corona travel insurance coverage comparison switzerland
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Swiss Travel Insurance Coronavirus Coverage Comparison

May 11, 2021 - Benjamin Manz

Are trip cancellations and interruptions caused by coronavirus covered by Swiss travel insurance? Find useful information and get a detailed comparison of the coronavirus coverage of Swiss travel insurance here.

Coronavirus vaccinations are finally well underway in Switzerland. Many residents of Switzerland can hardly wait to start travelling to other countries more frequently again. But would your travel insurance cover your losses if coronavirus or prevention measures prevented you from taking or continuing a trip as planned?

The independent Swiss online comparison service analyzed insurance terms and conditions and inquired at insurance providers to determine which hazards and situations are covered. Unless otherwise specified, the information provided here applies to annual travel insurance policies which cover all travel within a predefined insurance term.

Note: You can get a free, detailed comparison of the coronavirus coverage provided by each Swiss travel insurance offer at the foot of this article.

Scenario 1: Am I covered if I have to cancel my trip because I can’t travel due to catching the corona virus?

Yes. Practically all Swiss travel insurances cover losses resulting from a cancellation in this case – up to the sum insured by your policy. This is true even if the country you plan to travel to is on the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) risk list. Typically, you must be able to provide official test results proving you are corona positive.

Scenario 2: Am I covered if I cannot travel due to having to quarantine in Switzerland but am not corona positive?

Many Swiss travel insurance offers cover you if you are forced to cancel a trip due to having to quarantine (Note: This applies to individual quarantines and not general lockdowns). Quarantine coverage applies even if you are not coronavirus-positive yourself – such as when a member of your household tested positive for coronavirus.

Scenario 3: Am I covered if I cancel due to a person near me coming down with coronavirus?

Many insurers also cover cancellations when you cancel your trip dur to a person close to you (a family member, for example) coming down sick with the corona virus, even when you yourself are neither corona positive nor have to quarantine.

Scenario 4: Am I covered if I cancel my trip because I have concerns about travelling to my destination country?

No. Being worried about the coronavirus situation in your destination country or having concerns about how new regulations may impact you does not entitle you to claim reimbursement. Some insurers do cover cancellations if Swiss authorities place your destination country on the high-risk list after you book the trip.

Scenario 5: Am I insured against losses resulting from regulations in my destination country?

Losses caused by regulations in your destination country which were already in place at the time of booking your trip are generally not covered.

If your destination country implements new regulations after you book your trip – such as forbidding tourists from entering the country or instating long quarantine periods for new arrivals – then whether or not cancellations are covered varies between Swiss insurers.

Allianz Travel, Helvetia, HanseMerkur, Generali and ACS are among the insurance which do not cover cancellations due to regulations in destination countries.

Some insurance providers only cover cancellations of trips which were booked before certain dates, and only for countries which were not already deemed as high-risk by Swiss officials at the time of booking. ERV covers trips which were booked up until November 5, 2020. CSS covers trips booked up until March 12, 2020. AXA covers trips booked up until October 28, 2020.

Scenario 6: Am I covered if I cancel because I would have to quarantine upon returning to Switzerland?

When you book a trip, you run the risk that your destination country will be placed on the FOPH’s high-risk list before you travel. This would mean that you would have to quarantine when you return to Switzerland.

Would a cancellation be covered if you have to cancel because your work or other factors simply do not allow you to take time off to quarantine? Many insurers do not cover cancellations in this case. In many cases, this scenario falls under the same terms and conditions applicable to corona regulations in destination countries (see scenario 5).

Scenario 7: Am I covered if I cancel my trip due to a vaccination requirement in my destination country?

Some Swiss travel insurers cover cancellations when the airline or the country you are traveling to implements a vaccination requirement after your booking and getting the vaccine would pose a health risk.

Mobiliar and Generali are among the insurers which do not cover cancellation in this case. Some insurers like Zurich Insurance only cover cancellations due to vaccination requirements in very specific cases, such as when you are pregnant and the vaccine poses a risk to the unborn child. The supplementary insurance from ERV covers unexpected vaccination requirements in destination countries, if you are unable to get a vaccination on time to travel.

Scenario 8: Am I covered if I have to cancel due to a work colleague coming down with corona?

Many Swiss travel insurance offers cover your trip if you are forced to cancel because a work colleague who was meant to fill in for you during your trip contracts the corona virus. This does not only apply to coronavirus, but to any severe illness. AXA only covers coronavirus for this scenario if you took out your insurance policy before March 12, 2020.

Scenario 9: Am I insured against the risk of catching coronavirus while traveling?

