Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: How can I avoid the insurance on my Ryanair booking?
Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.
Thursday 08 August 2013
Q Ryanair slaps compulsory insurance on your booking. I don't want it since I have an annual insurance. Please tell me whom I should contact?
A I can't see any way to recover the cash you have wasted, I'm afraid. Ryanair has constructed its ticket sales architecture in such a way as to make it difficult for occasional users to avoid buying overpriced insurance. Long-suffering passengers such as me have discovered that you need to click on the drop-down menu, and search right the list of countries through to the end. Just beyond Slovakia you will find "Travel Without Insure", which is the only way to avoid an expensive mistake.
The airline knows perfectly well that the spirit of legislation is that passengers should opt in, rather than have to opt out, but clearly it is a profitable sideline. All you can do is spread the word that it is avoidable, or choose an airline that does not pursue such policies.
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