is it worth buying travel insurance?

    (Pixabay)

(Pixabay)

Although Covid travel restrictions have all but disappeared, UK holidays remain a popular choice. According to a study by Ipsos, 81% of Britons planned a holiday in the UK between September 2021 and September 2022.

Holidays in the UK are often cheaper than their overseas counterparts – and easier to organize. But wherever you decide to go on holiday, a travel insurance policy can give you peace of mind that if something goes wrong, you won’t be left out of pocket.

Do you need travel insurance if you are not going abroad?

Staying in the UK for a holiday may be less risky than going abroad. Your journey can be shorter, there is no language barrier and thanks to the NHS you don’t have to worry about medical bills.

That said, travel insurance can still provide a financial safety net. If you need to cancel your holiday due to unforeseen circumstances, book alternative transportation due to delays and disruptions, or lose your belongings while away, travel insurance policies allow you to claim for any unexpected expenses.

What does UK travel insurance cover?

While policies vary by provider, UK travel insurance typically covers the following:

  • Cancellation or Restriction – covers travel costs if it is canceled or cut short due to an unexpected event, including illness, bereavement or dismissal

  • Luggage and personal effects – allows you to reclaim the cost of personal belongings if they are lost or stolen while traveling

  • Delays – covers all costs incurred in the event of delay in transport

  • Personal responsibility – covers all legal costs if someone is injured or their property is damaged while on holiday

  • End-Supplier Failure – allows you to claim compensation if one of the companies you book with, such as a hotel, goes bankrupt

  • Transfer to hospital — if you are hospitalized during your trip, the cost of transport to a hospital closer to where you live is covered

  • Additional travel or accommodation – if you are unable to return home as planned due to an accident or illness, your policy may cover the cost of any extra transportation or accommodation you need

The maximum amount you can claim for each type of cover varies by insurer. Please check these limits carefully before purchasing a policy.

It’s also important to check your policy’s excess – the amount you’ll have to pay out-of-pocket to cover any claims.

Many insurers also offer cover if your trip is disrupted due to Covid. For example, you can make a claim for compensation if you have to cancel or cut short your trip because a member of your group passed a test.

However, as with any medical treatment claim, evidence may be required, such as a positive test result or medical certificate.

What may not be covered?

When choosing insurance for a trip to the UK, it is good to read the regulations carefully.

Many insurers only cover UK breaks of a certain length – usually at least two consecutive nights.

Others may only offer cover if your destination is some distance from your home and you have paid for your accommodation in advance.

Does a European or Worldwide policy cover travel to the UK?

If you already have a multi-trip policy with European or Worldwide cover, you may not need a second UK-specific policy as many cover UK travel as standard.

However, not every supplier offers this, so check your policy carefully before you travel.

When is it worth buying travel insurance to the UK?

The best time to buy travel insurance is when you book your trip – and UK travel insurance is no exception.

Buying a policy immediately means you are covered in case of trip cancellation.

What else should be considered when booking a UK holiday?

In addition to purchasing a travel insurance policy, vacationers can take a few extra steps to protect their money:

  • Look out for flexible booking options – some companies offer a full refund when customers cancel within a certain period of time, such as 48 hours

  • Pay by credit card – any purchases over £100 and up to £30,000 made by credit card are protected under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. This means that if something goes wrong with your purchase, the card provider is obligated to intervene if the company refuses to give you a refund, even if you only paid the card deposit

  • Consider the chargeback scheme – If you can’t pay for your vacation with a credit card, you can use this scheme. If something goes wrong with a debit card purchase, consumers can ask their bank to reverse the transaction and get a refund.

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