Moving home? NEVER forget your travel insurance

No insurance? This paradise could become a nightmare

No insurance? This paradise could become a nightmare

There are times when life gets so busy that you forget some of the simplest rules. That’s my excuse after I discovered last week, to my horror, that I was abroad without any travel insurance.

I’m an experienced financial journalist, so I know full well the importance of having proper travel insurance. I cocked up, though the mitigating factor is I recently moved home.

While I made what felt like 50 calls to change my address, I missed out my travel insurance provider. So I never got my renewal notice reminding me to buy a new annual policy.

I only realised while abroad, when I went to check when the policy was due to lapse. I wouldn’t say I got the shock of my life, but I ended up kicking myself when it dawned on me I’d gone the previous three days uninsured.

As soon as I discovered my aberration, I called my insurer to check the price to renew. But while it was a good deal, it said it couldn’t cover me for my trip as I was already abroad. I got the same message from other firms after searching for the next best deals.

To be honest, I was less worried than I’d have been in any other country as I have citizenship in the country I visited, so would have qualified for low-cost medical care if the worst happened.

I was also staying with family, reducing the risk of having items stolen as I wasn’t in a tourist area, while I also know the places to avoid, where you’re more likely to get mugged.

As I went through the doomsday scenarios, I realised the biggest risk was not being covered for repatriation were I to suffer serious illness or injury. Nevertheless, given how cheap travel insurance can be considering the peace of mind it provides, I was hardly jumping for joy even though the risks were lower (see our Cheap Travel Insurance guide for the top deals).

Luckily, I’m back home now safe and sound, with all my belongings.

I’ve learned my lesson, but this tale serves as an important warning to anyone moving home. Don’t forget to tell your travel insurer about your new address, or you risk disaster.

Have you made the same mistake or do you have any comments? Please let us know if the comments section below or in our forum.