Compare travel insurance for the Philippines

With 7,107 islands to choose from – plus the buzzing capital of Manila – the Philippines offers lots of opportunity for travellers. In 2018, more than 200,000 Brits visited the archipelago. Here’s what you should know about getting the right travel insurance for your holiday.

With 7,107 islands to choose from – plus the buzzing capital of Manila – the Philippines offers lots of opportunity for travellers. In 2018, more than 200,000 Brits visited the archipelago. Here’s what you should know about getting the right travel insurance for your holiday.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update: please check the latest government travel advice that sets out what you need to do, if anything, before you travel abroad and before you return home. You should also check the latest travel advice and entry requirements for each country you visit or transit through. Travel rules can change at short notice, so check the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) for the latest information.

Josh Daniels
Travel Insurance expert
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Last Updated 23 FEBRUARY 2022

Do I need travel insurance for Philippines?

It’s not compulsory but it’s wise. Private hospital treatment is expensive in the Philippines and without a travel policy that covers the cost of emergency medical treatment, you could face a medical bill of thousands of pounds if you’re sick while away. Travel insurance can also give you financial protection if your trip is cancelled or your belongings are lost or stolen.

Customers with more serious pre-existing medical conditions

If you have a serious health condition, the price you pay for travel insurance is likely to be more expensive. However, there are still many providers out there and you should be able to find affordable cover. Whatever happens, don’t be tempted to lie to an insurance provider, because if you do and then need to make a claim, it could be rejected.

When you declare medical conditions on our website, we’ll only show quotes from insurance providers who will cover all declared medical conditions, with no exclusions. 

MoneyHelper has launched a directory of insurance providers who may be able to provide quotes over the phone if you have more serious medical conditions. Find more information at MoneyHelper or by calling them on 0800 138 7777.

How much is travel insurance for the Philippines?

You’ll need a worldwide travel insurance policy for the Philippines. 

The cost of your policy will depend on:

  • The level of cover you need
  • Activities you’ll be doing during your trip
  • If you have a pre-existing medical condition
  • How long you’ll be staying in the Philippines.

Policies can vary between insurance providers, so it’s a good idea to shop around and compare to be sure you’re getting the best value for the level of cover you need.

What will Philippines travel insurance cover?

Look for an insurance policy that’ll cover:

  • Emergency medical care – necessary medical treatment that can’t wait until you’re back in the UK. It should also cover repatriation to the UK if that is medically necessary. Look for a policy that offers at least £2 million of cover outside Europe for emergency medical treatment and repatriation.
  • Cancelling or cutting short your trip – if you have a valid reason to cancel your trip, say you fall ill and can’t go, you may be able to recoup some of the costs. Make sure your cancellation cover is high enough to meet the full cost of your trip.
  • Baggage insurance – can protect your personal belongings if they’re lost, stolen or damaged. Check the single item limit - the maximum your insurance provider will pay out for one item - if you’re taking expensive items with you.
  • Flight delays, cancellation, and missed departures – cover if your flight is delayed or cancelled. Check your policy to see what circumstances would be covered.
  • Cover for COVID-19 - you can check the level of COVID-19 cover a policy offers when you get a quote with us. Just use the ‘more details’ option on the quote results page.

Cover levels and limits can vary between providers, so it’s important to make sure you’ve got all the cover you need, while not paying for features you don’t want. 

What won’t travel insurance for the Philippines cover?

Standard travel insurance won’t typically include:

  • Pre-existing medical conditions – unless they’ve been declared to your insurance provider and they’ve agreed to cover them (usually at an extra cost).
  • Drugs and alcohol – you won’t be covered for any injuries or accidents that happen while you’re under the influence – in other words, if you’ve had a few too many at an all-night beach party. 
  • High-risk sports and activities – you’ll typically need to pay extra for more adventurous activities like caving, diving and paragliding. 
  • Natural disasters – the Philippines is affected by around 20 typhoons a year. The archipelago is also an active earthquake zone with numerous volcanoes. Compare policies as some won’t offer cover for natural disasters. 
  • Travelling against FCDO advice – the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advises against travel to western and central Mindanao and the Sulu archipelago because of terrorist activity and clashes between the military and insurgent groups. Your travel insurance won’t cover you if you go to these areas. 

What else should I consider when I choose my travel insurance?

Think about the activities you’ve got planned during your stay in the Philippines. If you’re intending to do little more than strolling along one of the country’s many beaches, then basic travel insurance should offer the cover you need. But if you’re planning on scuba diving, surfing or wakeboarding, you’ll probably need to think about extra water sports cover. 

The Philippines is a tropical paradise for those who love adventure. But you’ll probably need extreme sports cover for more challenging activities like:

  • White-water rafting on the Chico river
  • Hiking Mount Pulag
  • Canyoneering in Cebu
  • Swimming with whale sharks in Donsol or Oslob

Did you know?

A common sight in the Philippines is the Habal-Habal - a modified motorbike that can carry five or six passengers or sometimes more. Basically, you flag down the driver then clamber on behind them. You’ll often see entire families riding around on them! Don’t be tempted though, Habal-Habals may be cheaper than a taxi but they’re dangerous too – and it’s unlikely your travel insurance will cover you if anything were to happen while riding on one.

Do I need a visa for the Philippines?

Brits can visit the Philippines for up to 30 days without a visa. If you intend to stay for any longer, you’ll need to get an extension visa from the Philippine Embassy before you travel. UK passport holders need at least six months of validity on their passport on entering the Philippines.

More details about the entry requirements for the Philippines can be found on the GOV.UK website including rules on COVID-19 vaccines and testing.

Any other travel tips for the Philippines?

  • Vaccinations - visit your doctor four to eight weeks before your trip. You might be advised to get some non-COVID vaccines, most of which should be free on the NHS, such as hepatitis A, tetanus and typhoid.
  • Climate - the Philippines has a tropical climate, so most of the time it’s hot and humid. Weather-wise, the best time to go is between January and May, while typhoon season is typically between June and November. 
  • Time differences - the country is eight hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).
  • Tipping - it isn’t typically expected, so restaurant staff aren’t likely to be offended if you choose not to leave a tip.
  • Pickpockets are common in crowded, touristy areas. If you’re on a busy street, visiting the markets or travelling on public transport, always put your wallet and valuables in your front pockets. If you carry a backpack, it’s safer to hold it in front of you, against your chest – not slung over your shoulder. 

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