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What is medical screening and why do I have to go through it?

Medical screening provides the insurer with all the relevant facts to make a decision on whether they can offer travel insurance.

It is used to calculate a risk score, which is determined from the questions you answer during medical screening. There will be a score for each of your medical conditions. The total score may also be affected by where you are travelling to. This is then used by the insurer to determine whether they will cover you and on what terms.

All of this may sound daunting. However, you will just need to answer a series of multiple-choice questions that takes a few minutes. Some of them might seem personal, but your answers are completely confidential. It is very important that you answer the questions as accurately as you can to ensure that you are covered. If you do not answer the questions, correctly, it may affect any claim.

Cervical Screening Awareness Week

Why cervical screening is so important

I was surprised to learn that there are around 5 million women in the UK that are invited to attend a cervical screening, more commonly known as a smear test and yet 20% of these women don’t attend their screening appointment – that is 20% too many!

Cervical screening is an important test which takes samples from the cervix to detect abnormalities within the cells, that may go on to develop into cancer or that may have already done so. Screening will also detect human papillomavirus (HPV) and the more persistent strains of this virus the more chance of it causing cervical cancer. HPV is prevalent in sexually active adults and four out of five will at some stage of their life come into contact with it.
According to Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust there are as many as 3,000 women diagnosed with cervical cancer in the UK each year. It is estimated that early detection and treatment through cervical screening can prevent up to 75% of cervical cancers from developing. Screening is provided free of charge by the NHS and not attending your appointment is one of the biggest risk factors for developing cervical cancer.

Causes of cervical cancer

As with most cancers, smoking can pose an increased risk as it causes abnormalities in the cells of the cervix.

Other risk factors could be:

  • Having children at a very young age
  • Giving birth to too many children
  • A weakened immune system
  • If your mother was given infertility drugs whilst being pregnant
  • Long term use of the contraceptive pill (more than 10 years) can slightly increase the risk

It is a myth that it is caused by promiscuity or infidelity, however the more sexual partners you have and the younger you are when you have your first sexual encounter, the more likely you are to come into contact with the more serious strains of HPV.

How many of you over the age of twenty can say you are one of the 20% that have ignored an invitation to attend a screening or made an appointment, then cancelled it at the last moment because of the fear of the unknown, or anxiety from previous experiences. I know that in my younger years and prior to me having my daughter, I didn’t miss any appointment however, this was no easy feat.

I think most women will admit that it is not a pleasant experience. Yes it can be uncomfortable, un- dignified and daunting especially if you are young, not yet had babies or do not like to going to the doctors, I can empathise with you as I used to feel the same way. However, since being pregnant with my daughter and the process of labour and giving birth, my thoughts have changed considerably.

If you can arrange an appointment with the practice nurse or a female doctor that will help with your anxieties and I can imagine it is not pleasant for them either. I find the topic of conversation is not about the procedure but anything else that comes to mind. I remember the last time I was rambling on about the length of the queue in the supermarket and how much the cost of food has gone up by and guess what; before I knew it the deed had been done.

I still find it incredible to believe that one million women cannot find 15 minutes out of one day, once every 3 or 5 years depending on where you live, to have such an important test and remember this is a test provided free by the NHS, there is no charge and could save your life.

I would hope the media coverage and the very public viewing of Jade Goody’s battle with cervical cancer, has made a lot of women sit up and take note of how serious this cancer is and yet with early detection and a screening reliability rate of 80-90%, cervical cancer can be prevented in 60-80% of cases. This is the same as 7 out of 10 women being prevented from developing cancer of the cervix.

You may be interested to hear that 2% of cancers diagnosed in women are cervical cancers and it is the most common cancer in women under 35 years old and despite this, it is this age group that appears to avoid the screening test.

Cervical screening in summary

  • An abnormal screening rarely means cancer
  • Between 90-94% of all screening results are negative
  • Regular screening offers the best form of protection
  • It is free, but make sure your GP has your current contact details
  • Screening saves 5000 lives a year
  • Ask a friend or family member to go with you for support, rather than not go at all

My health is important to me more than ever now I have a family, but then again why wasn’t it before? I can say that if I was to develop cervical cancer it wouldn’t be from not attending my routine cervical screening or from any of the risk factors above, but for other reasons. Can you say the same?

Europe Travel Insurance

Europe Travel Insurance

Europe has it all. Whether it’s a holiday in the sun or a quick city break – Europe simply has something for everyone.

When travelling abroad, it’s nice to have the reassurance that you’re in safe hands. Travel insurance offers peace of mind, that if anything unexpected were to happen whilst you were away, you’re protected.

If you are planning a European getaway, it’s important your cover is tailored towards this. Therefore, Free Spirit offers European Travel Insurance. We make a conscious effort to provide specialist travel insurance that covers a number of medical conditions and disabilities for individuals of any age.

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Travel Inspiration for your next European adventure

Europe has some of the most beautiful sights in the world. Its accessibility, combined with endless opportunity and adventure makes it ideal for any getaway. Whether you’re after a relaxing break in a sun-drenched spot such as the Algarve in Portugal; or an activity-packed trip exploring several stunning locations – Europe really does have it all.

If you’re looking for some inspiration on European destinations to visit, how about:

Plitviče Lakes National Park, Croatia

Plitviče Lakes National Park is a UNESCO world heritage site located near the coast of Croatia. It’s host to sixteen lakes connected by a plethora of beautiful waterfalls. It’s truly an amazing depiction of the allure of nature.

Plitvice national park Croatia
The park is open all year round however it does get busy during summer months, so if you wish to see it in its purest form without tourists, be sure to try and visit it in off-peak times.

Blue Lagoon, Iceland

The Blue Lagoon is a natural geothermal spa in Iceland. With an average temperature of 39°C, it’s nourishing waters are perfect to relax in, whilst providing health benefits too.

