By: 12 July 2016
Many people confused over need for proof of ownership when claiming for travel insurance

Research carried out Travel Insurance Facilities Group (TIFG) has found that many consumers are confused over whether or not they need proof of purchase or ownership to make a claim through their travel insurance provider.

According to TIFG, 67% of people in Northern Ireland expect a travel claim to be paid even if proof cannot be provided, while 34% of those in the East and East Anglia did not expect to need to provide proof of purchase or ownership when making a claim for personal possessions.

The research forms part of a campaign called Travel Insurance Explained, which aims to help consumers to understand what they are buying when purchasing travel insurance. It has found that there are varying levels of understanding of travel insurance across the UK.

For example, in the North East and North West regions, policyholders are least likely to read their policy terms and conditions, with 25% stating that they never read them. However 88% of those living in London read at least part of their policy, with 55% stating that they always read them thoroughly.

East Anglians are the least knowledgeable on their policy excess, with 39% of them admitting that they did not know their excess level on their travel insurance policy. Londoners and those in Northern Ireland, however, were the most familiar with their excess level, with 79% of them fully aware of the amount that they are expected to contribute should they need to make a claim.

Londoners also seem to be the most careless, with 60% of them incorrectly believing that unattended items, such as those left on the beach, would be covered – much higher than the average of 26% across the UK.

People in the East Midlands are the most likely to rely on insurance that is bundled into bank accounts, with 23% assuming that the cover meets their needs.

However, there was one area of consensus, with 86% of all respondents saying that they were now more likely to purchase travel insurance following the country’s vote to leave the EU in the recent referendum.

Fiona Macrae, head of client engagement at TIFG said: “Our research has confirmed that there is a genuine lack of understanding in what travel insurance does and doesn’t cover. As specialists in the market we recognise the importance of the cover that travel insurance provides and are concerned by the consumer’s misconceptions around what is and is not covered under their policies.

“It is for this reason that we are launching Travel Insurance Explained – a new initiative explaining the ins and outs of travel insurance: what exactly is covered and what you can expect from your insurer. The travel insurance product has changed over the years, as has the consumer’s expectations. This project highlights our ongoing commitment to meeting our customers’ needs.”