Gap year travel insurance

Compare gap year travel insurance 

If you’ve just finished your studies, or are taking a career break for an extended holiday, gap year travel insurance is the right kind of cover for your trip.

It's different to annual travel insurance because it provides cover for a longer period of time, usually 12 months. With an annual policy there’s a cap on the number of days you can be away each time, usually 30-60 days.

There’s also additional cover, designed to cover the activities and type of travel that you’ll be doing.

You’ll sometimes hear gap year insurance called ‘backpackers travel insurance’ - it’s the same thing. But all policies are different, regardless of what they’re called, so check the insurance you’re getting is the right cover for you before you buy.

gap year travel insurance

What to expect from gap year insurance

A gap year policy covers everything you’d expect from a standard travel insurance policy, like cancellation and delays, medical expenses, repatriation and lost or stolen luggage. Here’s where it differs:

Lower age limit

Because they’re geared towards younger travellers, some gap year policies set a maximum age limit - it can be as young as 35.

There are policies with higher age limits, but you’ll need to check policy docs or give the insurer a call to be sure. If you’re under 18 you’ll need to check too.

Extended trip duration

Most insurers will cover you for one year, but others can cover longer durations, like 18 or 24 months.

Always check that your policy fits the length of your trip, plus some buffer in case you decide to stay for longer.

Stop-over cover

Stop-over cover means that if, for example, you stop off in Singapore on the way to Australia, you’re covered in Singapore too.

With this cover in place, you can explore more of the word en route to your end destination.

Return visits home

Some gap year policies cover you if you decide to come back to the UK before heading back on your travels.

If you’re planning on coming home for Christmas, or a wedding, check that UK return is included in your policy.

Working abroad cover

Some policies will cover you if you decide to work abroad as part of your gap year.

Double check your policy - manual labour might not be covered, but voluntary work usually is.

More activities covered

Gap year insurance usually covers a broader range of activities compared to a standard travel insurance policy - check your policy to make sure any planned activities are listed. You can get optional cover for activities like scuba diving, skiing or bungee jumping.

Things to remember:

  1. Vaccinations

    Make sure you’re up to date on vaccinations. You won’t be covered if you get ill when it could’ve been prevented with a vaccination

  2. Do your homework

    Do your homework on the countries you’re travelling to before you head off. Check the website for more information and search by country

  3. Medical cover

    Check the medical cover small print of your policy. Most insurers won’t cover you if your incident is alcohol or drug related

  4. Don't delay

    Get your gap year insurance in place as soon as you book your trip, so you’re covered for cancellation too

  5. Check for exclusions

    Check your policy for restricted countries and exclusion clauses

  6. Contact details

    If your insurer has a 24-hour helpline, keep a note of this number - it’s handy if you’re travelling alone or for the first time

Travel insurance guides and tools

[1] introduces customers to which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.'s relationship with is limited to that of a business partnership, no common ownership or control rights exist between us. Please note, we cannot be held responsible for the content of external websites and by using the links stated to access these separate websites you will be subject to the terms of use applying to those sites