Blue Lagoon Iceland
However, it is important to pre-book given the Lagoon’s popularity. We recommend visiting at night for the perfect low-light experience – we promise you won’t be disappointed.

Charles Bridge, Prague

Labelled as one of the most famous bridges in Europe, and perfectly aligned with the tomb of St. Vitus, Charles Bridge is a truly spectacular landmark. The construction of the bridge boasts precision that defy the era in which it was constructed.

Charles Bridge Prague Sunset
The journey across the bridge boasts a number of eye-catching statues along with breath-taking views of the River Vltava. A construction so beautiful should rightfully be visited more than once – that’s why we recommend visiting the bridge both during the day and in the early evening.

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European Travel Tips and Advice

If you’re planning on travelling to or around Europe, here are some top tips to take away with you on your travels:

Explore:

Exploring some of the finest landmarks that Europe has to offer is certainly a must, from the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Colosseum in Rome, Charles Bridge in Prague, or the Chateau de Chillon in Switzerland. Europe has a vast offering of landmarks, sights and history – the only difficulty is choosing your next location!

EHIC:

The EHIC card leaves many asking: ‘Do I need travel insurance for Europe?’. Well, travelling around all European Economic Area (EEA) countries and Switzerland with an EHIC card will entitle you to free or reduced cost medical care. However, the EHIC alone doesn’t cover you for everything, so it is essential to have travel insurance to ensure you are covered for any medical emergency abroad.

When travelling to Europe, many people believe the EHIC offers enough medical protection if something were to happen during your trip. However, the EHIC offers only basic state healthcare. This is made available at a reduced cost or free of charge depending on the country as well as the type and amount of medical attention required.

On the other hand, Free Spirit Travel insurance will cover emergency medical and associated expenses up to £10,000,000 (depending on the level of cover). More details are provided further down.

Language:

Although English will often be spoken in most major European cities, learning some key phrases whilst on your travels may go a long way. Some key phrases to know include:

EnglishHelloGoodbyeI Need HelpExcuse MeI’m SorryThank You
GermanHalloTschüssIch brauche Hilfe. / Hilfe!EntschuldigungEntschuldigungDanke
FrenchBonjourAu revoirJ’ai besoin d’aide. / À l’aide!Excusez-moiPardonMerci
RussianЗдравстуйте (Zdrastvuite)До свидания (Do svidaniya)Помогите (Pomoguite)!Извините (Izvinite)Простите (Prostite)благодарю вас
(blagodaryu vas)
ItalianCiaoArrivederciMi serve aiuto. / Aiuto!Mi scusiMi dispiaceGrazie
SpanishHolaAdiósNecesito ayuda. / ¡Ayuda!Disculpa (informal) / Disculpe (formal)Lo siento / PerdónGracias
TurkeyMerhabaHoşçakalYardıma ihtiyacım var. / İmdat!AffedersinizÖzür dilerimteşekkür ederim
Portuguese OlaAdeuspreciso da ajudadesculpeDesculpe-meObrigado/ Obrigada

Currency:

Whilst you may assume that European countries transact with Euros, there are still a number of destinations that do not use it as their primary currency.

For example, Croatia, Denmark, Hungary, Iceland, Poland, Switzerland and Turkey as well as many others all use their native currency as opposed to the Euro. We recommend always checking the local currency before travelling.

Transport:

Travelling to Europe from the UK doesn’t have to just be via plane. You can go by car or train, cutesy of the Eurostar or Eurotunnel. You can also catch a ferry or go on a cruise.

Once you’ve arrived at your destination, transport to get around the country varies. From internal travel links such as over ground to underground rail services, tramlines, cable carts, bikes, canal boats, buses and cars, the options are endless. We recommend checking the internal travel options for your location in order to understand the accessibility of your chosen region.

For tips such as travelling with a medical condition, please refer to our guides.

What does European travel insurance cover?

Free Spirit Travel insurance will cover emergency medical and associated expenses up to £10,000,000 (depending on the level of cover) as well as aftercare at home following hospitalisation. Regardless of whether or not you have a pre-existing medical condition, it is important to take out a policy that offers a suitable level of cover for medical emergencies.

Our European travel insurance covers all countries within Europe, so wherever you wish to explore, Free Spirit will cover you.

Your travel insurance quote will vary depending on not only the trip duration but also the policy type, pre-existing medical conditions, and chosen level of cover.

It is important any pre-existing medical conditions are declared during the quote application. We offer affordable travel insurance for those with medical conditions. For more information, take a look at this useful guide which shows the average cost of a European travel insurance policy.

Free Spirit Europe Travel Insurance offers the following:

  • Cover for most medical conditions and disabilities
  • No upper age limits on single and multi-trip policies.
  • The option of either single (up to 94 days) or multi-trip (unlimited trips in a 12-month period)
  • Over 100 activities covered free
  • Online medical screening
  • Cover for European cruises
  • Terminal conditions considered – call us on 02392 419 080
  • 24-hour emergency medical helpline, 365 days a year

What are the benefits of Europe travel insurance?

Travel to Europe can be included in either Single Trip or Annual Multi-trip policies. So, if you fancy more than one trip and wish to travel to different European locations, then a Free Spirit European annual multi-trip travel insurance policy is ideal. For one-off trips, you should find that a single trip policy is just what you need.

Free Spirit offers two levels of cover, “Super” and “Super Duper” so you have the option to choose the cover level that matches the needs of your trip.

