Berkely Group

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The Berkely Group

The Berkley Group is a travel insurance wholesaler who provides travel insurance to tour operators, cruise lines, and other travel providers.

Most of their plans are custom designed for the specific travel provider, however, since they use the same underwriting company there are similarities in benefit wording and exclusions.  Many of the plans that they offer are combination plans that have two components;

  1. pre-departure "waiver" plan that is usually not underwritten by a licensed insurance carrier but rather by the tour operator.  In some cases it's advertised as "cancel for any reason" however, instead of a cash payment for your loss they offer a travel voucher that is only good for a specific period of time and which can only be used with the tour operator; and
  2. post departure coverage is the second portion provided by The Berkely Group and underwritten by a licensed insurance company which usually includes all of the typical post-departure coverage such as trip interruption, emergency evacuation, travel medical, baggage, etc. Some of the tour company plans that we've seen have had less than modest amounts of emergency evacuation coverage that might only be appropriate for travel within the USA or Canada.

Most consumer advocates recommend against buying coverage that is offered directly to you from a tour operator, cruise line, or airline.  Custom made plans offered by travel providers usually have more restrictions and because they are mass marketed they tend to generate more consumer complaints.  Also, most custom made plans offered by travel providers are "community rated" instead of age rated.  That means that much older travelers might find them lower priced than the retail age rated plans however, for everybody else they might be more expensive than retail plans available through on line comparison sites.

Founded in 1976, the company has evolved into a number of separate operating entities that currently comprise The Berkely Group, including Berkely Agency and BerkelyCare.

In 1995, The Berkely Group was acquired by Aon Corporation (NYSE: AOC, www.aon.com).


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Overall rating 
 
8.0
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9.0
Ease of understanding coverage 
 
5.0
Ease of submitting a claim 
 
10.0
Timeliness of claim payment 
 
8.0

Good Experience

Claim submission process was straightforward. Claim was resolved in less than 2 weeks and I got my money back for a flight I could not make. Could not travel due to illness and got dr. note with prognosis, be sure to document your own steps in the comments section for context. No issues.

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1.3
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AVOID AT ALL COSTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This company is a SCAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Had to cancel my tickets because of family issues and they refuse to refund my ticket!!!!!!!!!!!! Delta Airlines, you better re-think the company you use! I will be filing a formal complaint with BBB against Delta AND AON!

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Mr.

Do not use it! Terrible!

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Scam company! Do not use!

My husband purchased this insurance for his flight. Unfortunately, his father passed away in between the dates of his travel. Aon Affinity would not reimburse him for any part of his travel cost! If Aon won't provide a payout even for the death of an immediate family member, I highly doubt they will ever make a payout. Do not give your money to these theives!

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Worst Travel Insurance I have ever used

In August I decided to go to Egypt and I used Aon Affinity Worst company out there, Since august and I have been sending claim paperwork and they said paperwork its uncompleted. By far the worst company now the lady told me yesterday to send the claim to my insurance and see if they can pay for it and if not then I have to resubmitted to them to see if they approved it to get paid. They are crazy its the biggest scam out there. Do not purchase an insurance again do not throw your money away.

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2.0
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5.0
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1.0

DO NOT BUY INSURANCE FROM THEM.

My son is in the military. Early in the fall, he learned he would be able to take a leave for Thanksgiving which thrilled our family. We purchased an airline ticket for him....on Delta, through Expedia and purchased the travel insurance....which we later found out was through AON. Simultaneously, we purchased a separate flight for him to spend time with his Grandfather over the break in SF directly with American Airlines...also purchased the insurance through a company called Allianz. As things happen, his military orders changed, and now he was unable to come home for Thanksgiving. On the same day, I submitted claims with AON and Allianz. Within a week, Allianz siting his military duty, sent a check to our home covering the full amount of his AA flight. A few days later, we received a letter in the mail REJECTING a refund OR a credit from AON. In this highly offensive and unprofessional letter, AON explained if our son would have died, we probably would have received the refund. My wife and I were floored. I bypassed AON for my next step and contacted Delta airlines directly. In a matter of 10 mins, they listened to me, issued a full credit without any penalties for my son...to be used within the next 12 months. So let me ask you. Why in the World would anyone A) Book a flight through Expedia who farms out their insurance to this money hungry unprofessional circus of a business, and B) Not just book directly through the airlines? They understand military obligations and sacrifices these folks do for our freedom. Shame on you AON. Shame on YOU!

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Travel insurance claim

Avoid AON Affinity at all costs! We travel frequently, and always with insurance. Unfortunately, we listened to an agent with a cruise company when selecting our travel insurance and selected AON. When we were unable to go because of a medical emergency, and filed a claim, the process proved to be a disgrace. AON Affinity requested duplicate information on three occasions over a period of three months, and weeks passed between these requests. When I tried to get answers from one of their representatives, I was met repeatedly with a response that was obviously a parroted, standard company line. I've made no progress whatsoever, and at the end of the call the representative said, in a voice dripping with sarcasm, "I hope you have a good day." Stay away from this company. Our next trip will be insured with a company that is reputable and well-reviewed - something better than 1 star out of 5 in all categories.

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Never ever buy insurance from AON Affinity!

Never ever buy insurance from AON! I had to reschedule my flight due to a strike call of the Canadian Post in August, which made it impossible to get my visa in time from the US Embassy. I paid for the insurance exactly for this reason, because I knew something can come up and I wanted to be covered. Now they rejected my claim, because it's not a medical emergency or jury duty. Why don't they cover all reasonable cause that's not my fault? This is disgusting, a worst practice when it comes to insurance agencies. I'll never ever buy anything that has something to do with AON...

