No insurance, no assurance

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Travel insurance

A survey conducted by MoneySuperMarket suggests that Brits are less likely to take out travel insurance for ‘staycations’ or trips to Europe than for long-haul travel. However, in line with these findings, the price comparison site has also unearthed some other unsettling figures, with which it hopes to warn consumers of the perils of having no cover when things go wrong – which happens more often than many might believe.

MoneySuperMarket asked 2,000 British citizens about their attitudes towards travel insurance and found that as the length of a trip increased, people were more likely to consider taking out travel insurance – but that still only goes up to 69 per cent for people that get insurance for a week-long holiday. And of those who go away for the night, 52.9 per cent won’t take out travel insurance.

In addition to these worrying numbers, MoneySuperMarket found that 37 per cent would not consider taking out travel insurance for a trip within the UK, and that a troublesome 15 per cent of Brits didn’t realise that they would need cover while staying in the UK.

The reason for this indifference towards travel insurance, the report found, came down to the fact that respondents didn’t feel that they were travelling far enough to warrant it. “It’s still useful to take out travel insurance if you book a holiday within the UK, as it can cover you for lost valuables and cancelled accommodation,” noted MoneySuperMarket.

Travelling outside of the UK, the report noted that the Netherlands, Denmark and Belgium are the places people felt most able to skip out on travel insurance during their most recent trip – but MoneySuperMarket urges holidaymakers to reconsider, citing the Netherlands as having an unusually high rate of lost or stolen passports, at 82 per 100,000 visitors.

Anna Sant, travel insurance expert at MoneySuperMarket, stressed that, as well as missed or cancelled flights, travel insurance can help with medical issues and thefts while travelling. “While we all hope our holidays go without a hitch,” she warned, “travel insurance is a great safety net for those occasions when things do go wrong. You should try to take out insurance as soon as possible after booking your trip, as policies can cover the costs of unexpected cancellations or other difficulties before you leave.”

This is certainly not the first case of misconceptions around travel insurance causing consumer apathy, but it’s good to see that MoneySuperMarket has taken a proactive approach in publishing these findings. As an educational resource, A Study of Brit’s Travel Insurance Habits allows consumers to make informed decisions based on facts rather than assumptions and avoid suffering the consequences of no cover.

You can read the full report here.