The benefits to our Super Duper Cover include:

  • Cancellation of up to £5000
  • Scheduled Airline Failure of up to £2,500 should your trip be cancelled due to financial failure of your travel and accommodation provider
  • Emergency medical & associated expenses (outside your home country) of up to £10 million
  • Aftercare at home following hospitalisation abroad for more than 5 days. This includes cover for home help, physiotherapy, dental costs and cosmetic surgery
  • State hospital benefit of £1,500 max limit, which provides a compensation payment for each 24-hour period you are an inpatient due to illness or accidental bodily injury sustained abroad
  • Curtailment (cutting your trip short)/loss of holiday) of up to £5,000
  • Cover of up to £2,000 for loss, theft or damage to your medical aids, including wheelchairs and walking frames
  • Cover for loss or damage to prescribed medication
  • Plus, many more benefits

Click here to view Free Spirit’s summary of cover

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Frequently Asked Questions about European Travel Insurance

What are the emergency numbers in Europe?

If you any sort of emergency during your travel, you can contact 112 for help. 112 is the European emergency number and is free of charge.

Is there cheap travel insurance to Europe for someone with a pre-existing medical condition?

Free Spirit offers affordable travel insurance for Europe for people with medical conditions. Some of the most common medical conditions we cover include; high blood pressure, asthma, type 2 diabetes, heart attacks and breast cancer plus many more conditions.

Is there an age limit for European travel insurance?

Many travel insurance providers only offer cover up to a certain age. Free Spirit do not have an upper age limit on our travel insurance.

Will Brexit impact my European travel?

There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding Brexit and how it will affect travel. In light of Brexit, it’s more important than ever to take out travel insurance as soon as you book your holiday. For more details, please read our blog on Travel after Brexit.

Please contact us on 02392 419 080 to discuss your requirements. We are open Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm, closed Bank Holidays.

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USA Travel Insurance

USA Travel Insurance

Are you thinking of a getaway to Las Vegas? A family holiday in Orlando? Or a ski trip in Aspen? It is not surprising that so many take holidays in the USA, as it has so much to offer to so many. Be drawn in by its warm culture and spectacular sights. Visit its many renowned capitals, each showcasing their own unique landmark and character.

When planning your trip to the USA, it is important to have travel insurance.
America’s healthcare system is known as expensive and privatised, so don’t be caught out.
Your travel insurance should cover medical emergencies you may encounter, and that is even more important if you have pre-existing medical conditions.

What to do in America

Across America’s six time zones, there is a wide variety of landscapes and micro-climates.
You could be adventurous and explore mountainous North-west America, planning in a bit of skiing while you are there. Or even brave the deserts of California, Idaho, Utah and Oregon. On the other hand, there are plenty of beach locations on each coast if you envisage somewhere more calming.

If you’ve not made up your mind and need some travel inspiration, here are some ideas of what to do in America:

Watch the Superbowl: The Superbowl has become a national holiday and global phenomenon. If you love American football, music or hot dogs, then this is something worth getting tickets for. It happens once a year and is watched by millions.

Visit the Grand Canyon: Be breath-taken by Arizona’s immense Grand Canyon. Whether it’s hiking the Bright Angel Trail or rafting down the Colorado River – this is the place for any aspiring adventurer.

Visit Yellowstone: Yellowstone national park allows you to be at one with nature. You could experience the hot springs and hiking trails. Or visiting the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center may be more to your liking – where you can learn all about these fascinating animals – and maybe even get up close to some of them!

Visit New York: New York, referred to as the big apple, offers almost everything. You can see the Brooklyn Bridge during the day then venture to Times Square in the evening. Just be warned – with so much to see and do it may become all too apparent why New York is sometimes known as ‘the city that never sleeps’!

Visit Charleston: Charleston is an underrated gem of a city. Home to stunning architecture, sun-kissed beaches and a splash of southern charm. If you are exploring the USA, make sure Charleston is on the list.

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Advice for Travelling to the USA

If you do have an upcoming trip to the USA, here are a few tips to bear in mind:

Visa: If you’re travelling to the USA, make sure you understand whether you need a visa. The Visa Waiver Program (VSP) allows nationals from certain countries to enter the US. This is providing they will be there no longer than 90 days and for tourism only. Entering the country under the VWP, you need to apply for authorisation. You do this before your trip through the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA). For more information, visit the US Customs and Border Protection ESTA website.
If you don’t qualify for the VWP, then you will need to apply for a visa to visit the USA.

Emergencies: The emergency service number in the USA is 911. In the event that you need immediate medical attention, call this number to receive the best possible care. As soon as possible, contact your travel insurer and notify them of what has happened. In the case of a medical emergency, the insurance provider will liaise with doctors to ensure you receive the best possible care.

Road Safety: The USA traffic and parking laws imposed must be adhered to. Certain rules such as speed limits and following road signs are strictly enforced. There will be differences in the laws of the road for America compared to the UK. Remember that jaywalking can be punishable in many states, and Americans drive on the right-hand side of the road. Please ensure you have checked key differences in driving before travelling, as we don’t want your trip to be ruined.

What are the benefits of USA travel insurance?

Our USA travel insurance covers trips to the USA, with the following benefits:

  • Practically all medical conditions and disabilities covered for peace of mind
  • No upper age limits
  • Option of either single (up to 94 days) or multi trip (unlimited trips in a 12-month period)
  • Over 100 activities covered free
  • Online medical screening
  • Terminal conditions considered – call us on 02392 419 080
  • 24-hour emergency medical helpline, 365 days a year

What does USA travel insurance cover?

USA travel insurance offers both Single Trip and Annual Multi-trip policies. if you are planning one or more trips to America, an American annual multi-trip policy is ideal. However, for a one-off holiday, a single trip policy will suit your needs perfectly.

Free Spirit offers two levels of cover, so you can choose which best suits your travel needs.

Benefits include cover for:

  • Cancellation
  • Emergency medical & associated expenses (outside your home country)
  • Aftercare at home following hospitalisation
  • State hospital benefit
  • Curtailment (cutting your trip short)/loss of holiday
  • Personal accident
  • Personal liability
  • Delayed departure (after 12 hours delay)/trip cancellation (after 12 hours delay)
  • Legal advice & expenses

Click here to view a full summary of cover.

