Ahead of the Eid al-Adha holiday break, AXA Gulf has announced that its travel insurance policies will include cover for COVID-19 emergency medical expenses with immediate effect. In addition, the insurer will cover the expenses associated with the rescheduling of a return flight caused as a result of the virus.
Should a policyholder have to cancel or postpone a trip in the event that they test positive for COVID-19, the insurer will reimburse the policyholder for an amount of up to $5,000 for irrecoverable travel costs. Policyholders who are placed under quarantine whilst on holiday will get up to $100 per day for a maximum of 15 days if they cannot isolate themselves safely in their booked accommodation.
The insurer said this move comes as additional flights and destinations are opening up and people are looking forward to enjoying a well-deserved holiday or travelling back home to reunite with their loved ones. It acknowledged that travellers might face crippling healthcare bills if they contract the virus whilst overseas, with an average daily cost of treatment in an intensive care unit in a developed country being as much as $5,000.
AXA Gulf chief personal lines officer Franck Heimburger said, “With the UAE leading the way in opening up to international travel, we recognised the need to ensure that our customers could travel safely… The costs associated with the COVID-19 effect can be significant, which perhaps explains why most travel insurance policies will not pay for claims arising from COVID-19. We recognise AXA has a role to play in helping the region’s economy recover so we took the decision to extend cover to coincide with the Eid al-Adha holidays.”