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Travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions is specialist cover for older travellers with a history of illness. It’s different to standard travel insurance which only usually covers you against medical emergencies.
Many people suffer from pre-existing medical conditions, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, osteoarthritis or asthma. Pre-existing cover is designed to ensure that your costs will be covered should you fall ill whilst travelling.
Why it’s important to take out pre-existing cover?
If you take out a travel insurance policy, but don’t declare the medical conditions that you have, or have had, there’s a strong possibility that the provider won’t pay out should something happen.
For instance, if your medical condition were to worsen, make you ill or flare up while you are travelling, your insurer may say that they can’t cover you because you didn’t declare the condition. Also if you are injured or become ill because of your condition, for instance should you fall from a blood sugar issue, they may also refuse cover.
It’s also important not to presume that you won’t need specialist cover because your condition is under control or unlikely to cause you a problem. For instance, you could become ill from a completely unrelated injury, yet your medical history makes that treatment more complicated. Alternatively, you may need to claim for treatment that isn’t impacted by your condition, yet your insurer could refuse to pay out on the grounds that they would not have offered you that policy in the first place if they had been aware of your history.
Pre-existing cover can also cover you if your condition worsens and causes you to cancel. Many people make the mistake of waiting until the holiday approaches to take out travel insurance. Yet most policies also cover you against cancellation, which is all the more important if you suffer from any medical conditions as your risk of cancellation is higher. You should take out travel insurance as soon as you book your trip.
Do I need pre-existing cover?
Any medical condition that you are currently receiving treatment for must be declared, but you should also include conditions that you have been diagnosed with in the past. Generally, you need to declare anything that you have had treatment for in the last five years, but conditions such as blood clots or circulatory problems must be declared no matter when you suffered from them.
The key to getting the right cover is to answer all questions honestly and provide as much detail as possible. If you’re still not certain, make sure to ask your provider when you’re taking out the policy.
If you are fully covered for all eventualities you’ll be able to travel confidently, knowing you are fully covered.
How much is pre-existing cover?
Factors that influence the cost of your travel insurance include your destination, the type of holiday you’re going on, your length of travel, and your age. The most important factor however is your health.
As a result, most insurers charge a premium for travel insurance with pre-existing medical conditions because of the increased risk. This means that older travellers, and particularly those who have ailments‚ often find it harder to obtain the travel insurance they need.
When it comes to travel insurance, age is not a reason to restrict or refuse cover. That's why Age UK Travel Insurance has no upper age limit and provides cover for pre-existing medical conditions wherever possible†.
Find out more about Age UK Travel Insurance
†Subject to medical screening and acceptance by underwriters. Medical exclusions may apply and acceptance is not guaranteed. Terms, conditions and exclusions apply to this insurance.