The Consumer Lawyer


Travel insurance, inscription on sand concept

When you book an overseas holiday there are three things you should always do wherever possible: i) book a package holiday (as this gives you greater protection if something goes wrong); ii) use your credit card (again, this affords you more protection if you need to make a claim for the holiday); and iii) take out travel insurance (absolutely vital).

In previous years I have heard horror stories from readers who chose not to get travel insurance in a bid to save money and who then got caught out after falling ill or having an accident whilst on holiday. However, in recent times I have been hearing the complete opposite, stories of consumers being ‘over insured’ after hastily taking out a travel insurance policy, forgetting they already had insurance cover in place.

Forgotten travel insurance

Lots of people now have ‘package bank accounts’, a type of current account that comes with extra services or features, typically including insurance products, such as travel insurance. Many people forget they have these additional services included with their bank accounts, and especially travel insurance, and therefore end up taking out separate travel insurance policies, effectively becoming over insured with two policies.

The effect of two policies

Lots of people ask me if they wil get a double pay out for an insurable event if they have two policies. The answer is no, but, more importantly, there are good reasons not to have more than one insurance policy.

If you need to make a claim, and you have two insurance policies, one insurer could ask the other to make a contribution. This would inevitably delay your claim as the insurers would have to carry out additional work, including working out a proportionate amount of excess for each policy, which is the amount you would be asked to contribute towards your claim, and liaising with each other.

However, the biggest issue with having two policies is that it effectively means you make two claims, and this will affect future policies, as your record would show you made two claims rather than one (even though you would not have received a double pay out).

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