Travel Insurance (Frequently Asked Questions)
Please note these are general guides to travel insurance and do not constitute provision of advice or indicate that a particular product is appropriate for you. Benefits, conditions and exclusions vary from one travel insurance policy to another and you should always check the policy summary and policy document to make sure that you understand what you are buying. If you have any questions please talk to your insurance broker.
What is the difference between annual travel insurance and single trip policies? There are two main types of travel insurance. Trip travel and Annual travel. They both essentially provide the same type of cover (loss of baggage, cancellation, accident and sickness). The difference is how many times you can go away using the same policy.
Trip Travel will provide you with insurance cover for a single trip. When you buy this type of policy the insurance ends as and when you return. If you go away again then you will need to buy another trip travel policy. When you buy a trip travel policy the premium is based upon the number of people going away and for how long. The shorter duration the lower the premium. Children are usually charged at a lower rate than adults, and those under 2 are normally free.
Annual travel will provide you with insurance cover for as many trips as you make within a year. If you normally go away two or three times a year then this type of insurance can work out considerable cheaper than buying trip travel policies each time. Annual travel policies normally restrict the length of each trip to 31 days, but you can go away as many times as you like. The premium is based upon the number of people covered, with special rates for families and couples.
What if I have a medical condition? As one of the most important parts of travel insurance is the medical cover, it is essential that you report any pre-existing medical conditions to the insurer when you buy insurance. All standard contracts will assume that you do not have a pre-existing medical condition. Most insurers are looking for chronic or serious ongoing medical conditions for which you have received treatment in the past 12 months. Because this may make you a higher risk then the premium may be increased, or the insurer may specifically exclude certain parts of cover. It is essential that you disclose the information because failing to do so may mean that the policy may not pay out in the event that you need to make a claim.
Do I still need an E111 form? If you are travelling to a European Union country you are strongly advised to obtain Form E111 from your local Post Office. This will entitle you to benefit from the reciprocal health arrangements that exist between European Union countries. If you use this form (and thereby reduce the value of any medical claim you make) you will find that you do not have to pay the excess for that section of the policy.
Can I cancel the policy if I don't want it? You can cancel the policy for any reason within 14 days of issue, providing you have not already travelled and that you have not made any claim. You would then receive a full refund of any premiums paid.
What about skiing or other winter sports? Skiing and winter sports in general are more risky than normal trips. There is more chance of you receiving an injury and therefore requiring medical treatment. For this reason the insurer will ask for a higher premium to be paid. Even with additional winter sports cover, the insurer will normally exclude racing and other high-risk activities such as heli-skiing, para-penting and bobsleighs.