Thomas Cook travel insurance is part of the world’s oldest travel firm. It was around before planes even existed and there were certainly no wheelie bags to be seen. In this guide we’ll take a look at the complex Thomas Cook history, how to make complaints to Thomas Cook, contact numbers, reviews and more.
Thomas Cook history
A Thomas Cook history book would be a hefty one. It is the world’s oldest travel firm, dating back to 1841. Nowadays, when companies enter and exit the market faster than you can purchase your holiday, this is an impressive claim to fame. The company has undergone numerous name changes over the years as a result of being bought out but it has always stayed close to its original roots.
- 1841 - Thomas Cook is founded by Thomas Cook, a cabinet maker, in order to arrange transport by railway between Leiceister, Nottingham, Derby and Birmingham.
- 1855 - The company organises its first tours to Europe.
- 1866 - The company organises its first tours to the United States.
- 1871 - Thomas Cook’s son becomes a partner and the company changes its name to Thomas Cook & Son.
- 1924 - The company acquires limited liability status and changes its name to Thomas Cook & Son Ltd.
- 1950s - The company promotes inclusive tours using scheduled airlines by running films in town halls across Britain. The main destinations being advertised are France, Switzerland, Spain and Italy.
- 2001 - Thomas Cook changes its name to Thomas Cook AG when the German company C&N Touristic AG acquires it.
Thomas Cook travel insurance cover
With more people than ever before taking trips, there are hundreds of travel insurance policies on the market. Whether it’s to sample the cheese in France, cuddle a koala or surf some epic waves, travel insurance is a must. Even the most seemingly mundane holiday can end in tears. Luckily this is rare so don’t panic, just be prepared.
There are a few common factors that you need to consider before purchasing your travel insurance. Your needs will depend on the type of trip you are planning, how long you will be away and your medical circumstances.
What are the benefits and different levels of cover I could get?
There are three different cover levels that you can choose from: bronze, silver or gold. Bronze policies are the cheapest but offer the least amount of cover, then silver is in the middle, while gold is the most expensive and offers the most comprehensive level of insurance.
Here is an example of what you could be covered for with Thomas Cook travel insurance:
|Benefit / Level of cover||Bronze||Silver||Gold|
If you’re not familiar with travel insurance terminology, why not read our jargon-busting travel insurance glossary?
What optional extras can I add on to my policy?
Travel insurance policies usually come with the bare essentials. Depending on your holiday type you may need to add on one or more of these optional extras:
- Winter sports.
- Wedding/civil partnership cover.
We’ll go into each of these in more detail now.
This is absolutely essential if you’re heading to a ski resort this winter.
The key features of this optional extra cover are:
- Cover for your equipment (owned or hired) if it’s lost or stolen.
- Piste closure cover if the resort is closed and you are not able to ski/snowboard.
If you have added winter sports to an annual multi-trip policy, your ski trip must be 17 days or shorter.
Wedding/civil partnership cover
If you’re planning your dream day away you will want this extra level of protection. The main additional areas of cover that you’ll receive with this add-on are for your:
This type of cover will protect your business equipment that you use to support your business activity. This can include personal computers, phones etc, which will otherwise not be included under a standard travel policy. In the event of a claim, the reimbursable amount would be the current market value (minus a deduction for wear and tear and depreciation, based on years).
If you are planning on hitting the greens this holiday then this is for you. This cover will protect you against prepaid green fees, if you pay in advance and miss your game (for example, due to illness). It also provides insurance for your equipment, whether it be your own pride and joy or hired clubs.
There is nothing quite as relaxing as a holiday cruise. Bobbing along the crystal blue water, you can eat until your stomach is content, lay by the pool or cruise the shops. While this all sounds dreamy (and is) it is not uncommon that someone gets ill on board or quite literally misses the boat.
While dedicated cruise cover can’t stop you getting sick, it will protect you against:
- Baggage - Receive an extended baggage limit since cruises tend to be longer than the average holiday.
- Cabin confinement - Get compensation if you fall ill and are confined to your cabin for a period of time.
- Missed excursions - If you have pre-booked on-shore excursions, this will protect you if you miss them because you are ill or the boat misses that port.
Complaints to Thomas Cook
There is only one way to direct your complaints to Thomas Cook: in writing.
In the first instance you should send your written complaint to the following address:
The Customer Experience Manager White Horse Administration Services Limited PO Box 5633 Walsall WS6 9BB England
If you are not happy with the response or do not receive one, you should then write to:
The General Manager White Horse Insurance Ireland Limited Travel House Free Zone West Shannon County Clare Republic of Ireland
Thomas Cook travel insurance contact number
If you have Thomas Cook travel insurance and have an emergency while you are overseas, please call:
Overseas emergency helpline: +44 (0)871 895 0100 or +44 (0)1733 402 046.
Lines are open all day, every day of the year.
Thomas Cook travel insurance reviews: a quick look
If you haven’t used a company before then reviews can be a useful guide. While everyone has a different experience, if there are consistently positive or negative reviews around one theme, you may want to pay attention. We’ll take a quick look at what customers have been saying about Thomas Cook travel insurance and see how it stacks up.
On Trustpilot, there are over 1,600 reviews but these are company-wide and not just related to the insurance arm. Overall, it receives 1.5/5 stars which is a ‘bad’ rating and there are many negative reviews.
Most of the bad experiences revolve around the claims process. A common gripe is that the company didn’t accept a claim for some reason.
For example, one customer says they called the insurance helpline when on holiday in Turkey because they needed to make a claim and knew they had to phone as soon as possible to log it. When they returned home, they submitted the full claim but it was rejected because a receipt didn’t have a date on it. The receipt was in Turkish and the customer felt they couldn’t have asked for a new receipt - even if they had known there was no date - because they couldn’t speak Turkish.
Other customers have said the complaints process is not as it should be. Some customers did not even receive a response after logging a complaint with the company. If this ever happens, you do have the option of going to the ombudsman to lodge a formal complaint against a company.
Where there’s a negative there is always a positive though. Many of the positive reviews centred around the call centre agents. The customer service that customers receive is generally courteous and the agents are friendly.
Thomas Cook travel insurance is part of a company that has been around longer than most. This can be positive, in that the business has a lot of experience in the market. However, it could also mean it is less flexible and innovative than newer, modern companies.
Either way, one thing that concerns us is the claims process. Based on customer reviews, this really lets the company down. While customer service agents are friendly and helpful, this may not take the pain away if you have a claim that is delayed or rejected.
|Friendly sales agents and customer service representatives.||The claims process is not always the smoothest and could cause you problems down the track.|
|You could add your insurance at the same time as booking your Thomas Cook holiday.||The complaints process also receives bad press and could cause you a headache if you need to complain.|
Thomas Cook update
It is with great sadness that we report that Thomas Cook has collapsed and gone into liquidation. It is no longer possible to buy Thomas Cook products. For more information please read this news update.
Data and information correct as of January 2020.
All material on this page and the selectra.co.uk website is for information purposes only and does not constitute any form of financial advice. Selectra.co.uk is not responsible for any consequences that might arise from your use of the information provided.
Other providers are available and the best deal for you will depend on your individual circumstances. Please do your own research and seek professional advice if necessary (moneyadviceservice.org.uk offers free, independent advice on all financial issues).