Beware holiday crime hotspots and protect yourself with travel insurance

14 August 2007
Britons are subject to 1.4 million incidents of holiday theft a year – 13% of which occur when people are sunning themselves on the beach or by the pool, and 48% of them take place in Southern Europe, according to research from Halifax Travel Insurance.

Halifax is urging those venturing away on their holidays to be vigilant against theft and not to make themselves easy targets. Some people carry as much as £1,000 worth of belongings with them, such as mp3 players, camera, mobile phones and sunglasses, not to mention essentials such as cash and passports.

Paul Birkhead, Underwriting Manager at Halifax Travel Insurance says: “Long gone are the days when the contents of a beach bag included no more than a towel, sun cream and a few warm sandwiches. Today's beach bag is a fashion statement and holiday makers like to make sure they have all their fashion accessories to hand.

“While you can minimise the risks you can never eliminate them,” he continued, “which is why having travel insurance is so important when you are abroad. It's not only important having travel insurance, but having adequate travel insurance that will cover the full amount of the goods stolen. Single item and upper limits apply to travel insurance policies and holidaymakers need to do their research.”

Research from online insurance provider swiftcover.com also highlights the risk of theft abroad, revealing that one in six Brits has been a victim of theft whilst in Europe, and an unlucky 13% have experienced it twice.

Craig Staniland, Director of Underwriting at swiftcover.com comments: “For years Spain and France have been the top holiday destinations for Brits, but unfortunately they are also the top holiday theft hotspots.

“Try and make sure your possessions aren’t on display in your car or hotel room, and keep an eye on your belongings at all times. Try not to take valuables with you on holiday, but if you do, most hotels have a safe you can use. Sometimes, despite taking all possible precautions, you can just be unlucky, so it is important to make sure you have the right insurance to cover you for all eventualities.”

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