Top Five Tips Gap Year

Get vaccinated

Travelling to exotic climates and coming into contact with unfamiliar illnesses can result in delay, curtailment or unplanned medical expenses. Indeed, illness and medical costs can be responsible for over half of claims on long term insurance policies. Ensuring you have the correct vaccinations and take appropriate medication such as anti-malaria pills is vital to minimising this risk.

Take care of your belongings

Just over half of claims by gap year travellers are for personal effects and money (primarily, for theft and for lost luggage), highlighting the importance of looking after your possessions.
Backpackers in Krabi, Thailand
Backpackers in Krabi, Thailand (c) flickr/Jan

Do your research

Getting all the important information on the countries you intend to visit will not only make sure you go to the best places and have the best experiences, it will also help you choose the right level of insurance cover. For example, if you are heading to New Zealand, you may want to do something adventurous, but activities such as bungee jumping and white water rafting are not covered by all policies.
It is also important to keep up to date with the current situation in any countries you are travelling to, in case this affects your trip. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) website is a good source of information for the latest developments.

Don’t overdo the partying or take unnecessary risks

While no-one is expected to live like a monk on their gap year, it is important to bear in mind the implications of overindulgence. Policies will exclude claims resulting from alcohol and drug related incidents. Claim costs over £10,000 are not uncommon and can sometimes be in excess of £100,000.

Get a specific policy

It is vital to get a travel insurance policy that is specific to the needs of your trip. Tailored gap year cover includes cover for activities such as extreme sports and manual work and covers a longer period than standard travel insurance, reflecting the unique requirements of this type of trip.
Image credits: backpackers by Jan; destination signs by Will Ellis

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