Can I get travel insurance that covers being put on the no-fly list?
June 13, 2005 1:36 PM   Subscribe

Can I get travel insurance that covers being put on the no-fly list?

My wife and I are heading to Mexico in November for our anniversary. Having never actually been anywhere together, this raises some concerns in my paranoid little mind. One of which is this...
We plan on getting travel insurance, due to the uncertainties of life. Most of the plans seem alike...coverage for most common events (death, sickness, loss of job, etc) However, times being what they are, I have begun to wonder what would happen if we get to the airport only to discover, for some bizarre reason, one of us has made it onto the no-fly list. This would really put the hurts to our anniversary trip as well as our pocketbook.
So...anyone have any insight to this? Can I get travel insurance that covers this extreme possibility?
posted by Thorzdad to Travel & Transportation (7 answers total)
 
Get travel insurance that covers trip cancellation - that should take care of it, without getting into specifics.
posted by annathea at 3:36 PM on June 13, 2005


Actually, in the ones I found, they fully enumerate what kinds of cancellation they cover, and being barred by security seems like it wouldn't be:
In the event You are prevented from taking Your Trip because: (a) You or Your Traveling Companion suffers a death or an Injury or Sickness which results in medically imposed restrictions, as certified by a Physician, at the time of loss preventing Your continued participation in the covered Trip, or a non-traveling Immediate Family member suffers an Injury, Sickness, or death; or (b) You or Your Traveling Companion (i) is hijacked, quarantined, required to serve on a jury, or subpoenaed; (ii) has a home made uninhabitable by fire, flood, volcano, earthquake, hurricane, or other natural disaster; or (iii) is directly involved in a documented traffic accident while en route to departure; (iv) are delayed or have arrangements cancelled by a Common Carrier due to delays resulting from inclement weather, mechanical breakdown, or organized labor strikes that affect public transportation, provided (a) the scheduled carrier connecting times must be no less than ninety (90) minutes or longer; and (b) the scheduled time between arrival at the Scheduled Tour Departure City and the scheduled Trip departure must be four (4) hours or longer; (vi) being called into active military service to provide aid or relief in the event of a natural disaster; or (vii) has a transfer of employment of 250 miles or more; the Insurer will pay benefits up to Your total Trip cost for:
posted by smackfu at 3:45 PM on June 13, 2005


Note that the insurance policy shown above doesn't cover a situation where the airline simply stops flying due to financial problems.

I'd give very long odds that none of the other 10-20,000 MeFi's are on the no-fly list, and neither are you. At least 10,000 to one.

(So all you need to do is find someone you know who is as confident as I am, and make a bet. You'll certainly lose your dollar or two, but - assuming you're sure that the other person will pay you should you in fact be on the no-fly list, you'll have insurance of sorts, I guess.
posted by WestCoaster at 5:21 PM on June 13, 2005


Does the airline not give you a refund if you are prohibited from flying? Seems like you should be able to raise hell and get your money back from them.
posted by reverendX at 5:46 PM on June 13, 2005


Does the airline not give you a refund if you are prohibited from flying?
Good question. Out of all the tales I've read, I've not heard whether they get their money back. I would bet not. They are generally non-refundable for any reason (thus the need for insurance) Certainly, if you miss your flight due to being searched (and released) it seems the airlines do what they can to get you on another flight, but having to cancel your flight due to being on the list...sounds like free money for the airline to me.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:48 PM on June 13, 2005


My dad worked as a ticket agent for a major airline, and said that while he's not 100% sure, he is relatively certain that they would indeed refund the ticket for someone on the no-fly list.

As for the concern mentioned by WestCoaster - a part of the Patriot Act included a provision that, should an airline go under for financial reasons, the other carriers are required to honor any tickets from the failed carrier. You would end up flying at the very bottom of the stand-by list, but you would eventually get where you needed to go. Frequent flier mileage holders are screwed, though, so if you've been saving all those United miles for awhile, now might be a good time for that long-postponed trip to Hawaii.
posted by robhuddles at 9:37 PM on June 13, 2005


Does the airline not give you a refund if you are prohibited from flying?
Even if they do give him a refund, the airline probably won't give his wife a refund for her ticket, and they would also be out any pre-paid hotel, tours, etc.

By the way, thanks for giving me one more thing to be paranoid about the next time I fly.
posted by clarissajoy at 1:18 PM on June 14, 2005


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