Dear Internet travel pundits

Dear Internet travel pundits,

At the moment, people flying in and out of London and some European and North American airports cannot take hand luggage on their flights. Owners of laptops an other expensive electronic equipment must check it in if they wish to fly with it. Stop sanctimoniously telling people with laptops that they shouldn’t worry unless they don’t have travel insurance, in which case their main worry is that they’re an idiot anyway.

Why? Well, here’s what travel insurance companies have to say about checking laptops in as cargo hold luggage:

Navigator Travel Insurance Budget Policy

The Underwriter will not pay for the following in addition to the general exclusions on pages 5 and 6 in connection with claims made under section E:


12. loss, theft or damage to Valuables, which at the time of such loss, theft or damage were located in checked-in luggage or an unattended motor vehicle


Valuables Means cameras and other photographic equipment, video equipment, audio equipment, computer including all discs and tapes…

Travel Insurance Direct

We will not pay for any of the following losses:


12. A loss, or theft of, or damage to:


(e) a video camera, mobile telephone, photographic equipment, personal computer, or jewellery left unattended by you in a motor vehicle, or are transported in the cargo hold of any aircraft, ship, train or bus;

1 Cover


We will not pay a claim in relation to your luggage and personal effects if:


b] Your jewellery, mobile phone, camera, video camera, computer equipment or their accessories are transported in the cargo hold of any aircraft, ship, train or bus.

[All italics are this author’s emphasis.]

OK, I might be cheating with the last two, because they’re both Australian and for all I know have the same underwriter, possibly the same lawyer. However, the basic point is that travel insurance people are in the business of not paying out and those very moments where you think phew, thank goodness I have travel insurance, I’m a smart person and therefore have nothing to worry about are those times when you find that they don’t cover some perfectly normal activity; like being forced to carry a laptop as checked baggage thanks to security threats.