Monday, October 3, 2011

Kenya holidaymakers can't claim on insurance for cancelled trips

Travel insurers will reject claims from holidaymakers who want to cancel trips to beach resorts in Kenya following a second kidnapping at the weekend.

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued advice warning against all but essential travel to coastal areas within 150km (93 miles) of the Somali border, following the kidnapping of an French woman on the island of Manda, near Lamu.

The FCO had previously warned holidaymakers to stay 37 miles away from the border following the killing of British publisher David Tebbutt and the kidnapping of his wife Judith at a luxury resort 25 miles from the border on 11 September.

Regardless of the warning, insurers say they will not pay out claims for loss of deposits if holidaymakers have decided against travelling to the northern coast. A spokeswoman for esure said insurers could not base such decisions on warnings issued by the FCO because "these change from one day to the next".

Martin Rothwell of insurance broker World First said all insurers would take the same stance: "Because the FCO has warned against all but essential travel to this area, the onus is on the traveller to decide whether their trip is essential. This means a claim on a travel insurance policy would be excluded under the 'disinclination to travel' clause."

However, he added that travel agents and tour operators would rebook customers who have bought holidays in the Lamu area into alternative resorts. "No holidaymaker should be out of pocket because of this," he said.


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