Travel Insurance for Isle of Man trip -do I need it?

I'm going to the Isle of Man next month, the NHS there is not part of the NHS in mainland UK, but there is a ""reciprocal agreement"" in place whereby patients from UK mainland will be treated free of charge (except where a charge would normally apply on the mainland, eg prescriptions) and vice versa. I've been before and because of this agreement I've never worried about health insurance before, my only worry would be if I were to miss my ferry back due to illness and didn't have insurance to pay for repatriation I could end up stranded.

With my asthma being so volatile and easily triggered at the moment I do have concerns that staying in a hotel and having other people preparing my food I have much less control over my environment and so there is a risk of me running into trouble. I already have an action plan and emergency prednisolone as part of that so I would hope that I would be able to manage things myself should anything happen. I've never had to go to hospital or call an ambulance yet but have had a few close calls, but currently manage several mild-moderate attacks a week at home (GP is aware, and I'm seeing a resp consultant tomorrow) and I'm also on my 3rd prednisolone course in 9 weeks at the moment.

Do you think I should get insurance (I have a quote for £25 for the whole trip with no excess if i did need treatment) or would I be wasting my money? What would you do?

EDIT: Just to add £14 of that £25 was the ""medical premium"" after declaring asthma and a few other things.

6 Replies

  • Hi. I hope you have a great time and the asthma behaves itself while you're away. My experience of travel insurance is that most companies exclude existing conditions, such as asthma, so it might be a waste of your money to buy it.


  • If the insurance you have quoted covers your asthma and you can afford it, I would get it for peace of mind. I went to N. Ireland last year and had specialist insurance to cover my asthma and other issues; it was less about medical costs and more about getting home early/late if necessary, lost medication, not being able to go if I was ill before, that sort of thing. By having the insurance, it was just one less thing to worry about.

  • Thanks for the replies, it helps me get some perspective to see other peoples views so please do keep your comments coming.

    The quote I have is for a policy where you can declare existing illnesses and pay a medical premium, my understanding of the policy wording is that if I've declared the condition and paid the premium I should be covered. I haven't looked into it that much yet so will probably get some more quotes before I buy a policy I just wanted some opinions on whether I need it. Since the NHS reciprocal agreement covers medical treatment costs, I'd only really be making a claim if I needed to abandon the holiday early or if i missed the ferry.

  • I would recomend travel insurance even for UK holidays if they involve ferries, prebooked accomodation etc that will cost £100 plus! Worth it! I got it years ago for a trip to Isle of Arran.... needed it.... paid for extra nights for my Mum, plus a Flight home to stansted.

  • I am under the impression that the 'reciprocal healthcare agreement' only covers emergency treatment (I could be wrong!). So A and E treatment would be free, but an admission would not be, and repatriation certainly would not be (in the unlikely event you needed to be airlifted home, or to another hospital). In A and E units in the UK, I always notice signs saying only emergency 'patch-you-up' treatment is free for overseas visitors. Because the costs of being admitted are potentially astronomical, I would strongly recommend getting decent insurance.

  • hi, i defo think u should get it for peace of mind :)

    i know its gonna cost few quid extra, but worth it if God forbid u end up using it, isnt it?


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