The spread of the coronavirus across the globe is pushing demand demand for travel insurance as holidaymakers seek to protect their future holiday bookings.
Researchers at the travel insurance comparison site InsureMyTrip reported a 60% jump in policies sold since the first travel-related case of coronavirus was detected in the US last month.
UK comparison website GoCompare told the FT sales of travel insurance policies had soared by 277% over the past seven days. Compare the Market said it had seen a "huge spike" in purchases for travel insurance in recent days.
Worldwide searches for "travel insurance" on Google surged by 92% in the past week as consumers seek to protect their upcoming holiday bookings. Coronavirus cases in South Korea, Italy and Iran are stoking fears that we might be on the verge of a worldwide pandemic.
In general, travel insurance will reimburse you should an unforeseen event happen before or during your trip. That can include medical expenses, having to cancel your plans, lost baggage or even flight delays.
Since the coronavirus outbreak began, Squaremouth has reported a 208% increase in travelers seeking cancelation coverage. However, all travel insurance providers now consider the outbreak an expected event, and as such it is excluded from cancelation coverage.
Squaremouth recommends that travelers who are looking to purchase a policy now should consider a "cancel for any reason" upgrade. This upgrade is time-sensitive, and must be purchased within 21 days of the first trip booking.
As of now, given the coronavirus outbreak, some airlines are even relaxing their policies and some major hotel chains are waiving cancellation fees.