Cover will fall under our policy for worldwide cover including Canada, Caribbean, China, Hong Kong and the USA.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is there cheap travel insurance to the USA for someone with a pre-existing medical condition?

Free Spirit offers affordable travel insurance to the USA for people with medical conditions. Some of the most common medical conditions we cover include: high blood pressure, asthma, type 2 diabetes, heart attacks and breast cancer.

Is there an age limit for travel insurance to the USA?

Many travel insurance providers only offer cover up to a certain age. Free Spirit do not have an upper age limit on travel insurance to the USA.

If I take out a multi-trip policy, can I travel to the USA more than once?

Yes, with a Multi Trip Policy, you can enjoy unlimited trips to the USA and many other global destinations. This is within a 12-month period with annual travel insurance tailored to your condition or disability. If any health-related changes occur during this time, you will need to notify us. We can then adapt your policy to meet your needs.

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Family Travel Insurance

Family Travel Insurance

At Free Spirit, we offer family travel insurance so you can go away with peace of mind that you and your loved ones are fully covered.

What to look for in travel insurance for your family holiday

If you tend to go away no more than once a year, a single trip travel insurance policy should suffice. If you enjoy travelling many times throughout the year, an annual travel insurance policy for the family may be worth considering.

Family holidays are often activity filled so there tends to be more likelihood of accidents. That’s why it’s important you’re covered for any activity you partake in. Free Spirit policies include cover for over 100 activities, including camping, horse riding and whale watching, among others. Winter Sports can also be covered, subject to an additional premium. Now you can enjoy your holiday activities with peace of mind that you and your family are protected.

At Free Spirit, we offer specialist travel insurance for many different medical conditions. During your quote application, it’s important to declare any medical conditions you and your family have. This ensures your policy provides suitable cover to meet all your needs.

How can Free Spirit travel insurance protect you and your family?

Free Spirit travel insurance allows you and your loved ones to enjoy a holiday knowing that you are all fully covered.

  • Cover for most medical conditions and disabilities
  • No upper age limit on Single Trip and Annual Multi-Trip cover
  • Specific cover for medical aids and prescribed medications
  • Over 100 activities included free
  • Online medical screening, instant quotes and buy online
  • ‘Super Duper’ level of cover is rated 5 Star by Defaqto
  • Cover for cruises included
  • Terminal conditions considered – call us on 02392 419 080
  • 24-hour emergency medical helpline, 365 days a year

You can view a summary of our ‘Super’ and ‘Super Duper’ levels of cover here.

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Do Free Spirit cover single parents under a family travel insurance policy?

Yes – cover can be provided for one parent or grandparent and their children or grandchildren (under the age of 18 on the date of purchase). Cover for children and grandchildren will only be provided if travelling with an insured adult.

What happens if a family member becomes sick?

If a family member becomes unwell whilst you are away, providing all medical conditions have been declared, Free Spirit will cover up to £10,000,000 (depending on cover level).

If a family member’s health changes after you’ve purchased your policy but before your departure date, you must let us know immediately. This includes:

  • Seeing a medical practitioner because you have developed a new medical condition; your prescribed medication has changed, or a pre-existing medical condition deteriorates.
  • You have seen or been referred to a consultant or specialist.
  • You are waiting to receive treatment (including surgery, tests or investigations) or the results of tests and investigations, or have been admitted to hospital.

Can grandparents take out a family travel insurance policy?

A family policy allows for two adults to be insured, meaning that parents or grandparents can take out a Free Spirit policy. What’s more, adults insured on an annual multi-trip policy are entitled to travel independently of each other if they decide to take some trips separately.

Top tips for travelling with the family

  • Planning the right destination: When travelling as a family it is important to consider the type of location and whether or not it is an appropriate destination. For example, if you have young children it’s important to consider factors including journey duration, cuisine available and whether the country is familiar with the English language.
  • Booking a child-friendly hotel: Whilst some hotels are exclusive to adults, others do cater for children. These offer everything from kid’s activity clubs to simple food options – perfect for fussy eaters. Your children are able to make friends and have fun whilst the adults relax and enjoy themselves.
  • Plan in advance: It’s important to give yourself enough time to prepare for your family holiday. With children at school, it leaves only a small window to actually go away together, so planning in advance is key. Give yourself enough time to get all your documentation sorted and your packing organised. Holidays can be stressful enough so try not to leave things to the last minute!
  • Getting vaccinations: Some destinations need vaccinations, so it’s important to seek medical advice four to six weeks prior to your departure date. Whether or not you need vaccinations, if you do have a pre-existing medical condition and have any concerns you should speak to your treating doctor to clear up any worries. This will allow you to relax and look forward to your trip.
  • Enjoy yourself: Family holidays are bound to bring about a bicker or two, however it’s important to try and enjoy every moment of your holiday. Going away with your loved ones is a chance to make memories that will last a lifetime – so make the most of it!

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If you still have any unanswered questions, then please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions.
Alternatively, please contact us on 02392 419 080 to discuss your requirements. We are open Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm, closed Bank Holidays.

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Over 50s

Over 50s Travel Insurance

At Free Spirit, we believe age should never stop you from travelling. That’s why we offer exceptional wide-ranging cover to keep you and your loved ones protected whilst on holiday in the UK or abroad.
Whether you need a single or annual multi-trip insurance policy, we will be able to offer you a quote, subject to medical screening.
Our single trip policy can provide up to 94 days of cover (45 days if aged 76 years or over) and if you think you might be jet setting more than once throughout the year, our annual multi-trip policy may be perfect for you. It lets you travel as much as you like, with no restriction. It provides a maximum single trip duration of 31 days on the ‘Super’ cover and 45 days on the ‘Super Duper’ cover.

