Winter Sports Travel Insurance
Going on a winter break? Make sure you have your holiday insured
If you're planning a snowboard or ski holiday, it's essential that you consider travel insurance that covers you for cancellations, equipment damage, injuries and more.
At the end of the day, when you're enjoying crisp winter weather and perfect snow conditions, the last thing you want to worry about is if you are covered or not. This guide can help you plan ahead before you travel, leaving you free to enjoy the slopes.
As you plan your winter holiday...
You might want to consider the kind of activities you want to plan, the potential risks involved and more. This can help you research what your insurance plan should cover, and buy the right level of cover for your trip.
Here are some important things to consider:
- What sports am I participating in? - It's essential to ensure that whether you're a skier, snowboarder or ski jumper, your chosen winter sport is covered by your insurance policy.
- Is my equipment covered? - If you are taking your own ski equipment or snowboard, your travel insurance can ensure that accidental damage to your expensive gear is covered.
- Are my medical expenses covered? - Should you take a tumble on the slopes, you want to make sure your policy applies to every medical centre in the country you're visiting.
- Do I qualify for emergency medical evacuation? - Does your insurance cover repatriation to a medical facility, either to one near the scene of your accident or a facility back in the UK?
- Multilingual emergency assistance - this helps keep you in the loop at all times, meaning your medical team can get in touch with your loved ones back home.
- Are holiday cancellations covered? - If you need to cancel your winter holiday, can you be compensated after you've made non-refundable payments?
- Off-piste activity - Some travel insurance policies don't cover off-piste sports by default, so you may need to include this as an extra in your plan.
- What if I get sick? - If you're too unwell to take your winter break, can you be refunded or covered by your policy?
- Accidental death - This may sound far-fetched, but the worst case scenario should be accounted for to help protect your family
If in doubt, you can check your travel insurance policy documents for full disclosure of what is and isn't covered. Active winter holidays can be a wonderful experience, but there are many benefits to having peace of mind that all your activities are covered.
Protect yourself & stay safe
While your winter holiday should be all about having fun, it's worth remembering that between the cold and potentially having a tumble on the slopes, there are a few health and safety risks to consider. Planning ahead can help take the worry out of your trip.
Here are some things to think about:
- Wear warm clothing - Don't be fooled by sunshine on the slopes; you'll feel the chill unless you wrap up warm in close-fitting or thermal clothing. Layer up as much as possible before heading out for the day.
- Stay hydrated - Your body can become dehydrated more quickly at higher altitudes, so take enough water with you whether you're snowboarding downhill, or skiing cross-country. Make sure your friends and family do the same.
- Protect your eyes - It's important to see where you're going in high speed winter sports, so make sure you've invested in a sturdy pair of goggles to keep the sun out your eyes. These will also protect your eyes from stray branches and stones.
- Wear sunblock - The intensity of the sun is stronger than you'd think at higher altitudes, so it's essential to be prepared. Purchase a high factor sunblock to protect your skin and avoid getting painful sunburn.
- Know your piste etiquette - You must respect your fellow skiers and snowboarders, so choose routes that won't endanger those around you, and assist others if they have an accident. Overtaking is usually permitted, as long as you leave enough space for the person you've overtaken to move.
- Listen to the professionals - Don't feel tempted to skip professional advice in your excitement to hit the slopes. Instructors will have the training and experience to keep you safe, so make sure you follow their instructions.
- Know your limits - If you're a beginner, take things slowly and stick to slopes that match your ability level. You could end up feeling out of your depth on harder courses, and this will put your safety at risk.
- Be avalanche aware - So that you're clued up about the weather conditions for the day ahead, read or listen to avalanche forecasts each morning before you hit the slopes. Don't cross any boundaries into unsecured areas - if you're confused about where you're allowed to go, always ask an instructor.