The Royal Automobile Club of Victoria (RACV) provides advice regarding the comprehensive travel insurance policies in relation to the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan last week. Claims will be assessed by RACV according to the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and the type of plan that was purchased will determine the coverage.
For those who have not yet departed, cancellation or rearrangement expenses will be covered if the policy was purchased before March 12, 2011. Travels on or after March 31, 2011 are advised to be cancelled or rearranged until further advisory is released. For prepaid tours that will commence after March 31, 2011 that were cancelled because of the disasters, policy holders are advised to contact RACV for coverage. These are for travels to Tokyo and its surrounding areas and the northern part of Honshu. For the other areas in Japan, the policy covers trip cancellations due to factors brought about by the earthquake and tsunami.
For those who are currently travelling and were advised by the Australian Government to evacuate, coverage is provided for the cancellation of the remaining parts of your trip. There will also be additional cover provided if the trip was interrupted by the disasters and if the transport services were cancelled. For those whose schedules have not been cancelled, additional coverage for travel and accommodation will not be provided for them.
Insurance policies that were purchased before March 12, 2011 will not be covered if the trip was cancelled due to the earthquake and the tsunami. Travelers who will not be leaving the airport will not also be provided with coverage for additional expenses. Travels made after March 17, 2011 when the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade issued a warning will not be covered as well, even if the policy was purchased before March 12.
For cancellation of trips to Japan due to the tsunami and earthquake, travelers are advised to contact their travel agents for options regarding the journey. Claims should be submitted together with the required documents for consideration by the RACV.
It is always under advisement to contact your insurance carrier direct due to each claim has its own details that need to be dealt with. For information on U.S. claims being filed, contact your travel insurance carrier direct.