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Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Manchester, United...
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Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Hi

I am wondering if anyone on the forum can recommend a good travel insurance company that covers people with learning disabilities without hiking the price up?

I have taken my mentally handicapped sister on holiday all over the world every year for about 20 years now with no problems. She always paid exactly the same premium as me as we are both fully fit and healthy, I always just made a point of telling whatever company that she has a learning disability, they were always fine with this, all they were ever interested in is if she had any physical problems which she has not.

Then 3 years ago it started,as soon as I mention the learning disability the price goes up 3 fold and we have to do a special totally pointless medical questionnaire, I say pointless because my sister is the fittest person I know!. Apparently learning disabilities are now classed as a medical condition.. My husband has a lot (and I mean a lot) of very serious medical conditions and she is being quoted more than him!. I think this is really, really unfair and borders on discrimination and is just an excuse to rip my sister off.

I am wondering if anyone knows a company in the UK that is not classing learning disabilities as a serious medical illness?

Any help most appreciated

tucson, az
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1. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

To clarify: do you mean something like developmental disabiliies (what used to be called mental retardation in the US) or something like dyslexia?

Manchester, United...
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2. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Yes mentally retardation or mentally handicapped as we used to say in the UK . My sister has a mental age of about 5 years old. She has no "label" to speak of ie no specific condition like downs or autism, no one knows why she is like she is, it has just been put down to the fact that she was born very premature. She is 100% physically fit though and totally addicted to sport, she does yoga, aerobics,football, running,swimming,horse riding (she has her own horse she mucks out every night after college) she also ,does sponsored walks and a half marathon last year and obviously she doesn't smoke or drink and is very slim.

My husband has diabetes,neuropathy,COPD,cholesterol.is over weight,out of breath most of the time,had to take the "fit to fly" test last time as his oxygen levels were too low, is always in and out the hospital as he also has joint problems.. His insurance is cheaper and he is also 20 years older.

It is all just crazy

Manchester, United...
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3. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

I forgot to mention that both of them have been travelling for 20 years plus and neither of them has ever had a claim. My husband has always had to pay a fortune for cover due to his conditions but with my sister it is just purely a total rip off. Ok she has a mental age of 5 but how much do they charge 5 year olds, probably nothing.

Collectively between the 2 of them the cost is just becoming a joke

Manchester, United...
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4. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Finally found a company today that doesn't discriminate or rip off the mentally handicapped so we are all sorted finally!!

Goodtogo £29 (same price as me or any other healthy person)

Flexicover Direct £92 (shame on you). They even had the cheek to try and charge us an extra £5 for a medical endorsement form which literally had nothing on it as she has no medical conditions, (work that one out)

Virgin £86 (shame on you too)

Hope this helps others in the same boat

Mount Dora, Florida
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for Istanbul
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5. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

I am curious why you would have provided any information that you were not legally required to provide when applying for insurance. Insurance companies will find any way possible to earn more money by increasing premiums and reducing the amount and type of incidents they will insure.

I think this is a dreadful form of discrimination because your sister does not meet any of the criteria applicable to a pre-existing physical condition. There is absolutely no justification from the basis of an actuary to account for an increased premium. I have no idea what laws would cover this type of discrimination. Since you were able to obtain insurance I would probably not pursue the issue any further. In the future, unless you must respond to a specific question I would not mention the mental capability of your sister. If they do not ask, they do not need to know. The responsibility would be with their failure to ask rather than your failure to disclose information not solicited. My attorney often reminds me that nothing good can come from providing information not requested.

Essex
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6. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Requirements for insurance in the UK (where OP is from)

Are different than those for USA residents at a guess...

And laws and their interpretation thereof, also differs between the 2 countries.

So what you can/can't do, do/don't have to declare are possibly quite different....

England, United...
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7. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Busy,

I am very pleased that the OP managed to obtain appropriate cover at a reasonable price, and I hope they all enjoy their trip. In the UK, insurance is a contract struck " in the utmost good faith" and the particular condition mentioned is a material fact, non-disclosure of which could have serious implications if a situation arose necessitating a claim. It is not a case of actuaries trying to gouge policyholders or evade their responsibilities.

Claims are only paid from the common pool of premiums, and sadly, experience shows that some conditions increase the risks and costs of a claim arising.

Essex
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8. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Yes, I thought things would likely be different "mon"

(Yep, I miss that jolly old jack tar, too, OTC is dull without him....)

Sydney, Australia
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9. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Chrissy, your terminology is interesting and different from what we use in Australia. A learning disability (such as a reading disability) as defined by the DSM5 is not the same as an intellectual disability. An intellectual disability of the level you describe may make the person more likely to be unaware of danger and to perhaps take more risks than a person without such a disability.

Nevertheless, it amounts to discrimination and there are laws such as the Disability Discrimination Act which are there to assist.

I link to a UK page for you and suggest you call the number listed for legal advice (free) on what your sister is entitled to (and maybe provide better services in the future for others)

nidirect.gov.uk/travel-insurance-for-people-…

Manchester, United...
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10. Re: Travel insurance for learning disabilities?

Hi everyone, thanks for all your interesting comments and input. The reason I was so angry was because for many, many years the learning disability was no issue with the insurance companies and my sister hasn't changed so why have the premiums?.I think the answer to that is that it is purely a good excuse to make money out of people who not only can least afford it but are very low risk to the insurance companies as they have no physical medical conditions,it is a win ,win situation for the insurance companies.

I am just glad I found this company that is not discriminating, just hope they don't decide to jump on the bandwagon like the rest next year!

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