The Importance of Choosing the Right Travel Insurance Policy
New research has exposed restrictions on insuring children depending on their relationship with the insured adults, so Inspired Travel urges families planning holidays in the upcoming months to choose their travel insurance wisely
Planning a holiday is a very exciting process, which means certain important elements can sometimes be dismissed, but insurance is something you cannot risk overlooking. There are many different travel insurance policies out there, all of which entitle you to different allowances. It’s crucial that you understand the terms of your insurance and whether or not it suitably covers you and your family before agreeing to it.
Travel insurance is a wide-ranging thing, designed to provide cover for different circumstances and situations while the insurance holder is on a leisure holiday or away on a business trip. Travel insurance covers a trip being cancelled, a trip being cut short, medical expenses and loss or theft of luggage, money or personal belongings. Travel insurance can cover both worldwide travel, or it can be limited to within the UK or another specific area. A large amount of the time, but not always, travel insurance is sold alongside the booking of a holiday and, when there’s so many elements to think about, it can sometimes be overlooked, causing problems for you and your family in the future. Like every form of insurance business, travel insurance companies will try and get as much out of you as possible, which is why it’s incredibly important to read in detail the factors and elements you are entitled to and what your insurance policy covers.
In the event of a serious illness or injury when abroad, travel insurance can save you thousands of pounds worth of pay outs, so the benefits of taking the extra time to arrange a policy to suit you, should scream out. However, a large amount of people out there assume that the most expensive insurance policy is likely to be the best one to choose, so they go ahead and book it without much of a thought, but this isn’t always the case. High prices doesn’t always mean the best coverage and not all policies take into account what kind of trip you’re planning. The best way to get around issues surrounding travel insurance is to list all of the elements that are important to you as a holidaymaker. For example, it’s pointless paying for a policy which entitles you to a reduced cost in car rentals if you are unable to drive, or a policy covering your luggage if you’re backpacking with just one bag of belongings. By removing unwanted elements, not only are you saving yourself the time of deciding which policy best suits you, you’re also often reducing the premium you pay.
Although the summer holidays and the peak time of year for trips abroad are officially over, a large amount of families out there are preparing for their next trip away, whether they are planning a Christmas getaway, a trip during the upcoming Easter holidays or are just arranging next summer’s vacation – after all, there is no such thing as over-planning! And making sure you actually have suitable travel insurance shouldn’t be left until the last minute as, a lot of the time, it covers unanticipated events causing your trip to be postponed or cancelled, and some insurance companies will pay out for this kind of last-minute problem – the kind of problem that is more likely to occur when travelling with other people. Gocompare, one of the world’s leading travel insurance companies is pushing families to pay more attention to the type of insurance policy they will be choosing.
Gocompare’s Alex Edwards commented: “Travel insurance is a must for any trip abroad. Without cover, you could be left picking up the bill for expensive medical treatment. As well as medical cover, travel insurance provides a financial buffer against unforeseen events such as lost or stolen baggage, passports or other belongings.”
New research has revealed certain restrictions on insuring children based on their relationship and living arrangements with the adult. Additionally, this research found that a large amount of policies restrict an individual holidaymaker’s ability to travel independent of their family members. This research compared over 750 annual insurance policies (just to give you an idea of how many different types of policy are out there) by Gocompare and revealed some questionable statistics unbeknown to a very large amount of customers.
With regards to children who do not live with the insured adult, only 65% of policies actually cover them, meaning 35% of policies exclude children of this status. Similarly to this, just 61% of travel insurance policies cover step-children whether they live with the insured adult or not, while 34% only provide this kind of cover if the step-child does in fact live with the adult. This means that 6% of policies exclude cover for stepchildren altogether. Although these numbers don’t sound particularly high, when compared with the fact that there are more than 500,000 stepfamilies in the UK, it’s quite a shocking figure. Stepfamilies in the UK are becoming increasingly frequent and are seen as normality in this day and age, so it is questionable as to why insurance policies are different for circumstances of this kind.
Alex continued: “Not all policies will cover your children if they don’t normally live with you and there can also be restrictions on cover for step-children. However, some insurers who don’t automatically provide cover for stepchildren may allow you to add them, although you may have to pay extra to do so.”
Back to the point of independent travelling, Gocompare’s study also revealed that only 60% of policies cover all insured family members to travel independent of each other. This equates to 36% of policies restricting cover for independent travel to the insured adult and 4% of policies completely exclude all independent travel. Although the majority of families will travel together, it’s not great for the minority who have no choice but to travel out later due to other commitments.
The importance of travel insurance is overwhelming and unfortunately, a huge amount of people don’t read in detail what their policy covers, so if you’re planning a holiday, do your research and make sure you fully understand what you’re entitled to before booking!
Alex concludes: “When buying cover for your family holiday, it’s essential that you check the policy wording to make sure it suits your personal family circumstances and plans. If you are in any doubt about whether a policy covers your family holiday plans, pick up the phone and chat it through with the travel insurer.”
The Importance of Choosing the Right Travel Insurance Policy