Going away can be expensive and you may be looking at ways to cut costs on your holiday but one thing you should not cut back on is travel insurance. Travel insurance can be a valuable purchase should things not go to plan when you are away, particularly if you require emergency medical treatment, as medical bills abroad can quickly add up.
In this article, we look at how much travel insurance costs as well as how to buy a cheap travel insurance policy that still offers you the best cover for your trip. If you want to compare some of the best travel insurance providers you can do so in our article, 'The best travel insurance providers in the UK in 2023'.
What does travel insurance cover?
Travel insurance is designed to offer protection for irrecoverable costs if things don't go to plan when you are on holiday. Most standard travel insurance policies will provide cover for emergency medical bills should you require treatment whilst away and it is also possible to get extra protection in the event of cancellation of your trip or loss of your personal belongings. You can also expect cover for some coronavirus-related claims on most travel insurance policies which can provide additional reassurance when booking your summer holiday.
How much does travel insurance cost?
In this section of the article, we have compared the cost of various travel insurance policies to highlight how the cost of travel insurance varies. How much you will pay will depend on a number of factors including where you are travelling to and whether you have any pre-existing conditions. We explain what affects the cost of travel insurance in more detail later in the article.
Single trip vs annual multi-trip travel insurance
The type of travel insurance policy you choose will affect the cost of cover. If you travel multiple times in a year it may be more cost-effective to buy an annual multi-trip policy instead of a single trip policy each time you travel. An annual multi-trip travel insurance policy will cover you for more than one trip in a 12 month period but there may be limits on how long each trip can be. You will also need to ensure that each destination you travel to is covered under the policy.
The comparison table below compares the cost of single trip and annual multi-trip travel insurance policies for individuals of different ages. The quotes are based on a 7-day single trip policy and an annual multi-trip policy to Europe and the USA. For the purpose of the quotes, the individual does not have any pre-existing medical conditions.
How much does single trip and annual multi-trip travel insurance cost? - Price comparison
|7 night Single trip to Europe||Annual multi-trip Europe||7 night Single trip Worldwide incl USA||Annual multi-trip Worldwide incl USA|
|20 year old||£27.70||£60.08||£24.70||£57.54|
|30 year old||£12.55||£22.45||£27.45||£55.82|
|40 year old||£11.55||£22.45||£31.45||£50.01|
|50 year old||£11.77||£28.02||£42.92||£168.76|
|60 year old||£13.75||£63.10||£50.71||£254.16|
(Quotes are from travel insurer Coverwise for its Gold policy and are correct as of 03/02/23)
How much does long stay travel insurance cost?
In the comparison table below we provide some examples of long stay travel insurance (also known as backpacker insurance). Long stay travel insurance is designed to insure one trip abroad and is a good choice if you are planning to be away for longer periods e.g. a gap year. The quotes in the table are based on a 12 month trip around Europe or Worldwide including the USA. If you are planning to visit more than one country when away you will need to check that each country is covered under your long stay or backpacker policy.
How much is backpacker travel insurance? - Price comparison
|12-month long stay policy (Europe)||12-month long stay policy (Worldwide incl USA)|
|20 year old||£113.98||£311.80|
|30 year old||£113.98||£311.80|
|40 year old||£137.19||£274.40|
|50 year old||£285.21||£526.49|
|60 year old||£350.25||£607.49|
(Quotes are from travel insurers insurewithease.com, Tesco Bank, Sainsbury's, insurefor.com and switchedonInsurance correct as of 03/02/23)
How much does over 70s travel insurance cost?
As you get older you may see an increase in the cost of your travel insurance policy. Some travel insurance providers also enforce upper age limits to their policies which can restrict the amount of travel insurance available to you as you age, particularly if you have pre-existing medical conditions. It is still possible to get travel insurance if you are over the age of 70 and in the comparison table below, we show how much you can expect to pay with travel insurance provider Staysure but the quotes are based on individuals with no pre-existing medical conditions and therefore the costs may vary.
