Volcanic ash accounts for large proportion of insurance claims

Posted by Daniel Scognamiglio on

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I was not surprised to read that the volcanic ash cloud activity during 2010/11 has given rise to a notable increase in travel insurance claims.

A survey by Finacord, Travel Metrics in Europe, indicated that 5.4 per cent of reported claims across those surveyed were a direct result of the volcanic ash cloud activity which shut down much of European air space for almost 2 weeks.  

Other common claims related to lost, stolen or damaged baggage or belongings, medical expenses incurred while travelling and accidents whilst travelling.  Breaking down the figures further, the volcanic ash cloud and its impact represented a staggering 31.1 per cent of claims as a result of flight or trip delay, cancellation or postponement.

With further recent volcanic activity in South America, this survey shows the importance of ensuring you have comprehensive travel insurance in place well in advance of travelling.  Policies taken out after an event like a volcanic eruption has happened will not cover claims as a direct result of that event.  Airlines and travel companies may be obliged to offer compensation and assistance in some circumstances but the level of claims made over the past year to travel insurers directly shows there is no substitute for thorough travel insurance protection. 

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About the Author

Photograph of Daniel Scognamiglio

Daniel leads our travel team. He is a specialist in multi-jurisdictional disputes, travel insurance litigation and tour operator liability and is qualified as a solicitor in England and Attorney at Law (non-practising) New York.

Daniel Scognamiglio
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