical expenses – Any medical claims arising as a result of any attacks are fully covered under the policy terms and conditions.
  • Repatriation – We will provide cover for this in line with your medical needs.
  • Cutting short your trip – If you have chosen to end your holiday and no refund is available from your holiday company, then we will refund up to £1,000 per person for the cost of your lost holiday upon receipt of clarification from your holiday company as to why they will not reimburse this to you. This is extra cover that is not detailed in the policy terms and conditions, therefore the limits set out in the policy booklet do not apply in this case.  If you are currently in Nice, France and have made independent arrangements (i.e. do not have a holiday company that can assist you with extended accommodation (room only) costs that you need to incur after your planned return date), we will allow claims to be submitted under this section, within the £1,000.00 limit provided, to assist you with these costs that you cannot get back from any other source.
  • Cancellation – If you’re cancelling a holiday to Nice, France, in the first instance, you should speak to your holiday company, as they should offer a full refund/change of destination. However, if you find that these are not available to you, we will look at these on a case-by-case basis and will, again, be subject to clarification from your holiday company being provided as to the reason why this will not be refunded.
  • Travel delay – if you have travel delay cover this will be covered for delays over 12 hours, in line with the benefit on the policy (please note that if you are in Nice you can claim additional room only hotel costs or travel delay, but not both).
  • Baggage claims – any baggage claim associated with this incident will be considered. If any delay or loss occurs if the government arrange for its return, claims should initially be submitted to that government Authority before being submitted to us for consideration.

Cover under customers ‎policies will automatically extend if they are unable to return home as planned.

Please note that our advice remains valid until further notice.

FCO Advice:  https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france

  • BRITISH EMBASSY: (nearest to Nice)

Address: British Embassy, 35 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore, 75008, Paris, France

Phone:+33 (1) 44 51 31 00

  • FOREIGN OFFICE NUMBERS FOR RELATIVES OF THOSE IN FRANCE:

Phone number in the UK: 0207 008 0000

March 2016: French Air Traffic Controllers strike

Please refer to your policy wording to check the specifics of cover, but the following general guidelines are provided. 

Travel delay

This would be deemed to be a strike event so the usual travel delay benefits and terms would apply.

 – Abandonment

If the delay in departing from the UK exceeds 12 hours/24 hours as specified in the policy wording then unused travel and accommodation costs, which cannot be reimbursed from other sources, will be refundable.

 – Cancellation

No specific cover as claims would fall under the Abandonment section terms.

 In terms of travel to the UK departure points, our wordings state a customer must check in for a travel delay or abandonment claim to be valid. We would generally waiver this requirement as this strike was made publicly known 48 hours before the strike begins.

 For those customers who have purchased the upgrade additional benefits may be payable – please refer to each specific policy wording for full details of cover.

 All of the above terms would apply to customers who purchased their policy before Friday 18 March 2016 (when this became publicly known via the media). For customers who have purchased their policy from Friday 18 March 2016 onwards, the strike would be deemed to be a known event so no cover would be in place.

 For customers stuck overseas and unable to return to the UK, their existing policy would automatically extend to cover them until such time as they are reasonably able to return home.

 For customers who are still in the UK and have not yet travelled, the following rules should apply:

 –  Where possible, a full refund should be sought from their flight company, tour operator, travel agent etc. Only non-refundable expenses will be considered on their travel insurance policy.

– For customers wishing to rearrange their trip dates, provided they are not making any claim under Abandonment, we can allow the cover dates to be transferred to a new trip provided the new trip is within 3 months of the original departure date and is for the same (or no longer) duration and is to the same geographical area.

November 2015: Paris terrorist attacks 

Update: Mapfre can now advise that these instructions will remain in place until Monday 23 November 2015, when they will revert back to normal coverage on all MAFPRE underwritten schemes.

Please be aware of the following information we are providing due to the tragic events in Paris:

On the evening of 13 November 2015, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) changed their advice regarding Paris, France‎, ‎following the terrorist attacks in Paris. 

Paris is currently locked down and Disneyland Paris has been closed. 

If you’re currently in France, please contact your holiday company as soon as possible as they should be able to help make arrangements for you to return home.

If you have booked a holiday to Paris, France, that is due to depart very soon, please contact your holiday company as soon as you can as they should be able to either rearrange your holiday for another time or offer you a full refund. If you have a travel insurance policy with us, we can change this to cover your new holiday providing the new trip is within three months of your original departure date, is for the same (or no longer) duration and is to the same geographical area.  If your trip is cancelled and you are being fully refunded by your holiday company and so have no claim to make under this insurance, we will also consider the cancellation and refund of your existing policy.  Please note that this will only apply to Single Trip policies for specific trips covering the dates concerned.

We have also updated the advice regarding what cover we can offer you if you’re currently in France below (updates in brackets):

  • Medical expenses – Any medical claims arising as a result of any attacks are fully covered under the policy terms and conditions. 
  • Repatriation – Both holiday companies and the British government are looking to repatriate those in France. If, for any reason, you’re unable to be repatriated by either of these then we will provide cover for this in line with your medical needs. 
  • Cutting short your trip – If you have chosen to end your holiday and no refund is available from your holiday company, then we will refund up to £1,000 per person for the cost of your lost holiday upon receipt of clarification from your holiday company as to why they will not reimburse this to you. This is extra cover that is not detailed in the policy terms and conditions, therefore the limits set out in the policy booklet do not apply in this case.  If you are currently in France and have made independent arrangements (i.e. do not have a holiday company that can assist you with extended accommodation (room only) costs that you need to incur after your planned return date), we will allow claims to be submitted under this section, within the £1,000.00 limit provided, to assist you with these costs that you cannot get back from any other source.
  • Cancellation – If you’re cancelling a holiday to Paris, France, in the first instance, you should speak to your holiday company, as most are offering a full refund/change of destination. However, if you find that these are not available to you, we will look at these on a case-by-case basis and will, again, be subject to clarification from your holiday company being provided as to the reason why this will not be refunded.
  • Travel delay – if you have travel delay cover this will be covered for delays over 12 hours, in line with the benefit on the policy (please note that if you are in Paris you can claim additional room only hotel costs or travel delay, but not both).
  • Baggage claims – any baggage claim associated with this incident will be considered. If any delay or loss occurs if the government arrange for its return, claims should initially be submitted to that government Authority before being submitted to us for consideration. 

Cover under customers ‎policies will automatically extend if they are unable to return home as planned.

Please note that our advice remains valid until further notice.

If you have any queries, please contact us.

FCO Advice:  https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/france 

BRITISH EMBASSY:
Address: British Embassy, 35 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore, 75008, Paris, France
Phone:+33 (1) 44 51 31 00

FOREIGN OFFICE NUMBERS FOR RELATIVES OF THOSE IN FRANCE:
Phone number in the UK: 0207 008 0000