A leading travel insurance provider to UK and EU, EEA, Monaco and Gibraltar-based holidaymakers and business travellers, is urging those heading abroad to adopt its 12 travel resolution tips for 2024.
By embracing the following 12 actions, Europesure Travel Insurance hopes to keep more holidaymakers safe and secure, enjoying their exploration of a destination to the full, without the heartache that can come from not getting things right.
1. Don’t travel without insurance and purchase it when you book
Amazingly, some people still travel without insurance and come unstuck when an unexpected illness or injury occurs. Don’t run the risk of being unable to afford getting yourself or a loved one the treatment they require, or repatriation back to your country of residence.
Always try to purchase a travel insurance policy when you book your trip, as nearly a quarter of men and 19% of people overall have accidentally forgotten to buy travel insurance. This rises to 31% of 25-34-year-olds. If you buy travel cover at the same time as booking your trip, you can’t forget but, as importantly, can instantly benefit from cancellation cover protection. After all, you don’t know what your, or your family’s health situation may be in the months before your trip, whether you could suddenly get a jury summons, or whether a home or natural disaster might make travel impossible.
2. Check on medical requirements
As part of your travel planning, check on any vaccinations or medical treatments you will require for your destination. Some vaccinations need to be administered several months ahead of travel, so you must leave time for these. Do not travel without them, if it is a recommendation for the area you are visiting. It is too great a health risk to take.
3. Don’t over-rely on the EHIC and GHIC
Whilst having a European or Global healthcard can be handy, do remember the cards only provide the care that a local has, with regard to healthcare in their country. These cards will not pick up the cost of any private healthcare, or costs such as those of private ambulances. Similarly, they will not offer any financial support for getting your or a loved one home, if you need to get back to your own country in an air or land ambulance. They do not give you access to a support network that can speak to foreign doctors, in their language, on your behalf, make all medical arrangements for you and communicate back with loved ones at home.
Also, they are only valid within specified countries. Did you know, for instance, that neither the EHIC nor the GHIC health cards cover medical costs incurred in Turkey? Turkey requires all visitors to have health insurance that will cover their stay, so buying travel insurance is essential.
4. Be an alert traveller
Many situations relating to theft, pickpocketing, bag snatching and mugging can potentially be avoided, if the victim is more alert and aware of situations around them. Do not be over-trusting and try to ‘read the room’ or area that you are in. Be aware that much crime takes place around popular tourist sites and that some crimes are very common. Read up on these in your particular destination before travelling and do all you can to stay safe.
Some destinations and locations are high-risk in terrorism terms, with this including areas that are home to popular tourism landmarks or features. Learn the RUN, HIDE, TELL guidance and stay alert at all times. Also consider taking out a Terrorism Disruption Cover extension to your standard travel insurance policy with Europesure, particularly if travelling to a country that could present more of a risk.
5. Don’t flash your wealth or stand out
Try to blend into the crowd as much as you can, without making it obvious you are a tourist or non-local. Don’t talk too loudly, broadcast your plans or flash your wealth, whether that is jewellery, watch, a camera, gadgets or money. Try to be discreet with such things and invest in money belts or hidden pouches that can keep these out of view. Try to leave your passport and valuables in a safe, or hidden somewhere unexpected, within your accommodation.
6. Be alert to spiking
When ordering food and drinks, be alert to the risk of spiking, which is prevalent in some countries and also within bars and nightclubs in popular resorts. Never leave your food or drink unattended and try to use a drinks lid, if available. Take care if drinking by the pool or on the beach. Our research showed that 21% of women think it would be easy for someone to spike their drink whilst they were sunbathing.
7. Stay in main tourist areas
Tempting though it may be to book a private accommodation in a city, do check what the area in which it is based is like. You could find yourself having to go to and fro in an area deemed high risk from a crime point of view. Try to always keep to popular tourist areas but, even then, make the most of trusted local knowledge. Is it really safe to walk back home to your hotel at night?
8. Take care whilst sunbathing
Every year, holidaymakers are hospitalised because of extreme sunburn and the costs of their medical care can be eye-wateringly high. Practice good sun safety behaviour and always use a high SPF factor cream or lotion. Our research discovered that 27% of Brits have suffered painful sunburn on holiday. Don’t let that be you.
9. Respect local customs
Whilst on holiday, respect local customs and ways of doing things and learn about these before you travel. Also be aware of local rules – for instance, not eating or drinking around one of Rome’s fountains, or venturing into the fountain for a paddle. Nobody wants to offend the locals or incur a fine when on holiday. If you are a female traveller, do your research well and understand what the risks may be and how to mitigate these.
10. Pre-plan activities and sports
Remember that your travel insurance policy may not cover all activities that suddenly present themselves to you in resort. Make sure you know what is covered and what is not and pre-plan what you can do, at no extra surcharge on your policy. If not, you could be injured whilst taking part in an activity and not be covered for your treatment. Say ‘no’ to involvement, if you are not covered.
11. Be honest about medical conditions
It is essential that you check carefully with regard to any existing medical conditions when taking out your travel insurance policy. If not, you could find a claim for medical treatment turned down, leaving you with a lot of financial and emotional distress. Check what conditions are automatically covered by your policy or contact your provider, if you have questions.
12. Be more involved with your travel insurance purchase
By becoming more involved with your travel insurance purchase, you could save money. With Europesure, you can not only determine which of three bands of cover – Silver, Gold and Platinum – to choose but also delete any elements of cover that you do not need. Similarly, you can add in other elements that would be a good idea. See this as an essential part of holiday planning and everything should be as you need it to be.
Head to www.europesuretravelinsurance.com to buy the single trip or annual multi-trip travel insurance that you need, and which suits you, the minute you book your holiday or trip. Follow our resolutions and 2024 should be a good year for exploration, wherever you venture.