Pregnant - Do I need insurance travelling in Europe?

(26 Posts)
Ber2291 Mon 03-Mar-14 14:27:54

I am desperate to go on an upcoming family holiday but will be 35 weeks pregnant and apparently no one will insure me. Do I actually need insurance in any case (i.e. if something went wrong, went into early labour etc) since it is Europe if I have EHIC card?

AuntieStella Mon 03-Mar-14 15:25:13

EHIC means you won't get left high and dry, but it entitles you only to access health services on the same terms as a national of that country (which may be pay and claim), the services available may not be the same as in UK, and repatriation is not covered at all.

NomDeClavier Mon 03-Mar-14 15:41:55

I would say get it as state provision in some places is patchy.

NomDeClavier Mon 03-Mar-14 15:42:28

You should be insurable at 35wks but you might need to search around a bit.

Coffeeinapapercup Mon 03-Mar-14 15:43:53

Always get health insurance travelling in Europe anyway. try Tesco insurance, they seem to cover most things

CMOTDibbler Mon 03-Mar-14 15:45:11

Yes, you need insurance to cover you if you need to stay in that country for some weeks with a newborn who can't fly, can't tolerate being in a car seat for long periods etc as well as the costs of delivery, SCBU etc

SteamboatSprings Mon 03-Mar-14 15:45:46

You and your unborn baby need full medical insurance. I watched a programme recently where a girl on holiday in Spain gave birth prematurely in a Spanish hospital. The baby had medical problems which required treatment back in the UK, but as they hadn't taken out travel insurance they couldn't afford the cost of the air ambulance home. It took their family a further 3 months of fund-raising and an anonymous donor to raise the money. The NHS medical staff were not included in the costs they had to find, but in ran into the tens of thousands pounds. The poor couple were shown having to also find the costs of supporting themselves in the Spanish resort for months on end too, couldn't go home & return to work as they couldn't leave their sick baby behind.

Greenoes Mon 03-Mar-14 15:46:40

Would you need separate insurance for baby if he/she were to be born while you are away?

girlywhirly Mon 03-Mar-14 15:47:14

As I understand it, travel insurance is not just about health, it covers you for loss of luggage, flight delays or cancellations, extra accommodation in that instance, loss or theft of money/valuables and so on. There is always the possibility that you may not get a fitness to travel letter from a doctor, and airlines may refuse to let you on a plane if they think you aren't up to it (which is their right) If you did go and gave birth early, are you prepared for that, and also getting new baby a passport, etc to get home? If the baby or you were poorly you could be stuck there for a long time until medically able to travel. Would it be fair to the family you are on holiday with to deal with this, if it happened?

A lot of people think travel insurance is a waste of time, until something goes badly wrong and medical fees can be incredible if you need any specialist treatment. I think the EHIC may only cover you for the municipal hospital not any private care.

I wouldn't have felt like travelling at 35 weeks, although everyone is different. I presume you mean 35 at the start of the holiday, and could be 36/37 on return, in which case it sounds risky.

RaspberryRuffle Mon 03-Mar-14 16:32:28

You absolutely do need insurance. As others have said EHIC only covers your care in a public hospital, and that is the same care that locals are entitled to receive, which may be very different to what you're used to in the UK. You may have a language barrier to contend with too, not everywhere provides translators as is usual in the UK. There may be different rules about being accompanied (in Spain it is highly unusual for a partner to be allowed to go to theatre with you in the event of a c-section, gas & air as pain relief is virtually unheard of).
Of course other problems can crop up, that would be unrelated to your pregnancy but could be complicated by it.
Air ambulances are prohibitively expensive.
Travel insurance for you may be expensive but if you were my sister or friend I would pay for it myself rather than let you travel without it.

