Travel insurance for every type of family
Many of us are looking forward to a holiday away with our family. But today’s families come in all shapes and sizes, so make sure yours has travel insurance to match.
Gone are the days of the traditional two parents and two children households: according to the Office of National Statistics, there were 3 million lone parent families in 2021.
But when it comes to finding travel insurance for your holiday, getting the right type of cover for a single parent can be a challenge.
Buying travel insurance for a family holiday can be quite difficult for single parents, for instance, as many websites won’t allow you to purchase a family policy unless there are two adults going on holiday.
While for those who are newly separated, and where the family no longer lives together under the same roof, you may find that your family travel insurance is invalid due to different household addresses.
But according to Frolo – The Single Parent Community, a staggering 85% of their members said that they hadn’t read the terms and conditions of the travel insurance policy that they owned. As a result, they could find themselves with a policy that won’t pay out.
“Travelling abroad as a single parent can be a hugely daunting prospect – having to manage all the admin alone, navigating airports – it can feel overwhelming, so it doesn't surprise me at all to learn that so many single parents feel a lack of knowledge when it comes to travel insurance products, or simply aren’t covered at all,” said Zoe Desmond, founder of Frolo.
“The irony is that as a single parent, good travel insurance is essential,” she says. “Knowing specifically what your travel insurance covers you for as a single parent could make such a difference.”
If your family no longer lives together under the same roof, you may find that your family travel insurance is invalid due to different household addresses
Families of different shapes and sizes
But it’s not just single parents who struggle to get the right cover. It may also be a challenge for blended families, couples with kids who don’t live together, foster parents and grandparents taking their grandchildren abroad, or unaccompanied minors.
Here is what you need to consider when you’re shopping around for a family policy.
Bear in mind that each travel policy is different and it’s worth doing a full comparison to find the one that suits your specific needs.
Also be aware that some providers set a minimum time period a couple needs to live together (typically around six months) before they can get cover.
What is the definition of a family travel insurance policy?
There are two types of family policies:
1. A “family” policy, which consists of two adults who live at the same address plus at least one child (maximum eight children)
2. A “family one adult” policy, which consists of one adult plus at least one child (maximum five children). Children will be covered up to a specific age – typically 18. For more information, read our guide here.
Do those covered on a family or couple’s policy need to live at the same address? If a couple is divorced or separated, could they still get family cover even if they lived at different address?
If the two adults are living at different addresses, they should purchase separate policies.
If it were for a blended family where the adults lived at separate addresses and had their own kids, could they be insured on a family policy?
Each adult should purchase a separate policy and add the children living at their address.
Could you insure your child on a family policy if their legal address is different to yours, and would you need written permission from the ex-partner who they live with?
The child of an adult can be added to a family policy even if they don’t live at the same address.
If they are not covered for travel with you under a policy held by the parent they live with, it will usually be necessary to purchase another insurance policy – either a family policy providing the correct level of cover or a separate policy for non-resident children.
Permission is dependent on the childcare agreement post separation/divorce.
Could a family policy include grandparents and grandchildren?
Yes, policies normally allow the two adults on a family policy to be grandparents.
Read the small print
Travel insurance can be a complex product, as demonstrated by the detail of the above questions.
Be sure to check your provider’s small print, and the level of cover you are going for.
Insurance must be fit for purpose and be there to cover you if you need it.
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Don’t forget that while you may think that this article is brilliant, it is intended for information purposes only and should not be mistaken for financial advice or recommendations.