Medical emergency? Make sure you're insured (Shutterstock: see below)
List Words : Hazel Plush | 09 July

8 reasons why you'd be crazy to travel without insurance

Buying travel insurance can feel like an unnecessary drag, but who knows what will happen on the road? You'd be stupid to travel without it - here's why...

1. Cancellation

Sometimes events conspire to really mess up your plans. What if you fall ill before travelling? Or lose a loved one? You need to be covered to be able to claim back money lost through no fault of your own, otherwise you could be left seriously out of pocket.

2. Medical

We’ve all been there – an infected mozzie bite that needs seeing to, a twisted ankle from uneven ground, a stomach bug that refuses to shift – but are you insured for medical assistance? The bills soon add up, and if you need hospital treatment you can end up forking out well over the price of your trip. And although an EHIC card is handy in Europe, you still need actual insurance cover to protect against all eventualities.

3. Curtailment

Hotel bookings, car rentals, planned activities... If unforeseen events cut your trip short, travel insurance can ensure that you’re covered for any money you’ve already paid out for things that you’ll miss out on.

4. Lost documents

Misplacing your passport can mean more than losing all those hard-earned stamps. The cost of replacing documents while abroad can really eat into your budget, and if you can’t afford to replace lost tickets from your own pocket you can really get stuck.

5. Theft

Whether a bag goes missing when you’re on the move or your hotel room gets ransacked, there are few things more frustrating than personal theft. Travel insurance can cover the cost of replacing your belongings when you’re on the road (or when you return), including electrical items such as cameras, mobile phones, iPods and mp3 players.

6. Personal liability

If you cause an accident that damages property or affects another person, you could be liable. Travel insurance can protect you in a legal claim – always make sure that a liability clause is included. Remember to always read the small print.

7. Legal Expenses

If you need to make a compensation claim after an injury or accident that happened overseas, professional help can be very costly but can be covered by your travel insurance. Again, check the finer details of your policy.

8. Peace of mind

It’s tempting to sit back and think ‘oh, that’ll never happen to me…’, but it always pays to be prepared. We don’t want to be accused of scaremongering, but all of the above scenarios could happen to any of us, so for real peace of mind (and to enjoy your trip to the full!) always make sure you’re covered.

Need cover? Wanderlust subscribers get 10% off travel insurance, and readers get 5% off travel insurance.

Main image: Volunteer Mountain Rescue Helicopter (Shutterstock)