French travel agents offer sunshine insurance

Mon Jul 13, 2009 1:31pm EDT
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PARIS (Reuters) - Sun-seekers whose holidays are spoiled by bad weather could be reimbursed after French travel agencies launched insurance cover for unwanted interruptions to the sunshine.

The insurance policy, launched by holiday groups Pierre et Vacances and FranceLoc, will allow holiday-makers to claim back part of the cost of their trip if they suffer at least four days of rain in any one week.

"Aon France allows Pierre & Vacances to propose its clients with automatic reimbursement for part of their stay...if weather conditions don't meet expectations," the holiday group said in a statement.

Aon France will use satellite photos obtained by the French weather bureau to calculate how much money subscribers should receive.

Rain-spoilt holidays can now be worth up to 400 euros ($556) and holiday-makers would be informed by telephone text message or email if they are liable for compensation. They would receive a cheque a few days after returning home.

The man behind the idea, Herv Kayser, told French daily Le Figaro that in a trial run last year, 10 percent of those interested in the insurance policy witnessed sufficient rain to receive money back on their holiday.

($1=.7189 Euro)

(Reporting by Joseph Tandy; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

<p>A boy casts a shadow on a sunshade as he stands next to his father on a beach in Vina del Mar city, 85 miles (137 km) northwest of Santiago, December 28, 2006. REUTERS/Eliseo Fernandez</p>