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A Guide for Choosing Travel Insurance
Travel Insurance: Comparing Cheap Holiday Insurance Quotes
Mishaps and accidents can happen anywhere and anytime. There’s just no way of guessing when or where that would be. You could be enjoying a relaxing holiday and something untoward will just happen. It could be something straightforward like nowhere-to-find luggage or it could be something more serious such as an accident. Whatever it is, you wouldn’t really want to be left helpless and out of options if ever something goes wrong when you’re traveling. One way of better protecting yourself from uncertainties is to sign up for the right travel insurance.
This is also the reason that every year, about 75% of British holidaymakers see to it that travel insurance is part of the things that they sign up for before setting out. If you have decided to do the same thing before flying to your next travel destination, it goes without saying that you wouldn’t be keen on having to sign up for a policy that will only leave a massive hole in your wallet.
As long as you’re not plagued with any preexisting conditions like asthma, diabetes, or epilepsy among others, you’ll find that travel insurance isn’t actually going to cost you that much. What’s even better is that you’ll find even more wallet-friendly deals if you will use our insurance comparison platform to make it easier for you to look at a number of insurance quotes from a whole host of insurance providers.
Travel insurance explained
Travel insurance offers coverage against potential risks that you may encounter whilst on holiday. It is also useful at covering the costs that are generally involved when remedying such unforeseen events— making it a must-have for anybody who is considering getting on a plane and going on holiday.
For instance, you will want to look for a travel insurance policy that offers coverage for the costs involved in finding your luggage if you end up losing your bags. They can also come in handy if you ever encounter a medical emergency and you need extra funds to cover the costs involved. So whether you contract some serious ailment or you get involved in an accident, a travel insurance can help cover that.
There are also instances when a travel insurance plan can keep you covered if you get into a situation requiring you to make some last-minute cancelations to your travel plans. This would come in handy if you ever find yourself ill just before you’re set to leave so you won’t end up wasting all the funds you’ve spent to pay for the tickets and accommodations you booked ahead of time.
What types of policies for travel insurance can I avail?
As far as variety goes, there’s a wide range of holiday insurance policies that you can find out there. Oftentimes, the policies available for you will be affected by the destination you’re traveling to, how long you intend to stay and the specific types of activities you intend to do when you get there. Among the options you might want to look into before making a choice are:
- Single trip coverage- This offers insurance for a single holiday with the coverage only lasting for a set period of time.
- Annual coverage- Also referred to as multi-trip coverage, this insurance will offer coverage for an entire 12 months from the start date of the policy. This means that if you take several trips within the 12 month period, you will still be covered by the policy. However, it is important to note that the coverage will be limited for a certain number of days for every trip.
If you tend to go on trips several times a year, you will benefit more from an annual policy as it will provide you with better value. It will also help you save more compared to taking out single trip insurance plans every time.
A very important, albeit obvious thing to consider when choosing a policy is whether or not it covers the specific destination you’re heading to. Most of the time, you’re going to have to select policies that offer either coverage within Europe or those that are worldwide. When it comes to worldwide cover, note that they are generally split into:
- Worldwide coverage that includes the USA, the Caribbean and Canada
- Worldwide coverage that does not include the USA, the Caribbean and Canada
Always make it a point to pay attention to the small print of any policy you’re interested in since not every single one can be expected to classify countries in the same manner. For instance, there are travel coverage policies that will include Morocco, Turkey and Egypt under their European coverage on top of the worldwide cover. You also have the option to go for holiday coverage that is more specific as in the case of a travel insurance for the family that will offer coverage for two adults and at least a single child that share the same address. What really matters is you get a plan that will best suit your needs and of course, your budget.
How long are the trips supposed to be?
Once you’re ready to make comparisons among the variety of travel insurance policies available where you are, always remember that it’s quite common for most of these policies to set a maximum length that every single trip is supposed to last with the coverage still intact. The same is also applicable even for annual policies. This means that you might have a travel insurance that allows you up to 4 trips a year. However, coverage for each trip may only be limited up to 31 days. Understanding these limitations is essential so you know you’re getting the most out of the policy.
Also, if you take out this type of insurance and you believe that your trip is going to be longer than what is covered, it is essential that you talk to the insurer and look into the possibility of signing up for an insurance extension. Another option, in the event that an insurance extension isn’t allowed, is to take out a backpacker insurance coverage. Policies like these are generally aimed at people that travel multiple times to different countries and for longer periods of at least 12 continuous months. Our comparison service can also be used to make comparisons for policies that offer these types of coverage.
