If you’re planning a holiday, remember there’s much more to the process than simply booking flights and accommodation. For example, you’ll have to find your passport and check that it’s in date, as well as ensuring that you fulfil the appropriate visa requirements for your chosen destination. And though many people see it as an unnecessary extra expense, it’s also essential to book travel insurance before getting on the plane. After all, it’s easy to assume that nothing bad will befall you on your trip but as 2010’s volcano ash cloud travel crisis showed, anything can happen to disrupt your holiday.
To ensure that your travel insurance is well-priced and fits your needs, here are a few tips to bear in mind. First, search the internet exhaustively to find the best deals on travel cover, rather than purchasing it from your tour operator or airline. Insurance comparison sites have made it much simpler for consumers to locate the most competitive rates on travel insurance, helping save a significant amount of money in the process. However, it’s important to not simply opt for the cheapest insurance deal. Instead, compare the rates of reputable providers with well-rated cover options to ensure your cover is of a high quality. Also consider whether it would be more economical to purchase annual cover rather than single trip insurance.
Before purchasing, read the fine print carefully. Does the travel insurance provided meet all your holiday needs? For instance, if you’re going on a skiing holiday, remember that many insurers will not include winter sports cover in a standard insurance policy. You will either have to pay an excess sum or look for specialist winter cover, and these policies may still not provide cover for off-piste activities.
Often, this rule also applies to any trip with a high risk factor, like extreme sports holidays, and travellers on gap years or extended backpacking trips may also need specialist cover. You’ll also need to check whether your preferred travel insurance provider actually provides cover for your chosen destination. Usually, if official government advice recommends against travel to a particular country, insurance policies will not cover holidays to these destinations.
If you’re travelling as a couple, with family or in a group, it can sometimes be cheaper to buy your travel insurance altogether as one policy. In particular, insurers may provide discounts for couples travelling with children, though these policies may only cover group travel and not individual holidays. Finally, don’t rely solely on comparison sites to find the best deals. Once you’ve decided which insurer best suits your needs, visit their website or telephone them to see what deals or discounts are available direct. If you have specialist needs – for instance, if you’re over 65 years old or you’re a frequent business traveller – these insurance providers may be able to offer you bespoke cover options.
Paul Buchanan writes for a digital marketing agency. This article has been commissioned by a client of said agency. This article is not designed to promote, but should be considered professional content.