Travel insurance is something most people buy as a matter of routine, without checking out the small print. But buy a policy that isn’t right for you, and you could face a stiff financial penalty, or worse, thousands of miles from the UK with little or no medical assistance in your time of need.
To help you avoid making a big mistake, here are a number of myths about travel insurance debunked:
Myth: All my gadgets, jewellery, sports gear and other valuables are completely covered by my travel insurance
Reality: No, they probably aren’t. Travel insurance, on the whole, has much lower claim limits than standard household insurance. Typically, policies only let you claim up to a maximum of between £300 and £500 for a single item, and many valuables, such as golf clubs, watches, laptops and wedding rings, are worth much more. Some might even be excluded from cover, such as bicycles or glasses.
Myth: A European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) covers me for all health problems and treatments while away anywhere in Europe.
Reality: The EHIC only covers you, to a degree, in certain member states of the European Union, as well as Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Switzerland. But even then, you might have to pay for things that we take for granted in the UK, such as ambulance services and GP visits.
And you won’t be covered by your EHIC for repatriation costs if it’s an emergency, such as by air ambulance, which can cost tens of thousands.
Myth: My travel insurance will cover me for every potential health incident
Reality: Many sports, such as skiing or off-road cycling, will be excluded in standard policies and are only covered in more specialist travel insurance. If you know you’re going to be engaging in any sporting activity whilst on holiday, always check whether your policy covers this. If it doesn’t, extra cover for that activity may be available as an optional extra.
Myth: I don’t really need cover for short trips of a few days
Reality: By not taking out cover, even for short trips such as weekend breaks abroad, or 3-day skiing trips to the Alps, you’re taking a significant risk.
Myth: I’ve got a pre-existing medical condition but it’s never really been a problem, so I don’t need to mention it to an insurer
Reality: It’s vital that you inform your insurer of any pre-existing medical conditions, such as asthma or diabetes, that you or anyone in your family has. If not, a claim could be denied.
Myth: I’m too old to get travel insurance
Reality: There are many policies for older travellers, whether you’re 69 or 85. Premiums may be somewhat higher, but the policies offered usually have much greater levels of medical and emergency cover.
Policy Expert is an online insurance provider and broker, dedicated to helping customers find the insurance policy that’s right for them. Our customers are at the heart of everything we do, so we have a team of experts with a real passion for making sure people get the cover that’s right for them. Policy Expert is driven by a desire to help you find not only the best value insurance, but the right insurance for your individual needs. To speak to an expert today, call us on 0330 0600 603 or visit www.policyexpert.co.uk/contact for more ways to reach us.
Published 20 December 2017