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Saga included insurance

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BEWARE anyone who has taken Saga included insurance with their booking, and think that you will be covered for Coronavirus because it was added to your booking prior to 3rd April.

When you pay the holiday balance after the 3rd April, your documentation will show that this is a new insurance and you will not be covered for ANYTHING relating to coronavirus.

I have to contact Saga about this, as if this is correct it feels extremely underhand - let me believe that because insurance was added to the booking in May 2019 I was covered, but because the final balance is paid May 2020 it is treated as being taken out after 3rd April.

I'll come back and update after I have spoken (cruise is almost certainly going to be cancelled anyway).

 

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I have already checked this. We booked for 5 January 2021 in October 2019 then changed it to July 2021. Our insurance rolls on and covers us for the virus.

Got it recorded on my phone where young lady from Saga assured me of this 100%

we would have cancelled if this wasn’t so.

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Slightly different.

We have not rolled over the booking, it is the same booking just the insurance has changed.

It is the inaugural cruise booked back in 2018.

Insurance was added in May 2019. Received documents in May 2019 showing included insurance.

Final balance paid today.

Revised documentation for the cruise now states that the included insurance does NOT cover coronavirus.

Emailed them to ask why an insurance that did cover coronavirus is now saying it does NOT cover coronavirus.

I'd recommend getting Saga to conform yours in writing to be safe.

 

 

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This is worrying, and I agree it does seem underhand.  How on earth can Saga have information on their website which states that insurance purchased prior to April 3 includes Covid cover, and then issue documentation stating that it does not?  If correct, it means that anyone who pays the balance of their cruise after April 3 is not covered.  
 

I  hope Saga reads these boards and provides clarification.

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I've asked the question, should get a reply next week, and I'll come back with their answer.

I am hoping that it is a mistake created by their useless computer system - fingers crossed.

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2 hours ago, nosapphire said:

I've asked the question, should get a reply next week, and I'll come back with their answer.

I am hoping that it is a mistake created by their useless computer system - fingers crossed.

Good luck - their insurance is a bit hit and miss. Last year my wife declared a probably insignificant condition awaiting diagnosis a few days before our cruise, something our GP considered not to be of any concern. Saga promptly cancelled her cover without explanation, while admitting on the phone that many people in the same situation simply don't admit such conditions in order to keep their cover. The travel insurance bundled with our bank account simply doesn't cover conditions awaiting diagnosis rather than refusing any cover at all.

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Quick update. I had a reply this morning, which was totally useless as it was so generic.

The impression given was that either they did not know the answer, or they knew the answer but did not want to commit it in writing.

I've asked them for a specific answer to my specific booking.

I have a suspicion that if I push them hard enough I will find out that the insurance is not actually taken out with the underwriters until the final balance is paid.

Which means that nobody relying on Saga's included insurance will be covered for coronavirus.

I'll let you know of progress.

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for posting nosapphire.  If Saga can’t sort this  out, they’re going to lose  a lot of customers.

Edited by LandC
Misspelling

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I now have an email confirming that my specific booking IS covered for Covid-19, ad Saga are working on getting corrected documentation.

Which is good news for anyone who added Saga included insurance to their booking prior to 3rd April 2020, as they will be covered.

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Great news nosapphire.  Now we just have to hope that our cruises go ahead!

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Seems very underhand to me. Did not the contract become established on payment of the first amount, you would have lost that if you cancelled the cruise. I think you would have a good legal case that the Insurance was issued

a year ago on first payment. They would have be liable under the policy for any illness nine months ago.

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In my opinion, not underhand - just incompetent.

Saga have confirmed by email that the insurance is valid. They have said that they are working on correcting the paperwork (no idea how long that will take them).

The standard of accuracy in the paperwork Saga issue is steadily deteriorating - over the last 2 years we have had to contact them for corrections of various mistakes, including under-calculated advance registration discounts, wrong cabin numbers, missing insurance, dates of birth being mysteriously changed mid-booking, etc. I still have to contact them about a final balance payment date for another cruise which is stated on the paperwork as being due a month too early.

I assume the coumputer system was updated to reflect the fact that new bookings will not be covered for Coronavirus without any consideration of the people who had already booked.

Though - on reflection - maybe it is underhand, and being passed off as incompetence. Sigh.

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I note on the saga website that there is a statement that from 1st June, policyholders will be covered under the medical section only, this seems to indicate no cover under the other sections of the policy, Such as  cancellation, etc.
It still appears to me that policyholders who booked a cruise for late 2020 or 2021 and paid any deposit in say late 2019 would have valid cover and a valid claim under all sections of the policy , since coronavirus was not mentioned or excluded.

so there now at least two classes of covered policy holder.

And probably a third class of policyholder, and claimant  following the “coronavirus exclusions” announced in the spring of 2020.

 

it is an area ripe for discussion by the lawyers.

