Members’ Insurance

Alpenverein Weltweit Service (AWS)

This provides insurance cover for all members of the Österreichischer Alpenverein who require rescue services as a result of accidents occurring in the course of leisure activities. Costs for repatriation, transfer and medical treatment are covered abroad for accidents occurring in the course of leisure activities or business as well as for illness. AWS is valid worldwide, with the exception that the third-party insurance and criminal law legal protection insurance are restricted to Europe, (see leaflet for Europe definition). AWS’s insurance provider is Generali Versicherung AG.

For full details, click on the image or link: AWS leaflet

It is NOT a travel insurance.  You should read the AWS leaflet carefully to find out whether you need to take out additional insurance to meet all your requirements.

If you are already a member and have any queries please contact the broker, KNOX Versicherungsmanagement GmbH.  They speak fluent English. The AAC(UK) Office is not able to answer questions which seek interpretation of the insurance cover.  KNOX are unable to answer queries from non-members.

KNOX Versicherungsmanagement GmbH: 

Tel:  Austria +43 (0) 512 23 83 00-30; Fax +43 (0) 512 238300-15;
email: AV-service@knox.co.at 

Sums insured

  1. Rescue Costs (in one´s country of main place of residence and abroad) up to €25,000.– per person and claim. Year-round, worldwide, during leisure time.
  2. Repatriation (without cost limitation) and medical treatment costs abroad (up to €10,000 per person and claim).
  3. European third party liability insurance up to €3,000,000.– Year-round. Europe-wide.
  4. European criminal law legal protection insurance up to €35,000.– Year-round. Europe-wide.
  5. European damage compensation legal protection for damage compensation claims after accidents involving personal injury to max. €500.– per insured event

What should be done in the event of an insurance claim?

Please note! Prior to repatriation, transfer, in-patient medical treatment abroad or transport within the country of main place of residence (not rescue), it is absolutely imperative that contact be made with Europ Assistance (otherwise a maximum of only EUR 750.– will be reimbursed):

Europ Assistance:

Tel +43 (0) 1253 3798, Fax +43 (0) 1313 89 1304
email: aws@alpenverein.at

All other claim forms should be sent to:

KNOX Versicherungsmanagement GmbH,
Bundesstraße 23,
6063 Rum,
Austria

Tel:  Austria +43 (0) 512 23 83 00-30; Fax +43 (0) 512 238300-15;
email: AV-service@knox.co.at

Claim Form – for rescue, medical treatment and repatriation costs

Claim Form – for third party liability

Claim Form – for legal expenses

For further details/checklist about making a claim, click here.

Alpenverein Premium – Single Trip Cover

This insurance policy is separate from the Alpenverein Weltweit Service (AWS) policy.  It provides some additional cover that is not provided by AWS, and may be of interest to some members.  For details please click:

Alpenverein Premium Single Trip Cover

The prerequisite for insurance cover is the membership of the insured person(s) in the Österreichischer Alpenverein. The insurance contract can be concluded only by members of the Österreichischer Alpenverein whose main place of residence is in Europe.  Click here for definition of Europe, (which is different to the AWS leaflet for European third party/legal cover).

For purchasing the product, please click the following link, (the application form is web-based, and only available in German):

Registering for the Alpenverein Premium Single Trip Cover

What should be done in the event of an insurance claim?

Please note! Prior to repatriation, transfer, in-patient medical treatment abroad or transport within the country of main place of residence (not rescue), it is absolutely imperative that contact be made with Europ Assistance (otherwise a maximum of only EUR 750.– will be reimbursed):

Europ Assistance:

Tel +43 (0) 1253 3798, Fax +43 (0) 1313 89 1304
email: aws@alpenverein.at

In case of rescue, repatriation, transfer and medical treatment please send a claim form to:

KNOX Versicherungsmanagement GmbH,
Bundesstraße 23,
6063 Rum,
Austria

Tel:  Austria +43 (0) 512 23 83 00-30; Fax +43 (0) 512 238300-15;
email: AV-service@knox.co.at

Claim Form – for rescue, medical treatment and repatriation costs – for single trip insurance

For further details/checklist about making a claim, click here


Read our members Rescue experiences.

