Mental Health and Travel Insurance


Posted By: Maureen Juniper on August 26, 2017

Mental Health and Travel Insurance

We are all urged to be more honest about mental health problems-to end the stigma  but this can raise the price of travel insurance premiums by 200%.  Kara Gammell in a Sunday Times “Money” article reviewed how the financial services industry treats people with mental health difficulties. She looked at the price customers pay for being open with insurances about conditions such as anxiety, depression and bipolar disorder.

A growing number of insurance providers are excluding mental illness and some travel insurers will not cover pre-existing conditions. Polly MacKenzie, director of the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute says “Shopping around and securing the best insurance deal can be hard”.  The institute’s research found mental health problems can severely affect consumers’ ability to take out insurance and locate the best deals.

Those with mild symptoms or who have a history of mental illness within the past five years may see premiums increase by up to 50% for travel insurance, while more severe symptoms may lead the cost to double, according to the comparison website – Moneysupermarket. However, those with a history of self-harm or suicide attempts could pay as much a 200% more.

The Equality Act 2010 says it is unlawful to discriminate against people with a disability of any kind, unless the disability makes them a greater risk.  Insurers can charge more if the disability does create greater risk, but they must base their assessment on a reliable source, such as official statistics.

To take some of the difficulty out of finding appropriate travel insurance cover you can visit or download the app  This independent website compares and reviews hundreds of travel insurers and ranks them according to their ability to provide you with the cover you need and value for money. You can also filter policies by those that offer online medical underwriting.  Remember it is vital you disclose any condition or disability that may impact upon your travel policy. Martyn James of complaints website Resolver in a recent Daily Mail article said: “Travel insurance companies are renowned for relying on ambiguous contract terms to get out of paying claims. can take some of the stress out of finding the best cover for you.

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