It's been a while since an airline grabbed headlines for shutting down their operations. But, recently SkyGreece Airlines stranded passengers in Toronto and abroad due to what it says in a statement is an "operational crisis". The statement on its website advises passengers, to "contact their travel agent to arrange for alternate travel and/or accommodations."
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SkyGreece certainly isn't the first airline that has had its wings clipped. Remember Canada3000? Jetsgo? Zoom? Just like these three now defunct airlines, SkyGreece travellers were left holding airline tickets and no plane to board.
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If this were to happen to you, would trip cancellation insurance cover the costs?
Well, that depends. Let's first find out what trip cancellation insurance typically covers:
- You, or your travelling companion, are suddenly unable to travel due to a sudden, unexpected emergency medical condition
- Your travelling companion dies
- You, or your travelling companion's, immediate family is admitted to hospital following an emergency
- There's an unexpected death in your, or your travelling companion's, immediate family
- A travel advisory is issued by the Canadian government, after you purchase your insurance, recommending that Canadians do not travel to the area for where you were going
- You miss your connection, due to a schedule change or an unexpected delay outside of your control
- There is a natural disaster that renders your home uninhabitable
- You, or your travelling companion, are called to jury duty or subpoenaed as a witness (note however, this may exclude law enforcement officers)
- You involuntarily lose your job
Right. So you've noticed that an airline bankruptcy or default is not included in this list. That's because travel insurance coverage for this particular situation is not uniform across policies. Trip cancellation and interruption coverage can be bought to protect yourself against an airline's bankruptcy or default; however not all policies offer it. In fact, some policies specifically exclude it.
What's it all mean?
Each policy varies so read the policy to know exactly what you will, and will not be covered for should you have to suddenly cancel or cut short your trip. Don't forget to shop around too; because you don't have to take the first travel insurance policy you're offered. With the help of Kanetix.ca you can not only find competitively priced travel insurance policies, but you can also view policies before buying to ensure that you're covered for everything you need, or want, including the occasional airline "operational crisis".