Children travelling alone often not covered by insurance

Research carried out by Defaqto, an independent financial research company has discovered that less that half of the annual travel insurance policies actually covered the children named on the policies is they were to travel independently from their parents. The summer holiday season is fast approaching, and many young people are classed on their parents insurance as children even though they are old enough to travel alone.

They may want to travel with friends or members of their extended family, and although they are named as an insured party on the policy, Defaqto found that there was a clause in the small print, which got half the companies out of covering the youngster under these circumstances. There were also companies that placed certain restrictions that limited the circumstances on when they would cover them when travelling without their parents.

Some policies stated that the child must be accompanies by a relative, a guardian, or a person with a legal duty of care like a school teacher if they were to be covered on the family policy. In addition to these findings, the research also showed that while 43% of policies covered the parents if they travelled independently, 7% did not allow any kind of independent travel.

Defaqto’s general insurance analyst, Mike Powell has said that many families were now looking forward to their summer holiday, be it at home or abroad. Most will be travelling together but there will be numerous adults and children who are planning to travel independently or are planning to meet up at some point.

He added that while providers state that all the named insured are covered to travel independently, you needed to check the small print to find the restrictions or exclusions. This is particularly important of your children where to travel independently, make sure you check out the wording of the policy too, and if in any doubt contact your insurer.

Defaqto operate a star system where they rate annual travel insurance policies independently. Taking into consideration many features and benefits; they give each policy a rating of between 1 and 5 stars. This rating is to help people choose which is the best policy for them. The ratings for policies currently available can be found at www.defaqto.com/star-ratings/travel-insurance.