Who has travel insurance

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Travel cancellation insurance

The travel cancellation insurance reimburses the contractually owed cancellation costs that the policyholder incurs if he or a co-insured risk person cannot start a booked trip for an insured reason. The insurance does not have to be taken out with the travel company operating the trip. In addition, insurance cover can be arranged with some insurance companies even after the trip has been booked and taken separately from the trip. However, there are closing deadlines to be observed, which may differ depending on the insurer. Travel cancellation insurance can be taken out either with or without a deductible. If a deductible is agreed, the insured person must pay part of the cancellation costs himself.

Who is a Risk Person?

Risk persons are people who are close to the policyholder and who can trigger an insured event. Which relatives are specifically considered to be at risk must be found in the respective insurance conditions of the concluded contract.

When is a trip considered commenced?

As part of the travel cancellation insurance, a trip is considered to have commenced as soon as the first booked travel service is used.

These include, for example:

  • the check-in for a flight,
  • checking in on the ship during a cruise,
  • getting on the bus on a bus trip,
  • boarding the train for a train journey,
  • taking over a rental car or mobile home on a road trip.

If a transfer, e.g. by train to the airport, is an integral part of the overall trip, the journey begins with the start of the transfer.

For what reasons does the travel cancellation insurance pay?

The travel cancellation insurance only has to pay if you do not start your trip for a reason that is listed in the General Insurance Conditions (AVB). Insured reasons can be, for example: death, serious accident, vaccination intolerance, pregnancy, loss of job, damage to property or unexpected serious illness of the policyholder or a close relative. You can find out which reasons for the travel cancellation are actually insured in the respective contractual conditions. If you do not understand this, ask the insurer carefully.

For what reasons does the travel cancellation insurance not pay for a travel cancellation?

The general insurance conditions of a travel cancellation insurance can contain exclusions. This can be, for example, the worsening of an illness that existed before the trip was booked. The travel cancellation insurance does not have to pay even if a trip cannot be commenced due to an intentional act or force majeure (e.g. terrorist attack, strike, bankruptcy of a tour operator). You can find out more about possible exclusions from GDV. If you need specific information about the scope of benefits of your (desired) insurance, please ask your insurance company.

I have booked a trip to a country that has recently suffered a terrorist attack. I would therefore like to cancel. Does my travel cancellation insurance have to pay the cancellation costs?

No. The fear of terrorist attacks is usually not included in the insurance. However, there are individual providers who insure travel cancellation due to terrorist attacks.

How can I avoid cancellation costs if I cannot travel for a reason that is not insured?

You can avoid the cancellation fees if you can find someone to take your place on the trip. Please contact your tour operator in this regard. However, you are then still liable for the travel costs if the replacement person does not pay. In addition, the rewriting of the travel documents (tickets, vouchers, etc.) may be associated with fees that are agreed separately. Please ask your tour operator or the implementing company about this.

Health insurance abroad

Did you think about your health insurance coverage before your vacation and also take your relatives into account? Carelessness can be very expensive. After all, the scope of health insurance benefits abroad for many insured persons differs considerably from the standard they are used to in Germany. It can happen that individual services, which are a matter of course in Germany, have to be paid for from your own holiday fund and are not reimbursed later by the domestic health insurance.

Therefore, ask yourself the following questions while preparing for your vacation:

Is my travel destination in the EU or a country with which there is a so-called social security agreement (SVA countries), or do I travel to another country?

Background: In principle, statutory health insurance benefits are only provided in Germany.

The only exception is for temporary stays in EU countries and so-called SVA countries. These are countries with which Germany has signed a so-called social security agreement. As a rule, the services that are medically necessary - according to the criteria of the holiday destination - are provided here. In concrete terms, this means that when traveling abroad within the EU and to SVA countries, only the costs for the basic medical care applicable there will be reimbursed. The services do not always correspond to the services in Germany. This applies, for example, to costs for patient repatriation, medically necessary cosmetic operations and dental treatments. At the same time, costs can only be reimbursed according to the amount agreed in Germany.

Outside the EU and SVA countries, there is no insurance cover for those with statutory health insurance. For those with private health insurance, the contractually agreed insurance cover regularly applies in Europe. During the first month of a temporary stay in a non-European country, private health insured persons generally have insurance cover to the contractual extent even without a special agreement.

