Going on holiday, would you pack a hospital drip, dialysis machine, heart monitor and oxygen supply? Of course not, but a comical NHS video clip shows a frazzled holidaymaker trying to stuff them all into her suitcase.
The easy alternative, as the video makes clear, is to take a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), as well as booking your travel insurance.
With the EHIC you can get state-provided medical treatment and hospital care in all EU countries, plus Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, free of charge or at a reduced cost.
If you have an accident or suddenly fall ill, you’re entitled to the same care as a resident of the country you’re visiting. You can find out more about health services in different places in the Direct Travel Insurance country guides.
The EHIC is a must-have for a holiday or business trip but is never a substitute for taking out travel insurance, as both the NHS and Foreign Office websites point out.
The card covers many eventualities, including routine treatment for a chronic or pre-existing condition and even giving birth unexpectedly. It will not, however, cover the following cases – which are all covered by a Direct Travel Insurance holiday insurance or ski insurance policy:
‘Therefore, it is important to have both an EHIC and a valid travel insurance policy,’ according to the NHS website.
Taking an EHIC on every trip is a great holiday tip, according to the experts at Direct Travel Insurance. It costs nothing to get or renew at www.ehic.org.uk and cards are valid for five years. Remember to check yours is up to date before travelling. Children have their own card.
Notes For Editors
Established in late 1992 and trading since 1993, Direct Travel Insurance specialises in travel insurance for individual travellers, couples and families up to the age of 75. Direct Travel Insurance offers a range of cover options and added benefits including cover for over 100 sports and activities enabling customers to tailor their policies for single trip, annual multi trip, backpacking and winter sports.
All travel insurance policies are underwritten by Chartis Europe Limited. Direct Travel Insurance is a trading name of UNAT Direct Insurance Management Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA Number 312350). Chartis Europe Limited is also authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA Number 202628).