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There may be trouble ahead. Consular hot spots around the world.

Monday, August 18th, 2014

Millions of us travel overseas every year. We travel the world to work, see the sights and relax on our precious time off. The majority of trips – by a long, long way – are trouble free. But sometimes things go wrong. That’s when the FCO’s consular staff step in to help out where they can. While they can’t provide cash, pay hospital fees or bake a cake with a file in it, they can and do provide lots of valuable assistance to thousands of British citizens every year. In fact, according to the recently published British Behaviour Abroad Report, which the FCO publishes every year, between April 2013 and March 2014 British consular staff assisted more than 17,000 British nationals worldwide.

How these numbers break down can be seen in the interactive map below. It shows the type of help required country by country and region by region – so it’s easy to see where the trouble hot spots are.

Happily the number of hospitalisations has fallen to a five year low and the number of cases involving rape or sexual assault has also reduced.

However the message from the FCO remains the same:

  •  Get comprehensive travel insurance
  •  Check health requirements of the country you are visiting
  •  Research your destination so you won’t end up falling foul of local customs or laws.

Should you let it guide your travel plans?

We think this map makes very interesting reading. But it doesn’t tell the whole story. If you were considering using the map to guide you in your plans then you might want to think again. What it doesn’t show is the numbers of British nationals travelling in the first place. So at first glance you might think that Spain was the world’s most dangerous country to travel in. Yes, the numbers are high but the numbers of British citizens travelling there is higher than anywhere else in the world, apart from the US. It may be that the proportion of people travelling who require assistance is one of the lowest in the world. Again, before you panic and change your plans, do your research!

 

And get a good travel insurance policy.

 

 

How to use your EHIC in Spain.

Wednesday, August 13th, 2014

How to use your EHIC in Spain.

Going to Spain this summer? If you don’t want to be ‘redder than a Spanish tomato’, you might want to watch this video. It has been jointly produced by the Department of Health and the British Embassy, Madrid to explain how to use the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) in Spain. And it’s a cracker!

But before you have a chuckle to yourself, it’s worth remembering the message. And that is that your EHIC is one of your holiday essentials. Knowing how to use it properly could save you big bills if you need urgent medical attention when you are away. Your EHIC is your passport to the public healthcare system in Spain, but it cannot be used in private clinics or hospitals and will not pay for other expenses, such as being airlifted home or private ambulances.

So while the EHIC could save you a small fortune if you fall asleep in the sun and end up redder than a Spanish tomato (or need any other kind of urgent medical treatment) it does not replace your travel insurance.

For further information, please visit www.healthcareinspain.eu.

Enjoy.

If you’re going to party, do it like you never took out that travel insurance policy!

Monday, July 21st, 2014
If you're going to party, do it like you never took out that travel insurance policy!

If you’re going to party, do it like you never took out that travel insurance policy!

We all love a drink on our holidays. A glass of wine to relax after a tough day on the sun lounger or a refreshing G & T in the bar before dinner? There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, for many of us, enjoying alcohol is an essential part of our holiday experience. We sample new things, we see new places, we try a cocktail we’ve never had before.

However, the trouble comes when it goes too far. Last year the FCO published some research that suggested that almost a quarter (23%) of young British holidaymakers have gone swimming while drunk on holiday abroad and over a quarter (26%) have done something while drunk on holiday that they were ashamed of.

Oh dear. The fact remains that drinking can impair your judgement and the after effects can last far longer than the hangover. Getting arrested or hospitalised can cause a lot more emotional trouble than you might think. And it may cost a lot more too – even if you have got travel insurance. (more…)

Young Brits abroad: gambling with their family’s future?

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

Young Brits abroad: gambling with their family’s future?

Young Brits abroad: gambling with their family’s future?

Young Brits abroad: gambling with their family’s future?

What would you pay to get your loved ones home safely following an accident abroad? Would you be willing to remortgage the house to pay a hospital bill in Mexico? How about using all your life savings to get them home from Oz with a medical escort?

Of course, as parents you wouldn’t fail in your duty to your children. But, it seems from the latest research, that young Brits are risking their family finances for the sake of saving a few quid on their holiday essentials.

So if your children are about to fly the nest and are seeing the world or are heading off for a fab holiday abroad, we hope they have a great – and safe – adventure. But don’t let them put your future finances at risk by travelling without one of the essentials – travel insurance. (more…)

A Last Minute Weekend in…Tromsø

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

A Last Minute Weekend in…Tromsø

World First Travel Insurance - A Last Minute Weekend in...Tromsø

A Last Minute Weekend in…Tromsø

Mid summer is almost upon us! Thank goodness for that. It’s great being able to enjoy long evenings. But what if you could enjoy REALLY long evenings? That would be amazing. It’s also very possible to jump on a plane and enjoy 24 hour daylight right here in Europe. So pack your bags, we’re heading off to Tromsø, the Paris of the North in the Arctic Circle. For culture lovers and lovers of daylight, it’s the only place to head this midsummer’s eve.

But before you go, don’t forget that our Last Minute travel insurance policies are designed for people like you. With no cancellation cover costs included in the price it’ll work out cheaper than most standard policies – so you’ll have more to spend on those reindeer steaks!

