I don’t travel without insurance. Unfortunately, I was recently delayed in Bali while Mount Agung decided to have a smoking tantrum. Needless to say, my policy was useless, so here are a few things to consider when you next think you are covered!

When booking insurance cover for your holiday it always seems unlikely that those small clauses about terrorism of volcanic ash will ever be applicable. Unfortunately, both have recently happened and many travellers have been left bewildered and out of pocket.

The fine print on most policies is exactly that, fine print. So close inspect of your insurance and the airline rules & regulations when you book is now essential to avoid extra costs.

The ash cloud thrown into the airspace above northern Europe in April 2010 by the Icelandic eruptions caused panic amongst the European air industries and insurance companies. As a result, very few now offer cover for a volcanic incident.

The airlines are the only industry ready to offer full refunds or rescheduling at no extra cost in the event of cancellation due to such natural disasters.
Cathay Pacific, one of the biggest Asian airlines is currently advising passengers that, ‘flights still scheduled to operate may face disruption due to meteorological conditions on the day’, but that they will endeavour to update passengers with the latest status as soon as possible. However, this is little comfort to those who may be facing extra costs while their fleet is grounded.

Ironically and Flexicover are two the many insurance companies who do not provide standard cover for missed departure claims arising directly or indirectly from volcanic eruptions and/or volcanic ash cloud. However, there is one receive some level of compensation if such an unlikely natural disaster arises. Only available in advance of your travel, bespoke Volcanic Ash Cover is available from Columbus and Aviva. These optional extra policies are the only way of guaranteeing you will be eligible to make a claim arising from the disruption caused by volcanic eruptions and the ash thrown into the atmosphere as a result.