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Scuba diving travel insurance

Before you go scuba diving on holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right travel insurance policy. Here’s how to find cover so that you can enjoy your time underwater with peace of mind.

Before you go scuba diving on holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right travel insurance policy. Here’s how to find cover so that you can enjoy your time underwater with peace of mind.

Written by
Anna McEntee
Home, pet and travel insurance expert
Last Updated
14 MARCH 2023
3 min read
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Do I need scuba diving insurance?

If you’re going on a scuba diving holiday, you’ll need scuba diving insurance in place in case you’re injured or have an accident. If this happens and you don’t have travel insurance, you’ll have to pay for medical expenses yourself, which could be very expensive.

 

Is scuba diving covered by standard travel insurance?

Probably not, but it’s worth checking – look under ‘Key Features’ to see if it’s listed among the activities covered. Whether you’re covered as standard may depend on whether you’re a BSAC or PADI qualified diver.

What travel insurance do I need for scuba diving?

If a standard travel policy doesn’t include scuba diving, you can:

  • Ask your insurance provider to add cover for scuba diving to your policy
  • Look for a specialist policy, such as water sports or, if you’re planning to take part in other activities too, extreme sports travel insurance.

Water sports policies usually include scuba diving, but check if there are any restrictions. For example, there might be a limit on how deep you can go. If you go further than that (whether intentionally or not), you may invalidate your policy.

Your policy wording may also state that you must be accompanied by an experienced guide for your cover to be valid.

What does scuba diving insurance cover? 

There are certain eventualities you’ll want your scuba diving insurance to cover. These include: 

  • Emergency medical cover
    In the unlikely event that something goes wrong and you need medical assistance, you’ll want to know you have full medical cover in place. For example, if you surface too quickly and suffer from decompression sickness.
  • Cancellation cover
    If you can’t dive due to sickness or bad weather, you’ll want to know you can get your money back. 
  • Curtailment
    If you’re forced to leave your holiday early. For example, there’s a family emergency at home.

  • Repatriation cover
    If you suffer an illness or injury and need to travel back to the UK for emergency treatment.

  • Equipment loss or damage
    Diving gear is expensive. Make sure your dive equipment is covered against loss, damage and theft.
  • Different types of diving 
    It may be that you’re diving with sharks or cave diving. Either way, you’ll want to make sure your policy covers whatever activity you’re taking part in. 

Levels of cover vary between insurance providers, so make sure a policy offers the cover you need before you buy it.

Customers with pre-existing medical conditions

If you have a serious health condition, your travel insurance is likely to be more expensive. Whatever happens, don’t lie to an insurance provider, because this could mean your claim is rejected. When you declare any medical conditions on our website, we’ll only show you quotes from insurance providers who will cover them, with no exclusions.

If your condition is more serious, MoneyHelper has a directory of insurance providers who may be able to provide quotes over the phone. You can call them on 0800 138 7777.

How deep can I scuba dive?

Different insurance providers and policy types may cover different depths. If you’re an experienced scuba diver and are planning on travelling deeper than 30m, you’ll want to check that your policy covers you below that depth. If you need to, you can take out a more specialist policy by speaking to the provider.

Can I get insurance for scuba diving if I’m already away? 

If you make a spur-of-the-moment decision to go scuba diving after your policy start date, and don’t know if it includes diving cover, contact your insurance provider straight away. They might be able to amend your cover there and then.

If not, you may be able to buy specialist cover just for the day. But whatever you do, make sure you have insurance before you dive.

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Frequently asked questions

Do I need to tell my insurance provider I’m going scuba diving?

If you wake up one morning and decide to go scuba diving, but it’s not covered by your insurance, failing to tell your provider could be a very costly mistake. If something does go wrong and you need to access medical treatment, you could find that your policy doesn’t cover you.

Does scuba diving insurance cover me for other watersports?

Your scuba diving insurance may well cover you for other water sports, such as jet-skiing, sailing, surfing and parasailing. But you’ll need to check your policy before you hit the water to be sure.

Will I be covered for scuba diving if I have a pre-existing medical condition?

If you have a pre-existing condition, you’ll first want to check that it’s okay to dive. Assuming it is, you’ll need to declare your condition when you apply for travel insurance. The provider will decide whether they can offer you cover and under what conditions. If you don’t declare a medical condition, you could invalidate your insurance.

Can I get cover for multiple scuba diving trips?

Yes, if you’re planning on going scuba diving throughout the year, you should think about taking out an annual multi-trip insurance policy. For one premium, you’ll be covered for unlimited trips throughout the year. This means you only have one policy to keep track of and don’t have to take out single trip policies each time. 

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Anna McEntee - Insurance expert

Anna’s all about delivering fantastic insurance products at a great price. Value is the most important thing for Anna, as she cuts through the jargon and finds what’s most important and worth your hard-earned money.

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