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TRAVEL INSURANCE - BEWARE THE DIABETIES 'SPECIALISTS'

Discussion in 'Diabetes Soapbox - Have Your Say' started by candyfloss, Jan 29, 2013.

  1. candyfloss

    candyfloss · Well-Known Member

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    Last month I booked a holiday to go abroad. As always, without fail, I started to get some quotes for travel insurance. I used to have annual policies but now I travel abroad less I switched to single trip policies. So I thought lets try the ones who sell their services especially for diabetics in mind through this website (I wont mention names to avoid embarrassing them). All their questions on the medical screening were answered fully and truthfully. What a BIG mistake to think they would be in any way 'friendly' or 'understanding' when providing a quote. It came to several hundred pounds exc USA/Canada. A few phone calls later and I got a quote for £65 ANNUAL W/WIDE inc USA/Canada and covers existing conditions. This was one of the insurers recommended by Which? magazine (Consumers Assoc).
    So be very careful of companies selling products or services, especially travel insurance, to us diabetics. All they may specialise in is higher than usual premiums.
    Same warning applies to all co's selling their goods and services through this website. ALWAYS do your research and get quotes from others before buying anything from them.
    (I would add that all questions were answered correctly and fully for the second quote obtained. The only difference is that the cheaper company took the trouble to ask a few more questions e.g. weight/height etc so they could see I had a normal BMI and posed much less of a risk to them)
     
  2. mrburden

    mrburden Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi,
    I've had very similar experiences with the "specialist" insurers on here and elsewhere. The recommended ones on this site refused to insure my diabetes for a US trip and passed me on to another company who tried to charge me £1689 for two weeks in Florida (dearer than the holiday price!!), just short of £1000 more than the £700 I'd been quoted by a "standard" insurance company. Previously the advertised company have also offered extortionately high quotes which, I believe, are designed to make the customer go elsewhere thereby reducing their company risk. It's simply a "legal" form of discrimination, like saying "we won't insure ill people".
    I think this website is a massive benefit to diabetics, but the insurance that they recommend (and actively "push" on the Facebook updates) is a disgrace. The diabetes.co.uk shop is also noticeably dearer than most other places too. I realise that the site has to draw funds in to exist, but is it right to do so at the expense of the people it's supposed to help?
     
  3. candyfloss

    candyfloss · Well-Known Member

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    What also 'got my goat' was the way these websites want you to feed in info on medicines and treatments and when it comes to the quote either declines you outright (cue computer says 'no' sketch) or quotes such a preposterous cartload of money only someone stinking rich could afford it (in which case why would they bother with travel insurance in the first place - they could afford a private plane to repatriate themselves).

    So, do these co's really think they have less of a risk insuring non diabetics? Considering the hundreds and thousands who, we are told, are wandering around undiagnosed with diabeties, hypertension, high cholesterol, would they not be a higher risk than someone who is under medical supervision, taking his/her medicines, getting regular check-ups, eating a sensible, healthy diet?? I suppose it takes a certain type to work in the insurance business. One who likes low risk as opposed to bankers who like to high risk (with our money). Perhaps they ought to swap jobs.

    I think insurance and especially travel and motor insurance are the next areas that need a thorough investigation by the government with the emphasis on tighter regulation and more competition in the same way the banks will be subject to it.
     
  4. hayleylilyx

    hayleylilyx · Newbie

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    Do you know any good insurance companies? Im going to tunisa in june?:smile:
     
  5. candyfloss

    candyfloss · Well-Known Member

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    Recommend you get a quote from MRL Insurance, one of those rated well by Which? but always try 2 or 3 others to compare.
     
  6. mrburden

    mrburden Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I've used a local broker many times in the past, they usually find a fairly good deal. They don't just go to the same company every time. Since most insurance companies vary their rates and risk assessments all the time, it is hard to recommend a "good" insurance company. Quotes being based on individual circumstances will please some people and not others.
    The only thing I would suggest is that you think about your specific needs. Personally, since getting such ridiculously high quotes for my own travel cover, I now opt to take basic cover (after giving the insurance company full answers to their medical questionnaires) and sign away my rights to specific additional cover for existing conditions. This brings the quote down to "normal" levels, offering cover for things like flight delays, lost luggage and non-diabetic illnesses such as food poisoning or being knocked over etc., but means that if I fall ill due to my diabetes (or anything else that pre-exists) I can't claim for it.
    This strategy is a risk, but that is the nature of insurance. I do all I can to reduce the risk of becoming unwell, like carb-counting and 4 blood tests a day. I just hope that if my diabetes started to cause a major problem that needed hospital attention (not that it is very likely) I'd be able to get a flight home. Given that a flight would be maybe £600 that's still about £1000 less than the premiums I'm being quoted! I'm not suggesting that this is the right way to do things but it is a risk that I'm prepared to take.
     
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