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Ensuring the right travel cover

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The economic downfall of Greece has reinforced the need for travel insurance. It’s every holidaymaker’s worst nightmare; being stuck abroad in an economically turbulent country, without the financial safety net of travel cover. Although thousands of Irish families are travelling to the European country this summer, many will be unaware of the steps to take if they find themselves in a sticky situation.

Follow our tips below on how to get the most out of your travel insurance, whether you’re heading to Greece or to other sunnier climes.

What to look out for in your Travel Insurance policy
Despite being the sensible thing to do before jetting off, taking out basic travel insurance doesn’t mean that every box is ticked. If you’re covered under a cheaper policy, it might be the difference between being able to claim for insolvency or not. Put simply, make sure that your level of cover provides for End Supplier Failure. This covers any irrecoverable, unused costs and charges relating to third party companies that become insolvent within your booking, such as accommodation providers, hotels, car hire, ferries, coaches, which you have paid or are contracted to pay. So if your hotel goes bust before you get there, AA Travel Insurance policies allow you to claim up to €2,000.

Why buying early is best 
With financial insecurity comes the risk of short-notice strikes or industrial action. With AA Travel Insurance, you’re covered for unforeseen industrial action if it leads you to abandon your holiday. This benefit can be invoked if you’ve been delayed for more than 24 hours from the scheduled time of departure. For this reason, it is best to book travel insurance at the time of booking your holiday. Without it, or even by leaving it to the week before you depart, it could be the difference in losing a chunk of your accommodation costs due to a strike.

When not to travel
Advice from the Department of Foreign Affairs is invoked in most policies. Currently, the DFA has advised tourists to Greece to ‘take normal precautions’ but it’s always a good idea to keep abreast of goings-on and regularly check its security status in the run up to your departure, no matter where you’re going. If bouts of social unrest or other catastrophes lead the DFA to caution against travel, flouting this advice could lead to a claim being rejected by your insurance provider. You can check the security status of countries worldwide by clicking here.

Keep your money safe, and your valuables safer 
The introduction of Capital Controls on Greek ATMs meant that thousands of tourists resorted to carrying on their person high amounts of cash. Beware that carrying around hefty amounts of money can arouse a higher risk of theft or loss so it's best to make sure your policy covers for this event. As a precaution, ensure that cash is kept secure within a safe in your hotel/apartment – it generally comes with insurance in case money is stolen from it. It’s also a good idea to check that suitable protection is in place with your accommodation provider.

AA Travel Insurance provides cover for up to €350 cash per person travelling and €100 per person for those under 18. If your personal belongings (luggage, valuables etc.) are stolen we'll cover this up to €3,000.

We also have a 24-hour emergency assistance English speaking helpline that you can contact on + 353 1 431 1205.

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