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What is Travel Insurance?

In short, travel insurance is there to help you out if things go wrong with your travel plans. It helps you get medical treatment if you fall ill or have an accident abroad, and pays your medical bills.

If you lose your baggage, a travel insurance policy will provide you with reimbursement – so you can replace your stuff. And if your passport goes missing,it'll help with that too.

From missed flight connections to losing your ski pass... it can help out with all kinds of scrapes.

But it’s not just there to help while you are away. If you make sure you buy your travel insurance policy well in advance, it offers valuable protection against cancellation of your trip too. For instance, if you can’t travel because you’re ill, or if you have to cancel your trip because your house is burgled just before you go. Travel insurance will help you get your money back on travel and accommodation expenses.

An accident or illness abroad could leave you seriously out of pocket if you don’t have travel insurance cover in place. A travel policy will cover the cost of seeing a doctor or nurse. And if you need to be admitted to hospital, insurance will reimburse the costs for your tests, treatment and medical care. Did you know you could be charged for your bedding or an ambulance? Insurance covers that too! It could save you from bearing the burden of a bill which could easily run into the thousands. Especially in countries known for their high medical bills like the US. Not all insurance policies offer the same level of cover and it is therefore important that you check the insurance meets your needs.

A good travel insurance policy can also provide some practical assistance while you’re away. With a policy from Columbus Direct, you have access to Emergency Medical Assistance 24 hours a day. Our multi-lingual team are on call to help you find a local doctor or hospital, as well liaise with medical staff on your behalf. Emergency Medical Assistance can also help with travel arrangements – to help get you home for treatment, including air ambulance if needed.

Terms and conditions apply:

If you purchase travel insurance online you will receive a 10% discount off the price of standard cover.

We have covers suitable for everyone’s needs, whether you’re travelling for a matter of days, or weeks, or a few times across the year.

Single Trip Travel Insurance

Perfect if you’re only making one trip or excursion during the year…

Adventure Travel Insurance

For those who love the adrenaline attached to adventure sports…

Travel Insurance for the over 65s

Hitting retirement age shouldn’t mean you’ve missed your chance to see the world…

Travel insurance with medical conditions

Our medical screening helps provide you with the right cover to suit your needs…

Business Travel Insurance

When business calls abroad, you and your equipment will be suitably covered…

Annual Travel Insurance

For those who make more than one trip per year…

Are you crazy for a cruise, looking to lower your handicap, buzzing for some backpacking, or simply looking forward to making memories with your family? You’ll find it here

Family Travel Insurance

Enjoy your family holiday to its fullest, we will have your back…

Cruise Travel Insurance

Let the ship do the hard work while you wake up in a different country each day…

Golf Travel Insurance

Tee off from some of the most stunning golf courses across the globe…

Scuba Diving Travel Insurance

Explore the underwater world with scuba cover included up to 30m as standard…

Backpacker Travel Insurance

Cover for trips up to 365 days, so you can explore the world!

All products

See what policies we have to offer, and find the one which is right for you.

Key benefits of cover:

  • FREE Airport Lounge Access

  • FREE health information and GP access 24/7 with Babylon1

  • FREE 5 days unlimited global Wi-Fi access

  • Emergency Medical Expenses & Repatriation: up to £15 million

  • Cancellation and Curtailment: up to £5,000

  • Baggage & Personal Property: up to £2,500

  • Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance: £5,000

(1) The policyholder can use their details to register to Babylon after receiving their Columbus policy documentation. They will then be eligible for medical advice using the Babylon app. Customers need to download the app on their smartphone or tablet before travelling. GP consultation service is not available in the USA and Canada.

Full list of benefits:

  • Free Airport Lounge Access

  • Emergency Medical Expenses & Repatriation up to £15 million

  • Emergency Medical Assistance Services | Available 24/7

  • Cancellation and Curtailment from £1,000 - £5,000

  • 150 sports and activities

  • Baggage & Personal Property £1,500 - £2,500

  • Valuables limit £250 - £400

  • Cash and Documents £300 - £500

  • Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance £5,000

  • Cover for missed departure up to £1,500

  • Legal expenses take care of up to £25,000

  • Up to £2,000 Hospital Benefit

  • Physiotherapy Benefit

  • Personal Liability Protection

  • Terms & Conditions

Award winning Travel Insurance and Service

Cover for Amount
MEDICAL EXPENSES Up to £15m
CANCELLATION Up to £5,000
LOST/DELAYED BAGGAGE Up to £2,500
CASH & PASSPORT Up to £500
SCHEDULED AIRLINEFAILURE Up to £5,000
STANDARD EXCESS From £50
ASH CLOUD Optional
GADGET COVER Optional
PRE-EXISTING MEDICAL Optional
ZERO EXCESS Optional

Whats not included

  • Comprehensive insurance

  • If you’re due a refund elsewhere

  • Medical conditions you haven’t told us about

  • Mobile phones and gadgets

  • Sports and Activities

  • Missed Connections

Important Information

  • Maximum trip duration for single trips

  • Maximum trip duration on Annual Multi Trip policies

  • When to buy your policy

  • Travel with your insurance documentation

  • Your European cover includes Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia too

  • Dangerous destinations

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • I’ve just turned 50 – will you be able to protect me abroad?

  • Will Columbus Direct be able to help me if I’m 55?

  • I’m over 65 – will you still insure me?

  • I’m travelling with children aged under 16 – do they need insurance?

  • Will you take medical conditions into account?

How to Claim

If you need our help, our Claims team will guide you through making your claim. Here’s what to do, at a glance:

Medical Emergencies - Call our 24 hour Emergency Assistance helpline as soon as possible. They’ll be able to help you find a local healthcare providers, liaise with medical staff and help get you back home, if needed.

Your belongings - If your belongings are lost or stolen, report your loss to the police within 48 hours and get a written police report before you return home. You’ll need this to make a claim. If you buy anything as a replacement for delayed baggage – keep the receipts.

At the airport - If you’re delayed more than 12 hours, get written confirmation of the length of delay from the airline and keep receipts for any emergency purchases you need to make. If your things are lost or damaged, ask the airline for a Property Irregularity Report.

When you’re back – Check your policy wording to see what’s covered, then call or email our Claims Team within 28 days (details here) We can settle travel delay and emergency medical expenses claims up to £350 over the phone. See our checklist of what documents to have to hand here.

The details – When we can’t resolve your claim over the phone, we’ll send you a claims form to complete and return with your supporting documents. We’ll then take all the information on board and provide you with a decision.

Your payment – We’ll provide payment on successful claims within 48 hours of notifying you about the decision, wherever possible.

24 Hour Emergency Medical Assistance Service

  • +44 (0)208 865 1640

For more information and guidelines on making a travel insurance claim please click here.

Terms and conditions apply:

If you purchase travel insurance online you will receive a 10% discount off the price of standard cover.