RaspberryRuffle Mon 03-Mar-14 16:38:15

Have a look at the thread started by ema24august (I think) about travelling at 32 weeks, someone has recommended Ravenhall insurance.

specialsubject Mon 03-Mar-14 17:50:16

travelling without insurance is bonkers. Why? Because in the (hopefully unlikely) event of a major accident which means you need an air ambulance home, the EHIC doesn't cover that. It can cost thousands, maybe tens of thousands. Got that much money spare? Happy to bankrupt family?

it can happen and it HAS happened. Losing the beepy-beepy toys or the handbag won't bankrupt you. The above circumstances will.

the EHIC only gives you what the locals get.

no insurance, no holiday I'm afraid. The risk is just too great.

mummymeister Mon 03-Mar-14 17:55:18

will you need a fitness to fly letter OP or are you travelling over land? Please get proper insurance. it will cost but it would be so worth it if you needed it.

AuntieStella Mon 03-Mar-14 18:06:51

If flying you need a letter from 28 weeks, and the cut off is 36 weeks (or 32 if having multiples).

Hell yes! And insurance for your unborn baby too!

thanksamillion Mon 03-Mar-14 18:15:23

OP you must get the following
Insurance for you with the insurance company knowing that you're pregnant
Insurance for the baby. This is called Unborn Baby Cover and is very important but you will need to ask for it specifically
A fit to fly letter from your GP (possibly midwife) or a fit to travel if you're sailing.

Don't even think of going without these things.

PortofinoRevisited Mon 03-Mar-14 21:23:16

Flipping hell yes! I had an EHIC card and live in Belgium. One broken arm, an ambulance, minor surgery and an overnight stay was best part of 1000 euros. They didn't move the ambulance til I paid cash. They keep you for days here after having even a normal delivery and only pain relief is epidural. You would have to pay for ALL of that.

wigglesrock Tue 04-Mar-14 09:13:41

Please, please, please never travel without insurance. I know your circumstances are completely different but in the past month I have had to deal with the paperwork, financial implications etc of having to repatriate a family member. It was a nightmare both emotionally & financially.

wigglesrock Tue 04-Mar-14 09:14:51

Sorry, they didn't have any travel insurance, they thought they were just nipping away for a weekend sad

MinesAPintOfTea Tue 04-Mar-14 09:26:12

Don't travel without insurance. I think that a specialist insurance broker might be necessary, or ring a couple of "big name" travel insurarers. What if you are taken ill and can't travel home?

Unfortunately its not possible to stop competent adults from travelling without insurance, but it is what pays for you if something goes wrong.

SooticaTheWitchesCat Tue 04-Mar-14 10:37:27

Yes, you absolutely do need insurance, especially whilst pregnant. You also need to make sure you have to correct insurance to cover in case you actually give birth abroad and you will need a letter from your doctor to say you are fit for travel or your insurance wont cover you.

Please don't even consider going without insurance, try Insure and Go, I travelled at 34 weeks with them, although it was a few years ago now.

Janek Tue 04-Mar-14 11:31:43

It is quite hard to get travel insurance for pregnant people as (as pp has said) you need cover for the baby, should he/she be born prematurely. As someone mentioned upthread, RAVENHALL do suitable insurance and may be some of the only ones that do.

You also need an ehic, to avoid paying an excess for medical stuff, should you need to claim.

Ber2291 Tue 04-Mar-14 12:07:27

Thanks so much for all the advice everyone. Saved the holiday!

Misty9 Thu 06-Mar-14 20:36:36

Ravenhall, the post office, and (the one I went with at 33wks) cheaptravelinsurance.com (or something like that) insure up to 36wks.

Also, if you fly easyjet they will tell you that you don't need a fit to fly up to 36wks. DO NOT RISK IT - I was asked for this on my return flight from Valencia recently, and luckily had already obtained one before easyjet replied to my question. It cost £15 from my gp, but get one anyway.

mousmous Thu 06-Mar-14 20:42:57

absolutely yes.
check also the repatriation part of the policy. automobile clubs are often good for this.

a relative was stuck abroad in hospital for two weeks (until he could travel) because his travel insurance would only transport to a suitable hopital if neccessary, but not all the way home. private transportation would have been well over 10.000£.

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