Why being young and healthy doesn’t mean it’s ok to skip on travel insurance

You’ve been working super hard to save up money for a fun, summer trip with your friends. After the cost of flights and accommodation, along with spending money still to be saved, you probably don’t want to spend any more money. It’s pretty easy to talk yourself out of travel insurance-especially if you’re young and healthy. In fact, according to research by ABTA, 31% of people aged 18-34 travelled abroad uninsured in 2015. And the top reason for not buying it? Well, almost half of those surveyed felt they “didn’t need it”. Unfortunately, this is not the case, and there are plenty of reasons why you should take out a travel insurance policy-no matter how old you are.

1. Medical bills are expensive

Sure, you may argue that you are fit and healthy-you have no known pre-existing conditions, you haven’t been ill in a really long time. However, that doesn’t mean that the unexpected can’t pop up and surprise you. Whether you like it or not, even your best-laid plans can be foiled by an unplanned illness or accident. What if you are involved in a car crash, or you trip and fall and end up with a broken bone? Or, think about a scenario in which your appendix bursts and you find yourself in hospital. Any medical expenses incurred overseas can really cost you, and without a good insurance policy, you could be left paying through the nose or, struggling to foot the bill at all! This can seriously damage your financial life.

A travel insurance plan with emergency medical  coverage will pay for any emergency treatment that may crop up. Furthermore, the coverage will pay for medical repatriation and even medication. It’s far cheaper to pay for a solid policy up front, than to be faced with the financial consequences in a worst case scenario.

2. You may be an adventure seeker

Let's be honest, as a young person going on vacation with your friends there is a good chance you’re going to be involved in some kind of activity. Whether you’re skiing in the mountains in BC, hiking through Costa Rica, or backpacking through Thailand, all of these things have the potential to land you in danger. No one wants to think these fun activities can end in tears, but to make sure that you will be protected if the worst comes to the worst.

3. You may have to cancel your trip

There are all kinds of situations that can lead to having to unexpectedly cancel pre-paid travel plans. Whether its work issues or a family member falling ill, many travel providers won’t refund the full amount of money for cancelling your trip. Having a travel insurance plan with trip cancellation coverage can save you from losing a huge investment. Many policy providers have stipulations about when you can cancel and for what purpose, however by paying By purchasing  ‘cancel for any reason’ coverage you have much more flexibility when changing your trip itinerary or canceling altogether.

4. You might not have enough money

As a young person whether you're in the middle of studying for a degree, or are working a part-time job, money usually isn't something in great supply. So, if you find yourself in an unfortunate situation during your travels, you may not have the money at all to cover the costs, which can land you in debt or legal trouble. Travel insurance provides the safety net that ensures this won’t happen.

5. Travel insurance protects against more than just medical care

Sometimes the trouble you run into on vacation have nothing to do with how old or healthy you are. Travel insurance also protects your luggage, personal belongings, and can even cover costs of being evacuated in an emergency situation. None of these things can be planned for, but they can be protected against.

Additionally, travel insurance can provide cover for the things you might not even think about-such as rental car coverage. If you’re planning on driving on your travels, how auto insurance works in another country can be a little confusing, and the rules will vary depending where you are travelling to. Some Canadian companies will offer a rider for rental cars in the United States or Mexico, which is often a lot cheaper than purchasing insurance individually from the rental company.