Cruise travel insurance

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How to get the right cruise travel insurance for you

If you’re going on a cruise, you may need more insurance cover than you’d get with standard travel insurance. It’s important to make sure you’re fully protected before you travel.

Many insurers offer cruise travel insurance as an optional extra. This can be added to a standard travel insurance policy. You may have to pay more for this.

Cruise cover gives you added protection, on top of the standard benefits of a travel insurance policy. It covers likely activities and scenarios for a cruise holiday, such as missed port departures and excursions.

Here’s what a travel insurance policy should cover.

What’s covered by cruise travel insurance?

The best cruise travel insurance covers you for all sorts of potential scenarios that could otherwise leave you out of pocket. Cruise travel insurance may cover you for:

  • Missed departure due to delays: Claim if you can’t board your cruise due to public transport failure, traffic delays or poor weather.

  • Cabin confinement: You can usually claim for every 24-hour period you’re confined to your cabin by the cruise ship doctor for medical reasons.

  • Unused cruise excursions: You can claim back the cost of any excursions you can’t go on because you’re confined to your cabin due to accident or illness.

  • Change to cruise itinerary: You can claim if any ports of call on your cruise have to be cancelled due to bad weather or timetable restrictions.

  • Activities: Many cruise travel insurance policies will cover you for likely activities.

  • Emergency medical cover: You can claim back for emergency medical treatment and transport.

The very best cruise travel insurance policies also cover:

  • Repatriation: You can claim on your insurance to be brought back to the UK if you fall ill on your travels.

  • Extended baggage cover: You may also be able to get extended protection for your baggage and valuables.

  • Gadget cover: This means you can claim to replace your gadgets such as a camera or phone, if they’re damaged or lost while you’re on your travels.

Does the best cruise insurance, UK wide, cover me for every cruise destination?

Most cruise travel insurance policies cover any cruise destination.

This usually includes the Mediterranean, Baltic or Caribbean. But it’s important to check with your insurer or look at your policy before you go on holiday. You need to make sure that there aren’t any exclusions on your policy for your intended destinations.

The other thing to check is whether the UK Government’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued any advice on your destinations. If the FCO advises that it’s unsafe to travel, then travelling anyway could invalidate your cruise travel insurance.

Get the best cruise travel insurance policy for you

If you’re looking to get the best cruise insurance, UK wide, then there are a few things to think about. Remember that the best cruise travel insurance is the one that’s most suited to you.

You need to think about:

Can I get cruise travel insurance if I’ve got a pre-existing condition?

Insurers understand that cruise travellers are often older than the average holidaymaker. So you might get more leeway with cruise travel insurance than you would with standard travel insurance.

It’s important to tell the insurer about your pre-existing conditions. But cruise travel insurance providers will consider many medical conditions and are likely to be more flexible.

The same applies to age restrictions – a cruise travel insurance policies are less likely to have an age limit.

How much does cruise travel insurance cost?

The price of cruise travel insurance can vary. Some insurers offer it as part of their standard policies. Others charge you more for specialist cruise travel insurance.

Factors that might affect the price of your cruise travel insurance include where you’re travelling to, how long for, and your age.

If your destinations include the USA, China or Hong Kong, for example, your cruise travel insurance might cost more. That’s because the private healthcare systems in those countries are expensive. But that just makes it even more crucial that you have the best cruise insurance, UK wide, in place.

Plus, as certain injuries or illnesses are more likely at sea, it can be more expensive than a regular travel insurance policy. If you fell critically ill, you might even have to be airlifted to hospital. So although this is unlikely, insurers have to factor in that it’s a possibility.

Be wary of cheap cruise insurance. You need to make sure you’re getting the right level of cover for your needs, or you could find yourself in a sticky situation.

How to find cheap cruise insurance

Getting cheap cruise insurance sounds great, but it’s more important to make sure you buy the right cruise travel insurance for your needs. If you don’t have enough cover, and something goes wrong, you could find yourself out of pocket.

To get the cheapest possible deal which still meets your needs, try these 8 ways to cut the cost of your travel insurance.

How long will cruise travel insurance cover me for?

Cruise holidays tend to be a lot longer than your average seven-day holiday. Many last for months, or even a whole year, which means standard holiday insurance sometimes isn’t appropriate.

Most standard single-trip travel insurance policies cover you for a maximum of 30 or 60 days. Even annual travel insurance caps the length of each individual trip you take.

Getting the right cruise travel insurance will give you peace of mind that you’re covered for your entire trip.

If you have a pre-existing condition, you can still get a quote through These conditions could include cancer, stroke, serious heart, respiratory and terminal conditions.

Some insurers might not cover you if you already have a serious medical condition, or if you have a number of conditions. Others might only offer insurance at a much higher price. If you're unable to find suitable cover, the Money and Pension Service (MaPS) has also set up a directory of insurers willing to cover customers with pre-existing medical conditions.

You can contact the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) or you can telephone 0800 138 7777.

Cruise travel insurance FAQs

Yes, standard cover will still protect you on a cruise, but you will not have extra protection for things like cabin confinement and missed departure.

No, your EHIC will not cover you on a cruise ship or private boat, even if you are docked at a port in the EU.

Most insurers offer maximum trips lengths of between 31 and 365 days, but this varies.

Last updated: 13 October, 2021

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