Many just accept the standard single trip insurance offered by their travel agent as an add-on package, which is rarely cost-effective because a travel insurance European deal often includes cover that you don't need but still pay for.

Others opt for the cheapest standalone insurance, finding out to their cost that the cover is inadequate just when they need it the most.

By following a few simple steps, finding cheap travel insurance for Europe that provides the cover you really need can be surprisingly easy.

The most important point is to consider what level of insurance you need.

Medical cover is essential, but you should also think about safeguarding against the expense of cancelled flights, lost baggage, or perhaps a specialist policy for an adventure holiday.

The trick for finding cheap travel insurance to Europe is to look at policies that provide the cover you really need, and then start comparing prices.

Single trip insurance is appropriate for most travellers, but if you intend to travel a couple of times or more in the next year, you can make considerable savings by taking out an annual policy instead.

Annual or multi-trip policies have increased in popularity as the availability of cheaper flights has tempted holidaymakers to flit off more often on European travel at short notice.

Fierce competition between European travel insurance companies also means greater choice and more competitive prices.

With just a little effort you can turn this to your advantage to secure a Europe travel insurance policy that meets your specific needs and offers value for money that could leave you a little extra spending money while you are away.