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Travel insurance is something you should never set off on a trip abroad without. Yet an estimated 10 million people from the UK travelled without adequate cover last year, either because they took out the wrong insurance or didn’t take out a policy at all.
The problem is, people don’t like paying for something they don’t use. And yes, fortunately, the majority of the time you never need to make a claim on your travel insurance. Yet when you do need it, whether you lose your luggage, miss a flight and need to rebook at the last minute, or need medical treatment you have to pay for, your travel insurance cover becomes so important.
Of course, no one wants to pay too much for travel insurance, especially if, with a bit of luck, they will never have to use it, but it is important to strike a balance between getting the right cover and a good price because if you buy the cheapest insurance and then have to use it, you’ll probably regret getting it as cheap as you did.
So here are four tips to help save money on travel insurance but ensure you are fully covered on your trip:
Buy annual insurance if you travel regularly
Travel insurance comes in two main forms, single trip and annual. The names are pretty self-explanatory – single trip policies cover you for the duration of one trip, annual travel insurance covers you for a full year, no matter how many trips abroad you make (although most companies will have a limit on how many days you can be away for per year).
If you are a regular traveller who travels for a short time and then returns home throughout the year it can often work out cheaper buying annual insurance than taking out individual cover for each journey. This is what I did when I lived in London and went on multiple City Breaks and week long trips. Find out more about annual trip insurance here.
Read the small print
Not all travel insurance policies are made the same, and you need to pay attention to what you are and are not covered for. While this can mean shopping around to get appropriate cover for certain activities – if you enjoy adventure sports while travelling for example, you also don’t want to find yourself paying for things you don’t need. If, for example, you are travelling with a backpack, your passport and a few clothes, there’s no point paying for luggage or personal property protection running into thousands of pounds.
Go to a specialist provider if you have a medical condition
People with pre-existing medical conditions can be caught out in two ways by travel insurance. Either they tell a high street provider about their condition when applying for cover and then get hit with huge premium hikes, or they don’t declare it at all, and then find their insurance is invalidated when they need to make a medical claim. It is essential you get the right cover as medical treatment abroad can be extremely expensive, but you don’t need to pay eye-watering amounts for it. Search for a specialist who deals in tailored cover for medical conditions. Read more about how to not be caught out here.
Look into group or family policies
Finally, if you are travelling as a couple, a family or a group, you can buy single travel insurance policies with several different people named on them. The biggest benefit to buying on the same policy means that you’re covered if one of you has to cancel or cut your holiday short due to illness, whereas buying individually would mean that you wouldn’t necessarily be covered for this – especially if they aren’t immediate family. Group policies usually work out cheaper than everyone buying their own insurance separately so this is another way to make travel insurance cheaper.
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