Robbed and injured

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The Independent Travel
THE TWO subjects on which I get most letters are holiday insurance and single person supplements.

Insurance letter of the week comes from Jan Fairley of Edinburgh, who was mugged by four men in Chile. They grabbed the Sony Professional Walkman that she was using to record a radio programme and ran away, 'with me shouting after them that I needed the machine for my work] Foolish woman, as they'd given me a great thump in the ribs and in the mouth . . . Luckily they kept running.'

The police report - 'I'd been totally honest' - recorded the fact that the sum total of her losses was the stolen Sony and her broken spectacles. The true extent of the damage only became apparent a few days later, when a visit to the dentist revealed that the blow to her mouth had damaged the roots of her teeth and extensive and expensive treatment was necessary.

'The insurance company managed to pay for the Sony, which was new. They managed to pay a pittance for my spectacles, as they were not so new. But as for my teeth - they wouldn't even cover the cost of the visits and X-rays in Santiago, never mind the drugs.'

The small print on the policy excluded cover for teeth except for 'emergency treatment'. 'And this has to be in a 24-hour period and under pounds 25. As for my treatment at home - this is not claimable.'

Ms Fairley points out that if she had claimed for more than was actually stolen or damaged, she might have had enough to cover the cost of treatment to her teeth. 'While I can't ever see myself doing that, I now understand why some people might.'

Meanwhile, Mrs Cussens of Runcorn writes to say that if hotels dropped the single person supplement, she could afford one or two more holidays. 'Pensioners could easily be excused this surcharge on production of railcard, pension book or driving licence.'

Finally, another popular topic at the moment: Green Cards. The Rev Jackson of Gloucester calls to say that with the Ecclesiastical Insurance Company you don't need a Green Card for continental motoring. You don't even need to inform them if you travel abroad, as foreign cover abroad is included in their policy. Who could resist an insurance company called Ecclesiastical?

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