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Abandoned by travel insurance

A Which? Travel investigation has found evidence of serious failings by travel insurers – even when customers are faced with life-or-death situations. One holidaymaker, Beverley Waugh, had to wait 12 days to find out whether her husband’s insurer, Axa, would pay out when he suffered a cardiac arrest in Japan. ‘On top of worrying about my husband, I thought for almost two weeks that I might have to sell the house to pay for his care,’ Beverley told us.

Other issues encountered by Which? members included anxious waits for insurers to authorise medical care, spending up to ?200 on telephone calls to helplines, and being passed from one company to another. Many of these problems, it seems, may have been due in part to insurers outsourcing both medical care and claims handling. Some of the members had as many as five different companies involved in their case.

Lack of sensitivity

Beverley Waugh’s husband spent 16 days in intensive care and had to be airlifted back to the UK.

Meanwhile she found herself repeatedly phoning Axa’s Barcelona call-centre, desperate to find out if it would cover the hugely expensive medical bill. By the time it paid out the last part of her claim, her husband had died. ‘There seemed to be no difference in the way Axa treated my claim, to the way it would treat someone losing a pair of glasses,’ she said.

Axa apologised to Beverley and said: ‘Our goal as an insurer is not only to pay the claims of our customers but to deal with them sensitively at their time of need. On this occasion we have fallen short of our standards.’

Passing the buck?

The family of keen hiker Tony Willey logged the names of a dozen different people when they called Healix, his insurer’s outsourced medical emergency company, after Tony suffered a heart attack in Andorra. ‘It was rarely possible to speak to the same person twice,’ Tony says. ‘It was an absolute nightmare. We spent around ?200 on phone calls.’

Tony then faced further confusion about how to claim. His policy documents said to contact Travel Claims Services. But TCS told him to call Claims Settlement Agencies.

Ultimately the decision was taken by yet another company, HCC. His insurer, Avanti, said it was ‘disappointed that Mr. Willey’s experience of Avanti did not match the high standards that we set ourselves as a business,’ and that it has reviewed its procedures and passed on the findings to Healix.

Anxious wait

David Hollins, 75, had to wait for almost two months to receive confirmation that his insurer would pay medical bills incurred when he became short of breath on a holiday to Dubai.

His insurance was provided by Globelink, but the medical emergency number went through to a company called Mayday Assistance. He then had to claim from a third company, Reactive Claims, but Reactive Claims wouldn’t pay out for his phone calls and told him he’d need to complain to Mayday Assistance. The ultimate decision on his claim was made by a fourth company, Lloyds of London underwriter ANV, now part of AmTrust.

He did finally receive his expenses and was offered ?150 compensation, which he asked to be paid to Great Ormond Street Hospital. Mayday told us: ‘We collated all the required information within a matter of days, however his general practitioner was very slow and unco-operative in providing requested information. Despite our best efforts we regret that there was a delay in a final decision being made by both parties, which was inevitably beyond our control.’

AmTrust says it has ‘reviewed Mr Hollins’ case to understand what went wrong for him in the process’.

Cadbury’s Cocoa Powder Cat & Grammar Phone Old, food, Vintage Shop Advertising, Kitchen & Grocery Fridge Magnet – Sale Item

A vintage style reproduction metal wall advertising sign that is the perfect gift! Made from top grade steel with detailed high quality printing. Manufactured professionally from steel. All our signs are available in 3 sizes: Small(20x15cm), Medium(30x20cm) & Large(40x30cm). Durable and resistant, suitable for indoor and outdoor use and will look great in any room, garage, kitchen, Bar, Bathroom, Bedroom door, Shed, Man Cave, Office or Warehouse. (May fade in direct sunlight).

  • Full Magnet back for strong hold.
  • High Quality Printing Techniques have been used for the best finish
  • Made in Yorkshire, UK, from Strong British Steel
  • BEWARE OF FLIMSY ALUMINIUM RETRO COPIES! or CHEAP CHINESE VINYL/PAPER COPIES!
  • Does NOT include the diagonal watermark (if shown)

Discounted: Sale Offers

Nochoice Magnetic Car Phone Holder Upgraded Version (2 Magnets + 2 Balls) – Limited Offer

The magnetic phone socket can be adhered directly to the back of most phones and hard cases

Magnetic phone socket installation instruction: 1. Use the alcohol pad to clean the back of the phone case completely. Do not use any other cleaners. 2. The magnet socket is back with FOAM ADHESIVE tape, peel the adhesive backing carefully 3. Position the magnetic phone socket in the center of the phone or phone case, and then press it firmly 4. After application wait for one hour for durable bond

Note: For iPhone 4/4s or any phone with a glass case, after cleaning the phone or case as per instruction above, stick the magnetic phone socket on top of it, following instruction above. Do not use this product on soft and flexible cases

Dash ball mount installation instruction: 1. Before removing the backing, test the position of the dash ball mount in a few different places on dash. For best result, test with phone attached to dash ball mount to choose location. 2. Use the alcohol pad to clean chosen area. Do not use any household cleaners. If the dash ball mount will be installed onto a hard surface such as hard plastic, metal or wood veneer, go to step 3 3. Peel the adhesive backing from dash ball mount carefully, position the ball mount at the dash board and then press firmly into the place 4. Wait for 24 hours before applying device to dash ball mount to allow sufficient cure time for adhesive

Warning: The magnetic phone socket contains a strong magnet. Do NOT place near magnetically sensitive objects such as credit cards, pacemaker or computer’s hard drives

  • The Nochoice Car Mount Kit allows secure attachment for any mobile device, with or without a rigid case, to any vehicle dash with unlimited viewing angles
  • This Car Mount Kit includes 2 Magnetic Phone Socket, 2 Ball Mount, 2*alcohol prep pad, 6*3M primer, and installation instructions
  • Nochoice Magnetic Phone Socket features a powerful neodymium magnet and silicon center to provide a strong grip and smooth glide. The neodymium magnet is safe for use with all phones and tablets
  • Features 3M Primer. We recommend it be used when attaching the Ball Mount Component to a vinyl vehicle dash to create a durable bond
  • Magnetic Phone Socket still works with any other convenient metal surface. So you can attach your phone to refrigerator doors, metal shelving, filing cabinets, toolbox tops, even grocery cart handles-and keep it usable, secure, and easy

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