If you contract the corona virus while travelling outside of Switzerland, most Swiss travel insurance policies will cover additional costs for accommodation, meals, and a return trip to Switzerland.

The amount of coverage provided varies broadly between insurance offers. There are also insurers like Generali which do not cover these costs at all in this case.

Emergency medical transportation and evacuation is typically covered by Swiss travel insurance – including when you get sick with the corona virus. But here too, there are major differences between insurers with regards to how much of these costs are covered.

Scenario 10: Am I insured if I am placed in quarantine while travelling in another country?

If you have to go into quarantine in your destination country, but do not have the corona virus yourself, then whether you are covered depends on the specific case and on your travel insurance.

Normally additional costs are only covered if the quarantine applies to you as an individual (due to coming into contact with a corona-positive person, for example), and not when it applies to a general group (all incoming travelers, for example). ERV, for example, covers up to 700 francs of additional costs (accommodation, for example) and also covers additional costs for a new return trip. The optional supplementary corona coverage from ERV extends the coverage to 3000 francs of additional costs per person.  

General quarantine requirements such as quarantines for incoming travelers or lockdowns of the generally public are typically not covered, or coverage is very limited. The travel insurance from Swiss motorist club TCS does cover the costs of extended stays in this case, up to 1000 francs per person.

Some Swiss travel insurance offers cover the costs of events or experience bookings which you are forced to forego due to having to quarantine, but only for bookings for which you cannot claim reimbursement from the event organizer or experience provider.

What should I pay attention to when choosing a travel insurance during these complex times?

Coverage for losses related to coronavirus and related health measures vary hugely from one travel insurance to another. It is also important to note that even when a certain hazard is covered, there can be major differences in the amount of financial compensation you can claim from one insurance to another.

Even when certain hazards or scenarios are not covered as per the insurance terms and conditions, it is still worth asking your insurance provider. Many Swiss insurers are quite accommodating with regards to losses incurred due to the coronavirus crisis. For example, Generali says that it carefully reviews each case individually.

The date on which you took out your travel insurance and the date on which you made a travel booking play important roles. Mobiliar, for example, states that all incidents related to COVID-19 are not covered if you took out your travel insurance policy after March 16, 2020.

The entire situation for travel is subject to change at any time due to coronavirus and prevention measures – and travel insurance provides have been updating their terms and conditions in keeping with changes. Even the information provided by insurers and included in this article may no longer apply in the future if insurers change their terms and conditions.

What is the difference between trip cancellation insurance and trip interruption insurance?

Annual travel insurance policies typically include two primary components: trip cancellation insurance and trip interruption insurance. Trip cancellation insurance covers losses incurred due to cancelling a booked trip before traveling. Trip interruption insurance covers losses you incur during your trip.

This differentiation also applies to coverage which applies to coronavirus hazards. If you do not have trip interruption insurance, then losses incurred after beginning your trip are not normally covered.

Does travel insurance also cover local travel inside Switzerland?

Yes. Most Swiss travel insurance offers cover both local travel inside Switzerland and international travel outside of Switzerland. However, some insurance offers have limitations for local travel. For example, Cembra Money Bank’s travel insurance only covers travel you if your travel destination is at least 150 kilometers from your primary residence or if you have booked accommodation away from home ahead of your trip.

How can I find the best travel insurance for my needs?

When you take out single-trip travel insurances like those offered by airlines and online travel portals, make sure to check whether or not the insurance covers the most important risks related to coronavirus before you buy the insurance. Buying insurance which does not cover these risks is hardly worth it.

With annual travel insurance – which is generally worth getting if you take more than one big trip per year – you should compare the costs and coverages before you sign up. The easiest way to do this is with the interactive travel insurance comparison on

As long as coronavirus is still an issue, you should also compare the coverage for all possible corona-related scenarios before taking out a new travel insurance policy. You can easily do that using the coronavirus-coverage comparison which you can get as a free PDF at the foot of this article.

How do I claim reimbursement for covered expenses from my travel insurance provider?

Normally you first have to claim reimbursement from travel agents, transportation providers, and airlines. Typically, your travel insurance will only reimburse bookings which are not reimbursed by travel service providers.

Example: SWISS states that it will reimburses passengers for cancellations resulting from travel bans in destination countries. In this case you do not need to claim reimbursement from your travel insurance.

Even if the travel service provider does not refund the money and the insurer is not required to reimburse your losses as per the terms and conditions of your policy, there is still hope. Some Swiss travel insurance providers have been quite accommodating since the start of the coronavirus crisis. Contacting your insurer and asking about your specific situation is generally a good move.

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Expert Benjamin Manz
Benjamin Manz is CEO of and an independent expert on banking and finance.