Ever heard the one about the couple whose clothes were stolen by monkeys as they toured the jungle? That’s right, every scrap of cotton they owned was urinated upon and then torn up, before a gaggle of mischievous little bush babies scurried off with their goods. And do you know what? They managed to claim their losses back on insurance. So for those of you who think travel insurance is an ‘unnecessary expense’ because you’ve never lost or broken anything before, think again, as it can cover the strangest of happenings. Just remember, it could happen to you…
Totally nuts: A woman was peacefully enjoying her beach view from underneath a palm tree in Sri Lanka when a coconut fell on her head. She was immediately hospitalised but luckily her insurance covered the price. No insurance? Then wear a helmet at all times, we say.
Honesty’s the best (insurance) policy: While on holiday in Athens a young man walked straight into a bus shelter and broke his nose. Being an honest gent he explained in his claim exactly what had happened: he was distracted by a group of bikini-clad woman across the road – and he was duly compensated by his insurance company. There’s a moral in this story somewhere.
Snow joke: A woman’s holiday was refunded because it didn’t snow enough. Said young lady had invested in a shiny new pair of skis and some bangin’ boots, but sadly for her, there wasn’t nearly enough powder to get full use of them. Her insurance company accepted her claim and she was given a full refund.
Holy cow: We’re not kidding here: one family in Devon were covered for damage to their car because a cow licked it. That’s right, the cow had clean wiped off the red paint, and no questions were asked.
Snap decision: It was a good idea at the time – bury the camera in the sand to keep it safe during a swim. Little did they know, it would be too safe and the family themselves couldn’t remember where it was buried. Never mind though, their insurers didn’t bat an eyelid and paid them back £600.
Once burnt: A lady visiting a bar in Greece was burnt multiple times by the counter that went up in flames. This was a feature of the bar and there were warning signs plus an alarm, but she hadn’t understood them. Luckily, her insurance company paid out for stupidity.
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Travel insurance how-tos:
So we think we’ve drummed it in to you by now that it’s worth getting travel insurance, but that doesn’t answer the question of just how to do it. The internet is awash with options – you just need to make sure they suit your trip. Here’s a rundown of some of the different policies.
Single-trip insurance: This policy is the most basic and will cover you for one holiday for a specified amount of time. It generally includes lost luggage and property, and flight delays. Coverage can start at 50p a day but changes depending on destination. Policies can be compared on sites such as Money.co.uk or Confused.com.
Multi-trip insurance: This is similar to the above, but can be applied to a number of smaller holidays through the year, usually amounting to 90 days. If you go on minibreaks frequently this is a good option, with prices starting at about £30. Again, look at travel insurance comparison sites to get a range of quotes.
Backpacker insurance: If you’re going on longer trips to more remote parts of the world you’ll definitely want a comprehensive policy. It’s best to discuss the details of your trip with an expert to get the right coverage. STA Travel has good packages for backpackers and they also have adventure sport add-ons and extra medical coverage.
Add-ons: If sky-diving, parachuting, snowboarding or any other extreme sport is part of your agenda, then it will be worth getting extra coverage. You may also want to have better cover for your belongings if you’re travelling to several different places or the country has a high crime rate. Likewise if you have a health condition, you may want extra medical coverage, and must be honest about this.
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