An outbreak of the Coronavirus has occurred in China and has spread to other parts of the world. There are now restrictions to entering and exiting a number of countries. On 26 March, the New Zealand government upgraded the alert status of all other countries to ‘Do Not Travel’. This means you should not travel overseas to any other country at this time.
For current news and information, see safetravel.govt.nz
There is no cover for claims related to the Novel-Coronavirus (COVID-19).
There is a general exclusion in your policy which excludes cover for any loss, damage, liability or claims related to a pandemic or epidemic.
There is also a general exclusion in your policy which excludes cover for travel booked after the New Zealand government has upgraded the advisory status of a country to ‘Do Not Travel’.
If you have an emergency, please contact our Emergency Assistance Team as soon as possible on +64 9 985 5000.
All car, motorcycle, and motorhome policies across our domestic, commercial and rural policies in New Zealand are eligible for the refund.
Caravans and trailers are not eligible for a refund.
We're also happy to be extending the refund to our customers across all of our partners, including but not limited to, TSB, Trade Me Insurance, Kiwibank, ANZ/National Bank, and our broker referred customers.
Refunds will be based on eligible motor customers’ premiums paid between 24 March 2020 and 13 May 2020 (including GST, but excluding fees, levies and the RoadWise® optional benefit).
New Zealand entered the first day of alert level three on 24 March, and we entered our first day of level two on 14 May. There was significantly less traffic on our roads during alert levels three and four while everyone did the right thing and stayed home. From level two, traffic started returning to normal volumes again. We saw fewer motor claims and lower motor claims costs during alert levels three and four, and are therefore committed to returning these to our motor customers.
Your policy number will appear on your bank statement as the payment reference, so you can easily see the refund amount for your policy/policies.
If you think that there is a refund missing, don’t worry. We're taking a phased approach to refunding all of our eligible customers, so you may receive correspondence about the refund for your other policy/policies separately. This could happen for a number of reasons, including:
- if your policies are under different reference numbers
- if your policy sits under one of our partner brands such as TSB or ANZ
- if the policyholder names have slight variation, or are under different entities
- if your policy renewed during the COVID-19 lockdown period
- if you pay by different payment methods for your policies, for example by direct debit for one and credit card for another.
If you pay for a family member’s insurance but the policy is in their name, they will receive communication regarding the refund for that policy from us, but the refund amount will be credited to the bank details we have on file for that policy.
For example, if you pay for your daughter’s insurance, she will get a letter or email informing her about the refund. The refund amount will be credited to the bank details on file (which in this case may be your bank details) and the refund will appear in your statement with your daughter’s policy number as the payment reference.
We'll offer refunds to all eligible customers regardless of the method or frequency of their payments. As long as your payments are up to date for the period between 24 March 2020 and 13 May 2020 for each of your eligible motor policies, you'll be offered a refund.
A total of $7.2 Million (excl. GST) will be shared between our eligible motor customers. The amount being refunded is based on the lower motor claims costs during the COVID-19 lockdown.
During lockdown we saw a decrease in our claims volumes and costs for our motor policies, however we didn’t see a comparable decrease in our house and contents policies. This is because people were at home more, used their household items more, plus indoor soccer tends to be a pretty risky game!
No - due to the number of customers we're refunding, we want to make it as simple as possible to make the refund to you quickly. The fastest way we can do this is by a direct credit to a bank account for all of our eligible motor customers.
No, we will not ask you to send us your bank account or credit card details by email or text. To receive your refund, you will be given a link to a secure form on our Tower website if you need to provide bank account details. Please do not reply to any email or text that asks you for your bank account or credit card details directly.
The refund is based on our lower motor claims costs during the COVID-19 lockdown, totalling $7.2 Million (excluding GST). We have shared this amount between our eligible motor customers, and this has resulted in a refund equal to 45% of the value of the motor premiums paid during the relevant period.
The COVID-19 lockdown was an unprecedented event. Our usual pricing does take into account that some people drive their cars more and some less than average, but the lockdown was a unique event and that’s why we’re refunding the lower motor claims costs we saw as a result.
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