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What is over 50s medical travel insurance?

Specialist age-related and medical travel insurance companies including Free Spirit, offer tailored cover for travellers aged 50 plus. We cater for those with a number of pre-existing medical conditions, providing peace of mind to travellers, that they can travel in the UK, Europe, even Worldwide, and be covered in the case of an eventuality.

Why choose Free Spirit for 50 plus travel insurance?

  • Single trips covered up to 94 days (45 days if you’re aged 76 years or over)
  • Annual multi-trip cover provides unlimited number of trips – travel up to 31 days per trip (Super) or 45 days (Super Duper)
  • Fully interactive website including online medical screening
  • Journey disruption / Airspace closure cover (Super Duper cover only)
  • Scheduled airline failure (Super Duper cover only)
  • Cover for loss or damage to medical aids and prescribed medications

Click here to read a full list of reasons to choose Free Spirit.

Travel Insurance for over 50s with pre-existing medical conditions

Free Spirit specialises in providing travel insurance for customers with a wide range of pre-existing medical conditions including serious conditions such as cancer and heart problems. The majority of travel insurers will either refuse cover for serious medical conditions or charge an excessive premium (sometimes more than the cost of the holiday itself).
However, at Free Spirit, we do things differently. We will ask you a number of questions regarding your medical history, so we have a thorough understanding of your condition, then if we can, we will offer you a competitive quote for your travel cover.
We offer cover for a wide range of serious medical conditions, including:

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FAQs and advice for over 50s holiday insurance

Below you can access a number of additional resources all about over 50s medical holiday insurance- just click on the links below.
Going on a cruise? Take a look at our cruise travel cover.
Purchasing travel Insurance can be confusing, for everything you need to know, check out our blogs.

If you need more information, then why not contact our friendly customer service team.

Now for the FAQs:

Can I put any travel companions on the same policy?

Free Spirit can cover travel companions regardless of whether or not they have a medical condition. By including your travelling companions on the same policy, you will ensure the whole party is covered. For more information please read the Insurance Policy.

Do you cover mental health conditions?

Yes, we offer cover for mental health conditions. Whilst they are often invisible, they can be debilitating and are more common than many realise. Mental health issues can affect everyone, no matter their age. At Free Spirit, we offer cover for a range of conditions. For more information check out our medical insurance page.

How long can I go away for with a single trip policy?

Single trips cover up to 94 days (45 days if you are aged 76 years or over).

I don’t want to get a quote online, can I do it over the phone?

One of our friendly customer service team will be more than happy to speak to you. Please call 02392 419 080. We are open Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm, closed Bank Holidays.

Can I extend my insurance policy?

Subject to Underwriters agreement, your single trip insurance policy can be extended, providing we are notified before your policy expires and at the time of requesting the extension you have not, and you are not intending to make, a claim.
Please note – this is subject to the total trip duration including the extended period not exceeding 94 days (45 days if aged 76 years or over), which is the maximum trip duration of our single trip policy. You will be advised of the additional premium at the time of the request.
Please contact us on 02392 419 080 to discuss your requirements. We are open Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm, closed Bank Holidays.

Do I really need travel insurance?

Regardless of whether or not you have a health condition, it is important to take out a policy providing suitable cover for your trip. In the case of an emergency you can relax knowing you are fully protected.
When you are purchasing your policy, make sure you declare all pre-existing medical conditions and thoroughly read the policy wording to make sure your cover meets the demands of your trip. Without having the right insurance, you may not be able to make a claim.

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Ski Travel Insurance

Ski Travel Insurance

Skiing trips are the perfect option if you are after something action filled or just something different from your summer beach holiday. It provides you with the ability to experience some of the most breath-taking views, whilst creating exhilarating memories that will last a lifetime. With bustling towns, luxurious spas and award winning resorts, there is plenty on offer – even when you’ve packed away your skis for the day.

What is Ski Travel Insurance?

Ski travel insurance provides cover specifically tailored for worldwide ski trips. Irrespective of whether or not you have a pre-existing medical condition, it is imperative to have an insurance policy that covers you on skiing trips – both on and off the slopes.

What is included in our Ski Insurance?

Free Spirit’s Ski Travel Insurance offers wide cover on numerous skiing related activities.

In order to be eligible, you must ensure that your usual treating GP is happy for you to take part in any skiing related activity.  You are also obliged to follow the safety guidelines including using the recommended safety equipment (where applicable) and following local advice on areas to stick to and when.

Ski Travel Insurance is an optional extension for both Single-trip and Multi-trip policies, under both the ‘Super’ and ‘Super-Duper’ cover level. ‘Super Duper’ provides the widest level of cover and has been rated 5 star by Defaqto.

Ski insurance covers the following activities:

  • On piste skiing/snowboarding in recognised areas (including off-piste when accompanied by a guide or instructor and provided you are not skiing against local recommendations or where avalanche warnings have been given)
  • Cross country skiing
  • Mono-skiing

Ski cover is only in force if presented on your policy schedule and the appropriate additional premium has been paid.

Ski travel insurance covers:

  • Ski Equipment – Single article, pair or set limit and ski equipment (hired) limit
  • Delayed Ski Equipment (for more than 12 hours or lost/damaged during trip)
  • Ski Pack (loss of)
  • Piste closure (per day resort is closed)
  • Avalanche/weather delay (delayed more than 12 hours)

Why choose Free Spirit for Ski Travel Insurance?

