Travel insurance gives you vital financial protection should something go wrong on your holiday. Here’s a closer look at what it offers and whether it’s worth paying for.
It’s an insurance policy that protects you from expensive costs if, for example, you’re seriously ill while abroad or need to cancel your trip at short notice.
Cover can start from less than €6 for a single trip and could save you thousands, or in some cases even millions of euro if you have an accident or fall ill abroad.
A decent travel insurance policy should include:
Without travel insurance you could be left to foot a bill that could quickly run into the thousands of euro, for example, the cost of repatriation from Australia to Ireland is estimated to be between $8,000 - $16,000.
You can also add extra cover to include things like:
The European Health Insurance Card gives you healthcare protection across the EU, meaning you can access health care for free or at a reduced rate.
If you’re travelling to Europe you should definitely get an EHIC before you leave - you can apply for a free EHIC on the Health Service Executive website.
However, while the EHIC offers valuable protection it’s nowhere near as comprehensive as a dedicated travel insurance policy as it only applies to healthcare costs.
Travel insurance would also protect you financially in other ways, including:
Even if your existing medical insurance covers you abroad, a comprehensive travel insurance policy can offer financial protection in other areas, for example if you need to cancel your trip or your travel money is stolen (as seen above).
The good news is that many travel insurers in Ireland offer a discount on your quote if your medical insurance covers you abroad, which could make your travel insurance even cheaper.
Most travel insurance policies will cover you to travel in the early stages of pregnancy, but you should always check how far into the pregnancy the cover will last. For example, you may be covered to travel up to 32 weeks into your pregnancy but not beyond this date. If you fall pregnant after taking out a travel insurance policy and will be at a late stage in your pregnancy when you’re due to travel, you may be able to claim for cancellation.
It isn’t a legal requirement to have travel insurance for trips to Europe, but a good policy will offer valuable protection, especially if you need to cancel your holiday due to unforeseen circumstances.
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