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A co-worker is meant to be going on holiday for a week in Fiji. Leaving Saturday. If you're unaware of the news:

you get the idea.

Yesterday, authorities met to decide if it was going to be declared a state of emergency, but decided, for now, not to do so.

My colleague has travel insurance - but at what point does it become valid to use? Obviously if the plane can't land, it's probably covered, but does 'the beaches are ruined, so we want to change our flights' get covered, if no state of emergency has been declared? They are flying with Air New Zealand.

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Is it a private insurance or the one you can add to your flight? By private I'm thinking about a legitimate insurance company... –  John Doe Jan 25 '12 at 21:40
    
it's through the travel agent, so gather it's the one you add to the flight. –  Mark Mayo Jan 25 '12 at 22:30
    
not necessarily, many (most?) travel agents also act as insurance agents and will offer to sell you travel insurance from a reputable insurance company. Check your contracts and bills. –  jwenting Jan 26 '12 at 7:17
    
Policies and scenarios will vary greatly. Insurers may try to weasel out of making payments based on specific wordings and definitions. I don't see how this question is answerable. A question about specific policy wording and a specific weather event would probably be answerable but too localised. –  WW. Dec 30 '13 at 6:15
    
@WW it already got answered satisfactorily two years ago :/ See below. –  Mark Mayo Dec 30 '13 at 13:12
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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Check your policy. Different policies will have different restrictions and coverage. E.g. some might not cover a "ruined beach" unless maybe you booked a stay at a beach resort. Others may cover the entire trip because the area was "unsuitable for tourism". Then again, some might explicitly state that damages due to "natural disasters" are not covered at all.
Also check your cancellation coverage. Some policies may not cover voluntary cancellation unless for medical emergencies or a death in the immediate family, others are more lenient. Some also don't cover cancellation within a specific time frame before departure, while others cover even cancellation during the trip (refunding the balance of the trip from the moment of cancellation).

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I'm not really sure that it covers what you're proposing. Although I never travel through a travel agent, I know that you can buy additional "level" of insurance that covers trip cancellation and depending on when you cancel your trip (a month before departure, a week, a day), you get a certain percentage of your full amount (you obviously get less if you wait for the last day).

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