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The new pandemic policies to be sold through Manulife and its distribution network beginning in October will be available to Canadians travelling both within the country and to international destinations — including those with a government-issued level 3 travel advisory to avoid all non-essential travel.
A spokesperson for the insurer said the new policies will be priced individually based on the age of the client, what plan they qualify for, and the duration of their trip.
In a statement, Manulife said the policies will provide emergency medical coverage including additional coverage specific to COVID-19 and conditions related to the respiratory illness, and will also cover travellers in the event of an unexpected quarantine due to the pandemic under the umbrella of trip interruption benefits.
“Manulife understands that some Canadians have family, business and other important reasons for travelling in-country and to global destinations,” the insurer said in the statement, adding that the specialized coverage will assist them if they encounter the virus while away.
The Canadian government has advised travellers to check their insurance coverage if they do decide or need to travel, and to consider buying a cancel-for-any-reason (CFAR) policy top-up to ensure they are covered for expenses related to the pandemic.
Manulife said its new pandemic policies — which could be an alternative to a CFAR top-up — will provide coverage of up to $200,000 per insured person for emergency medical coverage for COVID-19 and related conditions if they test positive while at their destination, and emergency air transport to return home if needed.