Jamaica shows the way

By | Category: Travel destinations

Mandatory insurance provision has been considered by many countries.

Jamaican beach
Now even more inviting with “Jamaica Cares”

Thailand, a few years ago, considered providing free travel insurance to entice travellers and holidaymakers to return to the country after the red and yellow shirt protests a few years ago. Tunisia is thought to have considered a similar move to attract British holidaymakers after the terrorist attacks of 2015.

But whilst some destinations have offered free testing during the pandemic, none have yet gone as far as Jamaica is doing to attract us to visit during this coming winter sun season.

It has introduced the ‘Jamaica Cares’ policy which will cost about $40 (just over £30 per person). The compulsory fee will be collected when a passenger applies for a Travel Authorization Permit.

Launching today, it provides the holidaymaker with medical cover on the island, any transport required, field rescue, evacuation and repatriation for medical emergencies including Covid-19.

The cover includes:

  • Case management, transport logistics, field rescue, evacuation, and repatriation for medical emergencies, including COVID-19 and other crises up to and including natural disasters
  • International health coverage up to $100,000 USD for visitors traveling to and from Jamaica
  • On-island health coverage up to $50,000 USD.

With safety almost being the top priority when travellers are asked on surveys, the sticking point for many travellers has been the insufficient coverage offered by many travel insurance companies.

The Jamaica Cares policy gets over much of the perceived problems once the passenger arrives on the island but, for a family of four, $160 might be a bit of a deterrent.

If Jamaica shows an upturn in tourist numbers after the implementation then surely other destinations will look at introducing similar policies as a way of kick-starting tourism again.

Travel insurance companies, on the other hand, will be looking to see if this will take business away from them. In that case they might include similar provisions at more reasonable charges than many currently make.

Potential travellers to the island are reminded that the entry policy is due for review so check with the UK Travel advisory service or the Jamaican Tourist Board before you book to see what the rules are.

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