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European travel insurance is designed especially to cover you on a trip to European destinations.
It can be easy to get complacent when you’re travelling to Europe – after all, it’s so close to home. But there’s still plenty of scope for things to go wrong. With the right travel insurance, you can enjoy your European holiday knowing that your insurer will cover the cost if something goes awry.
European travel insurance usually covers:
Medical expenses: your insurer will cover your medical bills if you fall ill or get injured while you’re away
Cancellations or delays: you’ll be reimbursed if you face travel delays or cancel your holiday due to an emergency
Baggage loss: you can claim the cost of replacing lost or stolen items
Your quotes will outline what's covered, so check these carefully to make sure everything you need is included.
You may also be able to benefit from a few extra benefits that aren’t included with all travel insurance policies. Check the policy you’re looking at to see if it includes any additional cover. If not, ask the insurer about adding it.
Add-ons might include:
Repatriation: the cost of getting you home if you are ill or injured. This can be expensive if you don’t have insurance
Legal cover: expenses for any legal assistance needed in relation to your trip if you have to claim compensation or damages
Personal possessions: compensation to replace items that are lost or damaged while you’re abroad
Winter, water or extreme sports cover: pays out if you’re injured and need treatment as a result of taking part in certain sports
Personal liability: provides cover if you cause any damages to a third party on your trip that results in a lawsuit
Take care to read your policy carefully – even the best European travel insurance may include some common exclusions, such as:
If you’re travelling for business, let your insurer know as you might need a specialist business travel policy.
Make sure you provide accurate information otherwise your policy could be invalidated and you won’t be able to claim. It’s also important to make sure you can afford the excess on your policy. If you can’t afford it, and you end up needing to make a claim, it might be rejected.”Florence Codjoe, Personal Finance Editor
The most common types of European travel insurance are:
This covers you for one trip, up to a certain duration (such as 30 days). It’s ideal if you’re only planning to travel to Europe once in a year.
This can save you money, time and effort if you plan to travel to Europe several times over the course of a single year. Once purchased, you won’t have to worry about buying travel insurance again for a whole year – unless you later decide to travel outside of Europe.
To find the best European travel insurance for you, think about how many trips you intend to make before you get quotes.
The number of days covered can vary. For example, some policies may offer up to 30 days’ cover whereas the very best European travel insurance might cover you for up to 100 days.
Check how many days you’ll be spending in Europe. Then compare the quotes that will cover you for the full length of your trip.
With an EHIC or GHIC, you can access necessary state-provided healthcare in the same way as a local resident would. This might make it free or accessible at a reduced price. However, it does not replace travel insurance. You should travel with both an EHIC or GHIC and travel insurance.
Having the best European travel insurance you can afford gives you important extra protection so you can be sure you won’t have to pay more than your policy’s excess for treatment, even if the worst happens while you’re in Europe.
All countries within the EU will be covered by your policy. There are also some non-EU countries that you might be able to travel to, including Iceland, Monaco, Turkey, Switzerland and Norway, among others.
Some of the best European travel insurance policies may even cover you for countries that aren’t in Europe. These include Morocco, Tunisia, Cape Verde and Egypt.
Check your policy before you travel. If the countries you’re heading to aren’t covered, you might be better off with a worldwide travel insurance policy, which gives you more freedom. However, it’s likely to be more expensive as it covers you for travel to more far-flung places.
Wherever you plan to travel, it’s always important to check current travel advice from the UK government’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). If you travel against the advice of the FCO, you could invalidate your policy.
When looking for the best European travel insurance, think about:
what exactly you want to cover
the level of cover you need
the length of your trip
Next, compare like-for-like quotes clicking on the Get Quotes button above to find the best travel insurance policy for your European trip.
You can still get a quote through money.co.uk if you have a pre-existing condition, including cancer or severe heart or respiratory complaints. People who have had strokes or are terminally ill can also get a quote.
Some insurers might not cover you if you already have a severe medical disorder or a number of conditions, and others may only offer insurance at a much higher price. If you’re unable to find suitable cover, talk to the Money and Pension Service (MaPS). It has a directory of insurers willing to cover customers with pre-existing medical conditions.
No, most insurers also cover some non-European destinations such as Morocco and Tunisia. Check your policy to see exactly which countries are included.
Yes, many insurers offer joint and family European travel insurance, which can be cheaper than having individual policies. Check this when you get quotes.
No, although most insurers won’t cover you for that condition. Some companies may offer to insure you but it's likely to be more expensive.
If you have a medical problem, you may find it harder and more expensive to get travel insurance. Here is how to get cover even if you have a pre-existing condition.Read More
If you are heading off on holiday, you’ll need to choose between a single trip or annual travel insurance policy. But what is the difference, and which is right for you? Here is how to find out.Read More
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What you need to know to get as much holiday for your money as you possibly can - from where to go, how to get there, the best way to spend while away and your rights if anything goes wrong
Last updated: 12 May, 2022