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Visa, AIG to offer travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage

Digital payments provider Visa and global insurer AIG Philippines Insurance Inc. (AIG) will start offering new travel insurance with COVID-19 protection, exclusive to Visa Infinite cardholders in the Philippines.

The travel insurance, which will be provided by AIG, includes coverage for trip cancellations, travel inconveniences, and medical expenses including COVID-19 medical expenses and allowances. The complimentary coverage is automatic for all domestic and international trips between Dec. 4, 2021 and Dec. 3, 2022 paid for using Visa Infinite credit cards issued by Citibank, EastWest, Maybank, and RCBC Bankard. Terms and conditions apply.

“Our study shows that luxury travel (46%) and transportation (38%) are the most popular searches online among affluent Filipino holidaymakers,” said Dan Wolbert, Visa country manager for The Philippines and Guam. “Safety is a top priority for consumers thinking about the return to travel and this insurance will provide Filipinos with added peace of mind knowing they’ll be covered for COVID-19 related expenses.“

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The Visa Infinite Travel Insurance Protection with Covid-19 coverage offers reimbursements subject to terms and conditions for the following:

  • Travel accidents of up to $100,000 for international trips and $50,000 for domestic trips
  • Overseas medical expenses including due to COVID-19
  • Trip inconveniences including due to COVID-19
  • Baggage protection
  • Travel assistance

According to Visa and AIG, COVID-19 insurance coverage is generally treated as an exclusion in current practice by insurance providers or charged at a high premium given the risk volatility arising from a new illness. However, according to IATF-MEID Resolution No. 79, outbound Filipino travelers are required to present adequate travel and health insurance to cover disruptions and hospitalization in case of COVID-19 infections during their trip.

A recent Visa study shows that while overall travel intent is still low due to the uncertainty brought about by the pandemic, Filipinos place Japan, the United States, and Thailand as their top 3 international destinations, and Manila, Baguio, and Makati as their preferred domestic destinations once it is safe to travel again. Another study showed that while 44% of Filipinos surveyed said that they want to be able to travel as soon as possible, 71% also said that even after being vaccinated, they will still be cautious in their activities and movement.