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Trip Paperwork Covers all documentation, carnets, customs and country requirements, how to deal with insurance etc.
Photo by Michael Jordan, enjoying a meal at sunset, Zangskar Valley, India

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Michael Jordan
enjoying a meal at sunset,
Zangskar Valley, India



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  #1  
Old 27 Jul 2010
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Marks Green Card Insurance Adventure

And so i took out insurance cover with Hastings Direct following a phone conversation explaining my upcoming trip which will include pretty much all Balkan countries which they agreed to insure fully comprehensive for.

I have both my handbook and document here which only states "All E.U countries and Croatia, Switzerland etc". No mention of the Balkan (non eu) places. I have passed many emails regarding the misinformation and thus far am told that I am covered and that It is not their policy to issue a green card. (despite absolutely no mention of insurance on said documents)

I have now asked to be put on to someone higher as I fail to see the worth of being insured if you cant prove you actually are.

Sorry for the rant, they may come good yet! My question is... Am i missing some knowledge that would explain the reluctance to issue me with a hard copy official document that states i am insured for such places?

Or are they just being less than helpful?

Thanks

Last edited by MARKYOUNG; 13 Aug 2010 at 12:43. Reason: spelling (doh!)
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  #2  
Old 27 Jul 2010
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hello and welcome to Horizons Mark
1st post and already a rant! sorry about your problem- It's a little confusing :confused1: as you first state " I have both my handbook and document here which only states "All E.U countries and Croatia, Switzerland etc".
then you go on to say "that would explain the reluctance to issue me with a hard copy official document that states i am insured for such places? "
Seems to me that you have the hard copy official documents!

If you have supporting evidenceof being misled at the onset, this will help you. Salespeople are under pressure to make sales and may say things to 'push the sales process along' .... and it is up to you to ensure that you read the 'small' print when you receive the paperwork. If you received the handbook with the T&C and what you expected/were sold doesn't match, you should be able to cancel as it seems that you may have been mis-sold insurance.

Having said that, I do not know of an insurance company that will automatically include cover for the Balkans. Some may issue a third party cover note for an additional premium ( I had that for Hungary & Romania) whereas others will not accept the risk and say -no-
Insurance can most often be bought at the border or first big-ish town. Often though, whilst necessary to comply with the laws of the country, it often isn't worth the paper the police is printed on- aka ' if there is an accident, the foreigner is always in the wrong' !
If you look to the left hand side of the page, you will see the communities and you may want to ask them where/how you can buy insurance for a specifc country-
But please use the 'search function' first as there is a HUGE amount of information on the Hubb .
Enjoy!
and try not to stress! it really isn't worth it!

Last edited by Bertrand; 28 Jul 2010 at 09:00. Reason: added links
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  #3  
Old 28 Jul 2010
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Hello Bertrand

Thanks for the reply. I am sorry about the Rant its not my usual thing but then again it is not usual for me to travel so far by motorcycle either.

I can do one better, I have it in emails that they tell me I am insured for these countries yet it does not state I am in any of my documents. They tell me not to worry about such details!
Here is a copy of the emails (I have of course crossed out names with XXX)

From: xxxx xxxx@hastingsdirect.com]
Sent: 16 July 2010 16:52
To: Mark Young
Subject: RE: My insurance

Dear Mr Young,
I have spoken to the Advantage Underwriters who are the underwriters of your policy and they have confirmed you do not need a green card to travel to any of these Countries. They have checked their Foreign use guides, and terms & conditions and they have confirmed they cover all the Countries under their Foreign use cover. All they advise is that you take a copy of your certificate with you. On your policy you are covered for foreign use for up to 30 days per trip.
It is not our procedure to issue green cards.
Many Thanks

XXXXXX
Policy Services
Hastings Direct
08448 003 844
________________________________________
From: Mark Young
Sent: 16 July 2010 16:22
To: XXXXXX
Subject: RE: My insurance
Hello XXXX

I need a green card for each Balkan country stating I am insured. A single document ( my certificate) will need to state I am insured in these countries, which yours does not! This would mean it is impossible for me to prove I have insurance as all of the official documentation I will carry says I do not!

The countries I may visit that require insurance are
Slovenia – Croatia - Serbia – Bosnia – Montenegro – Macedonia - Albania.
Many Thanks
Mark Young.
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  #4  
Old 28 Jul 2010
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hmmmmmm....reading the above, personally speaking, I'd dig a bit deeper into this bit
" they have confirmed they cover all the Countries under their Foreign use cover" I am guessing this applies only to those you mentioned.

But that just doesn't sound right....
:confused1: and you will need to show (and sometimes give copies) of your docs at borders so telling you not to worry is ...just plain daft.

You might want to ask them, if they really refuse to issue green cards, that they provide you with an insurance certificate that actually names the countries covered with any pertinent conditions IMHO

one clue is in their terminology... It is not our proceedure..."
You might want to try insisting that it is a specific request.

and look out for that clause...
"On your policy you are covered for foreign use for up to 30 days per trip"
is that enough for you and how many trips are allowed p.a?
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  #5  
Old 29 Jul 2010
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Hey Bertrand, Not a problem with the 30 days – Please see below. I have also taken some of your words used them as my own and sent an email requesting escalation and closure, which I will of course keep you informed about when I receive response.

