If you’re thinking about travelling, but don’t think travel insurance is absolutely necessary, I really hope this article will change your mind. Thankfully I’ve only had two experiences where I’ve had to use my travel insurance, but both times I was extremely thankful I had it.
It’s easy to think, ‘It won’t happen to me’, but the truth is sometimes you unknowingly eat a dodgy meal or get bitten by a rabid monkey and when that particular load of nastiness hits the fan, you’ll be very glad to see your travel insurance policy.
Here are my top travel insurance tips:
- Find a travel insurer you’re happy with and who offers a policy that suits your needs. Cover More Travel Insurance is a good place to start.
- Get travel insurance when you book your flights, not the day before you leave, because you can be covered for events like cancelled flights etc,under some policies.
- Make sure your policy covers you for the activities you plan to do, like sailing, hiking, surfing or mountain biking. Don’t just assume all your thrill seeking activities are covered.
- Keep a copy of your travel insurance policy and product disclosure statement with you and leave a copy with a trusted friend or family member at home too.
- When taking out travel insurance, make sure you tell the company about any pre-existing medical conditions. If you don’t, and a pre-existing flares up while you travel, it could void your insurance so be honest from the start.
- If you intend to hire a car or scooter while you’re away, make sure your policy covers it and if you can’t get a policy that does, re-think your plans to hire a vehicle. The costs could be huge if something goes wrong, is it worth it?
- If you have any questions or are unsure about what you need from a travel insurance policy, then take the time to call the insurer and have your questions answered so you’re clear on what you’re covered for and the policy you’re taking out suits your needs.
- If you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel. Simple as that.
Thank god I had travel insurance…
The first ‘thank god I have travel insurance’ story is the infamous street-food story from my honeymoon. The second, is the little-known Turkish Buffet story, this one is equally entertaining and told with just as much tongue-in-cheek sarcasm as the first.
Matt and I were in Turkey, enjoying a much-anticipated tour through beautiful little towns and beaches and taking in the incredible scenery. We were part of a tour group and all the meals were pre-arranged for us. We arrived in Kusadasi and checked into our hotel and agreed to meet up with the rest of the group for dinner at the hotel restaurant.
The hotel was below average, it had old, dingy little rooms with paper-thin walls and I was very relieved we were only staying for one night. At dinner, we all chatted and laughed and loaded our plates up with food. I didn’t know it at the time, but it would be the last recorded instance of me eating meat.
After dinner, everyone else settled into cocktail hour quite comfortably and were just starting to get into the swing of things, but I felt really weird and went up to the room for a nap, assuming I was just tired. Within an hour I had the worst food poisoning of my life and had become very close to my new best friend, the toilet.
Things went from bad to worse, I developed a really bad fever and by the time morning came, I was in a really bad way. Our tour group was due to leave the hotel within the next hour, but there was no way I could get on the bus. However, not getting on the bus meant missing the trip we’d paid for plus the added cost of medical expenses that were definitely going to be needed.
It turns out the hotel was located right across the road from a hospital, which was really convenient because when you need it, and you will if you eat there, it’s very convenient for you to crawl your sorry self across the road and receive the medical attention you desperately require.
In fact, you will find the hospital a better place to stay at then the hotel. The hospital has ocean view rooms with huge comfy beds, you don’t even have to drink any water because they hook you up to a bag full of it and they bring you three delicious square meals a day. Tell them I sent you, they’ll hook you up.
The hospital nurses and doctors were fantastic, they told me I had a severe stomach infection (and other things I won’t gross you out with) which ravaged my guts. I was stuck in a Turkish hospital for a few days and had two of the biggest needles I’ve ever seen, right in the butt. Thank god I’ve got a big booty!
The tour company were absolutely useless, but the insurance company were fantastic. Thanks to our travel insurance we didn’t have to worry about the cost of the hospital or the cost of missing part of our trip.
I certainly didn’t plan on eating anything that would make me sick, sometimes these things just happen, but man I was glad we had it or it would have been a very stressful and costly experience.
Phoebe Lee is a writer, award-winning blogger and travel lover sharing helpful travel tips, insight and reviews for regular people. Follow her adventures at home and around the world, right here on Little Grey Box and on Instagram, Facebook and YouTube. Find out more here.