In order to close any gaps in medical care, travelers can therefore take out private health insurance abroad.

What health insurance cover does my existing health insurance in the holiday destination offer me?

The benefits that are reimbursed to you may differ depending on the health insurance company. This applies to both those with statutory health insurance and those with private health insurance. Therefore, ask your health insurer in advance what insurance coverage is available in your holiday destination. If necessary, your health insurer will also issue you an insurance certificate in the national language of your destination country. You can obtain additional information from the DVKA, among others.

Am I prepared to pay for additional medical services out of pocket?

In connection with insurance, the question always arises as to whether you are prepared to bear the risks independently or whether you would like to buy additional insurance protection. As described above, the health insurance coverage during trips abroad - depending on the holiday destination - varies greatly. In principle, however, there are costs that are (also) not covered abroad. These include, for example, costs for high-quality dentures, costs for patient repatriation to Germany and costs for medication. You should therefore consider very carefully whether you would like to insure yourself against such costs - usually at a low premium - or whether you can pay the potentially very high costs for medical treatment abroad out of your own pocket.

Have I already agreed additional insurance cover abroad, e.g. using my credit card or membership in an automobile club?

Around every third German already has private health insurance abroad. However, not all insured persons are aware that they have already agreed to this protection. For example, a number of credit card providers and some automobile clubs offer additional services for trips abroad. It is therefore advisable to ask yourself, before taking out separate health insurance for travel abroad, whether you have already agreed otherwise on the protection you want to the extent you want.

Do I have illnesses that could get worse abroad?

If you suffer from an illness prior to a trip, it may happen that the treatment of this illness will not be reimbursed by the international travel health insurance during your vacation. Experts often speak of the "(un) expectability of a disease". If you know before you go on holiday that you will need treatment during your holiday, the insurance may not reimburse the cost of the treatment. Therefore, find out in advance from your insurer to what extent the costs for treatment of known pre-existing conditions will be reimbursed.

How long does a travel health insurance cover me abroad?

The contract term of a foreign travel health insurance is offered either as a one-off insurance for the duration of the travel period or as an annual contract. Many insurance companies have a maximum length of stay in the holiday country (often between 42 and 56 days). This means that regardless of whether you have taken out an annual policy or a one-off insurance, you will usually only receive health insurance cover for a temporary period. If this period is not sufficient for you, you can arrange health insurance cover for longer periods with your insurance company. Ask your insurance company about this.

Travel insolvency insurance

The travel insolvency insurance (sometimes also referred to as travel cancellation insurance) is an insurance that is intended to ensure that, in the event of the tour operator's insolvency, the traveler is reimbursed the advance payments already made or - if the trip has already commenced - the reimbursement for services not received and receives the necessary expenses for the return journey.

In this way a tour operator can meet his obligation to insolvency protection according to ยง 651 r Abs. 2 Satz 1 BGB.

The security certificate for package tours - which contains the necessary information about the security provider (insurer or bank) - must generally be given to the customer before accepting or requesting a payment - including a down payment - before the end of the trip.

What should you consider when purchasing travel insurance?

When considering purchasing travel insurance, there are a few things to consider:

  • Whether and to what extent do you need travel insurance? Do you already have travel insurance, for example through your credit card?
  • Are all participants for whom you want to take out insurance covered by the insurance?
  • With an existing travel health insurance abroad, has the personal situation changed since the last trip (for example the birth of a child)?
  • Do you need insurance coverage for a specific trip or for future trips?
  • Which insurance claims should be covered by the travel insurance? The travel cancellation insurance is only valid up to the point in time at which you make use of the first travel service. If you also want insurance cover for the period in which you have already started your vacation, you must take out travel interruption insurance.
  • If you are offered a travel insurance package, you should take a close look at the individual benefits. This often includes luggage, travel accident and / or travel liability insurance that you may not need or do not want to take out, but which make the insurance significantly more expensive. Then it can make sense to only take out a single travel insurance policy.
  • When purchasing travel insurance and comparing prices, make sure you choose a tariff with or without an excess. If you do not want an excess, the price of the insurance is higher.
  • Before you take out travel insurance, you should double-check that the closing dates have been met.
  • Finally, pay attention to the cancellation conditions: If you have not only taken out travel insurance for the duration of the trip, the travel insurance may be automatically extended, for example by a year, if you do not cancel it.

Further information

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