Beach woman trying to cancel family trip to China, fearing coronavirus

10 On Your Side

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Bettie Jones, her husband and several relatives and friends love to travel, but not when the destination is where people are dying from a mysterious disease.

Last April they booked a tour to visit five cities in China, and were slated to leave in three weeks.

“This would have been a good chance to go see the wall and everything else,” Jones said Monday afternoon. “But what we’re facing now, no.”

More than 17,000 people have the virus worldwide, and more than 300 have died from it in China.

Jones contacted the tour company UTOvacation in Canada. She had purchased trip insurance, so the tour company referred her to the insurance company, John Hancock.

“There is no cure at this moment now, so why do we want to risk our lives for a vacation trip?”

At first, John Hancock told Jones that her policy didn’t cover virus outbreaks.

“It just ticked me off so I thought about (WAVY-TV).”

10 On Your Side contacted the affiliate for John Hancock, Seven Corners. A spokeswoman provided this statement late Monday afternoon:

“Seven Corners spoke with Bettie Jones today to obtain details about her travel plans. We are currently reviewing her travel insurance coverage and her situation. We will reach out again to Bettie and let her know the outcome of our review. Thank you for bringing this to our attention.”   

In the meantime, a UTOvacation spokesman said he will provide documentation to Jones and her group so they can make their case to the insurance company.

Jones and her husband paid more than $1,400 for the trip.

10 On Your Side checked out UTOvacation. It’s a solid, reputable company. The Better Business Bureau gives it both an A+ rating and accreditation — an even higher level of integrity and honesty with customers.


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