Columbus Direct’s Volcanic Ash Cover bolt on is available from £8 per trip.

Protect against travel disruptions caused by ash clouds, like the ones which wreaked havoc in European airspace in 2010 & 2011.

Columbus Ash Cloud Cover provides customers cover for Travel Delays, Abandonment and Missed Departures as a result of volcanic ash, up to the limit stated on their policy schedule. No claims arising as a result of volcanic ash are eligible without this upgrade.

Having spent hours packing, checking your travel plans and making sure everything’s in order, it’s incredibly frustrating to hear that your holiday or business trip has been cancelled due to a volcano erupting 1,000 miles away! The only thing worse would be to discover your travel insurer says ash cloud delays aren’t covered.

Policy details for Emergency Travel Upgrade

In the event of unforeseen circumstances preventing an individual’s return home as pre-booked, for at least 24 hours from the booked return journey, Columbus Direct will pay up to £1,500 for alternative emergency reasonable accommodation costs (on a bed and breakfast basis only and for a maximum of £100 per night or equivalent in other currency) or alternative emergency reasonable transport expenses incurred by the individual to make arrangements outside of the original plans to get the individual home (car hire is limited to £150 per 100km and train, bus, ferry or alternative flights are limited to economy basis only). The total payable for all insured persons under this policy is £4,000.

This cover is independent of other sections of this policy and does not include cover under the Scheduled Airline Failure element of this policy. This cover is intended to enable travel by alternative means, (e.g. to allow the use a train if flights are cancelled, or to take a flight if an individual’s ferry is cancelled) and to arrange accommodation required as a result of these alternative travel plans. Reasons for cancellation of intended travel must be unforeseen and not specific to the individuals named on the policy. The individual must provide evidence of all the extra costs he/she had to pay and must give Columbus Direct a written statement from an appropriate public authority confirming the reason and nature of the disaster, when it started and how long it lasted.

Columbus Ash Cloud & ETU* - what it covers



(Ash Cloud only)


(Ash Cloud & ETU* combined)

Travel Delay



- per 12 hours






Missed departure



Note: the amounts are per person amounts

*ETU = Emergency Travel Upgrade, which provides £4,000 of additional cover In the event of any unforeseen circumstances.


Single Trip






What is not covered:

  • The first £60 of each claim, per person (unless the individual has paid the additional premium to waive all Excesses);
  • Any expenses that the individual can recover from any tour operator, airline, hotel or other provider of services;
  • Any expenses which the individual would normally have to pay during the trip;
  • Any claim resulting from the individual travelling against the advice of the appropriate national or local authority;
  • Any claim for costs which are not reasonable or not an emergency to get the individual home;
  • Anything listed in "Exclusions Applicable to the Whole Policy", in the policy wording.



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Why Columbus Direct?

  • FREE airport lounge access if your flight is delayed for more than 1 hour
  • Over 150 sports and activities covered free
  • Award-winning products and services
  • Over 15 million customers since 1988


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