From: xxxxxxx xxxx@hastingsdirect.com]

To: Mark Young
Subject: RE: My insurance

How long are you planning on going for? I can see that you are leaving on 18th September. If your trip extends over the 30 days then your cover would drop from comprehensive down to the legal requirement needed to ride in that Country. You can purchase additional cover to upgrade your policy back to comprehensive.
Many Thanks

xxx xxxx
Policy Services
Hastings Direct
08448 003 844
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  #6  
Old 29 Jul 2010
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I'd bet your dealing with people who don't know the difference between Europe and the EU. I got this a lot trying to find a greencard. You can't buy insurance for one member state, they have to cover you in the EU that's why they say you don't need a greencard anymore - which is true, but only within the EU and those few countries like CH and CR who play ball.

Tell them you're going to non eu countries in Europe. Then tell them you need a green a4 sheet of paper listing your details and the country codes of the non eu countries you are covered in. Be specific around places like Yugoslavia that don't exist anymore, not much good having that one listed on your document.

I've done much of that region, and was frequency asked for the green card specifically.

If this company still don't understand, call Carole Nash and ask for a Groupama underwritten policy. They will gladly give out a greencard for everywhere but transdneistr, and for a trivial fee of tens of pounds.
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Last edited by KTMmartin; 29 Jul 2010 at 12:08.
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  #7  
Old 30 Jul 2010
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Thanks for the reply.

They have sent me a letter now which simply reads

"Further to our conversation i confirm you are insured in the following countries and you do not need a green card for any of them"

They refuse to send any green cards or any official documents stating each country that is insured.

Think i have been mislead by these guys. Do i have a leg to stand on?

May have to go Carole Nash.
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  #8  
Old 30 Jul 2010
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I'm sure most insurance allows time for checking for suitability before accepting or returning it for a refund. If it's no good for you send it back and take your money elsewhere.
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  #9  
Old 31 Jul 2010
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Hello

I have put this to them and am told that they have passed it on to customer complaints and i will receive a response within 5 days.
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  #10  
Old 31 Jul 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KTMmartin View Post
Then tell them you need a green a4 sheet of paper listing your details and the country codes of the non eu countries you are covered in. Be specific around places like Yugoslavia that don't exist anymore, not much good having that one listed on your document.

I've done much of that region, and was frequency asked for the green card specifically.
When I was traveling thorugh the former Yugoslavia in September last year they were all very hot on their green cards -- and they really do mean a green piece of card with, as KTMmartin says, their country code with a ticked box next to it.

Otherwise you're coughing up on a per-country basis:

Macedonia: EUR50
Kosovo: EUR20
Serbia: was reputed to be EUR85 assuming they let you in from Kosovo but I got some local advice to go the cheap route...
Montenegro: EUR13
Croatia: wasn't asked to stop at the border at 8pm (and didn't crash into anything so didn't test the "do you really need one?" theory) I've a feeling it was meant to be around EUR20

FWIW I went from Germany through Czech Rep., Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria and was only stopped at the Romanian border and only then for a cursory look at my passport. Otherwise plain sailing.

Who knows if I was covered for anything? :confused1:

Cheers,

Ian
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  #11  
Old 31 Jul 2010
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If you've specified the countries you needed cover for and they've sold you a policy that doesn't cover those countries, surely there's no argument! What are they messing about at?
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  #12  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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I haven't a clue what they are doing, then neither do they. The problem isn't that i am not insured, they confirmed in writing that i am. The problem is my official paperwork (documents & Handbook) does not indicate in any capacity that I am insured and they wont give me a green card.
They are absolutely adamant that I do not need one for these countries and will not have it any other way.
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  #13  
Old 2 Aug 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARKYOUNG View Post
They are absolutely adamant that I do not need one for these countries and will not have it any other way.
Just imagine how much fun you'll have if you have to make a claim in one of these places...
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  #14  
Old 3 Aug 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARKYOUNG View Post
The problem isn't that i am not insured, they confirmed in writing that i am. The problem is my official paperwork (documents & Handbook) does not indicate in any capacity that I am insured and they wont give me a green card
There are 2 separate things going on here, I think.
The Green card is used as proof that you have insurance that covers the minimum liability for the country(s) listed on the back of the GC. Usually, 3rd party.

If you have bought a higher level of insurance, fully comp, or TPFT, that is NOT part of the function of the Green Card.

In FR and DE, all insurance policy's are issued with an anual green card.
Its the UK that seems to be out of step.

John
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  #15  
Old 6 Aug 2010
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This is barrels of fun!

Hastings direct will not respond to my emails and when I call it is not possible for anyone to take my calls. I am told that it is being dealt with by the customer complaints who are a separate body and have to follow procedure. This is despite the 5 days I was told it would take to settle the complaint. They are happy to cancel my policy but I will have to pay a stupid % of the full amount for early cancelation as they are not willing to admit I was mis-sold insurance. They will not issue me with any official documents stating that I am insured. They claim the emails and letters confirming I am insured is proof enough. (I am sure the border guards will accept an email for proof)
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