Home Health 'I was quoted £700 for a week's travel insurance – cancer patients...

'I was quoted £700 for a week's travel insurance – cancer patients are unfairly excluded'


Thousands of people with cancer face missing out on summer holidays because they cannot find affordable travel insurance, research suggests.

Difficulty securing travel insurance was the second highest serious concern out of 30 cancer-related issues among 2,000 sufferers, a survey for Macmillan Cancer Support found.

Exhaustion and fatigue, and bowel and bladder issues, were joint first.

Among those impacted is Tom, 29, who was quoted £600-700 for a trip to Gran Canaria last year.

He was diagnosed with stage three melanoma in early 2022 after noticing a mole on his knee had grown.

Tom, from Colchester, was undergoing immunotherapy treatment when they tried to book a short break. He said: “I was looking to go on a week-long holiday with my wife, Rachel, and my six-month-old daughter, Olive, to Gran Canaria.

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“Because I was having immunotherapy I couldn’t get any affordable travel insurance. I tried so many companies but kept getting told the same thing.

“Being quoted £500+ just to go on a week holiday with my family due to my cancer diagnosis left me feeling defeated and unfairly excluded.”

Tom eventually sought help from Macmillan’s Support Line, which helped him find other options.

He joined a scheme with his bank which allowed him to get travel insurance covering everything other than cancer-related costs by paying £13 per month.

Tom added: “I deemed myself fit to travel…but I can imagine for some people having an exemption for anything related to cancer would be far too risky.

“I have photos from that holiday on my wall, and I will have those memories forever. 

“That holiday never would have happened if it wasn’t for that adviser on the Support Line who provided me with the information I needed.”

The survey showed that travel insurance was a serious concern was a serious concern for 24 percent of patients. This rose to 32 percent among those who also had another disability.

The charity’s webpage on travel insurance advice has received more than 20,000 hits already this year.

Macmillan’s advice for cancer patients hoping to go on holiday includes looking for recommendations from other people with cancer and ensuring they choose an insurer that fits their needs.

Some policies of not cover claims relating to pre-existing medical conditions and patients may be asked to pay an extra fee.

Richard Manson, the charity’s service knowledge specialist, said: “When booking a holiday, sorting travel insurance should be a simple task on the holiday checklist. 

“However, Macmillan often hears from people who are finding it very difficult to find travel insurance for their holidays, or they are being quoted extremely high premiums, something which should be easy and a reasonable cost when preparing for a trip.

“Macmillan is here to help provide guidance for whatever people affected by cancer need to ask around booking a holiday; online via the Macmillan website or through speaking to an advisor on the Macmillan Support Line.”

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