Travel insurance during pregnancy
Travel insurance during pregnancy
If you’re a mum-to-be, chances are you’ll want to enjoy a relaxing holiday before your baby arrives. Whether it’s a short city break or an exotic beach holiday, it’s worth finding the right travel insurance to ensure you’re properly covered during pregnancy so that you have a peace of mind.
Do I need specialist travel insurance during pregnancy?
Some insurance providers can include cover for pregnant travellers as standard in their annual travel insurance as it’s often not considered to be a medical condition, so it’s worth checking to see if you’re already covered.
If not, special pregnancy travel insurance can cover you for any pregnancy-related medical attention abroad, including hefty hospital bills for early birth or pregnancy complications.
If you’re covered by an annual policy tell your insurance provider in advance of your trip. If you opt for pregnancy travel insurance, make sure you read your policy carefully before travelling so you know exactly what you’ll be covered for while you’re away.
What does pregnancy travel insurance cover?
Pregnancy travel insurance covers the same things as standard travel insurance, such as:
- lost luggage
- flight delays
The main difference however, is that the medical cover it provides is better suited for pregnant women. A good pregnancy travel insurance policy can also cover you for things like:
- pregnancy-related complications
- early births
- medical care during labour
- emergency caesarean section
- additional expenses if you give birth abroad and need to delay your return
Not all insurance providers will cover these though, so when comparing policies, make sure you choose one that covers every possible eventuality for extra peace of mind.
Do I still need pregnancy travel insurance if I have an EHIC card?
Although neither are compulsory, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office strongly recommends you have both a valid EHIC card and comprehensive travel insurance in place if you’re visiting Europe.
The EHIC card is not an alternative to travel insurance.
Although it will cover any pregnancy-related medical treatment in a public hospital in another EEA country or Switzerland, it won’t cover private treatment, loss of luggage, cancellations, delays or repatriation.
UK residents can use their EHIC during the Brexit negotiations, until the UK is scheduled to leave the EU on 31 January 2020. The UK Government has proposed a scheme similar to the EHIC in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal, and consequently the EHIC no longer being usable. However, the implementation of that scheme is subject to EU countries agreeing to that proposal. Find out more about the EHIC card.
What pregnancy documents do I need to take with me?
If you do need medical attention while away, it’s important to have the right documentation to hand. Ensure you take the following with you:
- your travel insurance policy and relevant emergency helpline number
- your maternity notes
- a valid EHIC card if you’re visiting Europe
Keep any receipts or paperwork you receive safe, so they can be used as evidence should you need to make a claim.
What happens if I become pregnant after I’ve booked a holiday?
If you discover you’re pregnant after booking your holiday and you want to cancel your trip, you may still have to pay cancellation costs. However, if you need to cancel because your doctor has advised against travelling, your insurance provider may pay any claim you make. This varies between providers, so it’s best to speak to your policy provider just to make sure.
If you still want to go ahead with your trip after finding out you’re pregnant, and you already have travel insurance in place, speak to your insurance provider to see if they can alter your existing policy to cover you.
What else do I need to think about before travelling while pregnant?
Here are a few other important things worth bearing in mind when travelling during pregnancy:
- medical advice – make sure you get the all clear from your doctor or midwife before you go. If you travel against medical advice, your insurance policy will be invalid and you won’t be able to claim if things go wrong
- vaccinations – depending on your destination, your doctor can also advise whether you’ll need travel vaccinations and anti-malaria medication. Although the NHS strongly advises pregnant women to avoid travel to countries where there’s a high risk of malaria or Zika virus.
- airlines – most airlines won’t allow you to fly after 37 weeks. Be sure to check your airline’s policy before booking your flight. The NHS also offers valuable advice on flying safely while pregnant
- food and drink – food and water-borne conditions, such as stomach upsets and diarrhea, can be particularly dangerous during pregnancy. The NHS offers helpful advice on what foods and drink to avoid both at home and abroad, while pregnant
- activities – high risk sports such as horse riding, waterskiing and surfing are not recommended during pregnancy. It’s also wise to avoid these other popular holiday activities:
- scuba diving as you may be at risk of decompression sickness, which could lead to miscarriage
- Hot-air balloon trips, because of the change in oxygen levels
- saunas and jacuzzis as they could put you at risk of dehydration and fainting
The Babycentre UK gives a more comprehensive list of what activities to avoid during pregnancy.
Is it easy to get a travel insurance quote if I’m pregnant?
Getting a travel insurance quote that covers your pregnancy shouldn’t be any more difficult than getting standard travel insurance.
Just let insurance providers know your travel dates, holiday destination and any optional extras you’d like added to your policy.
You don’t necessarily need to declare your pregnancy as it’s not considered a pre-existing medical condition. But you should let insurance providers know to ensure you get the right level of cover for any pregnancy-related problems.
When you compare travel insurance with us, we’ll send you a list of insurance providers, so you can compare policies and choose one that ticks all the right boxes – and enjoy a holiday with the peace of mind that you and your baby bump are covered.