As a requirement to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the requirement to have traveler assistance medical insurance for air or land travel between the countries of the region was established.
In this context, the company Intermac Assistance has been selling this type of policy for a year in order to provide travelers with support in emergencies that could cause the spread of the virus in one of the neighboring nations.
However, since the land crossing between Paraguay and Argentina through the city of Pilar was re-enabled, Intermac Assistance detected that, using the name of its company, “false” travel assistance insurance is marketed in that area of the Paraguayan nation. ”.
For the minimum price of G. 50,000 “people in bad faith” would be marketing these invalid policies that, by not having the necessary guarantees, risk the integrity of the traveler, denounced the country manager of the company Intermac Assistance, Gonzalo de Caraballo.
“The service is assistance insurance with coverage against Covid-19 of US$15,000 for land travel. This is the most basic plan that is used to cross Argentina by bus or private vehicle. Even to cross on foot, because in Pilar there is a raft that crosses. In the market, this product costs approximately G. 85,000 and is good for about three days. Instead, they are selling bogus policies for G.50,000,” he commented.
According to Carballo, “the modus operandi” for the sale of false insurance is to “edit personal data and travel dates permanently to the same file, according to the person who wants to contract it.”
Along these same lines, the country manager of the Intermac Assistance company pointed out that this practice had been taking place approximately since the fortnight of April, when the border crossing between Paraguay and Argentina was again enabled, through Pilar.
Although the scheme is carried out mainly in Pilar, the firm does not rule out the possibility that false insurance is also being offered with other border cities such as Encarnación or Alberdi.
After becoming aware of the irregular sale, the company went to make the complaint to the headquarters of the corresponding Zonal Prosecutor’s Office and to the Specialized Unit for Computer Crimes of the Public Ministry. According to Caraballo, both agencies do not know who should “take the complaint”, so the investigation of the incident becomes even more complex.
The country manager of the company Intermac Assistance urged future travelers, who need to purchase this insurance, to go personally to the companies or travel agencies. In case of acquiring it from a reseller, make sure that the agent is authorized.
“Mainly, when in doubt as to whether the insurance that a person is selling is valid, consult us or the company listed. The ideal is to buy the policy from a reliable place. This is the business of the moment. All countries in the region require the policy and that is why it is even more complex”, he stated.
Caraballo emphasized that “there are two drawbacks with the sale of these false insurances: if they cross, for example, Argentina with this, without knowing that it is ‘trucho’ and you need assistance, when you call the call center, you will not be in the base of data and there you do not have insurance. In addition, you will be failing to comply with a decree of a country that requires coverage and, for this, you can even generate legal problems.