  • Most medical conditions and disabilities covered
  • No upper age limit – travel available no matter your age
  • Up to £5,000 cancellation cover (Super Duper) or £2,500 (Super) per person – we may be able to provide higher levels of cancellation cover – please call us on 02392 419 080 for more details
  • Single trips covered for up to 94 days (45 days if aged 76 years or over)
  • Annual Multi-trip provides unlimited number of trips – travel up to 31 days per trip (Super) and 45 days (Super Duper)
  • Online medical screening
  • Cover for European and Worldwide destinations
  • 24-hour emergency medical helpline, 365 days a year
Click to get a quote

 

 

FAQs for Skiing Holiday Insurance

1.What is ski travel insurance?

Free Spirit ski travel insurance is an optional extension, for both single and multi-trip policies, designed to provide ski specific cover for a trip or holiday, with an additional premium.

2.What cover levels offer ski travel insurance?

Both Super and Super-Duper cover levels offer the ski travel insurance extension.

3.Is there an age limit for ski travel insurance?

This is no upper age limit with Free Spirit.

4.Is there any skiing I am not covered for?

You are not covered for the following:
  • Off-piste skiing
  • Ski stunting
  • Skiing against local authoritative recommendations, warnings or advice
  • Free-style skiing
  • Nordic Skiing
  • Alpine Skiing
  • Heli-Skiing
  • Ski flying
  • Ski jumping
  • Ski mountaineering
  • Glacier skiing
  • Snowcat skiing

5.If I have a pre-existing medical condition can I get ski travel insurance?

Subject to medical screening, and providing your usual treating GP is happy for you to participate in skiing, then you are eligible for ski travel Insurance.

6.Can I extend my policy if I decide to stay longer?

Subject to Underwriters agreement, your single trip insurance policy can be extended, providing we are notified before your policy expires and at the time of requesting the extension you are not intending to make a claim.

Please note – this is subject to the total trip duration including the extended period not exceeding 94 days (45 days if aged 76 years or over), which is the maximum trip duration of our single trip policy. You will be advised of the additional premium at the time of the request.

Please contact us on 02392 419 080 to discuss your requirements. We are open Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm, closed Bank Holidays.

7.Will I be covered for delayed ski equipment?

If ski travel insurance is added onto your policy, you will be covered for hiring essential ski equipment, providing your own is lost or stolen on the outward journey, misplaced for more than 12 hours or lost during your trip.

8.Will I be covered if I have a medical emergency whilst skiing?

You will be covered for medical emergencies whilst you are away, with the amount differing based on the chosen cover level. Want more information? Check out our summary of cover.

We have a 24-hour medical emergency and repatriation service, made up of friendly and knowledgeable staff who will, when necessary, guarantee medical bills, arrange repatriation and, if required, provide a medical escort.

Free Spirit – 24-hour Medical Emergency Assistance
+44 (0)203 829 6745

9.Will I be covered if there is a weather delay?

If ski travel insurance is added on to your policy, you will be covered in the case that your outward or return journey is delayed for more than 12 hours due to an Avalanche, lack of snow or severe weather conditions.

10.Will I be covered for piste closure?

If you select ski travel insurance you will be covered for each day your resort is closed and will be offered an alternative skiing area providing ALL skiing facilities are closed due to a lack of snow or an avalanche.

If you would like a non-obligation quote for ski travel insurance, please apply online or if you have any more questions please speak to our dedicated UK-based customer service team on 02392 419 080.

  • Testimonials

    As on our previous experience with Free Spirit we again have nothing but praise for your service. The medical questions asked initially were adequate …
    D and P. CAvon
    To read reviews click here
  • Ask Mary

    Free Spirit Manager, Mary Holt is a recognised expert in medical screening and in underwriting travel insurance for people with medical conditions. You can read Mary’s Q&As or ask Mary a question directly.
    Read Q&As
    Ask Mary

Twisted bowel travel insurance

Twisted bowel travel insurance

As the name suggests, a twisted bowel is a loop, overlap or twist in the small or large intestine that causes a bowel obstruction. A blockage can cause pain, tenderness and nausea as well as a fever, vomiting and malnutrition in some cases. A twisted bowel is also known as a volvulus, and without treatment, it can prevent blood flow to the intestines and require emergency surgery to rectify.

It’s not always obvious what causes a twisted bowel, but some of the ways it can occur include:

  • Intense activity in the gut, such as through laxative use or eating a very high amount of fibre.
  • Over-eating.
  • A complication of an inflammatory bowel condition like Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis.

If you’ve had a twisted bowel, you may have had surgery to fix the problem, or you may have been prescribed medication and/or advised to make changes to your lifestyle to help the twist correct itself. There should be no reason why you can’t travel overseas, as long as your doctor agrees, but don’t forget to arrange travel insurance that covers your condition.

Specialist travel insurance for twisted bowel

Any pre-existing health condition that continues to affect your lifestyle makes travel insurance an absolute must. It’s important to let your travel insurance company know that you have had a twisted bowel – as well as any other conditions you have so that your cover provides for you should you need it. Overseas medical care can be very expensive, but proper travel insurance can protect you from the costs in the event of your condition affecting your health while you are away.

Sadly, many standard travel insurance providers may refuse to offer cover to people with existing health conditions, but that’s why Free Spirit was created. Our specialist travel insurance is specifically designed for people of any age who have pre-existing medical conditions, such as a twisted bowel, so you are far more likely to find cover that meets your needs.

We can provide specialist travel insurance policy that covers twisted bowel, and any associated conditions you may also have, to ensure you can access the right medical care in your destination of choice. There are so many other benefits too, from cancellation cover and protection against damage, theft or loss of your medication, medical aids and travel documents, to repatriation if medically necessary, and cover for unplanned transport costs to get you back home if you cannot travel as planned*.

Our medical travel insurance can be adapted to cover your friends and family travelling with you too, even if they don’t have any existing health conditions. This is especially valuable when it comes to our cancellation cover; it ensures your whole travelling party is saved the expense of unused accommodation and/or flights, in the event that a change in your health prevents the trip from going ahead.

