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Coronavirus: Everything You Need to Know

5 Feb

On 29th January 2020, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advised against all but essential travel to China.

Coronavirus (cousin to the SARS virus) originated in a fish market in Wuhan China and has infected hundreds of people since December.

Travelling to China

If your trip to China has been cancelled, you should speak to your tour operator or transport and accommodation provider in the first instance for a refund of costs.

Travelling to Other Destinations

If you are travelling to another affected country and you want to cancel, unfortunately, this type of event is not covered across the travel insurance industry for claims relating to cancellation. This is because most policies have the following exclusion relating to cancellation: “The fear of an epidemic, pandemic, infection or allergic reaction”.

We would advise travellers looking to cancel package holidays or amend their travel plans to destinations affected by the viral outbreak to contact their travel agent or tour operator in the first instance.

If you are not able to amend your trip details and have a medical justification for having to cancel your trip, insurers may review your situation on a case-by-case basis. Please check with your travel provider before you cancel your trip.

In addition to the advice above, the British government has been advising against “all but essential” travel to Wuhan. If you’re travelling in other countries, please keep up-to-date with The Foreign and Commonwealth Office website.

If you require further advice, please contact our specialist team today:

T: 02920 853797

E: barrie.mccarthy@thomas-carroll.co.uk

Coronavirus – Precautions to Take

Typically, a coronavirus causes a runny nose, cough, sore throat, headache and fever – all symptoms that mimic a common cold. Like cold and flu bugs, the new virus is spread via droplets when a person coughs or sneezes. Therefore, the most important line of defence includes:

1. Washing your hands: Be sure to carry hand sanitiser and gloves when in and around public spaces and public transport systems.

2. Cover your nose and mouth: Use masks, especially heavy-duty ones. If worn properly, this can reduce the risk of infection.

3. Use your own facilities: It is impossible to know for sure if the virus acts as a vehicle for infection. However, taking your own blanket and pillow when travelling may help minimise the risk as you will know exactly what you’re handling.

Most travel insurers offer a 24-hour emergency medical advice hotline and travellers who feel they might have been affected by this event are encouraged to call their insurers for help.

Public Health England has also issued advice for travelling to China:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-and-avian-flu-advice-for-travel-to-china