One in four Brits are now travelling abroad without insurance as many think it is too expensive or confused over what is already covered.
According to figures released by ABTA, 24% of travellers do not buy travel insurance, up from 20% last year. Men and those in the 18-24 age group are most unlikely to buy insurance, with only 52% of young travellers thought to be covered when they travel.
Around a third (31%) said they thought insurance was too expensive as to why they had not purchased insurance, compared to 20% in 2011, while others assume they are covered by the UK government or EHIC card.
ABTA and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) have urged Brits to take out insurance while on holiday to cover medical and repatriation costs.
“It is important that people understand what the FCO can and cannot do to help British nationals who get into trouble abroad. We cannot pay medical bills so it is vital that you have a comprehensive travel insurance package for trips overseas. We also advise reading the small-print to check that your policy covers you for everything you want to do on holiday,” said Lynda St Cooke from FCO. “Having an EHIC is a must when travelling in Europe as it gives you access to free or reduced cost basic state-funded care. But you still need full travel insurance as the EHIC doesn’t cover private treatment or repatriation to the UK if you are seriously ill.”
One in 10 travellers said they do not check the details of their policy and 65% of Brits staying in the UK do not take out insurance. Travel agents account for just 17% of insurance sales.