Travel. Clearly Explained.

Don’t ruin getting away on holiday with money worries. Here’s what you need to know.

What you need to consider before travelling

Travel insurance

Unfortunately not all holidays go smoothly, sometimes things can go wrong. Whether that’s becoming ill or injured during the holiday, your possessions stolen or lost, or even your whole holiday being cancelled, or having to return home early.

Do you need travel insurance?

Of course no one thinks that anything bad is going to happen to them. But it does. It’s recommended to get travel insurance, but it’s not compulsory. It can sometimes just be worth it for the peace of mind that you’re covered should something go wrong.

You can compare travel insurance quotes with MoneySuperMarket here.

Types of travel insurance

Single trip insurance

Cover for just one trip away, and can cover yourself, your partner or your whole family depending on which policy you need. If you are planning multiple trips per year, this may not be the best value for money.

Annual multi-trip travel insurance (Europe or worldwide)

For multiple trips away within a year. Normally there’s no restrictions on the number of trips, but may restrict the number of days abroad, which is normally 90 days. This cover typically works out cheaper than purchasing single trip insurance.

Family travel insurance

Cover for the whole family when travelling abroad. Normally works out cheaper than buying a single policy each, and sometimes under 18s are free.

Group travel insurance

If you are traveling as part of a large group this might work out better value for money. You’ll all be under the same policy so easy to manage. You can sometimes include extra cover for activities such as sports.

Winter sports travel insurance

Normally sports like skiing and snowboarding, or any activity on snow is not covered under a normal policy – you’ll need to get specialist insurance. It’s because there’s a higher chance you’ll be injured, so it’s worth it, and the equipment is normally fairly expensive to replace.

Backpackers insurance

Those going on a gap year or backpacking can get specialist insurance which covers them in most places they are travelling to, and for an extended period of time, normally the whole year, which regular policies won’t cover. They also provide some protection against activities also not included in regular policies.

Over 65s travel insurance

Sadly, older people are more likely to fall ill, which can be expensive abroad. Therefore standard policies don’t normally cover over 65, you’ll have to arrange specialist insurance.

Consider a card instead of travel money

These days you don’t need cash as much as most places accept card payments, and with a card you can reduce the risk of carrying a large amount of cash, along with cheaper foreign-exchange fees. But that doesn’t mean you should use your regular cards, you’ll likely face charges, and definitely do not use your regular credit card. 

Your options are a prepaid travel card, which you can load up with cash, spend in the local currency and withdraw from an ATM abroad too, or look at the likes of the digital banks who offer free transactions and withdrawals abroad up to a certain limit. You can also get a travel credit card if you are away regularly.

Can you get a loan for a holiday?

You can get a loan for a holiday, a travel loan. They act the same as an unsecured personal loan, that means you are completely liable for the repayment of the loan – it’s not linked to anything you own. You’ll need a good credit score and the ability to pay it back. The typical borrowing amount is between £1,000 and £25,000.

However, it’s not recommended to use a loan for a holiday as it’s likely you’ll be overextending your finances if you can’t afford it from your savings. It may be better to skip a holiday if you can’t afford it, but if you don’t have that option then a holiday loan can help spread the cost over time. Find out more about holiday loans here.