Famous literary characters and how travel insurance could protect them on their adventures

Written by: Nicola Taylor Content Coordinator, Asda Money 26 Feb 2021

The 4th of March is nearly upon us and that means kids and adults alike are gearing up to dive into the wonderful magic of books with World Book Day!

Across the world, readers will be discovering fantastical literary universes, meeting mysterious characters and getting lost in timeless stories, adventures and odysseys that can act as havens in times of uncertainty and anxiety. World Book Day itself is a wonderful initiative, organised by publishers and schools to ensure that every child in full-time education has access to books with free book tokens and events to celebrate the literary world.

Despite current restrictions in place across the UK, the day is still going ahead with an online schedule – you can learn more about on the World Book Day website here.

You may have been on epic quests to lonely mountains or escaped sand worms on distant planets. You might have mourned a missed chance with a human-rights lawyer or witnessed the rise of a 16th century Tudor statesman. You may even have followed the adventures of a mouse, outwitting a big, strange monster in a forest, or joined a water rat and a mole on a sunny river picnic, one fine spring morning.

Whatever book you’ve been lost in, whatever novel has carried you away with its captivating story, the super-practical of you may well have asked: ‘Well this adventuring is all well and good, but how much of these expeditions are covered by insurance?’

No?

Just us?

In honour of World Book Day and all the fantastic novels and stories it brings to our lives, at Asda Money, we’re celebrating in the way only we know how – by picking out five fictional characters and providing them a competitively-priced travel insurance quote for all of their wonderful adventures! With this piece, we’re going to find out just how much our heroes will be covered for if anything goes wrong with any of the incredible experiences they encounter on their epic quests.

Read on to find out more!

Alice – Alice in Wonderland


With Alice from Alice in Wonderland, we’re seeing an unaccompanied seven year old child heading off to an unchartered land full of unstable characters and strange creatures, so we’re already off to a great start.

So, let’s see – Alice’s initial tumble down the rabbit hole in the pursuit of disreputable leporine figures counts in our eyes as a foray into caving which we would, naturally, count as a dangerous activity. If Alice were to take out travel insurance - with a caving add-on - to cover her caving experience, she could be covered up to a whopping £10,150,000 in the unlikely (or rather, quite possible) event she’ll need medical care or rescuing.

So far so good. Our next point of interest is Alice’s dive into the pool of tears. It’s a niche activity, we’ll give it that, but thankfully for Alice, this could be covered with water sports cover of up to £900 for rescue and/or any medical treatment for spending an extended period in what is essentially human tears.

While we’re on the subject of niche activities, we’re fairly sure that a croquet game with humanoid cards as the hoops counts as dangerous sports! Thankfully, because of dangerous sports travel insurance add-on, in the event of any Queen of Hearts mandated punishments, Alice will be covered up to £15million.

Finally, there’s the infamous tart legal case, a case most of our legal experts agree has little to no precedence, and would require a crack team of lawyers to get Alice out of trouble. The good news is, with legal representation cover of up to £50,000, Alice has a good chance of being acquitted, or at least being saved from decapitation. On the subject of legal cover, while we’re at it, we should also ensure that any food preparation carried out in the Duchess’ kitchen is covered, since it really isn’t the best space for culinary excellence – let’s add cover for food preparation with low safety standards, for which Alice can be covered by up to £1,500.

Harry Potter - Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone


With Harry Potter and his days at Hogwarts in the first book in the series, things start fairly tame before gradually getting more and more out of hand – a lot like Harry’s school years actually.

With Harry’s journey to the famous wizarding school taking place mostly by train, we’re not too worried about anything going wrong. When he steps off the Hogwarts Express though, he hops onto a boat with the rest of his year, so we’d best add on some cover for water sports and sailing – he could get recompensed up to £900 (Please note: mermen attacks and hippogriff rides not covered).

Harry’s loyal companion Hedwig, no matter how capable he is in a scuffle, should really get some pet travel insurance at the rate he gets around. With our pet travel add-on, Hedwig could be covered up to £200.

Here’s where things get a little bit more complicated – potions class is pretty dangerous with all the ‘bewitching minds and ensnaring senses’ going on, not to mention Snape’s inspired approach to teaching. That means Harry will need a hefty substance exposure add-on, covering him up to £36,000.

For now, there’s no real insurance policy that quite covers quidditch as a sport, unsurprisingly, so we’ve taken a different tack with Harry’s quidditch match insurance. With a travel insurance policy that covers injuries sustained in aviation, Harry could be covered for up to a hefty £144,000.

Lastly, thanks to Harry’s poor choice in enemies and his pre-dereliction for going missing in explicitly-titled evil settings, we’d best provide him insurance that covers his detention in the Forbidden Forest – Dangerous Wildlife and Hazardous expeditions cover, with possible compensation up to a grand total of £15million.

Frodo Baggins – The Lord of the Rings


Frodo, Frodo, Frodo – You may wish to have never lived to see such times as yours, but that’s no excuse for not having a good insurance policy on your side as you take the ring to Mordor.

You can bet when Gollum lost the Ring to Bilbo, he was kicking himself for not taking out the right insurance policy. The One Ring has a mind of its own and is always trying to make its way back to its master, so our first step should be to ensure that Frodo gets the right compensation in case he misplaces it. Cover for a priceless personal possession/antique of precious metal – if Frodo lost his ring, he’d be able to claim up to £250 in compensation.

