Emirates Airline
Photograph ©2015 by Brian Cohen.

Free Global Travel Insurance to No Longer Be Offered By Emirates Airline For the 2019 Novel Coronavirus

When did the 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic end?

At least two airlines had announced during the summer of 2020 that they began to offer global insurance coverage free of charge in the event that you contract the 2019 Novel Coronavirus while you travel with them as a passenger and as a customer…

Free Global Travel Insurance to No Longer Be Offered By Emirates Airline For the 2019 Novel Coronavirus

…but one of those airlines is discontinuing its insurance coverage effective as of Wednesday, December 1, 2021.

Source: Emirates Airline.

The first airline to offer global insurance coverage free of charge pertaining to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus was Emirates Airline, which wanted you to travel with peace of mind “as borders begin to open around the world, you can take off to your next destination with confidence. We’re the first airline to provide free coverage for your health and quarantine costs if you’re diagnosed with COVID-19 on your travels. We’re keeping you safe on the journey and giving you extra security wherever you are in the world.”

Now, an important notice is in a yellow box at the official Internet web site of Emirates Airline which displays the following text:

We’re updating our cover policies. Our multi-risk travel insurance will no longer apply to tickets purchased on or after 1 December 2021.

If you were diagnosed with the 2019 Novel Coronavirus during your travels which you booked with Emirates Airline, you would contact Emirates Airline to get support and to use your complimentary global coverage — the expenses require pre-approval and are subject to terms and conditions — absolutely free and at no cost to you.

  • Assistance at any time when you fly between Tuesday, July 23, 2020 and Saturday, October 31, 2020 — which were the dates of the original period of coverage
  • Free global coverage for all customers
  • Applies to every travel class
  • Valid for 31 days from the moment you take your first flight as a passenger — and it covered you even if you traveled onward to another city
  • No registration required
  • 2019 Novel Coronavirus health and medical expenses up to €150,000.00
  • Quarantine costs €100.00 per day for 14 days
  • Free 24-hour hotline support telephone number
Los Angeles International Airport gates Virgin
Photograph ©2014 by Brian Cohen.

Also once offering global insurance coverage free of charge pertaining to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus was Virgin Atlantic Airways, which ensured that you had peace of mind in every way when you flew as a passenger with the airline. With its free 2019 Novel Coronavirus insurance, Virgin Atlantic supposedly would help take care of the health and quarantine costs that arose, should you fall ill or experience difficulties due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus.

Its global insurance coverage applied to every existing ticket — as well as the booking of new tickets — for travel between Monday, August 24, 2020 and Wednesday, March 31, 2021; and the coverage was reportedly extended to Friday, April 30, 2021.

The coverage included:

  • Up to £500,000 necessary and emergency medical expenses incurred due to 2019 Novel Coronavirus affecting you or your travel companions.
  • Repatriation due to 2019 Novel Coronavirus, should it be medically necessary.
  • Denied Boarding or Quarantine — Virgin Atlantic will cover many necessary additional costs should you or your travelling companion be denied boarding or individually requested to quarantine in your destination due to 2019 Novel Coronavirus, including personal accommodation, transport charges, refreshments, booking amendment fees and other travel expenses incurred.
  • Coverage for your whole trip, with no upper limit on the length of your time away.
  • Coverage for all passengers with no restrictions on age, travel class or length of journey.
  • There is no excess payable with this policy — unlike other traditional travel insurance policies.
  • Terms and conditions applied.

Final Boarding Call

Your safety is — apparently, now was — the highest priority with Emirates Airline and Virgin Atlantic Airways at every step when pertaining to the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic…

…but I do not recall anyone officially declaring that the 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic had ended.

For me, the golden rule of insurance in general is that it is only offered when someone benefits from offering it. No one offers insurance of any type solely out of the goodness of his or her heart. In fact, the very concept of insurance is generally legalized gambling: you are betting with your insurance payment that something will happen to you; and if so, you win your big payout…

…but if nothing happens to you, the entity to whom you pay keeps the money free and clear.

Even if something does happen to you after paying your premium, sometimes the fine print has exclusionary clauses and legal verbiage which can prevent you from receiving full payment — or any payment at all.

In this case, the airlines in question had gambled that their offers for global insurance coverage free of charge pertaining to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus would win over prospective customers who were fearful, nervous, or concerned that they will contract the virus by offering peace of mind.

What the aforementioned airlines did was not illegal, unethical, immoral, or wrong in any way, shape, or form — but were they really concerned about giving you peace of mind; or did they simply want to convince more people to be passengers aboard their airplanes? What if you were a passenger and you really did contract the 2019 Novel Coronavirus?

Even more importantly: did anyone ever submit a claim — and if so, was anyone successful with getting compensated?…

…or was the whole thing little more than a gimmick?

All photographs ©2014 and ©2015 by Brian Cohen.

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