Travel insurance Updated:
If you're heading off on holiday soon, there's one thing that should be at the top of the packing list: travel insurance. It may be something you begrudge paying for – or even something you don't think you'll need – but could you afford not to have it? The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has taken a look at the figures, which show just how valuable this form of insurance can be.
The figures show that insurers paid out a total of £365 million last year to 494,000 individuals and families who needed help with their holiday plans, with emergency medical treatment being the most common – and most expensive – type of claim. A total of £196 million was paid to cover medical expenses and repatriation costs, with 166,000 claims being processed.
A further £128 million was paid to 160,000 individuals and families to cover the cost of holiday cancellation, while £16 million was paid out in 87,000 claims to cover the cost of lost baggage and money while travelling.
Overall, this means that ABI members pay out £1 million every single day to help cover the cost of cancelled trips, medical treatment or other travel difficulties, and when you consider the cost of paying for such mishaps yourself, the cover becomes even more worthwhile.
For example, the average medical expense was more than £1,200 last year and the average cancellation claim totted up to £800, while a typical travel insurance policy costs an average of just £33. Doesn't it make sense to seek suitable cover?
"Holidays are meant to be enjoyable and relaxing, but they can be traumatic for some travellers who become ill or are injured abroad," said Mark Shepherd, manager for General Insurance at the ABI. "Medical treatment in foreign countries can cost tens of thousands, which is why it's essential to have a travel insurance policy that will cover you, should you need it."
Despite the clear advantages of having such a policy, more than one in five people still risk travelling uninsured. The question is, why? The cost of a policy will be negligible when stacked up against the potential cost of medical treatment, cancelled trips and lost baggage, and as the figures show, it needn't cost a fortune.
Of course, you don't want to go too cheap, either, but if you make sure to do your research, you can be confident in finding a policy that offers the cover you need at a price you can afford. "There are a wide range of policies available so it's important to shop around to find a policy that meets your needs," added Mark, so use our travel insurance comparison tool to get started.
Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.
Moneyfacts.co.uk will, like most other websites, place cookies onto your computer’s
hard drive. This includes tracking cookies.