What kind of coverage can I expect from a holiday insurance?
Policies and the coverage they come with will significantly vary from one insurance company to the next. However, when making comparisons, always make sure to check if the following features are actually included in what you are getting:
- Medical cost coverage- This ensures that treatments you need whilst you’re away are going to be covered. Considering going for £2 million as the minimum worth of the coverage. However, remember that there are countries that tend to have very expensive healthcare systems so always consider the average costs of healthcare and medical treatments in the country you’re heading when making a decision.
- Repatriation coverage-This covers the potential costs involved in the event that you have to go back to the UK as a result of some medical emergency.
- Curtailment or cancellation insurance- this ensures that you’ll have due compensation for those situations where the holiday is cut short or you have to totally cancel it as a result of unforeseen circumstances. For instance, if you fell ill while on holiday or if you were advised by your doctor not to travel after you have booked your tickets and reserved your accommodations.
- Delayed or missed departure insurance- This covers costs involved when your flight got delayed or you ended up missing it as a result of situations beyond your control as in the case of a car accident.
- Delayed or lost luggage insurance- This offers compensation if you ended up losing your baggage or if it gets stolen, damaged or destroyed.
Aside from these core features for travel insurance, the best policies out there should also provide the following coverage:
- Personal liability coverage- This covers legal fees as well as pays compensation in the event that you get blamed for an injury or if you cause damage to property due to an accident.
- Gadget travel coverage- This offers coverage in the event that your gadget needs repair or if you need to get it replaced because it got stolen or damaged beyond repair while you’re on holiday.
Is there anything that a travel insurance doesn’t cover?
There are certain exclusions and conditions attached to different holiday insurance policies. This can vary from one company to the next so it is important to pay close attention to the fine print before signing up so you know you are indeed getting covered for everything you wish to get covered for. Every inclusion and condition needs to be properly spelled out in the policy document. Make it a habit to check out the details before finally stamping it with your approval.
Some of the exclusions for travel insurance are generally standard. This means that there’s a very good chance that you might not be able to secure coverage for the following:
- Medical expenses incurred if you end up giving birth while you’re travelling overseas. It is common for pregnancy travel insurance plans do not consider pregnancy as a pre-existing condition. However, it may be a little hard for you to secure a suitable policy if you choose to travel when you’re almost due to give birth to the baby.
- Medical treatment that you are required to undergo due to pre-existing medical conditions unless you have specifically signed up for a travel insurance that covers pre-existing medical conditions.
- Expenses or injuries that result from sports adventure unless you have specifically signed up for a travel insurance policy that covers adventure sports then you can expect expenses related to skydiving, bungee jumping, skiing, scuba diving or snowboarding among others.
- Flights that were purchased using airmiles that got cancelled. If this happens, the value of the flight will not be covered. However, if you incurred additional taxes and fees on top of the airmiles you paid then these expenses may be covered.
Pre-existing medical conditions explained
Pre-existing medical conditions pertain to anything you’re taking medication or having treatment for as in the case of high blood pressure or diabetes.
Having a pre-existing medical issue could mean paying a much more expensive premium or you may have to agree to pay a higher excess. It is also possible to find that costs related to such a condition will be totally excluded from the coverage you are getting.
It is quite tempting to not be honest with the insurer of any condition that you already know you have in order to secure a more affordable policy. However, failure to disclose such information can cause the policy to be voided. This means that if you file for a claim and the insurer will find out that it is for something that you failed to inform them of ahead of time, then they can very well refuse any pay-out.
What other travel insurance features should I consider?
It is possible to add more features to the policy you have signed up for if you wish to enjoy better protection. Among these are:
- Winter sports coverage- Standard policies will not cover winter sports such as snowboarding or skiing. If you intend to head to the mountains, this is a good policy to sign up for just in case you might need coverage for damaged boards and skis.
- Cruise insurance coverage- Ensures that you are covered against risks that tend to be specific to cruise travels as in the case of missed port departures, changes to your itinerary as well as cabin confinement.
- Adventure holiday coverage- This offers coverage for risky activities that you intend to take part during your holiday including zip-lining, bungee jumping or even something like pony trekking.
