Travellers risk bankruptcy by not disclosing pre-existing conditions. This is the somewhat stark warning a leading risk expert suggest travellers receive to ensure they are not withholding pertinent health information from travel insurers.
"You wouldn't want to have the warning 'Failure to disclose a pre-existing condition puts your house at risk' on every page, but it's important to get that message across,” Dr Paul Beven, managing director of Healix Risk Rating, told a travel insurance conference in Bristol, the Independent reported.
There are travellers who don’t bother to get insurance, those who may believe they are covered by ‘automatic’ credit card insurance, those that buy a supposed ‘one size fits all’ policy, and those that get travel insurance properly (that is, they buy a policy that covers their individual needs, where they are going and what they are doing).
Joyce Kettle, 74, was on a cruise ship off the coast of Mexico when she started having difficulty breathing. She was airlifted to a hospital near Cancun to undergo an emergency heart operation. She did not have the appropriate travel insurance and her family had to fork over almost $90,000 to cover expenses.
"Every year we see cases of people falling into difficulty due to travelling without sufficient travel insurance,” UK travel association ABTA’s chief executive Mark Tanzer said.
"While not declaring existing medical conditions or taking part in activities that aren't covered are easy mistakes to make, they can be very costly, leaving holidaymakers and their families with expensive medical bills."