Credit cards with travel insurance for 2022

Does your credit card come with travel insurance as an added perk? Find out here.

Credit cards have a number of benefits. Perhaps the most obvious is that they can help you break down the cost of an expensive purchase into more manageable payments over several months – ideally interest-free. But some also come with a range of perks, such as travel insurance.

However, rather than being offered comprehensive travel insurance with your credit card, you’re most likely to be offered ‘travel accident insurance’. This will cover accidental death or accidents resulting in a permanent injury. How much cover you get will depend on the card and whether you need to pay an annual fee.

Here’s what you need to know.

Which credit cards offer free travel accident insurance?

Some of the credit cards that offer free travel accident insurance are outlined below. You’ll notice that all of these are American Express cards:

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold credit card

The Amex Preferred Rewards Gold credit card has an annual fee of £140 (£0 in the first year) and offers:

  • Travel accident insurance of £250,000 for accidental death or accidents resulting in complete loss of or permanent loss of use of limb, sight, speech or hearing while travelling on a public vehicle where the ticket was bought on the card account.
  • Cover for flight delays, overbooking or missed connections of up to £200 if no alternative is made available within 4 hours of the published departure time.
  • Baggage delay cover of up to £200 per person for reimbursement costs of essential items if your checked in baggage has not arrived at your destination within 4 hours of your arrival. This limit increases by an additional £200 if your baggage does not arrive within 48 hours of your arrival.

American Express Platinum Cashback Everyday credit card

The Amex Platinum Cashback Everyday credit card has no annual fee and offers:

  • Travel accident insurance of £150,000 for accidental death or accidents resulting in complete loss of or permanent loss of use of limb, sight, speech or hearing while travelling on a public vehicle where the ticket was bought on the card account.

Travel delays are not covered.

British Airways American Express credit card

The British Airways American Express credit card has no annual fee and offers:

  • Travel accident insurance of £75,000 for accidental death or accidents resulting in complete loss of or permanent loss of use of limb, sight, speech or hearing while travelling on a public vehicle where the ticket was bought on the card account.

Travel delays are not covered.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus credit card

The British Airways American Express Premium Plus credit card has a £250 annual fee and offers:

  • Travel accident insurance of £250,000 for accidental death or accidents resulting in complete loss of or permanent loss of use of limb, sight, speech or hearing while travelling on a public vehicle where the ticket was bought on the card account.
  • Cover for flight delays, overbooking or missed connections of up to £200 if no alternative is made available within 4 hours of the published departure time. Up to an additional £400 is payable for overbookings only if alternative arrangements are not provided within 6 hours.
  • Baggage delay cover of up to £750 for reimbursement of costs of essential items following baggage delay by an airline for 6 hours. Up to an additional £1,000 is available if baggage has not arrived within 48 hours of your arrival time.

American Express Rewards credit card

The Amex Rewards credit card has no annual fee and offers:

  • Travel accident insurance of £150,000 for accidental death or accidents resulting in complete loss of or permanent loss of use of limb, sight, speech or hearing while travelling on a public vehicle where the ticket was bought on the card account.

Travel delays are not covered.

Benefits of paying for a holiday on a credit card

Although you won’t get full travel insurance with your credit card, paying for a holiday on a credit card gives you protection through Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. This means that if your holiday costs more than £100 and up to £30,000, and you paid either a deposit or the full price on your credit card, you should be able to claim your money back if something goes wrong. Examples include if your airline or holiday company goes under or if the trip isn’t as described.

The cost of your flights or holiday must be more than £100 to be covered, but you don’t have to have paid more than £100 on the credit card to qualify. Instead, it’s the cash price of the holiday or flights that matters. Provided your holiday cost more than £100, even if you only paid a deposit of £50 on your credit card and paid the rest in cash or on a debit card, you’ll still be covered for the full amount.

What is covered?

Under Section 75, you’ll be covered against the following:

  • The travel company, airline or accommodation provider going bust
  • The holiday not being as described
  • Your travel provider cancelling the holiday
  • Additional expenses that you have to pay for through no fault of your own – for example, if you have to pay for more expensive flights to get home after an airline goes bust

What isn’t covered?

Section 75 won’t cover you in the following circumstances:

  • You decide not to take your holiday
  • You withdrew cash on your credit card to pay for the holiday
  • An additional cardholder paid for a holiday that the primary cardholder won’t be going on
  • You bought your holiday through intermediaries such as PayPal – although this will depend on the seller. Note that if you bought your holiday through a travel agent, your ability to claim on Section 75 will depend on who took your payment and what it was for. If the travel agent sold you a package holiday that they put together, you will usually be covered as the travel agent is party to the contract.

How to file a claim with a credit card issuer

Section 75 means that your credit card company is jointly liable with the holiday firm if something goes wrong. If you need to make a claim, it’s generally best to approach the holiday company first to see if they can help. But if they don’t reply, or if you are able to contact them because they have gone into administration, for example, you can go straight to your credit card company.

The process of making a Section 75 claim can vary depending on the provider. In some cases, you can do this through your mobile banking app or by speaking to someone via an online chat service. In other cases, you will need to contact your card provider by phone or by filling in an online form.

When you make your claim, it’s important to include as much detail as possible, as well as any receipts of your purchase. If you’ve already approached the holiday firm, include any evidence of this if you can. Explain what you would like your credit card provider to do, which will usually be to issue you with a full refund, and keep a record of all communication.

If you cannot resolve the issue with either the holiday or card company, you can contact the Financial Ombudsman Service which can independently assess the case. You must do this within six months of your claim being rejected.

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