Travel Insurance

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I have had recent treatment for stage 3 bowel cancer. I had to e tumour removed successfully and a 4cycle course of chemotherapy which finished on 21st December. I’ve been given the green light by my consultant to get on with my life so I’ve booked a couple of holidays. I’m now finding it really difficult to get travel insurance. Do you have any advice which might help. 

many thanks. 

  • Hi ,

    My name is Matthew, and I work as part of the Online Community Team. We're the team who work on supporting our Online Community to make sure it stays safe and working well.

    This is just a short message to let you know that I have moved your post from our 'Ask an Information and Support Adviser forum' over to our 'Ask a Financial Guide forum'. Now your post will be seen by the appropriate team, and one of our dedicated Financial Guides will get back to you within 1 to 3 working days.

    In the meantime, if you would find it helpful to connect with other Community members who have also been looking for post-diagnosis travel insurance, you might like to introduce yourself over on our dedicated travel insurance forum group using the link below:

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    Macmillan Online Community Team



    Thanks for getting in touch. I’m glad to hear your treatment has been successful.


    Just to make you aware we can’t recommend any financial products or services but hopefully you may find the following information helpful

    Firstly it may be worth looking on our online community. We have a helpful travel insurance group here. On this page people affected by cancer discuss their experiences trying to get travel insurance and post recommendations of companies they’ve personally used. By using the information provided by others who have been in a similar position, hopefully you can make a shortlist of companies to try. 

    Another option for finding travel insurance is the Travel Insurance Directory which has been created by MoneyHelper (a separate organisation to Macmillan).  The directory can be used to search for FCA approved travel insurers who may offer cover to people with pre-existing medical conditions. Please visit their directory here.

    Do you have any travel insurance cover in place through your bank account or a credit card? They won’t usually automatically cover for pre-existing health conditions, but if you’ve got this cover already through a product it’s worth checking on. They may be able to offer full cover if a top-up fee is paid.

    You’ve probably already realised when applying for cover so far, that a lot of companies will ask you very similar or even the same questions. The medical screening systems they use are often the same, which leads to a bit of repetition with the questions. Please don’t let this put you off, despite being asked similar questions each company will have their own quote at the end if they can offer cover – so it is worth persisting and shopping around. If you’re struggling to properly explain your situation with the questions asked, you can ask if it’s possible for the company to manually underwrite the policy. This is where a person would look at your health situation and decide whether to offer cover and at what price, rather than a computer making the decision. Some companies may do this as their standard procedure.

    You may encounter some companies that offer a policy with a cancer-related exclusion. This means you wouldn’t be covered for any claims relating to the cancer. This could affect the premium considerably, but it’s good to consider the risk of not being covered for anything relating to the cancer.

    One last thing I’d like to mention is about the insurance those you’re travelling with have. Some policies may cover cancellation if something happens to a ‘close family relative’. The exact cover would be explained in your policy documents, it’s a good idea to check exactly what may be covered. Some companies may only cover cancellation due to a close relative’s illness if it was disclosed and they were told about the person’s health conditions beforehand.

    If you have a current European Health Insurance Card, or you get a Global Health Insurance card (more information here) and you have opted to take an exclusion, you would still be able to get treatment in public hospitals when abroad. However, this treatment may still be chargeable at the time although it may be possible to reclaim some or all of the cost back once you are back in the UK.


    I hope this information helps and that you’re able to get cover in place. If you have any further questions or would like to discuss matters such as Pensions, Mortgages or Estate Planning, then don’t hesitate to get in touch.


    Yours Sincerely,




    Financial Guide

  • Thank you so much for all that valuable advice and information Joe, I really appreciate it. I will persevere and hope to find something soon. 

    Many thanks