30 October 2012
There are plenty of Q&As about travel insurance in the Internet. The most frequent questions travellers ask are about pre-existing medical conditions, annual multi trip and single trip travel insurance, covers for elderly people, backpackers and so on. You can find detailed answers to such popular questions in the Internet. However, as it always happens, there are some topics everyone tries not to bring up as well as there are some questions that everyone tries not to answer.
There is no such a deal although many insurers will say there is. Nothing is perfect. Travel insurance included. Ideally, the perfect travel insurance should be reliable, low-budget and decent. Let’s face it. Can you imagine buying a cheap suit of high quality at a reliable seller? It is just impossible combination. Yes, you can manage to buy low-budget travel insurance at a reliable insurer and be covered for a few risks. Yes, you also can buy reliable and decent policy but it will not be cheap. Finally, yes, you can buy low-budget and decent cover but you take the risk of getting into accident that is not covered due to poor range of covers. Therefore, whatever you choose you may combine a maximum 2 out of 3 ingredients of aperfect travel insurance recipe. Unfortunately, you will have to sacrifice either your money or the quality of policy or reliability.
We have to admit that risk is the reason for this. Unfortunately, things don’t work so well as people mature and many seniors have to undergo medical tests and are taking medication for various medical conditions. Statistics show that people aged 75 to 84 are nearly three times more likely to make a claim than someone aged 55. Also, the cost of each claim increases with age. Therefore, it is inevitable that premiums will eventually have to rise and a higher excess applied.
However, this is far better than elderly people finding themselves uninsurable resulting in a greater risk of them travelling without adequate travel insurance cover and leaving themselves at risk of financial ruin if they fall ill abroad. If you have a Pre-Existing Medical Condition, irrespective of your age you can either accept that the policy will not cover you for claims related to that particular condition or ask to include additional cover for an extra premium.
Actually, prices depend on insurer. For instance, you can find the policy from one insurer costing £80 and the same plan from the other insurer costing £50. Actually everything depends on dozens of different factors such as number of insured accidents, maximum payouts, restrictions, excess levels etc. For example, you have found two similar policies from two different insurers. Coverage level is the same, restrictions are the same but the price differs.
If you dig into details you will see that they offer different excess levels. The cheaper option includes excess level three times higher than the more expensive option. This will result in less risk covered because you will have to cover all minor expenses yourself. If the first insurer provides excess of £150 and the second one - £50, all accidents between £50 and £150 won’t be covered by the first insurer. Besides, you will get less payout if an expensive accident occurs. In most cases price difference between policy costs is less than difference in excesses. If you save £15 on a policy you will receive £100 less for accident.
It is one of the most frequently asked questions: why should I bother with Travel Insurance if I have an EHIC and am only travelling to UK or other EU countries? To give the most detailed and truthful answer let’s point out what exactly is covered by EHIC and what’s not. But you should be aware that in several EU countries, some hospitals and clinics will refuse to acknowledge the EHIC!
Read more: EHIC? Good But Not That Good!