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Virgin Money offers solid value across a number of travel insurance plans that cater to a range of needs, from those on a budget up through premium holiday cover. All plans include the three critical aspects of holiday cover: Cancellation, Emergency Medical and Baggage. Plus, you'll get cover for Delayed Departure and Scheduled Airline Failure on most plans, and Winter Sports included on most Annual, Multi-Trip policies. Read our review to learn about features and prices of Virgin Money travel insurance—plus we'll explain the main differences between buying direct from the Virgin Money site versus buying through a comparison site, to help you decide where to buy.
- Virgin Money Overall Review
- Virgin Money Price Comparison
- How Virgin Money Plans Differ on Comparison Sites
- Virgin Money Features, Policy Limits and Coverage Options
- Virgin Money Policy Wording
There is no "best" travel insurance—the best for you will depend on factors like price points and features that you might find valuable. Please use the information in this review to help you narrow your choices.
Virgin Money Travel Insurance Review: What You Need to Know
Virgin Money offers a series of holiday cover plans for reasonable prices, to suit those wanting a budget plan with just £1,500 of Cancellation and £1,000 of Baggage all the way up to those with more luxury holidays needing up to £7,500 for Cancellation and £3,000 of Baggage cover per person.
The cheapest Virgin Money travel insurance is the "Economy" plan, which is only available through comparison sites. The top-tier plan is the "Gold" plan, and this is only available directly from Virgin Money. Here's a high-level overview of their plans:
|Plan Names||Medical Expenses||Cancellation||Baggage|
|From Comparison Sites|
|Direct from Virgin Money|
Trip Cancellation, Emergency Medical, Legal Assistance, Personal Accident and Personal Belongings/Baggage are included on all policies—as is Scheduled Airline Failure. But end supplier failure is only on Premium and Gold plans (the top tier from comparison sites and direct).
Even the lowest tier plan includes some Missed Departure and Baggage Delay cover. However, there's no protection against natural disasters such as tsunamis, earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions (including volcanic ash clouds), hurricanes, etc.
Like many other travel cover plans, kids basically go free (up to 3 children under the age of 18, per insured adult).
For those heading to the slopes, Winter Sports is optional now (they used to include it on annual plans). In terms of other travel insurance add-ons, cruise-specific cover is not an option on Virgin Money travel insurance, so if you're going on a cruise you may want to consider other holiday cover providers for access to features like Cabin Confinement, Unused Excursions and Missed Port.
Pre-Existing Conditions: As part of the online application you'll be asked a series of brief medical questions. If you have a medical condition, Virgin Money may be able to offer cover for some pre-existing medical conditions, for which you'll probably be required to pay a higher premium. Pre-existing conditions are only covered if they've been fully declared, accepted and paid for.
Covid: Virgin offers pretty good Covid benefits. Here's a sample of what's covered, extending Cancellation and Curtailment cover.
- You, Your Relative, a member of Your household or travelling companion or a friend with whom You had arranged to stay has a diagnosis of COVID-19 within 14 days of Your booked departure date, as certified by a Medical Practitioner following a medically approved test showing a positive result for COVID-19.
- You being denied boarding on Your prebooked outbound travel due to You contracting COVID-19, as certified by a Medical Practitioner following a medically approved test showing a positive result for COVID-19 or having a confirmed temperature above 38 degrees Celsius.
- Death of Your Relative or a member of Your household living in the United Kingdom contracting COVID-19, as certified by a Medical Practitioner following a medically approved test showing a positive result for COVID-19 or having a confirmed temperature above 38 degrees Celsius.
- The hospitalisation as a result of COVID-19 for treatment with mechanical ventilation, of Your Relative or a member of Your household living in the United Kingdom.
How do Virgin Money Travel Insurance Prices Compare?
Virgin Money travel insurance premiums are in line with market averages. Only Virgin's top-tier Black plans cost more than the average cost of holiday cover (shown by yellow bars in the charts below), whether you're travelling to geographies like Europe or America. Given that Baggage and Travel Delay are covered on all plans, we think Virgin Money offers solid value for money.
However, insurance quotes can vary significantly from day to day and according to each individual's details, so please just use this data for general educational purposes only about the travel insurance market; your quotes may reflect a large degree of variation.
Buying Direct vs Using a Comparison Site
There are two ways to buy a Virgin Money travel insurance policy: direct from Virgin Money or via a comparison site like MoneySuperMarket. Broadly speaking, the cheapest plan is Economy, which is only available from comparison sites; the plan with the highest cover is the Gold plan, only available from Virgin Money direct.
There are pros and cons to both sources in terms of features and price points. We'll try to explain the differences to help you understand whether buying direct or through an aggregator (e.g., a comparison site) better suits your individual needs.
If the lower limits of the Economy or Standard plan are good enough for your needs then you can probably save money buying through the comparison site because our research revealed that the cost of Virgin Money's "cheapest" cover from each source can easily be 40% to 50% cheaper when buying through the comparison site—that is, Economy plans are consistently cheaper than Red plans.
Benefits of Buying via Comparison Site
If you're after a budget travel insurance plan, the cheapest holiday cover from Virgin Money is the Essential Plus plan, which is available only on comparison sites. Depending on details like geographic cover, you'll probably find cheaper plans on comparison site, but for a given level of cancellation cover, you might get higher limits in some other areas. For example, Red (direct) has £3,000 of cancellation as does Premium (comparison site), but Premium has higher limits for emergency medical, personal accident, personal possessions, financial failure, missed departure and more. But Red has higher travel delay benefits. And the excess is twice as much on the Premium plan. Also, direct plans include some level of gadget cover (and you can buy more), but comparison site plans only cover gadgets if you buy the add on. So there are trade offs.
