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Nobody wants to have to claim on their insurance when they’re travelling but sadly, not everyone is that lucky. Some claims come up frequently, particularly for backpackers, so what are the ones to be aware of?
The majority of travel insurance claims for backpackers are for medical expenses. It makes sense that if you do have to claim, it’s going to be for medical expenses because these can reach sky high prices. While we have the NHS here in the UK, the same systems are not in place abroad, with many countries only offering private healthcare.
If you do have some sort of injury or need any kind of medical attention, you can quickly find that the bills spiral out of control. Your travel insurance will cover the cost of medication, a stay in hospital and various other expenses. Bear in mind that when you go travelling, you are more likely to take risks and do more adventurous activities, so it’s essential that your insurance covers all the things you’ll be doing when you’re away.
When you go travelling, you won’t be taking your huge backpack with you wherever you go. If you’re staying in a hostel for a few days, you’ll leave your big pack in a locker of some sort and take a smaller bag out with you for the day. There is a risk of having your belongings stolen when you leave them at the hostel, or even of you losing them when you are out and about.
Some things are easy to get by without; if you lose your towel, you can get another one relatively easily. However, if you lose your money or an electrical device like your tablet or mobile phone, it’s not only more of a financial hit, but can also make your trip much harder. Knowing that, you would be foolish not to get full cover for your belongings before you travel.
Some countries are deemed to be more dangerous than others, particularly for tourists who are just visiting. With a number of uprisings having taken place in various countries in recent years, the number of potentially dangerous places is on the rise. While you may have planned to go to one particular country, you may find that there has been some sort of unrest there, causing you to avoid travelling. Most travel insurance policies will not cover you if you are travelling against the advice of the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), so always check their website for up to date travel information about your destination before booking your trip to avoid voiding your insurance.
There are plenty of tales of people who have been waiting for a bus to the airport and it just simply hasn’t shown up. This could result in you missing your flight, potentially costing you a lot of money. You’ll have to re-book or be on standby for the next one, which won’t be fun and wastes time.
There may also be other incidents that cause you to change your travel plans; perhaps you may be injured and have to rest up for a few days. If you do have to cancel or seek alternative travel arrangements, you can reclaim the cost on your travel insurance, taking some of the worry and extra expense out of the trip.
There are a number of different travel insurance policies available, depending on what your needs are. Make a list of everything you intend to do on your trip before you leave and take the time to be sure you’ve included everything. You will do better to get a policy that covers you than one that excludes some things, just in case your plans change while you are travelling. That way you can enjoy your trip to the fullest and put all your worries to one side.
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