Amidst the dense fog causing flight delays and cancellations at Delhi airport, passengers have expressed their dissatisfaction with the situation. The airport has been criticized for having only one operational CAT III equipped runway to handle flights during dense fog, leading to widespread disruptions in flight schedules. Videos circulating on social media have shown passengers stranded on the apron at Mumbai airport, as well as a passenger lunging at the co-pilot on a Delhi-Goa flight due to the frustration caused by the delays.
In the face of these challenges, travelers have been urged to seek financial relief through travel insurance policies. In cases of flight delays, insurance claims can be made if the departure is delayed beyond the policy-specified duration, typically 2–3 hours. The claim process has been streamlined in some cases through tech integration, with insurers tracking delays and automatically triggering claim intimation to customers.
However, making a successful claim requires attention to policy details, as the calculation of actual departure time may vary amongst insurers. Sanjeeb Rout from National Insurance Company highlighted that certain exceptions may lead to claim rejection, such as public announcements or notifications of delays or cancellations six hours prior to departure.
For flight cancellations, policyholders can contact customer service through helpline, email, or WhatsApp, providing proof of cancellation and payment details. Exceptions leading to claim rejection include publicly communicated information, changes in government regulations, permanent withdrawal of services by the airline, or announced strikes or disputes.
In response to the recent flight disruptions, affected passengers are reminded that travel insurance can cover costs incurred due to inordinate delays or cancellations. “The coverage includes reimbursement for ticket costs in case of cancellations and accommodation expenses for overnight stays. However, policyholders must be aware of deductibles associated with benefits, and the coverage for flight delays may be contingent on specific terms and conditions,” Rout added.
Opinions on the topic vary, with some travelers expressing frustration with the lack of infrastructure to handle dense fog conditions, while others emphasize the importance of having comprehensive travel insurance to mitigate the financial impact of flight delays and cancellations.