FCO issues consumer advice ahead of ‘Sunshine Saturday’

Consumers are being urged to take out adequate travel insurance and prepare fully to ensure a trouble-free holiday in 2016 ahead of ‘Sunshine Saturday’ – the expected peak booking day of the year.

Operators will be offering deals and discounts for 24 hours this Saturday, with millions of people expected to book a bargain break.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued an animated video that highlights some of the risks of travelling abroad without adequate insurance cover.

The average cost of a claim for medical expenses is £1,022, significantly higher than the £32 average for an annual travel insurance policy. according to the Association of British Insurers.

The FCO and weather broadcaster, Becky Mantin, are advising people to research the right insurance options, understand the potential costs of not being adequately insured and to give detailed and accurate medical histories to insurers.

In addition, travellers to Europe should also ensure they apply for their free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).

Cara Fortune, from the FCO’s Know Before You Go team, said: “It is great that many British nationals will be looking to bag a holiday bargain this Sunshine Saturday, but it’s important not to scrimp on insurance cover. A medical emergency abroad can be extremely expensive if you are not adequately insured.

“Come rain or shine, taking out appropriate travel insurance should be at the top of your to-do list before heading overseas.”

Mantin said: “I’m predicting that this ‘Sunshine Saturday’ will be an excellent opportunity for people to explore some fantastic travel deals, and maybe even book a well deserved bargain getaway abroad.

“But after you’ve found your perfect deal and clicked that ‘book’ button, ensure you also start to think about making the right pre-travel preparations.

“Getting adequate travel insurance is particularly important – without it you risk putting a real dampener on your holiday, as well as being out of pocket.”

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