Types of Virgin Money Travel Insurance Policies
Virgin Money offers five tiers of travel insurance—Economy, Standard, Premium, Red, Silver and Gold. The first three (Economy, Standard, Premium) can be purchased on a comparison site; Red, Silver and Gold are available direct from Virgin Money. All policies include Emergency Medical, Baggage and Cancellation/Curtailment.
Winter Sports cover can be added to Single Trip plans for an additional cost but is INCLUDED in Annual, Multi-Trip plans.
The upper age limits vary depending on whether you buy direct or through an aggregator site. Plans bought from comparison sites have lower upper age limits, so people in their 70s or above may have better success buying direct.
Age Limits When You Take Out a Virgin Money Travel Insurance Policy
|Upper age limits||Single trip policies||Annual policies|
|Comparison Site||85||no upper age limit|
While you can take as many trips as you want each year with a Virgin Money Annual, Multi-Trip policy, there are limits on trip length, depending on your age.
Virgin Money Trip Lengths for Annual Policies Vary According to Policy Type
- Economy: 31 days
- Standard: 31 days
- Premium: 45 days
- Red: 31 days
- Silver: 45 days
- Gold: 94 days
Single trips are limited to 90 days, unless agreed by them in writing.
Here is a quick, high-level recap of what's on offer from comparison sites and direct:
|Plan Names||Cover Limits|
|From Comparison Sites||Medical Expenses||Cancellation||Baggage|
|Direct from Virgin Money|
For further information, please review the policy documents. If you would like us to go into more depth here, please let us know in the comments section at the bottom of this review!
Gadget and Valuables Extension:
Direct plans receive some level of gadget cover (e.g. for loss up to £500 for Red and Silver and £750 for Gold); plans bought from a comparison site don't include gadget as standard. But prior to leaving your home area, if you pay the appropriate extra premium Virgin Money can extend your cover to:
|Gadget Extension Benefit||Sum insured||Excess|
|Comparison site policies|
|Economy, Standard and Premium||up to £1,000||£100 (£0 for loss)|
|Red||up to £1,000||£100 (£0 for loss)|
|Silver||up to £2,000||£75 (£0 for loss)|
|Gold||£3,000||£50 (£0 for loss)|
Unauthorised usage is limited to £1,000 for all options.
Here are some highlights of features available on Virgin Money travel insurance policies. Standard features like Medical and Personal Liability are also included on Virgin Money policies, limits for which can be found below in the Policy Limits section. For more complete details like inner limits and exclusions, please refer to the policy documents.
|Virgin Money Travel Insurance Features|
|Trip Cancellation||Cover for travel and accommodation expenses that you have paid or have agreed to pay under a contract and which you cannot get back, including any local prepaid excursions, tours or activities, if you cannot avoid cancelling or cutting your trip short; reasonable extra travel costs if necessary to cut short your trip; valid reasons include death or illness, redundancy, home damage, court cases, etc. (Theft or loss of passports/travel documents is not a valid reason to claim under cancellation.)|
|Travel Delay||Cover for every full 12 hour delay should you eventually go on the trip, for booked outward or final return international journeys (by aircraft, ship, cruise ship, coach or cross-channel train) that are delayed because of a strike or industrial action, poor weather conditions or a mechanical breakdown.|
|Trip Abandonment||If you have to abandon your outward trip as a result of a delay of at least 12 hours where the delay has been caused by strike or industrial action, poor weather conditions or a mechanical breakdown, Virgin Money will pay for your unused travel and accommodation expenses, including any local prepaid excursions, tours or activities, up to the limits after any amount that you can get back is taken off.|
|Missed Departure||Cover for the extra reasonable costs of travel and accommodation you need to continue your trip if you cannot reach the original departure point of your trip on the outward or final return journey, as a result of public transport services failing (due to poor weather conditions, a strike, industrial action or a mechanical breakdown) or the vehicle you are travelling in being stuck in traffic, involved in an accident or having a mechanical breakdown. (Does not include your vehicle running out of petrol, oil or water, or having a flat tyre or battery.)|
|Catastrophe||Natural disasters and civic unrest are NOT covered as standard. However, delays or trip abandonment (and in some cases missed departure) due to poor weather conditions may be covered.|
|Scheduled Airline Failure||Included on all plans (up to £2,500)|
|End Supplier Failure||Cover for Premium (through a comparison site) and Gold (purchased direct) for the irrecoverable loss of unused pre-paid expenses as a result of insolvency or financial failure of a company for the following services associated with your trip booked independently by you (not part of a tour operator's package): hotel, train operator including Eurostar, car ferries, villas abroad and cottages in the UK, coach operator, car or camper hire company, caravan sites, campsites, mobile home, safaris, excursions, Eurotunnel, theme parks or attractions.|
|Golf||OPTIONAL add on for direct plans or Gold plans purchased from a comparison site|
|Cruise||OPTIONAL cruise specific cover for single trips only (e.g., Cabin confinement, Emergency airlift to hospital, Missed port, Unused excursion)|
|Winter Sports||OPTIONAL on Annual, Multi-Trip plans with varying levels of cover; OPTIONAL extra on Single Trip plans|
|Personal Belongings/Baggage||Personal belongings and baggage cover included on all policies; possible 10% deduction for age (of your belongings, not you!), wear and tear|
|Scuba Diving||Covered up to a depth of 30 metres (qualified divers)|
Bottom Line: We like that all Virgin Money plans include Baggage, which is the most common reason to claim on holiday cover. A range of reasonably-priced plans mean there's cover for a variety of customer profiles, from those heading on a cheap and cheerful holiday in the sun to those who have more at risk for a premium holiday.