According to a new survey from UK-based price comparison site MoneySuperMarket, British travellers continue to demonstrate a lack of understanding of travel insurance.
The poll, which took in responses from 2,000 UK holidaymakers over the age of 18, found that 80 per cent of those who take out travel insurance do not check whether it actually covers the requirements of their trip. Fifty-five per cent of respondents stated that they planned to undertake activities such as skydiving and jet skiing while on holiday, despite not knowing whether they would be covered in the event that one of these activities went wrong, while 67 per cent said that they would drink alcohol while on holiday – not surprising, necessarily, but worrying considering that nearly half of respondents did not realise that injuries sustained while under the influence of alcohol could negate the validity of a claim.
Anna Sant, a travel insurance expert at MoneySuperMarket, warned consumers: “Personal injury claims can fail because of suspected intoxication, so it’s worth reading through your policy in full to make sure you don’t get caught out. As a general rule of thumb, the cheaper your policy, the more open the clause around alcohol is to interpretation. In many cases, especially with cheaper policies, it’s up to the individual to prove that they weren’t under the influence of alcohol when they got injured, which can prove almost impossible.”
While interventions from organisations such as MoneySuperMarket are positive – after all, consumers tend to see price comparison sites as neutral arbiters and may be more inclined to listen to their advice rather than that of the travel insurers that they already do not trust – but the persistence of this awareness gap is frustrating for those in the industry who have been observing it for many years.
It seems that even in this age of free-flowing information, it is all too easy to remain ignorant.