Special Needs questions & advice relating to people with special needs

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Old 3 Nov 08, 05:10 PM  
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Lightbulb Travel Insurance with medical conditions and special needs

People often ask where to look for travel insurance when you or one of your family has a medical condition or special needs. I thought it would be a good idea to have all our suggestions together in one thread for easy reference when shopping around. I will add more as they are mentioned or you can PM me with suggestions.

*You are always advised to declare all medical conditions as not doing so could invalidate any claim you may make and leave you with potentially huge medical bills to pay. If you are travelling with a larger group and cancellation by one of the party would affect all travelling ensure they are all covered by whatever policy you choose. It is wise to have insurance in place as soon as you book your trip so that you are covered for unexpected cancellation before you travel. Always read the full policy wording as various exclusions and conditions can apply.*

There is a comprehensive guide to travel insurance from the Association of British Insurers here.

If you are able to contribute to this thread can you please post the name of the insurer with a weblink if possible, the premium you paid, how many people are covered on the policy and whether it is a single trip or annual policy.

If you feel able to it would be helpful to know what medical condition(s) are covered but I appreciate people may not want to disclose this sort of personal information on a public forum.

Last year we had an annual policy from which covered a variety of medical conditions, it wasn't cheap at 323 for 3 of us but covered everything we needed including a variety of PEMCs, airline failure and ash cloud. We had to cancel our planned trip due to my cancer diagnosis and the claim was settled promptly with the minimum of fuss. This is the first time we have ever claimed on travel insurance and it's true that you don't know how good your policy is until you have to claim. I'm happy to recommend this company based on our experience but just to note that they would not include any cover for my newly diagnosed cancer after the first claim so we could not claim for the subsequent cancellation of 2 other planned trips and had to search for other cover when we were able to travel again.

I thought I had tried everywhere but I was recently tipped off about a policy from Eurotunnel which offers good cover at a great price so this might be an option for anyone with PEMCs which others refuse to cover. They don't load the premium massively for any PEMCs, don't require loads of medical info or lists of medication and only ask that your doctor confirms you are fit for travel.
Another one that doesn't require medical screening and also has no age limit is Media Travel Insurance you need to call them on 0151 3342600.

To save some research and help you to be ready with answers to the sort of questions which might be asked during medical screening the Post Office travel insurance health declaration questionnaire is here as an example although questions may vary between insurers.

There is a list here of medical conditions covered free by Staysure.
List of allowed conditions here from Motability

This is a list from Macmillan here of some specialist insurers who will cover various medical conditions including cancer. Some useful suggestions there for older travellers too.

A few more suggestions from travelhealth, kidney.

You can find a comparison quote tool including PEMCs from allcleartravel here

The Family Fund have insurance specially designed for families with kids who have special needs details here.

Don't forget to check with your bank or home and car insurance providers to see if they can offer a suitable policy. They may offer preferential rates to existing customers. You can often upgrade free travel insurance that comes with some bank accounts to include cover for medical conditions, other family members and worldwide travel. In some cases this could be the cheapest way to get cover for medical conditions and could make upgrading your account worthwhile.

a few more suggestions from Dibbers
aceinsure call for medical screening - unlimited medical & repatriation
able2travel call back for medical screening
orbisinsurance also have cruise insurance
free-spirit no upper age limit
travelinsured up to age 120
fishinsurance specialist in insurance for disabled people
saga policy holder must be over 50 no upper age limit
miatravelinsurance will only cover from 60 days prior to travel
livabilityinsuranceservices up to age 100
justthecover no age limit - 98% of medical conditions covered
insurefortravel also do cruise insurance
pulse-insurance specialist insurance for asthma and other conditions
enrouteinsurance specialists in travel insurance for disabled people
insurepink particularly covers breast cancer
globaltravelinsurance note larger excess for travel to USA
insurecancer specialist cover for cancer on an individual basis
activemindinsuranceservices specialist in mental health conditions
cantgetinsurance no upper age limit no condition automatically declined
holidaysafe Which? recommended will cover over 65's

Edited at 05:12 PM. Reason: updating and adding more links and info
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Old 3 Nov 08, 05:24 PM  
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Anne K
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DS has rare genetic medical conds, a metabolic illness called homocystinuria and bilateral dislocation of optic lens. We have very lengthy conversations with medical screening personnel . We buy an annual worldwide policy for DH, DS and myself.

Last year we used Direct Travel = 121. Had to make a claim for DS (not related to pre-existing conds), paid up without quibble, but it took abut 3 months. The premium was loaded by 22.

This year I have insured us through GMB Travel Services - 0800 915 9093(I am a member, bit they didn't ask),at 97.02, including excess waiver. This premium is loaded by 10. The policy is underwritten by AXA.

Both companies provide additional documentation stating the specific conds are insured - always like to have this in writing, just in case.

Hope this helps!
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Old 17 Nov 08, 12:34 PM  
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I've just been onto Epilepsy Action website to price up an annual policy for us all inc. DS2 epilepsy and found this quote from them

We are currently in the process of changing providers of our travel insurance.

In the meantime, please accept our apologies for any inconvenience the temporary loss of travel insurance provision may cause
Anyone got any ideas of where to try?

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Old 17 Nov 08, 03:02 PM  
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Young Pooh
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Not sure about specialist insurers but I have found Tesco quite good - DD has a congenital heart defect and they only loaded our policy by about 20 last year - everyone else I contacted wanted over 100 just to include her condition!

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Old 17 Nov 08, 03:12 PM  
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i got initially quoted for my condition 250, then in my va amex card was a flyer on pre ex meds and got a policy for 76 awesome
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Old 17 Nov 08, 07:05 PM  
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We upgraded our bank account to one with world wide travel insurance .There are other "benefits" and as all 3 of us have medical requirements was the best travel insurance we could find .
Our best quote elsewhere was 480.
Bank of Scotland is who we use.

Edited at 07:06 PM. Reason: oops poor sentence structure
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Old 17 Nov 08, 08:35 PM  
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Our DS is 6, he has cerebal palsy, a rare chromosome disorder (unique), epilepsy and gastro oesophageal reflux and is on a cocktail of medication. This year we used All Clear Travel Ins 08713 601013, the price for his annual policy was 51.18, which we thought was great. Hope this helps some people.

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Old 17 Nov 08, 08:40 PM  
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Tesco for us were very good,dear wife was covered after her kidney transplant for 230 when all other quotes were between 500 and 600 and paid out whin 1 day when i claimed for ear infection when we came back

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Old 3 Jan 09, 11:06 PM  
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We got an annual travel insurance policy from Fortis Insurance.

The policy cost 125 for myself, DW, DD, and DS.

DS has spina bifida and hydrocelphalus and we fortunate enough not to have the policy loaded due to his condition.

Some other firms were charging the earth and loading the policy.
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Old 10 Jan 09, 12:28 AM  
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Hi, This is a great idea and thank heaven I came across this post.
My mum (aged 66) is looking for cover to USA for 11 days and possibly Australia for 3/4 months this year BUT most policies will cover only up to age 65.She also had a claim in Tenerife approx 2 yrs ago, when she fell on water in the bathroom of her apartment and injured herself (full recovery made) and she recently underwent knee surgery (but given the 'all clear').

Any suggestions for over 65 with a prior claim and recovering from an operation?



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medical conditions, special needs, travel insurance

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