Foreign Office warns holiday skiers to get insurance

by Tiffany Millar on November 25, 2010

British holidaymakers have been warned by the Foreign Office to watch out for high medical bills if they fail to insure themselves while taking ski breaks.

While some skiers retain some form of insurance while on holiday, many do not bother to obtain the correct policy, which would cover them in the event of a broken bone or other bodily injuries. A new research study found that skiers that must be rescued and flown home by air ambulance might not always be covered. Such medical bills can add up to nearly £5,000.

The Foreign Office stated that half of skiers mistakenly believe they are adequately insured under their European healthcare card for things like being flown home for treatment. It also added that many are not aware that alcohol can have more damaging affects at higher altitudes.

An internet poll surveying 2,300 adults revealed that 61 per cent are unaware of that many insurance policies do not cover off-piste accidents. Only 16 per cent of people said they read their fine print when getting holiday insurance. Furthermore, nearly a third reported not taking out specialist travel insurance at all.

The Foreign Office stated that it strongly advises that those taking to ski slopes this winter ensure that they have taken out a comprehensive travel insurance plan. It added that medical treatment and repatriation costs can run in the thousands of pounds.

The Foreign Office also warned that heavy drinking was a growing result of ski and snowboard accidents. It also urged Britons to take caution while skiing and drinking and said that many health care policies would not cover skiers that were injured while under the influence of alcohol.

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