Editors Note: Trip cancellation coverage is a named peril coverage; only those reasons listed in the policy are covered. Read your coverage carefully before you buy.

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10.0
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10.0
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10.0
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10.0
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10.0

Great Company!! Claim Was Approved Within 5 Days! They are not a scam!

Wow..I found this site after submitting my claim about 4-5 days ago. I first want to mention that every time I contacted customer Service they were more than helpful and kind. They actually sent out a reminder to submit my claim which was amazing because I fixed it and after pulling up my fax send report I noticed the fax never went through. I called them literally five days ago to notify them I received the reminder letter and that I will be faxing it again. The rep gave me a second fax number if I needed it and gave me other options to submit it to make sure they received it. I faxed it over Monday 5/23. I called the following day to make sure it was received and again the rep was very kind and took the time to find out how many pages were received. By Wednesday 5/25 I received an email confirmation that my claim was received. I had cancelled my trip due to myself being ill and not able to go. I made sure the Dr filled out the form at my appt with hm. After reading this site today 5/28 I got so nervous I just called them again to advise them I had more medical information if needed and the sweetest woman advised me that the claim was already approved. 5 Business Days! I have to assume people aren't filling out the form correctly or are facing it to their doctors (never do that always bring forms with you to an appt). As soon as I felt I wasn't able to go away I took the iniative to read how to start your claim online and did so. This was by far one of the easiest transactions and companies to deal with for being reimbursed. Hands Down best travel company insurance I ever deeply with. Really odd people had so many issues and I was approved within 5 days of them receiving my claim and they advised the check will arrive within another 5 days. Make sure your filling out the checklist and giving all the information and details they want. I would use them with every vacation. I feel bad so many people got denied but after having such pleasant experiences every time I called them and the minimal paperwork that they asked for I think people aren't submitting it correctly. A+++++

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SCAMMMMM!!!!

DON'T EVER BUY, IT'S JUST SCAMMMMMMM!!!!!

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horrible customer service and lies

I bought travel insurance for my trip in December 2015 that had to be cancelled. We sent all the required documents from our doctor in January. They claimed they needed further info from my doctor though the doctor never received the follow up in January. In February 2016 we had another appointment with the doctor and had AON fax the forms to the doctors office. We saw the sent document from the doctor. Two weeks later we called and confirmed that AON received the documentation from our doctor. We were told yes and that they were waiting for something from the travel provider. Yesterday March 7th we received an email at 1 in the morning stating they never received the follow up info from the doctor. I called and asked for the forms to be sent to me. I never received the email. My husband called in the afternoon. The woman Jenny was extremely rude when I went on the phone call and told me to 'not be angry.' I wasn't yelling. I read fast. She then again inferred to my emotional state and never once answered the question about the lost fax. No one once offered to go find the fax that was sent. I was completely offended that Jenny pulled the 'fem attack' and belittled everything I said. I would never recommend this travel insurance as they clearly 'lose' medical documents in an effort to not pay, and speak to customers in a negative manner.

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DO NOT BUY! Such a scam.

I was on a vacation in Costa Rica in the beginning of this year. I was in a rural place and had to be medi-vac'ed off to the capitol, San Jose for further medical evaluation (They didnt have the right tests at that clinic to see what was going on with my health) The docs called my insurance company, everything seemed to go through. So, they heli'd me out of there on a 30-45 min heli ride. Now, 8 months later they are saying I owe $52,000 for my helicopter ride. WTF?! I bought travel insurance through Travelocity and now they won't cover me..??? SUCH A SCAM. If anyone knows of any lawyers that could give me advice, HELP A SISTER OUT. Sincerely, one broke @ss B*tch

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DON'T BUY THIS INSURANCE

After buying this insurance I got sick and could not make my first scheduled flight. Ended up paying more for another ticket doctors visit payment and then to finally file a claim only to be denied. Wish I had read these reviews prior to spending my money but this won't be repeated! Wish I could have given all zeros for a rating!

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never purchase this insurance

terrible awful service no repayment

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Overall rating 
 
7.3
Customer Service 
 
10.0
Ease of understanding coverage 
 
5.0
Ease of submitting a claim 
 
6.0
Timeliness of claim payment 
 
8.0

Successful claim payment in 28 days.

Twenty Eight days from claim form submittal to receipt of check in full amount of claim. We had to cancel a RCCL cruise due to illness of my wife that required hospitalization for a few days, about three weeks prior to cruise. Had notified RCCL about 12 days in advance of the cruise. Doctors advised her not to travel yet due to close monitoring required. Completed AON claim form (under the Berkley Group umbrella) listing the Dr.s involved along with supporting copies of the cruise documents, credit card payments, cruise itinerary, letter from Humana showing hospitalization was approved by them. Faxed claim form on Oct. 26th, received AON e-mail on the 28th indicating the claim was "in process". Called to confirm about a week later and was told the standard processing time is 3 to 4 weeks. Received another e-mail from AON around the 22nd day indicating the claim would be paid and gave the amount of the checks that were being mailed. Received checks on Nov. 23rd.

RCCL refunded all taxes paid to them and AON refunded the cruise fare. Insurance costs were of course not refunded because of value received..."claim settlement". In summary, provide as much supporting documentation as possible with the claim and I believe things will go smoothly. Hope this helps others.

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