Despite the warnings, one in five travellers headed abroad uninsured last year, according to ABTA. Whether you simply forget or want to spend your money on other things, travel insurance can prove to be a very wise investment. So we thought an article about how to get cheap travel insurance for adventure holidays might be useful.
As well as buying peace of mind, it may save you thousands in hefty overseas medical bills or compensate you for lost luggage. Accidents do happen, and cutting corners really isn’t worth the risk.
If you are booking snowboarding holidays, a weekend mountain biking in France or other activity vacations that have any added risk involved, first thing’s first, ensure you have a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).
This entitles you to free or reduced medical treatment in the EU, plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland adventure travel. It doesn’t provide cancellation cover, repatriation or baggage cover though, and is no substitute for travel insurance – you should have one in conjunction with a travel insurance policy.
Now, how to get cheap travel insurance? Years ago, buying travel insurance was a pretty straightforward business. You’d buy your holiday, agree to a policy from your travel agent and not spend another second thinking about it.
Today though, the list of ways to get it is endless, with everyone from the Post Office and your bank to the local supermarket offering policies of every shape and size. Yet, with a little patience and searching, you can find one that not only covers exactly what you need, but that’s easy on your wallet.
It always pays to shop around, so take a look at price comparison websites which sometimes offer policies much cheaper than buying direct from the insurer. Also check if you need something specialised such as expatriate travel insurance, a family plan or cover for more dangerous activities.
What cover do I need? Any policy worth its salt should cover medical treatment of up to £1 million for European trips or £2 million further afield. These should cover repatriation and include cancellation protection that matches the cost of the holiday. These policies vary greatly and some are best avoided; if you’re taking cheap no-frills flights, there may be little point in securing cancellation cover, as once you’d paid the excess you might have little worth claiming.
Another thing to look for is up to £1 million personal liability cover. This is included in the event you are sued for causing injury or damage while overseas, and should include a 24-hour emergency helpline in case of emergency.
Also look out for pricey add-ons: they may sound like a good idea at the time, but a measly £20 compensation for a delayed departure will barely cover the cost of a couple of coffees and sandwiches in the airport, so compare this to the cost incurred when paying for the policy.
Another murky area is whether to go for an annual multi-trip policy or single trip. The rule of thumb is if you make more than two overseas trips, sticking to an annual policy will be more cost-effective, while single-trip policies are good value and can be bought for just a few pounds if you head abroad just once or twice a year. Again, test this against your own adventure travel plans and see what works best for you.
And if you’re going on skiing holidays and will be throwing yourself down ski slopes or planning any different types of extreme sport, you should consider a specialist policy that can be tailor-made to suit your needs. From equipment cover to search and rescue – then compare this to the more regular policies to make sure you really are getting what you pay for.
So you have any additional tips on how to get cheap travel insurance for adventure holidays? Let us know in the comments. And check out this interview with the MD of Snowcard specialist adventure insurance for more info.