Travel insurance: What you need to know

Do you need travel insurance? Which type of policy will you require? Taking out travel cover can be a minefield… If you’re unsure about it, whether you need it, and what policy to opt for, take a look at the following guide…

Jetting off on holiday

Do I need travel insurance?

Whilst travel insurance is not an essential document when travelling abroad, it is wise to take out cover in case you run into problems. Whether you have booked a flight only or an accommodation package, most travel scenarios require you to pay up front, well ahead of your holiday. It covers you if you can’t go on the trip for one reason or another, meaning you’ll get your money back if you end up missing the holiday.

Though not being out of pocket if you don’t go on an impending holiday is not the only reason to take out some insurance. Unfortunately, things can go wrong on holiday. You could have an accident, fall sick, be a victim of theft or another crime, and without travel insurance, such pitfalls are likely to come at a high price.

Single trip or annual policy?

Generally speaking, if you go on one or two short holidays abroad a year, specific trip insurance is likely to work out the most cost-effective. Though if you are a regular traveller or go on longer breaks, usually of up to a month, taking out an annual policy would probably be best.

What if I have a medical condition?

It is important to provide full disclosure of any past or existing medical conditions you have. People with health conditions usually have to pay higher premiums for their travel insurance. This is because travellers with medical problems tend to result in making a greater number of claims with the cost of such claims being higher than average.

It is important that you disclose any medical issues when taking out the insurance to ensure you are adequately insured and your policy will not be made void should you run into problems.

What about the EHIC card?

Whether you take out travel insurance or not, when travelling in Europe, you should always carry a valid European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). The EHIC card will enable you to get free or reduced medical insurance in European hospitals should you have an accident or fall ill.

You can apply for an EHIC card here.