The FINANCIAL — Virgin Atlantic has introduced Virgin Atlantic COVID-19 cover, which is a complimentary COVID-19 global insurance cover for all bookings, including all existing and new ones, travelling from 24 August 2020 up until 31 March 2021. The policy is designed to provide peace of mind to customers and it will be applied automatically to all flights automatically. Emirates also covers medical expenses of up to EUR 150,000 and quarantine costs of EUR 100 per day for 14 days while they are away from home.
In the event that they or anyone else on their booking becomes ill with COVID-19 while travelling, Virgin Atlantic COVID-19 Cover ensures related costs are covered, no matter how long the trip is or even if they’re visiting another destination on the same overseas trip. The insurance policy is fulfilled by Allianz Assistance and covers emergency medical and associated expenses while abroad totalling £500,000 per customer – the highest value of policy offered by any airline to date, with no excess payment required. The policy also covers expenses incurred up to £3,000 if a customer is denied boarding, at either departure or in destination, or has to quarantine due to positive or suspected COVID-19 during a trip, as Virgin Atlantic stated.
Virgin Atlantic Holidays customers will also benefit and cover will also apply to flights which are operated by a partner airline or a Joint Venture carrier – Delta Air Lines or Air France-KLM.
Virgin Atlantic’s Chief Commercial Officer Juha Jarvinen said that the company’s priority is always the health and safety of people and customers and industry-leading Virgin Atlantic COVID-19 Cover ensures customers can continue to fly safe and fly well with Virgin Atlantic.
“Following our return to the skies to much-loved destinations like Barbados, we’re planning more services in the autumn, as travel restrictions continue to ease, including London Heathrow to Montego Bay, Antigua, Lagos and Tel Aviv. Whether it’s to visit friends and relatives or take a well-deserved break, we believe this complimentary cover will provide some added reassurance for our customers as they start to plan trips further afield. It applies in parallel to existing travel insurance policies which may now exclude COVID-19, and provides comprehensive cover for coronavirus, recognising the needs of our customers as we restart services.” – he added.
Emirates customers can also travel with confidence since the airline will cover medical expenses of up to EUR 150,000 and quarantine costs of EUR 100 per day for 14 days while they are away from home. The cover is free of cost to customers and is fully provided by the airline. This cover for COVID-19 related medical expenses and quarantine costs is offered by Emirates free of cost to its customers regardless of class of travel or destination. This cover is immediately effective for customers flying on Emirates until 31 October 2020 (first flight to be completed on or before 31 October 2020). It is valid for 31 days from the moment they fly the first sector of their journey.
Emirates Group Chairman and Chief Executive HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said that under the directive of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Emirates is proud to lead the way in boosting confidence for international travel.
“Emirates has worked hard to put in place measures at every step of the customer journey to mitigate risk of infection, and we have also revamped our booking policies to offer flexibility. We are now taking it to the next level, by being the first in the industry to offer our customers free global cover for COVID-19 medical expenses and quarantine costs should they incur these costs during their travel. It is an investment on our part, but we are putting our customers first, and we believe they will welcome this initiative.” – He added.
It should be mentioned that airlines saw an up to 90% reduction in the number of passengers due to the pandemic, so routes have been cut back as well. In essence, the world has become less connected in terms of aviation. Virgin Atlantic resumed flights to the United States in July 2020 and is expanding service to most of its destinations by the end of the year. That said, you should expect a reduction in service frequency. But the good news is that if you want to get to London and beyond, Virgin Atlantic can get you there, either directly or with a connection via their partnership with Delta, according to Forbes.
On Tuesday Virgin Atlantic’s creditors will vote on a 1.2 billion pound ($1.6 billion) rescue plan in a crucial test of the airline’s ability to survive in an industry devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Virgin Atlantic agreed the deal with shareholders and creditors in July to secure its future beyond the coronavirus crisis. The airline, which is 51% owned by Richard Branson’s Virgin Group and 49% by U.S. airline Delta, said it remains confident in the restructuring plan and is on track to finalise its solvent recapitalisation in the first week of September. Tuesday’s vote of affected trade creditors includes nearly 200 suppliers that the airline owes more than 50,000 pounds to. It needs 75% support of the overall outstanding value of money owed at a hearing at London’s High Court, Reuters wrote.
Air travel demand in Europe is recovering from COVID-19 impact. Business aviation recovering faster than other segments and now only 9% below 2019 levels. Also, all-cargo flights are 4% above 2019 levels. Ryanair, announced it has restored over 60% of normal flight schedules from 1st August, following the successful resumption of its services at the end of June. Based on traffic levels, the Top 5 busiest countries include Germany, UK, France, Spain and Italy. Read more.