How travel insurance will be affected by vaccine passports


Places like Greece (pictured) will require proof of vaccination for visitors this summer (Getty)

Summer is on the horizon but there’s still a looming question mark as to whether we’ll be able to go overseas or not.

While international travel is slated to restart on May 17, the government will reassess this date on April 12 and booking an overseas holiday remains risky as dates are subject to change.

The other thing to consider when contemplating an overseas jaunt is a vaccine certificate or ‘passport’. Countries like Greece and the Seychelles have already said they will welcome travellers who can provide proof that they have been vaccinated, while Turkey announced earlier this week they would let travellers in without proof of vaccination.

Read more: These are the countries most likely to open for Brits this summer

Travel insurance has never been more important – but what effect will vaccine passports have on this?

“First off, travel corridors and vaccine certifications are likely to induce an explosion in bookings and a related spike in the need for travel insurance policies,” Nicky Kelvin, Head of Content at The Points Guy UK says.

“As vaccine passports roll out, requirements by certain states for visitors to be vaccinated to enter, we could see the Covid associated risk of passengers travelling in the coming months being rather low. The vaccine is overall going to have a positive effect for the insurers who are less likely to be hit by Covid-related claims and will see a surge in travellers taking out policies as they look to protect their trips as confidence returns, the world opens up and bookings explode.”

Blue Lagoon in Oludeniz, Mugla, Turkey (Getty)

Turkey is allowing visitors in this summer without proof of vaccination (Getty)

Kelvin adds that many travel companies are also offering flexible booking policies where you are able to change the date of your flight or holiday for free – even so you should always get travel insurance when travelling to a foreign nation.

Read more: 10 small Greek islands to visit this year

He adds that his team hasn’t seen a surge in travel insurance prices and, with vaccinated travellers looking to book trips, we hopefully shouldn’t see a spike any time soon. 

“A search today for individual travel insurance for a one week holiday in Spain shows policies for less than £7. For under £10 you can find individual single trip policies that have extended Covid coverage whereby you might be able to recover losses if you are forced to cancel because of catching Covid,” Kelvin says.

“The travel insurance market is highly competitive and nothing currently signals there being a hike in the price of policies except for the most comprehensive ones which may be the type to cover a passenger being able to cancel their trip for any reason whatsoever.”

Read more: 5 alternative staycation destinations in England – and where to stay

As well as taking out insurance to cover any Covid-related costs, the other factor to consider is the new rules implemented for British travellers when the Brexit transition ended in December last year.

When travelling to Europe, British travellers now need to make sure their passport is valid for at least the next six months and the government advises travellers to take up correct healthcare cover, particularly if you have a pre-existing medical condition.

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