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Need some guidance on what happens next? We’re here to support you.
In line with government guidance and to keep our employees safe, all the Towergate Health & Protection offices are now closed but we remain available as we are all working from home, continuing to deliver the excellent standard of service our customers have come to expect.
We are experiencing a high number of phone calls at the moment, so please bear with us if it takes a bit longer than normal to get through to us.
Our normal phone lines are all still up and running but it might be easier to email us initially, due to the amount of calls we are receiving. We will let you know as and when the situation changes.
Stay safe and thank you for your continued support.
The NARPO travel policy
You’ve worked hard all your life and now deserve to enjoy your retirement.
Through Towergate Health & Protection and AXA PPP healthcare, we offer access to a travel policy with subscription rates just for NARPO members.
The plan is open to all NARPO members providing they reside in the UK.
New Members can join provided they are less than 85 years old at the point of joining, but once they have joined, there is no age limit.
For further details about the policy please contact Towergate Health & Protection on 0800 389 7724 or email haps-Narpoenquiries@towergate.co.uk Their office hours are Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm
Calls may be recorded for training and monitoring purposes.
As an independent intermediary to NARPO, Towergate Health & Protection provides you with a free service, to answer your questions about the different policies and to assist you with claims issues and offer advice.
Health and Protection Solutions Ltd trading as Towergate Health & Protection is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority’.
Please click here or further details about travel insurance for non-UK based NARPO members.
In general, travel insurers compensate for cancellations only under certain circumstances:
Many policies provide cover for cancellation and curtailment where the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice has changed after you purchased your policy or booked your trip, whichever is later. If you buy a policy for a destination where an outbreak has been reported or a travel advisory notice is already in place, then coronavirus claims are unlikely to be considered by your insurer.
If you have booked a package holiday, you should approach your tour operator in the first instance. If you are then passed in the direction of the insurer, each potential claim will be looked at on a case by case basis.
Your travel policy wording sets out exactly what is and isn’t covered. If you’re unsure about this or have questions, please call your adviser who will be happy to help.
You should monitor the situation through official sources such as:
Changes to travel from the 19th July 2021
Travel to and from an amber or green list country**
Holiday hopefuls have received the news well, and travel operators are already reporting a surge in holiday bookings.*** It is against this backdrop that we also expect to see a surge of interest in travel insurance policies.
While 18 months of pent up demand for foreign travel can finally be let loose, the travel insurance market of today looks very different to when the pandemic began. March 2020 saw almost half of UK travel insurance providers suspend the sale of new policies**** while making changes to their policies to protect themselves against the risk of Covid-19 and future pandemics. When insurers re-entered the travel insurance market a few months later, most had introduced policy exclusions for cancellations resulting from a pandemic, and many had restricted or removed any cover for travel disruption.
While insurers moved to limit their exposure to pandemic-related risk on new policies, there were claims on existing policies, and the Association of British Insurers predicted that travel insurance claims due to Covid-19 would eventually reach £275 million in 2020.***** While claims costs reached unprecedented levels, premium income collapsed as the travel insurance market shrunk by almost 50%. SAGA initially announced 300 job cuts in July 2020,****** before eventually confirming 1,400 job losses as the loss of income from their cruise operations also took its toll.*******
Some private medical insurance providers who also offered travel insurance chose to review their position, and in February 2021 Bupa announced it would end the sale and renewal of standalone travel insurance policies with effect from May 2021. Vitality has also confirmed they will cease to offer standalone travel insurance with effect from August 2021.
Independent to the Covid-19 situation, AXA Health has reviewed their position on providing standalone personal travel insurance and, as a result, will no longer be able to offer such products to our members. The good news is that AXA Health has agreed to renew existing policies for our members up until 30 April 2022 and to continue offering new policies until 31 October 2021. Members who have a private medical insurance (PMI) policy with AXA Health will continue to be able to include an element of travel insurance within their PMI policy.
While customers who purchase a new policy or renew an existing policy in 2021 will not be able to renew that policy after April 2022, this still represents an excellent opportunity to purchase or renew a policy that applies no premium loading or policy exclusions for pre-existing medical conditions, and so provides cover for pre-existing conditions provided the policyholder has not travelled against medical advice or FCDO advice. Policies provide cover for 12 months, so members who are not travelling this summer but who plan to travel in the winter or next year may well wish to purchase a policy, and take advantage of the generous underwriting terms, before AXA Health withdraw the policies from sale in the autumn.
As the impact of the vaccine roll-out changes the nature of the pandemic , and restrictions on foreign travel are lifted, this may be the time to look again at our AXA Health travel plan while it remains available to our members. If you want to find out more please contact our dedicated team at Towergate Health & Protection on 0800 389 7724 (Mon to Fri, 9am to 5pm).
Update 31st March 2021
As you may be aware, we offer our members the option to purchase Standalone Annual Travel insurance via our intermediary Towergate Health & Protection and the insurer AXA Health.
AXA Health has informed us via Towergate Health & Protection of its decision to cease providing this cover to NARPO members.
For members that have purchased standalone Travel Cover via Towergate Health & Protection, this means when their travel cover renews after 1st May 2021, it will be their final 12 months of cover with AXA Health. All affected members will be written to by AXA Health in good time before the renewal date with more detail about the impact on cover for the affected members.
Furthermore, AXA Health will cease to offer travel insurance via Towergate Health & Protection to NARPO members wishing to join (or re-join) the scheme from 31st October 2021.
We have instructed Towergate Health & Protection to source an alternate travel insurance product which can be purchased from them and we hope they will have this in place by summer 2021.
If you require any advice regarding either your existing travel policy, or if you are considering joining the travel insurance scheme, please contact Towergate Health & Protection on 0800 3897724 or email email@example.com .
Please note that any annual travel insurance purchased as an option on an AXA Health Private Medical Insurance plan will continue to renew as usual
Update 1st August 2020
AXA PPP healthcare are open for new business travel effective from 1st August 2020 with the addition of the pandemic exclusion
Please see the following link for further information
Update 1st June 2020
Important information about AXA PPP healthcare Annual Travel Insurance
In response to the current circumstances we’ve set out some additional options and specific considerations for you to think about.
Please use the following link to Coronavirus FAQ'S
On 16th March, Towergate received the following notification from AXA PPP :
We have been assessing the Covid -19 situation here at AXA PPP and now have a decision on how we move forward.
Most importantly now that COVID-19 has been classed as a pandemic, it is no longer viewed as an unforeseen event.
In line with other providers in the market, including AXA Insurance, we will use our existing policy terms to reject cancellation claims from members who booked their trip or purchased their travel insurance policy after 9am 14th March 2020 due to Covid-19.
We should warn any customer wishing to purchase travel insurance as a standalone cover or as an add on to one of our PMI policies that this is our position.
We have made this decision because cancellation as a result of COVID-19, is now considered something the member should reasonably have known about before they purchased their travel insurance or booked their overseas journey.
Cover on both new and existing travel policies will continue to include cover for medical treatment should a member choose to travel within FCO advice and fall ill with COVID-19. This is the case so long as the member was fit to travel.
NARPO is an Introducer Appointed Representative of Towergate Health & Protection. Health and Protection Solutions Ltd, trading as Towergate Health &Protection, is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
The NARPO travel and private medical insurance arrangement is underwritten by AXA PPP healthcare Limited. Registered in England number 3148119. Registered office: AXA PPP healthcare, 5 Old Broad Street, London, EC2N 1AD. AXA PPP healthcare is authorised by the Prudential Regulations Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.
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