Many travel insurance companies say they cover people who have cancer. But your emails and calls to Macmillan suggest this cover is often unaffordable.

We recently had a call from Jacqueline, who had read our Getting travel insurance booklet. Her 83-year old husband had bowel cancer more than 10 years ago. Aside from a bowel obstruction, which was unrelated to the cancer, he has recently been very well and is not on any medication.

Jacqueline called 15 travel insurance companies, but was surprised and disappointed to be quoted between £2,000 and £580 for a one week holiday in Cyprus.

In the end, Jacqueline and her husband cancelled their holiday and lost their deposit. They didn’t want to go on holiday without travel insurance – but the travel insurance was going to cost more than the holiday.

While calling the companies, she found out that:

  • Free spirit would have considered providing travel insurance to someone with a terminal illness
  • Freedom would not provide travel insurance to her and her husband
  • All Clear quoted £1,800.


Other readers have recently been in touch with us to praise Eurotunnel and another travel insurance company that we haven’t come across before called Global Travel Insurance.

Have you tried getting travel insurance through these companies? If so, it would be great to hear from you.

Travel insurance companies work by assessing risk. If a person ‘poses a risk’ to the company – in other words, they are likely to make a claim – the company will probably charge more for cover.

The principle is understandable. Yet from many stories we hear, it seems that some companies:

  • take a ‘blanket approach’ to people who have had cancer
  • are not prepared to consider their individual circumstances, even if the cancer was years ago and the person is now doing well
  • can speak insensitively to people about cancer.


What do you think about Jacqueline’s story? Have you had a similar experience, or maybe a good experience with a particular company?