In addition to possession cover, the number of times some unscrupulous fellow tries to steal the ring means it makes sense for Frodo to get attempted robbery/mugging cover. Frodo could get compensation of up to £500 in case of a robbery by anyone, be it Boromir or a ringwraith.

We thought long and hard about Frodo’s run in with the mighty Shelob and his subsequent kidnapping by the orcs at Cirith Ungol, and we’ve decided that he’ll be needing cover for Dangerous Wildlife up to £30,000 and kidnapping cover for up to £500 to cover the whole shoddy experience.

Lastly, with Frodo et al spending a great deal of their time pottering around old mines and hauling themselves up mountains, both he and the fellowship are likely in dire need of quality insurance cover for mountainous and caving activities. Skipping over the less-than-friendly locals like the goblins and the Balrog of Morgoth, our intrepid hobbit will still be needing caving cover for his Mines-of-Moria expedition for which he could be compensated for rescue expenses and medical expenses of up to £10,150,000. As for his final stretch to destroy the ring, well, anyone going up somewhere called Mount Doom should probably have some quality insurance backing them up – Mountaineering cover up a live volcano – we’d suggest up to £10million in potential compensation.

Lyra Belacqua – Northern Lights


Lyra Belacqua’s impressive ability for getting into trouble, along with her silver-tongued way of getting out of it means that a handy travel insurance policy that covers all the essential bases is exactly what she needs.

We’ll start with the wildlife first. Yes, we know that Pantalaimon is Lyra’s daemon, an extension of her soul, and not a wild animal at all – but for the sake of bureaucratic simplicity when filling out a claims form, let’s just call him a pet. For proper pet travel insurance cover while travelling with her ‘pet’, Lyra can be covered for up to £200.

Staying on the wildlife angle, Lyra’s meeting with all-round terrifying, powerful and armoured fuzzball Iorek Byrnison and her subsequent journey to the panserbjørne/armoured bears castle means she’ll likely be wanting Dangerous Wildlife cover too of up to £30,000.

As for the rest of her expeditions, where to start? Getting kidnapped by the Gobblers and dragged away to Bolvangar on Svalbard of all places, well we’re looking at kidnapping and imprisonment cover at the very least, not to mention the experimental medical procedures they carried out on her there – rounded all up, she’ll need kidnapping-and-imprisonment insurance, covering up to £25,000,000.

In her escape from Bolvangar in Lee Scoresby’s hot air balloon, even if Lee is an experienced flyer, Lyra will still want ballooning cover for herself, which she could get with aviation travel compensation of up to £144,000. On the subject of sports and travel methods, she’ll also be wanting some water sports cover for her journeys with the Gyptians – which could cover her for compensation of up to £900. As for the rest of her travels, making your way safely across Svalbard to find Lord Asriel is no joke. All of that hiking, skiing and mountaineering is dangerous stuff, so she’ll be needing some winter sports and mountaineering cover with, covering up to £1,200,000.

Lastly, if you ever ask an alethiometer what you should get sorted before a big trip with an invaluable, priceless artefact in your bag, the inevitable answer will, of course, be valuables cover, with possible compensation of up to £250.

Dorothy – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz


Well Dorothy, you may not be in Kansas anymore but that doesn’t prevent you from being adequately protected in case anything goes wrong on your trip - machinations of a wicked witch notwithstanding.

As with many of our literary heroes in this list, Dorothy will need a travelling-with-a-pet insurance add-on for her beloved Toto so we’ll note that down with a pet care cover limit of up to £200. The storm itself that carries them both off, whether magical or otherwise, still causes a lot of damage so we’ll add some storm damage cover on while we’re here, at a cover limit of up to £13,200.

Now however which way you look at it, Dorothy’s arrival and adventures in Oz coincide with the untimely death of two of its most prominent citizens, whether politically or fraudulently-motivated. Both wicked witches would have both benefitted from a reliable death benefit insurance policy, which would have seen compensation of up to £30,000 be delivered to their loved ones (who, let’s be honest - sorry ladies – probably don’t actually exist).

While we know he’s a friend, we also can’t discount the fact that Dorothy spends a great deal of her time in Oz in the company of a (presumably) man-eating lion, however cowardly he may be. There’s also the flying monkeys, wolves, crows and bees that the Wicked Witch of the West has in her employ. Dangerous wildlife cover is needed – she can get up to £30,000. Along with that, just like Lyra and Frodo, Dorothy gets kidnapped by the witch, so she’ll also need some kidnapping cover of up to £500.

Finally, while the adventure to Oz may not have been the feet-up, lazing-by-the-poolside holiday Toto most definitely had in mind, Dorothy does indeed abandon their trip when she click-clacks her magical silver shoes to get them back to Kansas. A bit of a downgrade we reckon, but with a comprehensive trip abandonment cover policy of up to £2,000, well, Toto might be just able to afford the holiday he deserves after all.

Those are our insurance cover policies for some of our favourite literary characters! We hope you enjoyed reading them and for more information about World Book Day and the fantastic initiatives it supports for children across the country, visit their website here.

With any luck, you won’t require the same level of travel insurance cover that Alice, Harry, Frodo, Lyra and Dorothy need, but if you’re looking to find competitively-priced and comprehensive insurance for your travels, discover more here.