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Air Canada includes COVID-19 insurance with purchase of flight

September 20, 2020

Eligible Canadian residents will receive COVID-19 insurance included in the price of their international round-trip ticket with Air Canada, news which could help encourage vacations to Costa Rica.

According to Air Canada, the coverage is available for new bookings made in Canada from Sept. 17 through Oct. 31, 2020. It provides emergency medical and quarantine insurance, two items Costa Rica currently requires for visitors.

The passenger must be a Canadian resident “with a valid provincial or territory government health insurance plan for the duration of the trip,” according to Manulife, which is providing the policy. It applies for trips of up to 21 days.

“At Air Canada, we know people have personal, family and business reasons to travel. To give them greater confidence as they do so, we have engaged Manulife to offer all Canadian residents complimentary COVID-19 emergency medical & quarantine insurance when they book round-trip flights for travel outside of Canada,” said Lucie Guillemette, Chief Commercial Officer at Air Canada.

Implications for Costa Rica

The Manulife policy offered with Air Canada tickets covers up to CDN $200,000 for COVID-19 medical expenses and up to CDN $2,100 per person for quarantine costs. 

While the policy meets Costa Rica’s requirements for medical care, it falls short of the current requirements of $2,000 USD (about CDN $2,636) for lodging expenses.

This means that, unless Costa Rica changes its policies or offers an exception, tourists visiting via Air Canada would still need to purchase a separate policy for lodging.

According to Aeris, which manages Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO), Air Canada will resume service to Costa Rica on November 1.

Canadian tourism comprises about 7% of total international arrivals to Costa Rica, according to the Tourism Board.

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