Coronavirus has seen an explosion in demand for travel policies

Direct Line is the latest insurer to temporarily stop selling travel policies amid the coronavirus outbreak.

In a statement, the insurer said it had experienced ”a huge increase in demand for travel insurance”.

“Therefore we have taken the difficult decision to temporarily suspend the sale of travel insurance to new customers so that we can focus on our existing customers.

“We have not taken this decision lightly and we carefully considered many different options prior to reaching this decision.

“For our customers who already hold a travel insurance policy with us there is no change and they can continue to contact us to make a claim or amend their policy.

“We remain committed to the travel insurance market and would reiterate that this is a temporary measure and we will continue to monitor the situation closely”.

It joins a host of other insurers that have decided to suspend policy or add-on sales, including Insureandgo, Churchill, LV=, Aviva, and Zurich.

Temporary measure

This afternoon, Aviva additionally confirmed that it was revising its travel insurance offering for direct customers - from 3pm today, the insurer will not be selling travel insurance to new customers.

Described as a “temporary” measure, the firm said this will impact its single and multi-trip travel insurance products.

In a statement, Aviva said: ”Following a review of the evolving risks posed by coronavirus, we have decided that it is necessary to make some changes to the travel insurance we can offer our direct customers at this challenging time.

”Travel insurance is designed to cover unforeseen events and coronavirus is a known event which creates a high likelihood that customers’ travel plans will be affected.

”For new customers, we have therefore made the decision to pause the sale of Aviva’s travel insurance from 3pm on 13 March 2020. We envisage that this decision, affecting Aviva’s single and multi-trip travel insurance, will be a temporary action. We will continue to monitor the situation closely.

”In addition, as coronavirus is a known event, Aviva travel insurance customers booking trips may not be covered on their multi-trip policies for cancellation and abandonment, depending on their destination.”