*Cover is subject to the terms, conditions and limits of the Insurance Policy.

twisted bowel travel insurance

How can I get travel insurance for a twisted bowel?

We aim to make it as straightforward as possible to arrange twisted bowel travel insurance with us. So long as you are not currently awaiting surgery, are having inpatient treatment, waiting for tests or test results and your doctor has no objections to you travelling, we should be able to offer cover for a twisted bowel based on a short medical screening process.

As part of our medical screening process, we will need to ask you about your condition and how it affects you. The exact questions we ask will vary depending on your personal circumstances, but it’s likely we will ask the following:

  • How many episodes of bowel obstruction have you had in the last five years?
  • How long ago was the most recent episode of bowel obstruction?

Having this information helps us to arrange travel insurance to cover your unique condition and health needs.

If you would like a quote for twisted bowel travel cover, please call our UK-based travel insurance specialists on 02392 419 080. Lines are open from Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm (excluding Bank Holidays). You can also apply online, although please note that there may be occasions when we need to speak to you before we can offer a quote. If this is the case, we’ll ask you to give us a call.

Travelling after having had a twisted bowel

Looking after yourself and your health after having had a twisted bowel is crucial, and while it shouldn’t stop you taking a holiday, a little preparation can ensure it’s the relaxing break you’re after.

Start by talking to your doctor to make sure they are happy with your travel plans, particularly if you will be flying, and preferably before you book anything. They will also make you aware of anything else you might need to think about, such as extra medication to cover your time away, or a doctor’s letter with information about your prescriptions. Depending on where you will be going, you may need to have this with you when you travel, as certain medications are regulated in some countries.

You can also get in touch with our resident medical travel insurance expert, Mary Holt. She has over 20 years’ experience with Free Spirit, and you can ask her a question directly.

Apply online today to get a free quote for your travel insurance with a twisted bowel. If you prefer to discuss your needs, call our UK based specialist travel insurance experts on 02392 419 080. Our team is available 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays).

Perforated bowel

Perforated bowel travel insurance

A perforated bowel, also known as a gastrointestinal perforation, is a hole or tear in the lower part of the digestive system, including the stomach and the small or large intestine. It is a serious medical condition that requires immediate medical treatment. In most cases it will need surgery to repair the perforation.

A hole or tear in the bowel can occur for many different reasons, such as:

If it’s not treated as soon as possible a perforated bowel can be very dangerous, potentially leading to peritonitis (an infection of the stomach’s inner lining), which in turn can lead to sepsis (an infection affecting the whole body).

Treatment for a perforated bowel can involve a long period of recuperation but, as long as your doctor says there is no reason why you cannot take a holiday, it needn’t stop you heading off on a much-needed break. Like many long-term health conditions, having and recovering from a perforated bowel can mean making lifestyle adjustments, but with the right medical travel insurance and healthcare provisions in place, overseas travel needn’t be out of reach.

Why do I need specialist travel insurance for a perforated bowel?

While having had a perforated bowel doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a trip away, it does mean that you must prioritise your health even more than normal. Travel insurance should be an essential pre-holiday measure for everyone, but it’s especially important for those who have existing medical conditions or have had a condition that can affect them in the long-term, such as a bowel perforation.

What’s more, if your perforated bowel was caused by having another pre-existing health issue, like Crohn’s or a stomach ulcer, it’s vital that your travel insurance covers both conditions.

A specialist travel insurance policy is there to protect you from the very high costs of overseas medical care, and to ensure you can access emergency and non-emergency healthcare if you need it while you’re overseas. Many standard travel insurance providers may exclude people who have existing medical conditions, but a specialist provider like Free Spirit aims to offer cover to as many travellers as possible. We’re proud to provide travel insurance to people of any age with almost any disability and/or medical condition, including a perforated bowel.

Should your health deteriorate once you’ve booked your trip and you cannot travel as planned, we can make sure you don’t lose out on travel and accommodation expenses you’ve already accrued, and do the same for your friends and family, provided they are also named on your policy.

Not only can we cover you for any medical care you need in relation to your bowel perforation (and any associated conditions you may have), we can help to ensure a stress-free holiday for you and your travelling companions. Our specialist travel insurance includes repatriation cover, protection against loss or damage to your medical aids, medications and travel documentation, and personal accident cover*.

*Cover is subject to the terms, conditions and limits of the Insurance Policy.

Arranging travel insurance for a perforated bowel

Securing perforated bowel travel insurance with us is simple. Provided that your doctor is happy for you to travel, you are not on a waiting list for surgery, are having inpatient treatment or are waiting for tests or test results, we are able to offer cover for a perforated bowel, subject to medical screening.

To give you a travel insurance quote that’s as tailored to your personal circumstances as possible, we will need some information about your health. In particular, we will need to ask you whether your bowel perforation was caused by another condition, such as Crohn’s.

Our friendly, UK-based team is just a phone call away from Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm (excluding Bank Holidays), please don’t hesitate to call on 02392 419 080. Or, if you’d rather apply online, you can use our online medical screening system, available anytime day or night. It’s quick and easy to use, although please note that in some cases, we may need to speak to you before we can offer a quote. If so, we’ll ask you to call us.

Tips for travelling after having a perforated bowel

As with any long-term medical condition, if you have had a perforated bowel you should take time to prepare for your trip and take all necessary measures to safeguard your health.

Your doctor will be able to help you with this, as well as confirming whether or not you are fit to travel. They will be able to prescribe extra medication should you need it, and provide you with a letter detailing your stoma (if necessary) and prescriptions if you will be travelling by air. Some countries have restrictions on certain medications, so it’s worth checking whether yours are permitted before you depart for your destination. Speak to your doctor in plenty of time ahead of your departure date, ideally 6-8 weeks in advance, so that you have time to make any extra arrangements.

