While not compulsory, travelling without travel insurance is just idiotic. But it is equally important to make sure that you have the right coverage. If you’re planning a trip abroad this year, make sure you read our ultimate guide to travel insurance.
What is Travel Insurance?
Travel insurance is essential it will cover you against having to cancel your holiday for any reason, such as you get made redundant at work so you have to save your money, or you get sick whilst abroad and need to pay for medical care.
Types of Travel Insurance
Single or Annual Trip
Depending on how many trips you are making in the next year, you have two options: single or annual trip cover. If you are making more than one trip abroad in the next year, then annual insurance is likely to be cheaper and more cost effective than a single trip policy twice.
European or Worldwide
Different insurers have different ideas about what constitutes Europe and the rest of the world, so it pays to check that your country falls into the one that you think it does.
Individual, Couple or Family
There are different options when it comes to who you’re travelling with, too. It may work out cheaper to cover your family altogether rather than individually. However, if one of your party needs specialist cover, due to their age or medical conditions, then this may bring the cost of your cover up. It may be worth covering them separately with an insurer who specialises in existing conditions cover.
Some insurers let you travel independently on a group policy, but you should always check that you can before you do.
Benefits of Travel Insurance
Emergency Medical Cover
This is an essential part of your policy. Look for travel insurance in Europe that offers you at least £2 million worth of cover, and worldwide cover that offers at least £5 million.
Whilst this might seem a lot, medical bills abroad can easily wrack up into the hundreds of thousands without travel insurance. Make sure that you inform the insurer of any pre-existing medical condition, no matter how small or irrelevant it seems. Otherwise you may find that the insurer will refuse to pay out when you claim.
Cancellation and Missed Departure
If you have to cancel or cut short your trip because of illness or bereavement, then your travel insurance will usually cover it. Look for a policy that offers at least £3,000, which should cover the cost of you getting home.
Personal Belongings and Money
Travel insurance will cover you up to a certain limit for lost or stolen personal belongings. Buy a policy that offers cover for up to £1,500, and be sure to check the limit for individual items and bear this in mind when packing.
This covers you in case you injure someone or damage their property and you face legal bills – so it’s a really important part of your travel insurance. Look for insurance that offers cover of up to £1 million.
Make sure that you check your individual cover for the details to ensure that you have exactly the right cover that you need – policies vary wildly so it never pay to assume that you’re covered.