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Happy holidays? Getting good disabled travel insurance is just one of our top tips for disabled travellers this summer.

With summer fast approaching many of you are no doubt looking to escape to the sun, the city or more adventurous destinations. Before you go, check out our disabled travel tips so you can make the most of your trip.

Take cover!

In late 2010 Foreign Office research revealed that 15% of all travellers failed to take out travel insurance, a number which rose to a third when it came to visiting friends or family. Anecdotal evidence suggests many disabled travellers are among those failing to take cover with difficulties in securing affordable or appropriate disabled travel insurance cited. Helen Dolphin, director of policy and campaigns at Disabled Motoring shared her own experience, reporting: “I have always found getting travel insurance a headache. It’s so complicated and off putting. When you’re trying to get a quote they want to know all about your problems and make the whole process an uncomfortable experience.” Thankfully she saw her issues being addressed when welcoming the launch last year of Fish’s specialist disabled travel insurance policy: “I like that the policy is geared up to meeting disabled people’s needs, that it makes things easier and that it’s available online so you need not be giving personal details to someone over the ‘phone unless you want to.”

That’s good news because journeying abroad without decent travel insurance can expose you to potentially huge bills. As a warning the Foreign Office has published figures which, for example, show the cost of an air ambulance for America’s East Coast coming in it at £35-40,000. Ouch.

Take your medicine

More than that help airport security by taking your medicine in the packaging and labelling your pharmacists supplied it. If you need carry hypodermic needles or similar sharp objects for obvious reasons in these security conscious times, make sure you have a doctor’s note. The same is true if you need manage pain or a condition using a controlled drug such as morphine. Finally make sure your travel insurance cover you for the emergency replacement of prescription medicines.

Take care when booking

It goes without saying that if you have specialist needs then you’ll need take extra care when making your travel and accommodation arrangements. If booking direct make sure you document those needs (eg. wheelchair access, an extra legroom seat, sign language assistance etc.) and that you get in writing details of how they will be met – if you’ve agreed a ground floor room you don’t want to turn up on the 44th floor. If you’re in any way nervous about handling things yourself then seek out one of a number of tour operators such as Accessible Travel who provide specialist services to disabled people.

Take a seat

If you’re a wheelchair user check with your airline what their policy is. Whilst all airlines must, legally, carry disability equipment without charge, their policies differ with some letting you travel in your own chair and others requiring it be stowed in the hold whilst you fly in their own wheelchair.

Take advice

Before you travel make sure you know your rights. For example airports are legally obliged to provide disabled travellers (or “persons with reduced mobility” as the legal definition has it) and airlines and tour operators have a duty to provide information that is accessible to customers (such as in large print or audio formats)). A great resource for air travellers is the Equality and Human Right’s Commission’s Your Rights to Fly publication. This “step-by-step guide for disabled and less mobile passengers” can be downloaded for free by clicking here. It’s also worth checking out specialist websites and forums for tips such as .

* If you’d like to compare disabled travel insurance offered by Fish by getting a quote, then simply click here or call our specialist team on 0800 088 3275.

For help, speak
to one of our team
call 0333 331 3770

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