Are you fit to fly? If you have a medical condition, make sure the answer is yes. If the answer’s no, you could be setting yourself up for disappointment as well as the cost of a holiday you can no longer take. A lot of people don’t realise that if they are ill, they could be refused permission to board the plane or even charged for an emergency landing if they have a relapse during the flight and need urgent medical attention. The onus is therefore on you to make sure you are classed as fit to fly before you book your flight.
Airlines always recommend that you buy suitable travel insurance as emergency medical treatment and repatriation costs can often run to thousands of pounds. While the free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) pays for emergency medical treatment, it does not cover repatriation, emergency landings or ambulances, which can often form the bulk of your emergency costs.
The medical screening you need to complete in order to get travel insurance often identifies anyone who should not be travelling, because their medical condition puts them at too much medical risk. Underwriters are experts at assessing risk and if they decide they can’t cover you, it will be for a good reason. On the other hand, if they grant you cover then it’s likely that the airlines will be happy too. However, bear in mind that with travel insurance, medical cover does not automatically guarantee that you will be allowed to board your flight, so a quick check with the airline is essential.
Most airlines offer up-to-date information on travelling with medical conditions on their websites. The British Airways website provides comprehensive special assistance information, where you can download a Medical Information Form (MEDIF) to inform them of your particular medical circumstances. Their Passenger Medical Clearance Unit (PMCU) then processes your information and assesses your fitness to fly. The website also gives valuable guidelines on when they allow you to fly after operations or the circumstances and timings for which you can fly with certain medical conditions, including pregnancy. Another useful website, packed with detailed medical information on the ins and outs of flying with specific medical complaints, is patient.co.uk, which lists a full range of conditions and examines their various risks and considerations when flying.
So what can we conclude from these words of wisdom? Simply check your fitness to fly first. If you decide to chance it and skip insurance, then remember that having no travel insurance could mean you need to pay for an emergency landing as well as medical, repatriation and ambulance costs, not to mention the money you may waste by not even making it to your destination – all this and more can be covered with a Staysure travel insurance policy. You’ll then be free to enjoy your holiday, safe in the knowledge that should things go wrong, you have them covered.
Looking for Travel Insurance?
If you are planning to fly soon, check out your suitability for a travel insurance policy with Staysure today. You can do so online and we could come up with a quotation to cover your medical conditions in minutes. Alternatively, give our travel insurance specialists a call on 0800 033 4902 and they will be glad to help.
This information is non-advisory and is merely meant as a general guide to flying with medical conditions. Please consult the airlines to obtain up-to-date details on their criteria.
All travel insurance provided by Staysure is subject to agreement from our underwriter. Terms and conditions apply, details of which can be found within the Policy Document.