Holidaymakers who missed their airline flights because of the petrol crisis are unlikely to be able to claim on their holiday insurance.

Claims for cancellations and missed departures are being assessed on a case-by-case basis by travel insurers, but several have said they will not accept the fuel crisis as a valid reason for paying compensation.

Primary Insurance said in a statement that it would consider cases if the insured was unable to reach the airport for their outward journey, but: “This will be in the event of failure of public transport, or accident, or breakdown of their vehicle, but it does not include cases where the individual's own vehicle has run out of fuel en route.”

A spokeswoman for Bishopsgate said that the delays caused by the fuel crisis would be excluded under its labour disputes clause.

Those insured with Columbus would not have faired any better. A spokeswoman for the company said those driving to airports during the fuel crisis were taking the risk of missing their flight upon themselves.