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Heading abroad? Remember to pack travel insurance!

Heading abroad? Remember to pack travel insurance!

Category: Travel insurance

Updated: 18/06/2014
First Published: 18/06/2014

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

It's the time of year when thoughts are turning to that much-needed break, with everyone clamouring to get on a plane (or boat, car, train…) and jet off to warmer climes. If you're one of them, you're probably already thinking about what to pack – but have you remembered travel insurance?

It could well have slipped to the bottom of the list, particularly if you're younger. Research from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) has found that 38% of those aged 16-24 don't think it's necessary to take out insurance when they travel abroad, but that can have huge consequences.

As well as needing to fork out should you lose your luggage or an entire holiday needed to be cancelled, medical costs can be particularly painful. They can easily run into thousands of pounds, and don't think you'll be covered by the Government. This is an assumption of 16% of those surveyed, but in reality, if you fall ill abroad and don't have suitable cover, you (or your family) will be entirely liable for the costs incurred.

Having a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is essential, but don't be one of the one-in-five that assume it acts as a full insurance policy – it doesn't. Yes, it provides access to state medical care in the European economic area but it doesn't cover additional costs and nor will it act as insurance for anything else that could befall you, so why run the risk?

No matter what age you are, making sure you've got a suitable travel insurance policy should be at the top of the agenda. It could provide cover in the event that you fall ill or are injured, if your possessions were lost or stolen, if you needed to cut your trip short (or cancel it altogether) or if you caused damage to something – or someone – while away.

Other policies could include the likes of personal accident cover, legal expenses and financial protection, and even cover for dangerous activities such as jet skiing or scuba diving – it all depends on your circumstances, the holiday you're going on and the policy you choose, so make sure to do your research to find the cover that's right for you. Then all you've got to do is get out there and enjoy yourself!

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