Tips for Backpackers Travel Insurance
If you’re thinking about booking into one of our hostels in London, then there’s a very good chance that you’re a backpacker. Although our UK hostel is designed to accommodate every kind of traveller – from university groups to lone travellers or couples exploring the world – we are particularly suited to London backpackers. That’s because we offer affordable accommodation to people travelling on a strict budget without cutting any corners. Our backpackers hostel in London is clean, secure and comfortable, and boasts extras such as free Wi-Fi and a highly convenient central London location.
When you book our hostel in London you don’t just get excellent accommodation, however, you also get access to help, and information provided by our experienced staff and accessible via our website. One piece of advice we always give to London backpackers is that they need to take out travel insurance before heading out on their adventure. Travelling on a budget means trying to cut expenses wherever possible, but one thing you should never think of doing without is travel insurance. The only thing you can safely predict from travelling on a shoestring is that the unpredictable will happen. Nine times out of ten this will be a positive thing – meeting new friends in unexpected places or trying food you’d never even thought of before – but every now and then it may be less positive. If you fall ill, lose your possessions, or hurt yourself in an accident then travel insurance could make all the difference between a minor inconvenience and outright disaster.
What to look for in your travel insurance
There are so many companies offering travel insurance that choosing the one which is ideal for you can be extremely confusing. Once you’ve decided what your budget is, however (and you should always spend as much as you can really afford on travel insurance), you should only consider those travel insurance policies which offer at least the following basic features:
- Insurance which covers most countries in the world. You may initially be heading to London, but once the travel bug bites you might want to explore further afield.
- It covers items such as personal possessions, luggage and documents which are lost, stolen or become damaged. Although our hostel in London put an emphasis on the security of our guests’ accidents can still happen, and you want to be able to relax in the knowledge that the stuff you rely on is properly insured.
- It lets you pay a little extra to cover high-value items. Most of the things you travel with may be easily replaced but more expensive items such as smartphones, tablets and laptops would be much more of a loss. Travelling without at least one device which makes it easy to contact the folks back home is unthinkable in the 21st century, so make sure your travel insurance covers the device(s) you opt for.
- Does the company have a 24-hour emergency helpline? If not, then look elsewhere. The last thing you need when dealing with a crisis like losing your luggage or breaking a leg is to be told the office won’t be open to handle your claim for another eight hours.
- Does the personal liability insurance aspect of the policy offered at least £1 million of personal liability insurance? This might seem like an exorbitant amount, but if you injure a person or damage their possessions you could find yourself in a legal battle over compensation, and the costs involved in cases such as these can son spiral, particularly if you’re found to be liable.
- The same question as the one posed over personal liability insurance applies to medical coverage. Again, £1 million may seem like a lot of money, but many countries (the US being the example that springs most easily to mind) impose eye-watering medical costs on patients, and a £1 million ceiling will offer peace of mind.
- Will the insurance cover repatriate you to your home country if you suffer serious illness or injury? If not, you could find yourself being taken only part of the way back home and having to arrange the rest of the trip yourself in the worst possible circumstances.