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Don’t forget to pack your gap year travel insurance

29 August 2007
It’s that time of year again when many students, school-leavers and people who want to get away from it all embark on gap years, but a once-in-a-lifetime experience could turn into a nightmare if they set off without adequate insurance, has warned.

Exclusions on travel insurance can mean that some of the 340,000 gap year adventurers heading abroad this year might not be covered while they are away for prolonged periods of time, as cover can vary greatly from one insurance provider to another, both in what’s covered and how much it costs.

Peter Gerrard, head of insurance research at, said: “With the prospect of spending months abroad, it is essential to consider insurance. Checking the small print of a policy is crucial. If you are going to be working or doing extreme sports, ensure you’re covered. It is also vital to make sure your policy will cover you for the entire duration of the trip. Shop around to get the correct policy and levels of cover for your money.” recommends checking policies carefully to ensure they provide adequate cover for all aspects of the trip, such as working abroad, adventure activities and sports. The recommended cover is up to £2 million for medical expenses, £1 million for personal liability, £3,000 for cancellation, and £1,500 for baggage.

Peter Gerrard added: “For the 90,000 Brits who take a career break each year, covering yourself while abroad, and the property you may be leaving behind for an extended period, is vital.

Make sure the policy you choose has sufficient cover for medical expenses. This will cover you if, for example, you have to be repatriated. If you are staying in Europe, have a European Health Insurance Card. You should ensure your cover limit takes account of your camera, ipod, phone and other expensive items, and that they are secured when possible and not left at unnecessary risk."

Learn more about gap year travel insurance and compare policies online