 

The recent note on the SAGA website needs to “Precisely” define what the policies state and what the cover is for each traveller.

 

SAGA cannot retrospectively change the cover.

 

They have muddied the waters for prior policyholders, in trying to clarify the situation of policyholders in the future.

 

They have opened a can of worms in their treatment of prior policy holders, the legal profession will have a field day in pursuing claims.

good luck

Fred

 

 

 

 

 

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Their website is confusing (nothing unusual there).

Saga optional included travel insurance taken out on or after 3rd April 2020 will cover coronavirus only under the emergency medical section, and only for travel which started on or after 1st June (I assume that is June 2020).

New Saga insurance policies taken out on or after 1st June (again, I assume 2020 as the year is not mentioned) will cover coronavirus only under the emergency medical section, same as above.

For all policies taken out before 6pm on Friday 13th March 2020 - simply tells you who to contact if you need to claim. No mention of coronavirus one way or the other.

No mention of insurance taken between 6pm 13th March 2020 and 3rd April 2020 - maybe nobody booked anything in this period.

Just to muddy the waters, the insurance page, under "get a quote" clarifies that new policies will now offer emergency medical treatment abroad for claims related to coronavirus, then adds that exclusions related to coronavirus for policies dated 13th March onward continue to apply to the rest of the policy.

 

By the way, I still don't have any corrected paperwork. Although as now the sailing date, and probably the itinerary and price, will have to be changed, maybe it will all get done together.

 

 

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I wonder when the policy is deemed to be taken out , when you initially book and pay your deposit, when you pay the final tranche of the fare, when you board the vessel or when you claim.

it may all be irrelevant if the Spirit od Discovery is not delivered until 2021.I believe SAGA has said it will be delivered in the next year, a very precise date.

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We booked a 2021 cruise on 16th March 2020, with the optional included insurance.  We assumed we would be covered for treatment abroad and repatriation to the UK for COVID-19.  Not so sure now.  What a mess!

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35 minutes ago, Fred989 said:

It is sure a mess.

 

I do not think anyone knows, SAGA included.

Well, I think that post has summed it up accurately enough.

 

Just to add to the confusion - on the Saga cruises page it simply states that :

QUOTE: If you have purchased the optional Saga Holidays Travel Insurance after 00:01am on Friday 3rd April, 2020, the following applies:

Please be aware this policy will not provide cover for any claims caused by or relating to Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), or any mutation of unless your trip begins on or after 1st of June, in which case this policy will only provide cover for any claims caused by or relating to Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), or any mutation of, under the 'Emergency medical associated expenses' section of your policy book. This section provides insurance for emergency medical and associated costs not covered by the National Health Service or any reciprocal health agreement. END QUOTE.

Which is not quite the same as any of the others.

 

To be honest, I have no idea now whether the email I have confirming that my insurance does cover coronavirus means I am fully covered, or just for emergency medical treatment abroad.

While Saga say that "Saga will assist" in the event of repatriation (because of coronavirus) they do not also say "Saga will pay".

They must be updating things on the website (and hopefully the documentation), as there is no longer a link to the policy book for the included insurance, and the link to the summary is not to the insurance, just to Saga.

Glad the only Saga travel insurance we have is linked with 2 cruises on the Adventure which are almost certain to be no-shows, so the insurance is academic.

 

 

 

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I booked acruise back in December 2019 to be taken in May 2020. In March 2020 I ttransferred the booking to a cruise for June 2021. The booking No did not change.

I phoned SAGA this morning for some clarification and was assured that the insurance taken out in December 2019  would roll over to the re-booked cruise.

I am not convinced  and will be asking for some written confirmation.

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They might insure you , but for what, under what terms and conditions?

 

your old pre virus insurance would have covered you under all sections for a virus event.

 

even the new improved recent T&C’s excludes virus events in all but one sections.

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All this uncertainty and reduction in original insurance cover is a sign of financial difficulties.Hope not as we enjoyed our Saga cruises to date and UK/UK cruising without Flying is very appealing.

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2 hours ago, brimary said:

All this uncertainty and reduction in original insurance cover is a sign of financial difficulties.Hope not as we enjoyed our Saga cruises to date and UK/UK cruising without Flying is very appealing.

I do not think the reduction in insurance cover is a particular sign of financial trouble.

The Covid-19 exclusion has been happening across the board from all insurers;  Saga themselves do not provide the insurance, their travel insurance is provided by Great Lakes.

The problem is the lack of clarity, with nobody knowing exactly what is or is not covered, and no concise answers being given by Saga, and what this (in my opinion) does show is extremely poor management from Saga.

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It does not matter if it is financial difficulty or poor management, either could bring the company down.
 

The two new build vessels will survive and as are both marked as boutique cruisers, not SAGA, so could be sold on easily to a stronger survivor cruise line.

 

A market for Cruises from Southampton exists and will be filled by a company who survives the crisis.

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