Travel insurance if you have a pre-existing medical condition or disability | MoneyHelper

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If you have a medical condition, or you’ve ever had a serious illness, travel insurance can be hard to get. Find out how to get the cover you need at the right price.

What’s in this guide

What’s in this guide
  • Travel insurance if you have a medical condition or disability
  • Using a travel insurance broker
  • Travel insurance if you’re travelling in the UK
  • Is travel insurance worth it?
  • Travel insurance and coronavirus

Travel insurance if you have a medical condition or disability

Travel insurance if you have a medical condition or disability

It can be difficult to know where to start looking for travel insurance if you have a medical condition or disability.

These conditions can include a number of physical and/or mental health conditions which have a substantial and long-term impact on your ability to carry out day-to-day activities.  

There are a number of travel insurance provider who cover a great number of health conditions and disabilities; please see our Travel Insurance Directory.

Insurers will probably want to know details about your health condition or disability, how it might affect day to day activities and any special arrangements which might be needed for yourself or your medical equipment.

What’s considered a medical condition for travel insurance?

What’s considered a medical condition for travel insurance?

Different insurance companies have different definitions. But your insurer is likely to consider any of the following a pre-existing medical condition:

  • any condition you’re waiting for an operation on
  • any condition that you’re currently awaiting test results for
  • any condition, even a minor one, that you’ve seen a doctor about in the past year
  • any serious condition – cancer, heart trouble, respiratory problems – you’ve ever had.

If you feel your medical condition is not serious, it’s still worth trying a provider on our Travel Insurance Directory as well as a mainstream company to compare prices.

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Using a travel insurance broker

Using a travel insurance broker

If shopping around is too exhausting, you can ask an insurance broker to do this on your behalf. You’ll only have to provide your details once, which the broker will send on to several different insurers.

An insurance broker can also support you if you have to make a claim.

You can find an insurance broker through the British Insurance Brokers’ Association

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Travel insurance if you’re travelling in the UK

Travel insurance if you’re travelling in the UK

Even if you’re not travelling abroad, it’s still a good idea to have travel insurance.

Most policies include cover for:

  • lost or stolen bags
  • emergency medical expenses
  • the costs of cancelling, delaying or cutting your trip short (some policies will cover if it’s coronavirus-related)
  • personal liability, in case you’re sued for damaging property or causing injury.

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Is travel insurance worth it?

Is travel insurance worth it?

Travelling without insurance, particularly if you have a serious medical condition, could end up far more expensive than the cost of a policy.

It could mean not getting the treatment you need quickly, or being faced with huge medical bills or high costs to get you home.

So, it’s important not to risk travelling without insurance.

What should I do if I can’t get travel insurance?

What should I do if I can’t get travel insurance?

It might not be possible to get cover for the trip you had set your heart on, either because of age or medical reasons.

However, you might have more chance if you switch:

  • to another location – possibly one nearer home, or
  • from a multi-trip policy to a single trip.

It’s worth persevering as the risks of travelling without insurance – particularly if you have a medical condition – aren’t worth it.

For contact details of companies who specialise in providing travel insurance for people with serious medical conditions, check our Travel Insurance Directory.

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Travel insurance and coronavirus

Travel insurance and coronavirus

The current pandemic has changed travel insurance policies, and what will and won’t be covered.

Most travel insurance policies being issued now will have some sort of coronavirus cover included. But it’s important to always read the terms of the policy carefully.

For example, if coronavirus cancellation cover is included in the policy, this will usually only apply if the policyholder tests positive for the virus. If you have to cancel because you have to self-isolate or are in quarantine, most policies currently won’t pay out.

If you already have travel insurance policy, check the terms carefully to see whether: you’re covered:

  • if you test positive for coronavirus before you travel, or
  • while you’re on your trip.

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MoneyHelper is the new, easy way to get clear, free, impartial help for all your money and pension choices. Whatever your circumstances or plans, move forward with MoneyHelper.

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Looking for us? Now, we’re MoneyHelper

MoneyHelper is the new, easy way to get clear, free, impartial help for all your money and pension choices. Whatever your circumstances or plans, move forward with MoneyHelper.

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