We are pretty sure you’d never have thought about Tromsø for a last minute weekend. But, with direct flights from London Gatwick to the city in the Arctic Circle, it is a possible destination for someone looking for a weekend away with a difference. At this time of year, when you can expect 24 hour daylight, it is a remarkable place to spend a very long, sun drenched weekend. It’s also a cultural centre, with lots to see and do. A weekend might not be enough! (more…)

Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

World First Travel Insurance - Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

Bowel Cancer Awareness Month

April is bowel cancer awareness month in the UK. It is the time when people get on their bikes, run marathons or hold coffee morning for charities like Bowel Cancer UK to fund research and help people affected by the disease.

It’s also a time for us to think about our lifestyles and make choices to live more healthily – and so avoid many of the risk factors of bowel cancer – or to visit your doctor to get screened for bowel cancer.

Bowel cancer, which is a general term for cancer that begins in the large bowel, is the third most common type of cancer. It is the second most common among women after breast cancer and the third most common for men after prostate and lung cancer. In 2009 41,142 cases of bowel cancer were registered in the UK (all figures in this article from NHS). (more…)

Holidays in term time. Where do you stand?

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Holidays in term time. Where do you stand?

Holidays in term time. Where do you stand? Travel Insurance

Holidays in term time. Where do you stand?

A travel company recently offered to pay any fines imposed on parents who book skiing holidays with them outside of the school holidays. It made the front of The Times, sparked a lively debate in The Daily Mail Online and enraged head teachers. On the other hand, plenty of parents welcomed it because it offered a way out of paying the higher prices they face during holiday times.

It’s a divisive issue.

So, we thought it’d be interesting to look at the issue and some of the arguments put forward by all sides. Let’s start with the basics….. (more…)

Going slopestyle at Easter…don’t forget your insurance!

Friday, February 28th, 2014

Going slopestyle at Easter…don’t forget your insurance!

Going slopestyle at Easter…don’t forget your insurance!

Going slopestyle at Easter…don’t forget your travel insurance!

The Winter Olympics have been fantastic haven’t they? It’s been inspiring stuff, especially the Snowboarding Slopestyle, a new event that involves riders making their way (very quickly) down a steep course that includes a series of jumps and obstacles. It makes for spectacular viewing and has been much praised for its excitement and drama.

We’ve even got our very own Slopestyle heroine now, Jenny Jones, who took the bronze medal in style at Sochi. She’s a multiple X Games gold medal winner and the first British athlete to win a medal on snow. That’s an amazing achievement. Jenny’s medal is every reason to celebrate and head for the hills! And with the Easter holidays coming up fast, there will no doubt be a queue of new snowboarders hoping to try a few moves themselves. Who wouldn’t want to pull off an air grab or backside 360? Exactly. Book your ticket now! (more…)

Valentine’s Essentials. Wine. Chocolate. Exotic Destination. Travel Insurance.

Friday, February 7th, 2014

Valentine’s Essentials. Wine. Chocolate. Exotic Destination. Travel Insurance.

World First Travel Insurance - Valentine’s Essentials. Wine. Chocolate. Exotic Destination. Travel Insurance.

Valentine’s Essentials. Wine. Chocolate. Exotic Destination. Travel Insurance.

Valentine’s Day is approaching fast. Are you ready? Have you stocked up on roses and chocolates and grabbed a booking at your partner’s favourite restaurant (be quick!)? Failing that, have you booked the flights to whisk your better half away for a romantic weekend away in one of the World’s most romantic cities? Well, if you have then you’re probably about 90% more organised than most of us.

If you haven’t, why worry? Most of us would rather not have the pressure of Valentine’s anyway. If you want to do something for someone you’ll do it anyway, right? That’s how we feel. Anywhere can be romantic at any time of the year.

But, just in case you’ve been getting some serious hints and painful prodding, we thought it’d be nice to find out who rates where as the most romantic place to visit.

Bags packed? Great. Let’s go… (more…)

Looking for a great family holiday? Try camping in France

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

Looking for a great family holiday? Try camping in France

Looking for a great family holiday? Try camping in France

Looking for a great family holiday? Try camping in France

It’s morning. You wake to the sound of the sea and the seagulls above. In a little while it’ll be too hot to stay inside, so you unzip the door, swing your feet out of your bed and enjoy the coolness. As the zip slides back you take in a big lungful of salty sea air and feel very much alive. The sky is blue and the breeze is just strong enough to sway the towels from yesterday’s swim that are hanging on the line. Any minute now you’ll hear a cheery toot-toot and the local baker will appear in his van with freshly baked croissants, pains au chocolat and sticks of still-warm bread. That’s the cue to get up, get the kettle on and send the kids off to the pool to slip, slide and squawk their way through the day down slides, along lazy rivers and into plunge pools. (more…)

Rothwell & Towler Tourism House Woodwater Park
Pynes Hill Exeter EX2 5WS

World First is a trading name of Rothwell & Towler (2013) Ltd and is an appointed representative of Crispin Speers & Partners Ltd who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, FCA register number 311507. Travel insurance premiums and availability of cover may vary depending on individual circumstances. If you are a consumer insured (i.e. a person buying insurance wholly or mainly for personal purposes unrelated to your employment), you have a duty to take reasonable care to answer questions fully and accurately, and that any information you volunteer is not misleading. This duty exists before the cover is placed, when renewed, or altered at any time throughout the duration of the policy. If you do not do so, your Insurer may be able to void your policy from inception. Rothwell & Towler (2013) Ltd, Registered in England No. 08294942. Registered Office: St Clare House, 30-33 Minories, London EC3N 1PE.

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