Coronavirus and Travel Plans

Webility Admin, posted on March 3, 2020



I am sure each of you is wondering what impact the developing global Coronavirus COVID-19 will have on our lives in the months ahead - not least your trip overseas! I realize the Coronavirus has been front and center in the news for the past few weeks, and considerably more this past week as it spread to Italy and as fears of a potential pandemic have been the main source of news leading to more questions than answers.

First and foremost, our thoughts are with those who have been impacted directly with this illness, and we wish them a full recovery. This is absolutely a real and ongoing concern that must be suitably and formally addressed by authorities and the travel industry alike.

Please know that we are in touch with our suppliers regularly as are governments with personnel and staff living in the affected countries. We check daily-updated information from the CDC, WHO, State Departments for Canada and the US, as well as key industry organizations for the latest information on travel advisories and other relevant announcements. In doing so we have avoided the spread of rumor or the sharing of unauthorized sources of information, e.g. Facebook and other sources that are not authorities in this matter. While their intentions are honorable, it is governments, various agencies, and WHO that are the authorities at this time.

As of March 3, the Canadian Government is not advising against travel to any of the destinations we are offering in the next few days, weeks or months. As a result, Pauwels Travel will be going ahead with the trips we have planned and that means honoring the contracts we have in place with airlines, hotels, attractions, coach companies, guides and restaurants. Of course, the absence of such a government advisory doesn't mean that each of you will be comfortable travelling, and we appreciate and respect anyone's decision to cancel the trip in light of current circumstances. However, penalties as per our terms and conditions would apply and we would like you to be aware that without a Level Three (Avoid non-essential travel) or Level 4 (Avoid all travel) advisory by the Canadian Government, you may not be covered for any non-refundable portions of your trip. We encourage you to check with your insurance provider for more information before cancelling your trip 100%.

If you have not purchased insurance it is not too late. In light of what is currently taking place with the Coronavirus and the fact that things are changing constantly, you may want to consider that protection. We offer insurance with Manulife. If you purchase a policy and an official travel advisory from the Canadian Government (Level 3 or Level 4) comes into effect, you will be covered under trip cancellation. You will also have coverage when in destination under trip interruption for both quarantine coverage and government travel advisory coverage. If you have insurance through another means, it is worth noting that most policies will fully honour any claims for compensation should a government advisory come into effect. I suggest you contact your insurance provider to confirm your entitlements and to make sure you are properly covered.

Finally, I am attaching links for the Canadian Government Travel Advisory as well as the most recent Travel Market report fact sheet regarding the Coronavirus for more information. I hope you will find the FAQS thorough and informative.

Travel Market Report Factsheet Link:

Sandra Pauwels