AA Travel Insurance

July 22, 2009 09:18 ET

Holiday Collapses Prompt New AA Travel Cover

- AA Travel Insurance now includes up to Pounds Sterling 5k financial failure protection

BASINGSTOKE, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - July 22, 2009) - Travellers who protect themselves with AA Travel Insurance are now automatically covered for financial failure of the firms they book through.

According to AA Travel Insurance, more than 50 holiday firms have collapsed during the past 12 months, dashing travel plans for thousands and leaving others to pay for extra flights home.

Explains Christian Young, CEO of AA Travel Insurance: "Travel agents and operators selling package holidays that include the flight with other travel components (such as transfers or hotel) should provide the traveller with Air Travel Organisers' Licence (ATOL) protection or similar. But this doesn't apply to the increasing number who prefer to book their own separate holiday components such as flight, hotel or car hire - all of which are easy to arrange online.

"Uncertainty in the market is leading many travellers to build their own holiday arrangements and they may have little or no protection in the event of a company failure. They, as well as business travellers and weekenders and those driving in Europe, will now automatically enjoy that extra protection with AA Travel Insurance."

Few travel insurers offer this type of cover as standard or sell it as an add-on, while others restrict cover to scheduled airline failure. AA Travel Insurance covers all suppliers of separate travel components including airlines; accommodation suppliers (such as hotel companies and villa owners); car hire companies; ferry operators; excursion organisers and theme parks.

"Many travellers believe they are fully protected when taking a holiday, either through their insurance, credit card or travel compensation schemes. But the truth is that cover is often incomplete, patchy and the claims process can be long-winded," Young says.

"The travel sector is going through a difficult time. The recent strength of the Euro against the Pounds Sterling; oil prices; unemployment; people deciding to stay at home or leaving holiday plans until the last moment are all contributing to mounting losses in a market where margins are very small. Even British Airways is very publicly facing cash flow difficulties and many smaller operators could possibly become grounded.

"One commentator(i) recently said that: 'the late deals market could be all that stands between some travel businesses and failure'."

Young adds: "People should not be deterred from taking a holiday.

"There are many bargains to be had: holiday companies are being left with thousands of unsold flights and hotels throughout the world that can be booked at bargain prices. If you buy a package through an agent bonded by ATOL, ABTA or similar you will have protection. If you make your own holiday plans, AA Travel Insurance will help ensure you remain protected."

AA Travel Insurance now includes financial failure holiday protection automatically, protecting against the insolvency of any travel or accommodation supplier up to a maximum of Pounds Sterling 5,000 per person and where ATOL or similar cover doesn't apply. The cover is provided by International Passenger Protection Limited (IPP), world-wide leaders in financial failure insurance with over 20 years experience in providing this specialist cover.

All single trip and annual travel insurance policies bought by telephone or online now include financial failure holiday protection. For full information visit www.theaatravelinsurance.com or call 0845 092 1729.

(i)Barry Moxley of the Association of Independent Tour Operators Specialist Travel Agents: Daily Mail, 19 June 2009

AA Travel Insurance - terms and conditions apply.

AA Travel Insurance is a division of Drakefield Insurance Services Limited, authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. (Firm Registration No. 312317). Drakefield Insurance Services Limited is part of The AA.

Authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority

Contact Information

  • Ian Crowder MCIPR
    Public Relations Manager
    AA insurance and personal finance
    01256 492 844 (internal 622844)