Alpine Worldwide Service to the Rescue

by Gerry Becker:

In March my ski touring holiday came to an abrupt end with my helicopter evacuation from the Neue Prager Hut (2796m) in the Hohe Tauern to the hospital in Lienz where I was diagnosed with pneumonia and spent two nights as an inpatient.  Interestingly, even though I am a US citizen resident in the US, neither the helicopter company nor the hospital asked for payment or a credit card number, nor did they seem interested in my Alpenverein membership .  Both indicated that they would just send an invoice to me in the US. Either the Austrians are very trusting or they have an agreement with Arnold Schwarzenegger to put the squeeze on deadbeats in the US.

The invoice for the helicopter arrived with a cover letter stating that, because I was not an EU citizen or resident, EU tariffs would not apply.  This was a polite way of saying the sky is the limit with respect to what we are going to charge.  Perhaps this is what awaits UK members post-Brexit!  The actual flight time from the hut to the hospital was 13 minutes but the invoice charged for 47 minutes which was the time from engine start at the helicopter base, flight to the hut, then to the hospital and back to the base and engine shutdown.  This was charged at a rate of 90 EUR per minute plus a base rate of 400 EUR and a medical charge of 500 EUR for an invoice total of 5100 EUR.  The hospital bill for two days was only 1700 EUR.

Per the instructions from KNOX Versicherungsmanagement I posted my claim form and helicopter invoice to KNOX who sent it on to Generali Insurance.  They “settled” the invoice (amount unknown) within two days of receipt.   With respect to the hospital invoice, KNOX/Generali required that the invoice first be submitted to my US insurance to determine what benefits they might pay.  My US insurer required me to pay the hospital and then submit a claim.  Given that my US insurance is a high deductible (excess) plan no benefits were payable and I submitted the claim denial and invoice to KNOX/Generali.  Once again Generali paid the invoice within two days of receipt but, unfortunately, they mistakenly paid the hospital.  As soon as I notified KNOX, the error was corrected within 24 hours and the full reimbursement appeared in my bank account.

I was very impressed with the speed with which my two claims were processed.  A far cry from the weeks or months this type of thing takes in the US.  Kudos to the Alpenverein Worldwide Service.  Well worth the price.


Himalayan Rescue

by Brian Jackson:

This will now be my fifth year as a member of the Austrian Alpine Club.  During this time, I have attempted to climb 5 first ascents in the Nepalese Himalayas and have been successful on 4 of these.  Each time on these expeditions, I have bought the AAC single trip premium rescue insurance, available only to AAC members, which covers me for mountaineering expeditions that are not on the standard trekking routes.  Previously unclimbed peaks fall within this remit.  On each of these expeditions, I have encouraged all the other expedition members to join the AAC and book the same insurance which they have all done.  The insurance cost differs if the peak is below or above 6,000m and is great value for the outlay and an essential part of any expedition.

Until November 2016, no members of our expeditions have ever had the need to call upon the AAC to use this insurance. However, on our attempt in November 2016 to make a first ascent on the unclimbed peak, Karbu Ri (6,010m), we had 3 people who got altitude illnesses at different times during the attempt to reach the summit.  Unfortunately, out of the 13 in our team, two people got HAPE and one got HACE.  The difficulty was that the walk in to both Base Camp and Advanced Base Camp was on a very long glacial moraine with a gradually increasing gradient which made it extremely dangerous to attempt to walk out in order to lose height quickly.  It would take hours just to lose a few hundred meters so the decision was taken to evacuate each person by helicopter straight back to Kathmandu.  We used our satellite telephone to contact our ground handlers in Kathmandu, HimEx Nepal, who sorted out the helicopter rescues. As soon as each person was in Kathmandu, they were told to make contact with the AAC to talk through both the necessary rescue and hospital costs.  The Tyrol Air staff on the end of the emergency number could not have been more helpful or understanding to each person and reassured them that the rescue would be covered.  They only needed to get a copy of the correct paperwork for both the helicopter flight and hospital costs and they would be reimbursed.  One of the climbers actually had the money in his bank account before he even got home on the next available flight to the UK. When it was required in an emergency, Tyrol Air were there to help and I cannot recommend them enough to all as their first port of call for all expedition insurance needs.


[Updated 23 October 2018]

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