Humorous, harrowing & heroic travel insurance claims from 2020

Snakes in a villa

A faulty electric breaker in your Indonesian vacation villa is bad enough, but running into a venomous cobra while exiting the pitch-dark dwelling makes turns it into nightmare material. The snake was eventually caught, but power couldn’t be properly restored.
The quite anxious, and rightly so, travelers decided to stay in a villa with no power, and the possibility of more snakes popping up, was a no-go. They found accommodations elsewhere and changed flights.

(Credit: Libor Sojka)

Kitesurfer lands into feral dog beach rumble

While taking in the majestic beauty of the Thailand coast via kiteboard, a traveler headed out of the water to use the restroom only to find themselves in the midst of a stray dog beach battle. In the ensuing melee the kite was completely ripped, resulting in a claim payment of $650.

(Credit: MakanaCreative)

Canceled due to bushfire

A bushfire emergency resulted in a flight cancelation, as the traveler — a member of the Australian Navy — was called in to fight the blaze.

(Credit: Petar B photography/

Flood claim prompts travel claim

While on vacation a couple received word that a water pipe had burst in their home and caused flooding. Needing to rush to the house to call their home insurance agent, the coupled canceled the rest of their trip, including accommodations. The claim travel insurance claim paid $1,337.
There was no further news reported regarding the home insurance claim.

(Credit: Robert Kneschke/

‘Bite-and-run’ gran, pooch accomplice strike traveler

For many, a European holiday is a dream trip. The lights of Paris. The ruins of Roman. The vicious dogs and their elderly owners in other exotic locales. The last one might not be listed in any edition of Frommer’s, but for one unlucky traveler that is how their European trip unraveled.

While out on a morning run, the voyager was attacked by a dog and bitten. The dog was being walked on a leash by an elderly woman, who immediately fled the scene. The traveler went to the hospital to get patched up from the bite, which led to multiple follow-up treatments in Europe and the person’s home country.

(Credit: Nigmatulina Aleksandra/

Indonesian monkey gangs targeting tourists

Indonesian tourists are having unsavory encounters with local primates. In one incident, a hiker in the wild was sprung upon by a monkey, which took the person’s sunglasses and tossed them off a nearby cliff. In an unrelated incident, a group of travelers was repeatedly attacked by a band of wild monkeys in an Indonesian forest. The primates assaulted the tourist and stole personal items from their bags on more than one occasion. The claim paid $890.

(Credit: LindaPhotography/

Safe to say not many had a “normal” travel experience during 2020. For some voyagers, though, pandemic protocols were just the start of the unusual as they battled snakes, monkeys and feral dogs for a bit of R&R.

With the pandemic pushing closer to the periphery, consumers are showing their eagerness to resume traveling. While travel is returning, so are hotel and airline cancellation and change fees, making travel insurance more crucial, according to Sasha Gainullin, CEO of battleface, Inc.

On top of this, nearly half of Americans have paid fees or other costs associated with a trip that would have been covered by insurance, according to a survey from the travel insurance provider.

“We are confident that COVID-19 has brought on a shift in the way Americans perceive travel insurance and that soon purchasing insurance for any kind of trip will be as normal and ingrained in the traveler’s mind as selecting a seat for a flight,” Gainullin said in a release.

The above slideshow highlights the most bizarre travel claims Cover-More received in 2020.


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