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Don’t miss a step this year when taking your extended family on holiday

24 January 2014

Gocompare.com finds some travel insurance policies won’t automatically include cover for step children.

The days of families consisting of two point four children and parents that stay together forever are long gone – it is now estimated that 10% of families in the UK are step-families*, but when it comes to travel insurance, step families may not be covered.

Gocompare.com is warning step families to take time out to check the fine print of their travel insurance before going on holiday, as the whole family might not be included.

The comparison website examined 473** annual travel insurance policies and found that only 297 policies cover step children regardless of whether they live with the main insured person or not, while 174 have state that the step children must live with the main insured person to be included in the cover.

Some of those insurers that don’t cover step-children as part of a family policy will if they are named on the policy, while others say you can add a step child to the policy if a family premium is paid.

Gocompare.com’s travel insurance spokesperson, Caroline Lloyd, said: “Step families are increasingly common in today’s society, so it seems strange that these children aren’t included on travel insurance policies as a matter of course.

“Whether the child lives for the majority of time with the main insured person or not, when they are holidaying together as a family, the child is a dependent of that person, whether they are a birth parent, or step parent.”

Caroline added: “One way around this is to ensure that when a family with step children are planning a holiday that the biological parent buys the travel insurance – not the step parent. That way all children will be covered as they won’t be deemed step children, or if your family includes step children on both sides, make sure your insurer covers all of the children before buying.

“Again, checking the fine print of your insurance documents will mean that you won’t get caught without cover for your step children. When you are buying your travel insurance make sure that it includes everything you need, and if you are a step family, check that your step children are included in the policy.

“If you are in doubt about whether your current policy protects your step children, then call your travel insurance provider. They should be able tell you straight away, and if you need additional cover to protect them, you might be able to add that to your policy.


Notes to editors:

*Grant, H. (2006) The State of the Nation Report – fractured families.

**Source: Defaqto Matrix of 473 annual travel insurance policies - instant and unbiased market and competitor intelligence, from independent financial research company Defaqto. Correct as of 13th January 2014