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It could be Rotterdam or anywhere, Liverpool or Rome

18 January 2017

City breaks are now the most popular type of holiday according to ABTA;

  • Travel insurance is essential for city breaks abroad, but cover can vary widely;
  • looks at cover provided by 880 annual travel and 863 single trip travel insurance policies;
  • Most annual travel policies also provide cover for UK city breaks.

Whether it’s Rotterdam, Liverpool or Rome, an increasing number of people are enjoying city breaks.  According to the latest ABTA research* city breaks have overtaken beach holidays as the most popular type of holiday.

But when you consider the costs of travel, accommodation, food and any excursions, the price of even a short city break can soon add-up. Travel is therefore urging people planning a city break - whether they’re jetting-off for a short trip abroad or in the UK, to consider travel insurance.   

Last year over half (53%) of Brits took a city break while 38% went on a beach holiday.  And, this trend is likely to continue in 2017 with 52% of people saying they are planning a city break compared with 44% who say they will take a beach holiday.

Alex Edwards from Travel commented: “City breaks are now the most popular type of holiday for UK travellers – allowing holidaymakers to experience a dose of culture, history, sightseeing, relaxation and retail therapy in a short space of time.

“If you’re planning a city break, particularly if you’re heading abroad, you should consider arranging travel insurance.  The main purpose of travel insurance is to provide financial protection against the potentially high cost of medical treatment and repatriation if you’re injured or fall ill abroad.  Illness and injury can strike at any time and if you’re unlucky enough to be taken ill on a weekend abroad and need hospital treatment, without insurance, you’d be left to cover the costs out of your own pocket.

Alex Edwards continued: “As well as medical cover, travel insurance provides a financial buffer against travel plans being cancelled as a result of a range of unforeseen events.  These could include illness, injury or redundancy and travel delays. You’ll also usually be covered for lost or stolen baggage, passports or other belongings.  So if, for example, on your city break you fall victim to a pick-pocket, you can claim for the loss of your cash and other documents – subject to the terms shown on your policy. 

“According to the latest statistics from the Association of British Insurers**, every day its members pay out £1m to help holidaymakers with the costs of medical treatment abroad, cancelled trips and other travel-related claims.

“If you’re planning several trips abroad, then an annual travel policy can be a more cost-effective option.   As well as insuring you for multiple overseas trips, most of these policies cover UK holidays.  While medical treatment in the UK will be excluded, the policy will cover other costs such as pre-paid travel and accommodation if, for example, you have to cancel or curtail your trip as a result of illness or bereavement.  For this cover to apply, policies typically require you to have pre-booked at least two consecutive nights’ pre-paid accommodation.”

Cancellation and curtailment cover is a standard feature on just under 99% of annual travel and 97% of single trip policies.  Cover levels vary massively from £250 to £25,000 depending on the policy.

It pays out for travel and accommodation costs, including the cost of pre-paid excursions, if you’re unexpectedly unable to go on your planned holiday or forced to cut your trip short.  However, to fully benefit from cancellation cover people need to buy travel insurance as soon as they have booked their trip abroad.

Baggage cover is available on 93% of annual policies and 96% of single trip policies.  Subject to policy limits and an allowance for wear and tear, this pays out for accidentally lost, stolen, damaged or delayed baggage   Depending on the policy, cover levels vary widely, but typically, most provide total cover of between £750 and £2,500 per insured person.      

Personal money and travel documents (e.g. passports, visas and driving licences) are covered by 93% of annual travel policies and 94% of single trip policies which generally provide cover limits of between £200 and £500. 

UK holidays are covered by most of the annual travel insurance policies reviewed.  To be covered you will need to have pre-booked a certain minimum number of consecutive nights away – typically from one to five depending on the policy.

Visit for more information on travel insurance or to compare quotes.

- ENDS -

Notes to editors:

*Source: The ABTA Travel Trends Report 2017: In 2016 of people surveyed 53% took a city break, 38% a beach holiday. This year, 52% of people say they plan to take a city break and 44% are planning a beach holiday.

**Source; Association of British Insurers’ press release 11 June 2016.

***Source: Defaqto Matrix of 880 annual travel and 863 single trip travel insurance policies – instant and unbiased market and competitor intelligence, from independent financial researcher Defaqto (06 January 2017). Percentages are rounded up to the nearest whole number