Best travel insurance

Whether you’re young or old, going on a family holiday or a backpacking trip, we break down how to find the best travel insurance deal.

Working out which travel insurance deal to get can be a bit like looking at a foreign menu in a faraway country.

This guide can help you translate the lingo though, so you can find the best travel insurance deal possible for your trip.

The type of policy you will need will differ, depending on your trip. So we break down travel insurance into the following categories: seniors, those with pre-existing medical conditions, multi-trip, those taking plenty of gadgets and those looking for the cheapest deal possible.

Compare cheap travel insurance

  • Search over 35 UK travel insurance providers
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  • Find the best cover for the lowest price

How to compare travel insurance and get the best deal

First, there are some basic tools you can use to effectively compare travel insurance policies.

Regardless of whether you’re going on a cruise or a city break or whether you’re young or old, here are some key ways you can find the best travel insurance deal.

  • Shop around. Use price comparison websites and get quotes directly from insurers, so you can really see the lay of the land. Try not to jump for the first or second decent deal you find.
  • Use an insurance broker. A broker could give you tailored advice and even help you find an affordable deal. If you have a pre-existing condition and you’re struggling to get cover, it can be a good idea too.
  • Think about the excess. Watch out for cheap travel insurance policies that come with high excesses. This is the amount you’ll have to contribute towards any claim, so it could hit your wallet harder in the long run.
  • Medical protection. Try to get at least £1 million medical cover, potentially £2 million if you’re heading to the U.S or the Caribbean. Health care can be expensive in certain countries as can repatriation costs.
  • Age limits. If you’re in your 60s or above, watch out for age limits on any deals you compare. You don’t want to waste your time looking at policies that exclude you.
  • Individual claim limits. If you’re taking away any expensive items, jewellery or gadgets for instance, keep an eye out for any limits the insurer imposes on individual items. If it only pays out £200 for your £2,000 camera, you’ll be left red faced and out of pocket.

Best travel insurance for seniors

Once you’re in your 60s and above, you’ll be charged increasingly more for travel insurance. Some insurers could even refuse to cover you.

Yet it’s crucial you get cover. Should you have a medical emergency while uninsured abroad, it could lead to financial ruin. Follow these steps to find quality cover for your trip:

  • Don’t buy through a travel agent. You’ll invariably be ripped off when you take out travel protection through an agent or airline. Shop around, use price comparison sites and buy direct from the provider to get the best deal possible.
  • Specialist insurers. Over 65s can struggle to get travel insurance, yet specialist insurers such as Age UK travel insurance offer protection, no matter your age. Compare deals from these providers if you’re struggling to find cover.
  • Multi-trip. Heading away more than once this year? Buying an annual (multi-trip) police can save you money.
  • Declare any conditions. Make sure you mention any pre-existing health conditions. Ultimately, the best deal is one that will cover any emergencies while away, so you want to make sure the insurer will pay out should you need treatment. It could refuse if your pre-existing condition leads to a situation abroad.
  • Medical cover. Try to find a policy that offers at least £1 million medical cover, as treatment and repatriation costs can really skyrocket. If you’re heading outside of Europe, you’ll want at least £2 million.
  • Opt for a higher excess. As a senior, you might have more cash to burn. Accepting a higher excess can lead to lower premiums, although you need to make sure you can afford the excess should you need to make a claim.
  • Cruise cover. Setting sail across the open seas? You’ll want to get additional cruise cover, which can protect you should you fall ill during the trip or if you miss the boat for reasons beyond your control.

Best travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions

Unfortunately, getting travel insurance with a pre-existing health condition can be a bit more difficult. Insurers might hike prices or even refuse to cover you completely. Yet there are a few ways you can find a top-quality deal:

  • Speak to a charity. Struggling to find cover? Get in touch with a charity that works to help people with your specific condition. It could point you towards a recommended insurer.
  • Look at specialist insurers. Check out specialist providers like Travel Insurance 4 Medical and Medical Travel Insurance, which offer cover for people with a range of health conditions.
  • Shop around. As always, use price comparison websites and really look at all the deals out there, making sure they offer the cover levels you need, at a price you can afford.

Best travel insurance for covering electronics

From your phone to your camera, you’ll want travel insurance that properly protects your gadgets abroad. You might buy gadget cover as an add-on to your standard travel insurance deal or take out a separate gadget policy.

  • Check individual item limits. All policies will have a maximum amount you can claim for a specific gadget, so make sure the limit will cover the cost of your electronics.
  • Look at the excess. The excess is the amount you contribute towards a claim before the insurer starts paying out. Taking on a higher excess can mean cheaper premiums, but make sure you can afford it.
  • Check contents insurance documents. Check whether your home and contents insurance covers your electronics abroad, or ask your insurer if this is possible. It might be a cheaper and more effective way of getting protection.

Best cheap travel insurance

Holidays and trips abroad are expensive enough without having to think about getting insured. Yet there are some simple ways you can keep costs down and save that money for a nice meal out.

  • Buy direct and online. Avoid travel agents as they often charge over the odds. Use price comparison websites and buy through insurance companies’ websites to get the cheapest deals.
  • Look out for discounts. Coupon codes are sometimes available and are a quick and easy way to shave some pennies off your insurance costs.
  • Buddy up. Travelling with friends or family? Buying a joint policy will lower your premiums.
  • Buy an annual policy. Heading away multiple times this year? Buying an annual or multi-trip policy will save you money on travel insurance for the year.

Frequently asked questions

The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products we can track; we don't cover every product on the market...yet. Unless we've indicated otherwise, products are shown in no particular order or ranking. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations), aren't product ratings, although we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it; this is subject to our terms of use. When making a big financial decision, it's wise to consider getting independent financial advice, and always consider your own financial circumstances when comparing products so you get what's right for you.

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