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Warning to travellers heading over to Paris for the Summer Olympics

Reviewed by Executive General Manager of General Insurance, Adrian Taylor
4 min read
19 Jun 2024

As the Summer Olympics in Paris draw near, travel insurance comparison site Compare the Market is urging travellers to safeguard their European summer sports dreams by getting travel insurance for when the unexpected happens.

While many fans have undoubtedly already organised their long-haul flights, tickets to sporting events, accommodation, and transportation to and from the games, travel insurance is another must-have for their pre-flight checklist.

While France seems like a decently safe country to visit, it’s crucial not to overlook the potential risks that could disrupt a holiday. From bed bugs to protests and pick-pocketers to scams, a number of things that could turn your dream holiday into a vacation nightmare have made headlines in the city of lights in the past year or so. This caution is key to ensuring your safety and well-being during your trip.

Compare the Market’s Executive General Manager for General Insurance and Travel Insurance expert, Adrian Taylor, said that no trip is without risk, even these worldwide spectacular events, which is why getting travel insurance is so important before you fly out.

“With the European summer coming up shortly, France is a favoured hotspot for many Australians. From hosting this year’s Olympics to its museums, food, wine, and culinary experiences, travellers could find something new around every corner,” Mr Taylor said.

“However, travelling to the city of lights doesn’t come without its dangers.

“While cities like Paris, Marseilles and Bordeaux are popular among Aussie tourists, people should be extremely cautious of scams and thieves in these areas. Potential thieves tend to target crowded tourist spaces, so keep this in the back of your mind when you’re engrossed in the 100-metre sprint final, admiring the Eiffel Tower or taking in the famous artworks of the Louvre.

“Furthermore, consider keeping your money and your passport separated from one another and never carry all your cash and credit cards in one place.

“You may experience tight security around public places and at border points, with French authorities on high alert for suspicious activities following previous terrorist attacks. Not to mention this might be heightened further by the Olympics themselves.

“It’s also important to note that France has a history of protests and violent demonstrations. Even with travel insurance, it’s crucial that you take steps to avoid these incidents. Your insurer is unlikely to cover costs related to protests. Therefore, it’s your responsibility to stay informed and avoid protests whenever possible by checking local media for ongoing issues.

“People should always check the Smartraveller website ahead of travelling to any country, including France, to stay updated on any active travel warnings and heed any advice given.”

Mr Taylor also mentioned other risks people should keep an eye out for while travelling throughout France.

“Safety aside, we also know that Paris was on high alert last year after a bed bug infestation caused many hotels and attractions to temporarily close. if there’s a local directive from the responsible government or local authority directly affecting the area where your pre-booked accommodation is located and you’re forced to move from pre-booked accommodation to continue your trip, some policies will cover you up to the amount specified in your policy schedule.

“However, in most cases, your travel insurance policy won’t cover you for additional expenses or cancellation costs relating to a bed bug infestation. This means that you could be left out of pocket if you choose to change a hotel, cancel a booking or wash your clothes or belongings due to a bed bug outbreak.

“We don’t want to see any holidaymaker’s travels disrupted or, worse, cancelled by any of these risks. Having travel insurance can provide people with the peace of mind that they’re protected against some unforeseen circumstances, allowing them to fully enjoy their Olympic experience. And, purchasing cover as soon as you book in flights, events and other activities may offer protection if something happens ahead of your trip that prevents it from going ahead as planned.”


For interviews and more information, please contact:

Noémi Hadnagy | m: 0433 377 252 | e: [email protected]    

Compare the Market is a comparison service that takes the hard work out of shopping around. We make it Simples for Australians to quickly and easily compare and buy insurance, energy, and home loans products from a range of providers. Our easy-to-use comparison tool helps you look for a range of products that may suit your needs and benefit your back pocket.

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avatar of author: Noémi Hadnagy

Written by Noémi Hadnagy

As a Media and Comms Advisor, Noémi works closely with a variety of expert teams at Compare the Market to create compelling and informative pieces to help Australians make better financial decisions. Noémi holds a Bachelor of Business - International majoring in Public Relations from Queensland University of Technology as well as a Bachelor of Business Administration specialising in International Business from BI Norwegian Business School. In her spare time, you can find her reading a book or planning her next international holiday.

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