How much is travel insurance for those over 70? - Price comparison
|7 night Single trip to Europe||Annual multi-trip Europe||7 night Single trip to USA||Annual multi-trip USA|
|70 year old||£25.42||£101.16||£101.90||£252.94|
|80 year old||£47.61||£197.92||£205.28||£491.00|
|90 year old||£119.29||£390.62||£475.73||£981.89|
(Quotes are from travel insurer Staysure and are correct as of 03/02/23)
How much is travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions?
Travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions is usually more expensive than travel insurance without cover for pre-existing medical conditions but that does not mean it won't be affordable. The amount you will pay for your medical travel insurance will vary depending on your pre-existing medical condition and if you are currently receiving any treatment. We compare the cost of different travel insurance providers and a range of medical conditions in our article 'The best travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions'.
What affects the cost of travel insurance?
How much each individual pays for a travel insurance policy can vary and below we list a number of factors that can affect the cost of your travel insurance.
- Age - Your age affects the cost of travel insurance and typically the younger you are, the cheaper your travel insurance policy. However, there isn't a large difference in the cost of travel insurance until you reach about 60 years old when you may start to see an increase. The comparison table shown earlier in the article demonstrates how age can affect travel insurance.
- Pre-existing conditions - If you have any pre-existing medical conditions then you are likely to pay more for your travel insurance policy as there could be an increase in the chances of you having to make a claim. How much you will pay for your policy will vary depending on the condition you have and if you are still receiving treatment for the condition. We look at how pre-existing conditions affect the cost of travel insurance in our article 'The best travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions'.
- Destination - Where you are travelling also has an impact on the cost of your travel insurance policy. For example, the cost of an insurance policy to Europe is likely to be cheaper than a policy that covers travel to the USA due to the difference in the cost of medical bills in each country. The difference in the destination is illustrated in the comparison tables throughout the article.
- Trip length - The length of time that you are away will affect the cost of your policy. The longer you are away the more you can expect to pay for your travel insurance policy.
- Policy type/cover - The amount of cover you choose and the type of travel insurance policy you have will affect how much you pay for your travel insurance. A premium policy with more emergency medical cover and cover for cancellation and baggage claims will be more expensive than a basic policy with the lowest cover. A single trip policy is also likely to be cheaper than an annual multi-trip policy as you are insured for a shorter amount of time.
- Activities - The type of trip you are taking is also likely to affect your cover. For example, if you have booked a cruise or winter sports on your trip then you may have to purchase additional coverage as you may not be covered should you need to claim. If you are planning on taking part in adventurous sports or activities you will also need to check your policy documents to see if your travel insurance policy covers you. If not you may need to speak to your provider to see if you can enhance the policy to ensure the activity is covered.
How to buy cheap travel insurance
One of the best ways to ensure you buy the cheapest travel insurance policy is by shopping around to get the best deal. One of the easiest ways to do this is via a comparison site such as MoneySuperMarket* or Compare the Market* as you can quickly and easily compare multiple insurers at once to find the cheapest deal.
One thing to consider however is that not all comparison sites are whole of market and so in some cases, you may not be getting the best deal. When shopping around you may also benefit from comparing providers directly as this may mean you can benefit from online discounts and deals that come with buying directly through the insurer.
If you are going away as a family or in a group, buying a policy that covers each individual may work out cheaper than multiple individual single trip policies. One thing to consider, however, is that if someone on the policy has a pre-existing medical condition this may make the policy more expensive overall.
Another way you may save money on your travel insurance policy is by purchasing an annual multi-trip policy. An annual multi-trip policy could work out cheaper if you travel multiple times throughout the year and would save you from having to buy numerous single trip policies. We compare some of the best travel insurance providers for single and annual multi-trip travel insurance in our article 'The best travel insurance providers in 2023'.
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