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Compare travel insurance for China

Compare travel insurance for China

From Beijing’s Forbidden City to the Great Wall, and much more in between, China is a vast landscape full of stunning architecture and must-see attractions. So it’s no surprise that the country had 141 million visitors in 2018. Let’s take a look at how to find the right travel insurance ahead of your trip to China.

Patrick Ikhena
From the Travel team
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Posted 21 JANUARY 2020

Why do I need travel insurance for China?

It’s always important to have travel insurance, and it’s no different when you’re planning a trip to China. Included as standard with most travel insurance policies, cancellation cover could pay out if you cancel or cut short your trip because of illness or bereavement (or for another reason specified in your policy). So it’s important to get travel insurance when you book your trip.

If you need to take an emergency flight home, tell your insurance provider before you make any travel arrangements. They’ll need to know the reason why you’re cutting your holiday short before deciding whether to pay the costs.

Travel insurance could also cover your belongings – such as your phone or jewellery – so they can be replaced if they’re stolen, lost or damaged. Typically, policies offer cover from £1,500 up to £3,000 for your belongings, but each policy will set its own limits. Check your single item limit to see the maximum you’ll be able to claim back against any individual item. It’s also worth checking whether your belongings are covered by your home contents insurance. Look for personal possessions cover on your content insurance policy.

Healthcare is inconsistent across China, but one constant is that it won’t come for free. However, the right travel insurance can protect you against the high cost of medical bills if you’re sick or injured during your trip.


On 7 September 2020, the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) updated the list of countries that are exempt from its ongoing advice against all non-essential international travel.

If you choose to travel overseas to a destination where the FCDO is advising against non-essential travel at the time of your departure, then your insurance policy will be invalid, and any claim likely to be rejected.

For domestic travel, please check the local public health rules for the destination you wish to travel to within the United Kingdom.

For more information, please see our coronavirus and travel insurance page.

How much is travel insurance for China?

If you’re travelling to China, worldwide travel insurance could cost just £38** for a week or £63*** for annual travel, based on Compare the Market data in February 2020.

**50% of people could achieve a quote of £37.68 for worldwide travel insurance for 1 week based on Compare the Market data in February 2020
***50% of people could achieve a quote of £62.28 for for Worldwide multi travel insurance based on Compare the Market data in February 2020.

What kind of travel insurance might I need for China?

That depends on what you’ll be doing in China. Low-risk sports are typically covered by regular travel insurance. If you’re planning anything more adventurous, you might need:

  • extreme sports cover for activities such as hiking, zip lining or white water rafting
  • water sports insurance can offer cover in case you get injured or your valuable sports equipment gets damaged. Make sure you check your policy for details of exactly what’s covered.

Once you’ve got a policy, keep your insurance provider’s details with you in case you need to contact them while you’re away. If your plans change during your trip, you should speak with your provider to see if you can amend your cover level.

Do I need a visa to travel to China?

Brits will need to get a visa to enter mainland China – including Hainan Island – but not Hong Kong or Macao. If you’re aged between 14 and 70 (inclusive), you’ll need to apply for a visa in person at a Visa Application Centre. Your passport needs to have at least six months’ validity when you enter China.

Any other travel tips for China?

Vaccinations: Visit your doctor four to eight weeks before your trip. You might be advised to have vaccines such as hepatitis A, tetanus and typhoid (these are usually free on the NHS).

Climate: This varies a lot from region to region. In the north-east, which includes Beijing, it’s typically hot and dry between June and August, while the winters are freezing cold.

Time differences: China has only one time zone and is eight hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

Tipping In general: Tipping isn’t expected. It’s more customary in Hong Kong, and leaving a tip at the end of a tour is acceptable.

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