Kiwis travelling to Hong Kong can no longer get insurance cover that will pay out if their travel is disrupted by the protests with several major insurers.

And for those who have already got insurance any claims related to the protests will be dependent on when they bought the policy and the exact wording of the policies.

Travel through Hong Kong airport has been disrupted for days as protesters have stormed the international airport's terminals forcing flights to be cancelled.

Kiwis planning to travel to the Chinese territory are being told to check with their airlines and contingency plans have been drawn up by New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs to evacuate Kiwis if necessary.

Advertisement

CoverMore who underwrites the travel insurance for IAG's brands, State Insurance, NZI, AMI, and Lumley warned its policy holders on August 8 about the situation.

"Hong Kong continues to be plagued by widespread protests and civil unrest that has become unpredictable and expected to continue.

"Hong Kong's Airport Authority has reported that hundreds of flights have been cancelled after a sit-in protest at Hong Kong International Airport. Additionally, a number of other carriers have cancelled flights and this will likely impact thousands of travellers."

It told policyholders affected by the event that "there may be provision" to claim benefits if their policy was issued before 7am on August 7.

"Claims will be assessed in accordance with your policy wording and may vary depending on the type of policy you purchased."

For those who had already departed on travel and had transport directly affected because of the Hong Kong protests there would be cover up to the policy limits for
"reasonable additional transport and accommodation expenses."

If pre-booked travel arrangements were cancelled, delayed or rescheduled as a result of the Hong Kong protests policyholders may be able to claim for cancellation or amendment of their journey.

But there was no cover for those with policies bought after 7am on August 7 New Zealand time.

Advertisement

"There is no cover for claims arising as a result of the Hong Kong protests as this is no longer deemed an unforeseen event."

AA Travel Insurance also has a cut-off but its timing is a day earlier on August 6, 12noon New Zealand time.

AA Travel general manager Mark Savage said policy holders currently travelling in Hong Kong who took out a policy before 12pm on August 6 may be covered for additional travel, accommodation and meal expenses if their transport was delayed or cancelled, or their accommodation was affected due to the protests.

While those who took out a policy before 12pm on August 6, 2019 but have yet to depart may be able to make a claim for cancellation or rearrangement of their journey if their travel plans have been directly impacted by the protests.

But policyholders who took out cover after August 6, 2019 would not be covered for claims caused by or any way connected to the Hong Kong protests, as it is expected that the policy was taken out with awareness of the protests, he said.

Government website Safetravel didn't issue a warning about the protests until 3.20pm on August 8.

It said travellers should "exercise increased caution in Hong Kong due to civil unrest."

"Large-scale protests and demonstrations have been taking place on Hong Kong Island, in Kowloon and various suburbs in the New Territories. Acts of violence have occurred, including clashes between police and demonstrators.

"Locations of gatherings may be unpredictable and change at short notice. Separately, attacks by reportedly criminally-linked individuals have affected commuters in the New Territories. Further demonstrations are expected."

New Zealanders in Hong Kong have been advised to avoid all protests and demonstrations.

"Even those intended to be peaceful have the potential to turn violent with little or no warning."

Safetravel has also advised people to monitor local media for developments and comply with any instructions and restrictions issued by the local authorities.

"Expect road closures and disruptions to public transport as a result of demonstrations."