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It’s estimated that around a quarter of British holidaymakers jet off without travel insurance – some out of ignorance, with others viewing it as a legitimate cost-saving decision given the likelihood that it won’t ever be needed. So is it worth taking the chance?

It’s obviously a personal choice, but when weighing the decision up in terms of cost, benefit and the potential hazards if the worst were to eventuate, it’s difficult to justify not getting it given the risks involved. Remember, insurance is there to cover the cost of unforeseen circumstances like illness, injury, loss of luggage, theft, delays, trip cancellations, or even a need to come home early in the event of an emergency. Some of these unexpected setbacks could end up costing you thousands – or, in the worst-case scenario, even millions – of pounds.

So here are five key things to remember with regard to buying travel insurance:


It’s not expensive!

As a single, you can cover yourself on a week’s holiday for £10, or your entire family for around £25. In the context of an overall holiday budget, it isn’t very much money. One decision you may also want to consider is taking out an annual policy. If you plan to go on holiday more than once in the space of 12 months – particularly if it is in a similar geographical area – it will usually work out as the cheaper option.

Always declare medical conditions

It may knock up your quote by a couple of quid, but there is nothing to be gained from not disclosing pre-existing medical conditions of yours or a member of your family. Insurance companies aren’t charities, and won’t hesitate to reject claims if they can demonstrate a lack of full disclosure on your part.

You might already be covered

A lot of people don’t even know that they’re already covered. Certain credit cards and bank accounts offer this as a sweetener if they charge a fee. However, in the case of Nationwide, some of their accounts offer full cover without even charging a monthly fee.

Get winter sports cover

With a good few weeks of the ski season still remaining, you may be tempted to hit the slopes while you still can. However, many people make the assumption that standard insurance covers injury incurred while on the piste. This is almost always NOT the case. So be sure to check the fine print of your policy thoroughly, and if need be, add on winter sports cover.

Don’t pay over the odds

Be sure to shop around to find the best-value provider of travel insurance. Obviously, price can’t be the only determinant, but is certainly the big one. Price comparison sites will generally give an idea of the most competitive offers. But don’t fall foul to the extras that get thrown in. ‘Platinum’ packages and the like are rarely worth the extra cost. Get what you need, and get out of there!


Hopefully these pointers will set you on your way to making your travel insurance purchase as quick, painless and cost-effective as possible. But while you want to find the best deal you can, this is not something to skimp on, as the risk is potentially overwhelming. If you feel squeezed in terms of your budget, and there really is no room for insurance, it might also be worth considering low-cost holiday loans. After all, aside from insurance, this is a time to be enjoyed for you and your family, with complete peace of mind. The last thing you want is to be weighed down by financial pressures.


kate sutton


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Published by Kate Sutton

Writer, Mother, Dater.

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