Martin Lewis explains travel insurance advice as he issues urgent coronavirus warning

Martin Lewis explains travel insurance advice as he issues urgent coronavirus warning

More than 88,000 people have now been infected by coronavirus, with the global death toll from the outbreak exceeding 3,000. Amid the spread of Covid-19, Martin Lewis has issued a “big warning” to holidaymakers.

Speaking on Good Morning Britain last week, the financial journalist explained that he often talks about his “ASAB” travel insurance tip.

This stands for as As Soon As (You’ve) Booked, and Mr Lewis suggests holidaymakers adopt this acronym when they are planning their getaways.

“This is the big warning,” he began. “I do it every year – I talk about booking travel insurance ASAB – as soon as you book.

“Because if you don’t and something happens in the meantime before you get travel insurance, you’re not covered.”

READ MORE: Martin Lewis issues urgent travel insurance warning as coronavirus ramps up

Mr Lewis went on to explain what his holiday tip could mean in terms of the coronavirus outbreak.

He explained that travellers who have travel insurance would be covered should they then be told by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) say they cannot travel to their intended destination due to the outbreak.

However, should those who don’t have travel insurance in place be told by the FCO that the destination is no longer safe to travel to, then these holidaymakers would not be covered.

As such, they wouldn’t then be able to make a claim on their travel insurance for this reason.


“Well, anyone who has booked a holiday now for this year – if you have not got travel insurance, if you get the travel insurance and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office then says you can’t go to a country, you’re covered,” he explained.

“If the Foreign & Commonwealth Office rules out a country in future and you haven’t got travel insurance at that point, you’re not covered.”

The broadcaster also explained that it’s not the case that a person can just cancel a trip out of fear of catching coronavirus.

He warned that “unless the FCO has warned against travel to a country, you can’t claim on your travel insurance” if the holidaymaker doesn’t want to go.

It’s also important to note that cover depends on the travel insurance policy itself and the specific insurer.

“Not all travel insurance policies will cover you for pandemics but you should check and talk to your travel insurer,” Mr Lewis warned.

Coronavirus: Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) travel advice

The government website states that the FCO is “currently advising against all travel to Hubei Province, and against all but essential travel to the rest of mainland China”.

“If you’re in China and able to leave, you should do so,” it adds.

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) is also advising against all but essential travel to:

  • The cities of Daegu and Cheongdo in South Korea
  • Ten small towns in the Lombardy region and one in the Veneto region of Italy.

The FCO says: “If you’re concerned about the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on your existing travel plans, check with your airline, tour operator, cruise line or other transport and accommodation providers as applicable.

“Individual providers may also have their own requirements for customers or passengers to meet.”

Published at Mon, 02 Mar 2020 17:45:00 +0000