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woman wheeling a suitcase in an airport, why is travel insurance important?

In a survey, around 62% of travellers did not purchase travel insurance. This is despite the average doctor visit cost being more than £1,300 whilst abroad.

Holidays can be expensive, and many looking to cut costs do without insurance and hope for the best. But is this wise, even before you travel, given the potential risks involved? Let’s look at why travel insurance is important and, for specific destinations, nothing less than essential.


·      Why is it important to have travel insurance?

·      Before you buy

·      Is travel insurance compulsory?

·      How does travel insurance work?

·      Conclusion

Why is it important to have travel insurance?

It’s important to note that not all travel insurance is the same. All of us have different needs, personal circumstances, and levels of risk we’re prepared to take. Travel insurance in Malta is usually a packaged product providing a number of sections to cover various eventualities which could happen whilst one is aboard.

The following list is not exhaustive but demonstrates the most important reasons to purchase cover for the average traveller.

·      Hospital & emergency medical expenses 

If you or your family are sick or injured on holiday, insurance will pay for emergency medical expenses or care you receive. Policies come with different levels of coverage, so be sure to read the small print before signing up for anything.

Many policies in 2023 will include Covid medical coverage. However, travel insurance will typically NOT cover the cost of over-the-counter medication or any pre-existing medical conditions. 

·      Loss of money & personal items

Thankfully, we’re (almost) past the days of traveller’s cheques! However, losing money and any personal item can be both a heartache and a chore.

Travel insurance can cover the likes of replacing a lost passport at short notice. It can also include covering stolen luggage and even bank cards. 

·      Delays

Some travel insurance coverage will reimburse travellers for flights and travel delays, especially if these are lengthy and eat into holiday time.

Imagine you’ve spent a year saving for one week in the sun and then lost two days due to airport problems. Having such an insurance policy to cover this can be a great weight off your mind.

·      Trip cancellations

Further travel insurance plans may cover you in the event of a trip cancellation. Last-minute emergencies or sicknesses can occur just as you’re about to depart for sunny horizons. Unless your policy covers this, most hotels and airlines won’t offer refunds beyond a specific cut-off date.

Before you buy

It’s an old adage that everyone should read the small print before they make any form of purchase. However, it’s especially vital to do so regarding travel or any other form of insurance.

Look into precisely what you’ll be covered for, and research your holiday destination. It could be subject to freak weather patterns, which could significantly disrupt your trip. 

Likewise, see if the area is undergoing a health epidemic or any political/financial unrest that could affect your plans. 

could affect your plans. Find out more: What does travel insurance NOT cover?

Is travel insurance compulsory?

In a likely bid to save money, 40% of holidaymakers have no plans to buy travel insurance for their trip abroad this summer. However, many of these travellers may be surprised to learn that certain insurance is compulsory, depending on their destination.

In many countries, coverage is optional and up to the individual’s discretion. In many others, it’s a legal requirement. You should check any country-specific stipulations as part of your holiday planning.

You’ll need travel insurance before being allowed into any of the following countries:

  • Belize
  • Cuba
  • Ecuador
  • Georgia
  • Iran
  • Israel
  • Jamaica
  • Jordan
  • Qatar
  • Rwanda
  • Seychelles
  • United Arab Emirates

Furthermore, should you require a visa when entering any of the following countries, you’ll legally have to purchase travel insurance to enter:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Moldova
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Togo
  • Turkey

This information is correct as of June 2023 but could be subject to change at any time. Remember to check any specific requirements regarding your destination ahead of your trip.

How does travel insurance work?

Travel insurance works much the same as any other form of insurance. You take out a policy to cover unfortunate occurrences during your trip. Should they occur, you’ll likely need evidence, be it a hospital form or police incident report.

Travellers should also contact their insurance provider as soon as anything untoward occurs. This is to ensure the best protocols are followed according to the country they happen to be in.

It’s also vital to have your travel insurance documents on hand at all times. You may need to display these to an official to show that you’re covered in the event of personal injury. If you have to make a claim, you’ll need to send copies of your evidence to your insurer.

For further information, read our article What is travel insurance? Pros, cons, and hidden realities.


So why is travel insurance important? Like birthdays and other special events, holidays are a means of making memories to last a lifetime. Taking out insurance that meets your needs and personal circumstances gives you peace of mind that your trip will be remembered for all the right reasons.

Treat securing travel insurance as just another facet of booking your dream adventure. Put sufficient time aside, and don’t leave it to the last minute. It is usually advisable to buy a travel insurance policy as soon as you pay any holiday deposits since cover starts from the time one purchases the policy.

Look at our competitive and comprehensive benefits, optional extras, and annual offer on our travel insurance page.

GasanMamo Insurance is authorised under the Insurance Business Act and regulated by the MFSA.