In our previous blog ‘Top Four Tips for Making Your Journey More Comfortable’, I highlighted the importance of having travel insurance before heading out on your vacation. This blog post will highlight the important steps you should take when getting disability travel insurance.
Finding the right disabled travel insurance, without letting your premium get too high, can be a bit of a challenge. But always be aware that the Disability Discrimination Act deems it unlawful for any insurance company to deny any person insurance, increase their premium level, or reduce the coverage simply because of their disability.
The points mentioned below will assist you through the process of getting insured for your vacation while avoiding possible blips:
APPLY FOR A EUROPEAN HEALTH INSURANCE CARD:
For Europeans traveling within the EU, it is important that they get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before their journey. This is a medical conditions travel insurance card that will cover health insurance during your stay in another EU country. This EHIC card is also valid in Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland. Make sure that you get your EHIC card at least a week prior to your travel date. You can apply for it online, over the phone, or in person by contacting your local health authority.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT DISABILITY TRAVEL INSURANCE:
When choosing which medical holiday insurance to take out, there are some things that you should keep in mind. These include:
- Getting coverage for any and all medical conditions that arise as a result of your impairment. This is important because there are several disabled travel insurances that do not cover ‘pre-existing medical conditions’.
- Getting coverage for airlines that are unable to let you on board due to any reason
Getting travel insurance with medical condition is especially important if you are on a wheelchair, require traveling with special equipment, or might require medical attention during your holiday or stay abroad.
GIVING FULL MEDICAL INFORMATION:
When arranging for disabled travel insurance it is crucial that you highlight all illnesses and disabilities to the insurance company. There are many travel insurances that will not cover existing health problems and illnesses that were diagnosed before the date of your travel. Therefore, it is important that you give your insurance provider full details regarding both your disability and your health condition.
GETTING COVERED FOR YOUR DISABILITY EQUIPMENT:
All mobility aids like scooters, wheelchairs etc. are not normally covered by standard travel insurance packages. Here you might be required to pay an extra premium for getting your disability equipment insured against possible damage or loss. Some household insurance provides cover for disability equipment, so you might want to check with them before your travel insurance provider adds this to the premium amount.
GETTING SPECIALIST INSURANCE:
Most travel insurance for people with medical conditions will cover all the needs of a person with a disability. However, there are some disability travel insurance companies that do not cover for severe medical conditions or for people that have a long history of a medical illness. This is when you will be required to find medical conditions travel insurance by a specialist insurer that specifically covers all of your requirements. This is even more important for people traveling abroad.
KNOWING YOUR RIGHTS AS A DISABLED PERSON:
The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) was passed with the aim of putting an end to the discrimination many disabled people face. Part 3 of this Act places a duty on several service providers which particularly includes all travel companies and insurance providers in the UK.
This duty is to ensure that all disabled customers of these companies do not get treated less favorably than regular customers. They are not allowed to unjustifiably refuse you a service only because of your disability unless they are able to provide a strong reason for being unable to cater to your service.
Conditions under which an insurance company is allowed to charge a higher premium are:
- If they are able to prove that the risk involved in providing insurance to you is higher
- If their decision to charge higher premium was based on information that applies to the risk assessment
- The information they are using (medical reports, statistics, etc.) for risk assessment is from a reliable source
- When all relevant factors and circumstances have been taken into account