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Top Tips For Buying Travel Insurance Including Winter Sports

During the winter months, many people will be thinking of booking their next holiday, possibly another skiing holiday.

I recently read that February half term is the most popular and dangerous time to go skiing, as this is the time when most skiing claims are made following injuries suffered whilst on a winter holiday.

Although we all want to enjoy our holiday and not think about the ‘ifs’, it is always best to be prepared and make sure you have the necessary insurance in case you do suffer an injury whilst on holiday, especially if taking part in adventure activities.

It is vital that you have the correct insurance when booking a holiday and you must ensure this covers winter sports such as skiing and snowboarding. ABTA, working in partnership with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), recently revealed that ‘a third (31 per cent) of travellers do not check whether they have the correct insurance to cover winter sports, such as skiing and snowboarding, before jetting off’.

Top Tips When Buying Travel Insurance

1. Factor in the cost of the insurance into the whole cost of the holiday, as it is not something you should economise on. Although we all want the best deal, it is important to have the right level of cover especially if taking part in adventure activities.

2. Compare different travel insurance quotes. Important information to have to hand when comparing quotes is dates of travel, destination, and personal details such as date of birth.

3. Make sure you declare any pre-existing medical conditions.

4. Ensure you have the right level of cover for each element:

  • For medical cover the minimum you should have is £1m, although some policies will go as high as £10m. It’s recommended to get a higher limit if taking part in winter sports or travelling to countries where medical treatment is more expensive.
  • Ensure you have cover for medical evacuation and repatriation, in case you cannot fly home on a commercial flight or without a medical professional. This is especially the case if you are involved in winter sports or other dangerous activities which could lead to serious injury.
  • Baggage cover and cancellation cover should be at least as high as the value of the baggage you are taking and the cost of your holiday. Cancellation cover will usually be between £1,000 and £2,000, which is likely to be enough, but also include any pre-paid trips and excursions that you have planned whilst you are away.
  • If you are taking more expensive items with you, such as laptops or cameras, then make sure their value is within the single item claim limit on the policy you have chosen. This is often £200-£300.
  • You should also have at least £1m of personal liability cover in case something happens and you face claims against you personally as a result.

5. Always check that the policy includes everything you want to do whilst on holiday. If you intend to do more snowboarding rather than skiing then you need cover specifically designed for this activity. If you are planning on more dangerous activities such as off-piste skiing it may not be covered in standard policies and a more comprehensive policy will need to be taken out.

6. Choose annual cover if you travel more than three times a year. But also check what this covers and ensure this covers winter sports and adventure activities if one of the trips is a winter holiday.

Sarah Moore is a personal injury litigation executive specialising in travel litigation at Slater and Gordon Lawyers in Manchester.

Slater and Gordon Lawyers offer a free consultation for people injured in an accident on holiday, or injured while travelling or working outside the UK.

Call our No Win, No Fee Solicitors 24 hours 7 days a week on freephone 0800 916 9046 or claim online. From outside the UK please call +44 161 830 4446

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