This is not about Cats

(although I do have 4 of my own - all angels)

it's boring, sorry...

it's about getting my elderly parents to visit us and not waste money on travel insurance

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My elderly parents were coming to see us last September - an adventure on the train via the Eurostar, Paris and the TGV to Avignon. A couple of weeks before my mother had a heart attack and all had to be cancelled - awful for them - as my father said the worst of it was missing his longed for glass of champagne in Paris.

But, they are insurance 'nutters'. If they go on a coach trip to the coast they take out insurance. They have warranties on their warranties.

They'd like to re-book, but the Co-Op (who else) has quoted £850 for insurance for a week's trip.

They're in their 80's, my dad had a heart attack and cancer of the eye (AGGGH) many years ago, and my mother had the problem as above but is now 'fit to travel' according to the specialist. Apart from that they are very sprightly, fit and happy. Their doctor says 'Go, Go' (as realistically any other major issue will probably kill them... her words)

I'm trying to persuade them that they are European citizens - and specifically as they're pensioners they will not have to bear the costs if anything happens. And even if we have to pay up front for anything they don't need Health Travel Insurance.

We went to Turin last week for a few days and didn't take out health travel insurance - just because they are old and travelling over water why should they?

Is it such a waste of money? - it would quadruple the cost to come and see us.

All and any advice and experience appreciated

x teresa

(car insurance, house contents & top-up health - that's all!)

Personally I've told my mum and dad if they pop their clogs here, they're staying here. Much easier for us to arrange and my brother lives in Canada so he's not going to care anyway.

Tracy and Sheila - thanks

Good advice - last thing we want is the cost of repatriating a body! I don't imagine it's cheap...

i'll ask if they've shopped around and i doubt it - likely they've been using the local branch.

Forgot to add that your ordinary mutual (top up) usually covers you when going abroad so you don't need additional insurance!

Hi Teresa. This one is heavily advertised on TV.

Only problem is that the EHIC only covers the same as French people - ie roughly around 70% is covered. However, as most hospital costs are around 1000€ a night, just for accommodation, if they do end up being hospitalised that still leaves quite a large bill.

You also need to consider that EHIC doesn't cover repatriation to the UK - living or dead!


or SAGA- seem to think my mum and dad used the Post Office last time, worth checking.

Make sure that they bring copies of all their prescriptions with them, just in case they do need a medical visit (for any reason) as the GP will need to know what meds they are on if they need a prescription for anything else.

I'd imagine that to be the case but don't know for sure. The info on the nhs site seems to indicate that travel insurance is necessary if they want to use private healthcare which (being from Newcastle!) they're not likely to want to do are they?

thanks David,

that's a great link

i think they DO have EHIC cards - they're from Newcastle aren't they? i think I read that as pensioners they are eligible for S1 status - eg they are claiming pensions and so do not have to pay for (most) healthcare

Do they have EHIC cards Teresa?

Here (hopefully) is the link

There's also plenty of useful info on what to do if in France