If you will be flying and you have a stoma as a result of surgery for a perforated bowel, be aware that it might balloon slightly once you’re airborne. This is nothing to worry about, and you should be able to drain the air yourself when you go to the bathroom. If your destination is very warm, or if you will be swimming, you might find that your pouch is less adhesive, so you might have to change it more often than you’re used to. Be sure to apply sun cream after your barrier is in place, as lotion can also make adhesion tricky. There’s more information on travelling with a stoma on the Coloplast website.

For anything that you are unsure of, ask Mary, our Medical travel insurance expert with over 20 years’ experience, by messaging her directly.

Apply online today to get a free quote for your travel insurance with a perforated bowel. If you prefer to discuss your needs, call our UK based specialist travel insurance experts on 02392 419 080. Our team is available 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays).

Travel insurance for children with medical conditions

A child in front of a glode and a man's hand pointing

At Free Spirit, we’re proud of the fact that our specialist travel insurance has no age limit. We look to insure those aged 70, 80, 90 or older, so you might sooner associate the benefits of our cover with older holidaymakers. But our no age travel insurance applies to younger travellers too, in fact, we cover many children who are travelling with their parents or in groups.

Travelling with children who have existing medical conditions or disabilities can be challenging, but there’s no reason why they can’t enjoy a holiday. However, the last thing parents, carers and guardians need is a complicated route to taking out travel cover.

Our medical travel insurance for children works in exactly the same way as it does for adults – we aim to offer a specialist travel policy for children with virtually any pre-existing health condition or disability and the same key features and protections. All we require is that there is an adult on the same policy and that the child’s doctor is happy for them to travel.

Why does my child need specialist travel insurance?

Covering your family for any overseas trip is always necessary; you never know when your holiday might take an unexpected turn. Accidents, injuries and even lost luggage can all disrupt a family trip away and run up huge expenses. If your child has a medical condition or disability, the need for suitable travel insurance is even greater.

Naturally, if your child does need emergency medical assistance while you’re away, your first priority will be getting the care they require. Not only can a specialist travel insurance policy ensure you can access  this help quickly, it also means you won’t be responsible for paying the medical bill. Overseas medical care can be incredibly expensive, but travel insurance is there to meet the costs*.

Finding this cover from a standard travel insurance provider can be difficult though; many will decline to offer cover to those with health conditions or disabilities or will provide cover excluding the health conditions. That’s where a provider who specialises in tailored medical travel cover, like Free Spirit, can make all the difference – we can cover your child and their specific health needs, subject to a medical screening.

What constitutes a child when it comes to travel insurance?

In terms of our travel cover, a child is anyone under 18 years of age. For children to travel under a Free Spirit specialist policy, we simply require that an accompanying adult is named on the policy with them.

In the case of most family holidays, this will usually be a parent or guardian, but could also be a teacher, family friend or carer if your child will be travelling without the rest of the family. School and college trips, excursions with friends’ families and tours with clubs or teams are all wonderful opportunities for older children to explore the world. Our specialist travel insurance allows them the freedom to do so, while also giving you the peace of mind that their medical condition or disability is covered.

Can I cover my child and the whole family on the same policy?

Yes, you can. We want to make it as straightforward as possible for you to secure travel insurance, which is why we can cover the entire travelling party, such as your family or the named adult(s) travelling alongside your child, on the same policy, even if they don’t have existing medical conditions or disabilities.

With travel insurance in place, you will not lose the money already spent on flights and/or accommodation should the trip have to be cancelled because your child has become too unwell to travel. Separate policies don’t normally offer this protection, plus, having a single travel policy for everyone means that you will all benefit from the same key features of Free Spirit cover*.

What’s included with medical travel insurance for children?

Our travel insurance for children with medical conditions or disabilities includes all of the same benefits as our policies for adults; there’s no difference in the levels of cover available (except for personal accident cover). You can still choose between our Super cover or Super Duper cover options, and you can select either single trip or annual multi-trip travel insurance, which enables your child to travel as many times as they like over the course of a year (as long as these trips are made with an insured adult).

By purchasing a medical travel insurance policy through Free Spirit, you can rest assured your child’s health condition or disability will be fully covered (subject to medical screening).

All of our customers have access to our dedicated 24-hour emergency medical assistance helpline, meaning help is just a phone call away.

There’s more to our specialist travel insurance than just medical cover though. Both our levels of cover offer essential benefits such as:

  • repatriation to your home country
  • aftercare following time in hospital
  • loss or damage to personal possessions including travel documents
  • loss or damage to medication and medical aids
  • cancellation cover

View the full list of our travel insurance features, or take a look at the full policy terms and conditions.

How do I apply for cover?

Applying for medical travel insurance for children with us is simple. You can apply online or call and speak to one of our friendly expert team on 02392 419 080 (Monday – Friday, 8am – 6pm, excluding Bank Holidays).

Tips for travelling with children with medical conditions

  • As we’ve already mentioned, the most important thing to establish before planning a trip is that your child’s doctor is happy for them to go. Speaking to your child’s GP will also enable them to make you aware of any additional medication or steps you might need to take ahead of the holiday, such as vaccinations. Or, depending on your child’s medication, you might need a doctor’s letter to allow you to take the medication on board a flight with you, or into another country.
  • Make sure you know where the nearest hospital is to where you will be staying, and check ahead to see if you will be able to buy any non-prescription medications over the counter in your destination. If not, stock up before you go and split it across your luggage so that you’ll always have a supply with you, even if anything goes astray.
  • Be aware of the climate of the country your child will be visiting. If it’s very warm or cold, read up on how it could affect your child’s condition and take any recommended precautions. In hot weather, drinking plenty of water and applying plenty of high-factor sun cream is good advice for anyone, but it’s even more important for children with medical conditions or disabilities.

*Subject to terms, conditions & exclusions of the policy.

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