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Travel insurance will not cover declined visas

26 January 2009 21:05

Travel insurance will not cover declined visas

Gap year travel insurance providers will not cover backpackers who have their visas for entry into the US declined, it has been warned.

According to, those who choose to wait until the "last minute" to fill their forms on the day of travel will not be protected by their backpacking travel insurance provider if they are rejected.

Peter Smith, head of flights at the online comparison service, urged people to fill in their US visa applications online at least 72 hours in advance to give themselves time should any issues arise.

"Your travel insurance will not support you if your visa has been declined," he explained, adding that travellers will still have the opportunity to apply at the last minute if that is something they "have to do".

Mr Smith's comments were made in response to the commencement of the US Visa Waiver Programme's new Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA).

As of this week, eligible nationals from the UK who do not require a visa for trips into the US lasting less than 90 days must apply online for an electronic passport.

Despite the widespread promotion of the new system, a poll from conducted earlier this month revealed that 57 per cent of travellers were not aware of the ESTA.

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