WestJet, Canada’s second largest airline, is now offering complimentary COVID-19 insurance for eligible passengers for travel to and from the US, Europe, the UK, Mexico and the Caribbean until August 31, 2021. The carrier joins Air Canada in offering free Covid-19 insurance in an effort to boost sales as more Canadians elect to stay home or travel domestically to avoid Canada’s 14-day quarantine for international travelers.
Originally WestJet’s insurance did not include US coverage but will now cover travel to the United States. On September 25, 2020 WestJet announced that “guests travelling to, through or from the United States are now eligible for the airline’s enhanced $200,000 CAD COVID-19 travel insurance coverage for air-only and vacation reservations. The enhanced coverage will retroactively include all bookings made as of September 18, 2020 and will increase by $100,000 CAD to include up to a maximum of $200,000 CAD at no additional charge to eligible guests.”
Eligible bookings include any WestJet air-only reservation, including WestJet Vacations bookings for travel to and from the U.S., Mexico, the Caribbean, Europe (including U.K.) and inbound to Canada. These trips will be eligible for coverage for up to 21 days for travel into and including August 31, 2021. For one-way travel reservations, coverage is available for up to seven days.
Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer, said that “Our research shows that a lack of COVID insurance is a considerable barrier to travel and our guests were seeking the inclusion of U.S. destinations to our travel insurance offering. Eligible guests travelling to and from the destinations we serve can now have an added layer of confidence knowing they are covered for up to $200,000 CAD against unforeseen medical costs related to COVID-19 when booking with WestJet.”
Here is an overview of what is covered by WestJet Covid-19 insurance:
- New round-trip bookings including WestJet Vacations packages will be eligible for coverage up to 21 days
- New one-way bookings will be eligible for coverage for up to seven days
- Emergency medical and hospital costs for outbound travellers if diagnosed with COVID-19 while outside of Canada for up to a maximum limit of $200,000 CAD per insured person.
- Emergency medical and hospital costs for inbound travellers visiting Canada diagnosed with COVID-19 while in Canada up to the maximum limit of $200,000 CAD per insured person.
- Quarantine accommodation costs when the traveller tests positive for COVID-19 on the trip up to $150 CAD per insured person (or up to $300/day per immediate family),per day to a maximum of 14 days for inbound and outbound reservations.
- Ambulance transportation and air evacuation costs related to COVID-19, up to the maximum limit of $200,000 CAD per insured person for inbound and outbound guests.
- COVID-19 repatriation costs in case of death of up to $5,000 CAD per insured person for inbound and outbound guests.
- One-way economy airfare for the return of one travelling companion and dependent children when air evacuated back home for treatment.
- COVID-19 related insurance coverage will apply to any eligible itinerary that includes at least one flight operated by WestJet (code 838). You will qualify for coverage regardless of whether your first flight was operated by WestJet or by one of WestJet’s code share partners so long as your booking was ticketed on WestJet and includes a flight operated by WestJet.
- If you purchased your ticket on a WestJet-operated flight from another airline, even if that airline is a code-share partner airline of WestJet, you will not be eligible for coverage.
The complimentary insurance is not available for travel including cruises. You can read full details on WestJet’s insurance program on their website.