Do I really need to secure a travel insurance?
There is no legal obligation requiring you to secure a travel insurance before going on a trip. In fact, about a fourth of British travellers will decide to not take out one before heading off to their respective destinations. For the rest of holidaymakers, however, taking out a holiday insurance policy offers them that much-needed peace of mind with the knowledge that they are going to be covered against potential risks while abroad. More importantly, travel insurance doesn’t really cost that much, to begin with.
If you take the time to compare different insurance quotes from a number of insurance providers, then you can easily find the best possible policy deal out there. Avoid signing up with the first insurer you can find and take the time to look around and compare your choices so you get the most out of what you’re signing up for.
Do I need a UK travel insurance policy?
You’re probably wondering if a travel insurance is still necessary when you’re just planning on doing a ‘staycation’. You might actually benefit out of signing up for one. This is because even when you’re just holidaying in destinations that are very much close to home, last-minute delays, cancellations as well as lost luggage are still going to be a common experience. Finding a suitable travel insurance policy that covers your travel within the UK is something you should consider signing up for to prevent yourself from unnecessarily losing out.
Is travel insurance still necessary if I already have an EHIC?
An EHIC or European Health Insurance Card offers you the same level of insurance as any local would if you are to visit their country. However, it’s important to note that it cannot be a replacement for an insurance coverage. This is because the card can only be used in certain countries in Europe and if you intend to go abroad, travel insurance is something you should always prioritize.
Compared to the NHS, many countries around Europe only ever offer subsidised or basic health services. For those instances when you might need medication or an operation, you will have to pay it out of your own pocket if you don’t have a proper travel insurance that is supposed to cover that.
It is also important to note that the EHIC can only offer limited health care. This means that repatriation, cancellations and stolen luggage costs are never going to be covered.
Are there age limits to travel insurance?
In some cases, yes, some insurers will set limitations about how old are those that can be covered by the travel insurance plans they offer. This means that if you happen to belong to an age bracket that is beyond what they cover, they will either refuse your insurance application or they will require you to pay more for the coverage.
There are also travel insurance providers that specialise in offering holiday coverage for people over the age of 50, 70 or even 80. Policies like these are generally targeted for senior travellers and will usually come with added benefits such as emergency medical care with 24-hour availability. This may be one option you will want to look into.
How can I sign up for an affordable travel insurance?
When buying travel insurance, you need to select a policy that will meet your specific needs. While it is always very tempting to go for the cheapest policy you can find but the level of protection it offers may not be that ideal— something that would just end up costing you more in the process. Still, this doesn’t mean that you should instead sign up for the most expensive policy out there. Make sure to compare different policies from different providers. Make sure too to take into consideration the following factors and how they can contribute to the overall costs of the policy:
- Agree to voluntarily pay for a higher excess
- Pay for an annual policy instead of paying a monthly premium
- Check if you’re already covered for what you’re signing up for. For instance, if you have home insurance, it may already offer gadget coverage. There are also certain UK bank accounts that will offer free travel insurance coverage. It pays to check ahead of time for what you’re already potentially covered for before signing up and paying for anything more.
- Buy only what you need. If you’re the type to go on holiday once a year, an annual coverage isn’t going to be ideal for you. Also, if you tend to only go on holiday in Europe, then there’s no point in buying a policy that offers worldwide coverage.
How do I compare travel insurance policies?
Before comparing travel insurance policies, be sure to list the different features you consider an ideal policy should have. This is especially true if you happen to engage in activities like extreme sports since you need to be sure that you are covered for that.
If you’re not sure which between two insurance policies would make for a good choice, you can always revert back to the fine print and find out what it exactly says and which one has the better offer. You’ll be surprised at the amount of information you can find in these documents that will help you determine limitations and exclusions to the policy— something you need to be aware of before actually signing up for one.
Be sure to look at any excess that is imposed by the policy you’re interested in. This is essential to avoid getting surprised with exorbitant costs later on. There are a number of ways that insurers will determine the excess. For instance, they may impose it on a per separate or per person claim basis.
Ready to sign up for a holiday insurance?
When you compare costs for travel insurance with us, you will improve your odds at signing up with the right policy at an equally affordable price. We have partnered with more than 35 travel insurance providers to make sure that you will get access to some of the best range of holiday insurance options available out there— as far as price and features go. Just fill out the form and get started.