Be sure to let your travel insurance provider know you have cystic fibrosis so that your policy covers you for any medical treatment you require when you’re abroad.
Finding quotes for travel insurance that includes cover for cystic fibrosis can be a little more challenging than purchasing a standard policy.
But there are lots of insurance providers that specialise in offering cover for people with pre-existing health conditions.
Specialist policies can be more expensive, but they provide invaluable cover should you need medical treatment on your travels.
You should compare quotes to ensure you’re getting the best and most reasonably priced policy.
If you’re finding it difficult to get cover, then organisations like the Cystic Fibrosis Trust can provide a list of travel insurance companies that people with cystic fibrosis and their families have used and recommend.
Or check out the government’s MoneyHelper travel insurance directory of specialist providers which could also help.
You might like to look at taking out group or family cover which would pay for the return of everyone on the policy if you had to go back to the UK early because of your health.
When you get quotes for travel insurance policies, providers will always ask if you have any pre-existing conditions.
By that, they mean any illness or condition which you’ve been diagnosed with prior to taking your trip.
Pre-existing conditions include everything from asthma to heart problems, diabetes to cancer and mental health conditions like anxiety or depression. Cystic fibrosis is also included as a pre-existing condition that insurers need to know about.
After you’ve declared your condition, the provider will decide if they can cover you for it.
If you fail to let your insurer know about your condition, then any claims related to it won’t be covered under your policy.
That would mean, for example, that if you needed medication or antibiotics for an infection while you were away, you couldn’t claim back the costs.
And if you experienced more serious symptoms which required a hospital stay, or you needed to return home early, you could be faced with bills amounting to thousands of pounds.
It’s important you declare any and all pre-existing conditions to your insurer, including conditions that may have developed because of your cystic fibrosis, including osteoporosis, diabetes and liver problems.
Providers will have their own set of questions to determine how serious your condition is and whether you’re at risk of requiring treatment while abroad.
You could be asked things like:
Answer the questions honestly or any claims you make could be invalid.
It will cover everything that a standard travel insurance policy does. That includes things like medical cover for accidents, lost or stolen luggage and personal belongings, plus delay or cancellation cover.
But you’ll get added protection for any treatment or travelling expenses that arise as a result of your cystic fibrosis.
Without this cover in place, you could be liable for thousands of pounds in medical and travel costs if you were unfortunate enough to fall ill during your holiday because of your condition.
For example, travel insurance with cystic fibrosis may pay out for:
You should be able to travel widely but there are certain things you should be aware of.
Speak to your medical team before you go away so they can give you advice.
Before you set off, it’s important to:
If you’re visiting a country within the European Union (EU), then a Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) gives you access to state-funded healthcare for free or at the same rate as a resident of that country.
It’s replacing the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), but a current EHIC remains valid until the expiry date on the card.
However, a GHIC/EHIC card isn’t a replacement for travel insurance. It won't cover you for things like getting back to the UK if you fall ill or if your belongings are stolen.
And it only covers EU countries. So if you’re travelling to anywhere else in the world - including countries like the USA where healthcare is very expensive - then travel insurance is essential to protect you from large medical expenses.
Most people with cystic fibrosis can fly without any problems.
Check with your doctor or consultant if you need a ‘fit to fly’ test. It assesses your breathing and if your blood oxygen levels may be affected by flying or not. You may need to take oxygen on board with you, or your airline may charge you to supply it.
If your condition changes or you develop any new health issues, be sure to let your insurer know, in case they need to make any adjustments to your policy. If you don’t let them know about changes to your health, your policy could become invalid.