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Travellers 'must tell insurance firm of illness'

Wed 7th Jul 2010

Expatriates and other travellers are jeopardising their travel insurance by failing to tell their insurer about existing medical conditions, according to research.

A survey by Sainsbury's found over half a million British holidaymakers travelled abroad in the last year with a long-term medical complaint without telling their insurance provider about it, potentially invalidating any claim they may have made.

The retailer's study revealed that around 245,000 travellers did not tell their insurance provider about their severe back pain, 110,000 went abroad without adequate cover for a respiratory condition and another 50,000 failed to inform their provider about a heart condition.

Scott Gorman, Sainsbury's travel insurance manager, said insurance can prove vital should someone fall ill abroad, so it is important to be open and honest with a provider.

"The costs of medical treatment abroad can be exceptionally high and simply omitting to give details of a pre-existing condition because you felt it wasn't relevant could, in the event of an accident or further illness, prove very costly indeed" he added.

Specialist expat health insurance providers can provide cover tailored to individual policyholders.

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