Ski Travel Insurances: The Definitive Guide

antoine fruchard Antoine Fruchard  updated on April 3, 2020

You are crazy about ski and you are about to plan ski holidays to practice your favorite sport? You would like to find travel insurance that is tailored for your activity in case something goes wrong?

You’ve come at the right place.

In the below guide, we will tell you everything you need to know about ski travel insurance: what does it cover exactly, which policy you should go for, how much does it cost and other tips.

Stay tuned! 

What is ski travel insurance?

You are planning a super fancy skiing or snowboarding trip in the french Alps or Austrian mountains?
You should definitely get ski travel insurance.

Ski is seen as a high risk activity by most insurers. You may face inflated travel insurance premiums but you will be covered for any unexpected event that can go wrong during your ski trip.

Ski holiday insurance is not exactly the same as standard travel insurance as it is tailored for your skier needs. There are two ways to purchase winter sports travel insurance:

  • you apply for a standard single or annual multi-trip policy and pay an add-on to get winter sports cover
  • you get specific winter sports insurance.

A ski travel cover will provide you with financial compensation and assistance in case:

  • you get injured in the mountains
  • you need air rescue
  • the ski station closes for any reason and you can’t ski
  • your ski equipment is damaged, lost or stolen
  • you want to go off-piste skiing etc.

Be careful, note that some skiing activities are usually not covered under winter sports travel cover. You may need to take extra adventurous or extreme sport cover.
This would be the case for cross-country skiing, off-pist skiing (if unaccompanied by a guide), heli-skiing or ski acrobatics, ski bob-racing, ski stunting, ski fun parks or ski in competition. Always carefully check your winter sports holiday policy booklet and what is included or not.

Why do you need travel insurance for ski?

Getting travel insurance for your ski trip is vital.

Just to show you how important applying for travel insurance is, here are a few examples of what an unfortunate and unexpected event might cost you during your ski travel:

What you will need to pay without ski travel insuranceWhat you will need to pay with ski travel insurance
My ski pairs that I left unattended at the station restaurant have been stolen £500£0 
I need to cancel my ski trip because of medical condition£5,000 – £10,000
(real cost of trip)
£0
until trip cancellation limit is reached (check carefully cancellation reasons allowed)
I am stuck in the mountain and I need air rescue£3700£0
(if planned in policy)
I got injured in the mountains and I need to stay at the hospital £30,000
(if not covered by European Health Insurance Card)
£0
until medical expense limit is reached
Expenses you may face during your ski holidays if not covered by travel insurance

Depending on your destination, you may already have some financial assistance either with European Health Insurance Card (if your ski trip is in Europe) or with healthcare cooperation systems between countries for example UK and Australia or New-Zealand. Note that your EHIC will only cover medical treatment in public hospital (you won’t be covered for any air ambulance, surgery in private hospitals etc.). It can’t be seen as a substitute for travel insurance.

Compare best ski holiday insurance

To find the right cover for your ski travel, you will need to explore the different options you have. You’ll have to answer a series of questions such as:

  • what exactly you’d like to get covered for 
  • the length of your stay
  • the destination
  • how much are you planning to ski etc. 

We’ve came up with a non-exhaustive list of travel insurers that cover ski breaks abroad as standard or as option:

InsurerPriceOur reviewsSee offer
logo world first£30,09
  • Winter sports cover to be added as extra
  • No credit or debit card fees guarantee
  • Possibility to apply 12 months in advance
  • UK- based customer service and claim team
  • Reimburse within 14 days
Get quote
logo travel insurance 4 medical 2£32,18
  • Winter sports cover to be added as extra
  • Dedicated to golfers with pre- exisiting medical condition
  • UK based- call center and 24/7 assistance team
  • Provides cover for people up to 100 years old
  • Provides all travel insurance types with 3 level of protection
Get quote
logo insure and go£38,86
  • A leader in providing all kinds of travel insurance plans
  • Available as an option (for additionnal £19,91 for basic skiing) for all levels of protection starting from £200 cover to £1000
  • Up to £1000 for ski travel insurance covering ski equipment, ski packs, piste closure and avalanche delays
  • For high risk skiing such as free- ride: increased medical excess of £250, Personal accident and Personal liability sections does not apply
  • Max 17 days skiing covered for annual multi- trip policies plans
Meet a local agent
logo explorer travel insurance£39,82
  • Winter sports cover available paying an extra charge
  • GoldPlus cover: up to £500 for ski equipment if owned (£200 if hired), £20 per day for ski pack up to £200, same for piste closure, £50 per day for delay due to avalanche up to £250
  • Max 17 days skiing covered for annual multi- trip policies plans
  • Standard compensation: £25000 personal accident, £10M medical, £2M personal liability
  • Only covers recreational sports (professional practice of a sport is not covered)
  • Dedicated customer service according to reviews
Get quote
logo staysure£40,02
  • Winter sports cover to be purchased as add- on on comprehensive travel insurance plan (from £20,72 p/person)
  • Cover winter sports equipment up to €500, for delayed equipment up to €300, ski passes up to €250, piste closure up to €200, avalanches delay up to €160
  • No limit in medical expenses and repatriation under comprehensive travel insurance cover
  • Very easy and clear 100% online quote system
Meet a local agent
Ski travel insurances comparison

Prices above are for a 7 days single trip to Europe with ski cover for a 30 years old people.

What does ski travel insurance cover?

Travel insurance for ski holidays should include:

  • specific cover for your sport activity
  • must-have features you need in any travel insurance.

If ski is included as standard in your travel insurance policy, carefully check limits and excess amounts that you will get / need to pay in case of claim.

Specific ski cover that you could get

Travel insurances for skiers usually include:

Ski cover optionsAverage amount
Ski equipment (ski pairs, boots, poles) damaged or stolen£500 – £2000 if owned£200 – £750 if hired
Off-piste cover (as long as you are with an experienced guide)Included
Avalanche delays (if you can't ski because there was an avalanche)£150 – £750
Piste-closure (if you can't ski because piste are closed for more than 12 or 24 hours)£200
Ski-pass (if yours is stolen, lost or damaged and you need to purchase a new one)250
Specific cover for ski travel insurance

Note that if you injure someone else during your sport practice, you may not be covered unless it is clearly mentioned in your policy booklet.

Must-have features your ski travel insurance should cover

CompensationAverage amountGood to know
Medical expensesFrom £5M to £10M
(depending on your medical situation and your destination)
  • Injury due to my sport practice included
  • Stays in private hospitals included
  • Pay for medical fees upfront
  • Accompanying person fees (extra travel, accomodation, car rental)
  • 24/7 free-of-charge and UK-based assistance landline available
  • Overseas assistance
RepatriationReal fees
  • Transportation mode included (by alternative schedule flight or by air ambulance)
  • Repatriation under the supervision of a nurse or a doctor
Trip cancellation / curtailment£5000 – £10000
(depending on your destination)
  • As standard or as option
  • List of valid reasons for cancellation (e.g. ski competition postponed)
Baggage or personal belongingsMinimum of £1500 limit
  • Valid for return transportation or entire stay
  • Receipts of belongings needed
  • Limit by valuable item
  • Sport equipment (ski pairs, boots, ski poles) covered as standard or as option
Missed departure, delay Minimum £500 limit (minimum £200 limit for delay)
  • All justified reasons to qualify for compensation?
  • Number of hours of delay to qualify for compensation
Personal liabilityAverage £2 million limit 
  • Limit by article or valuable
  • Don’t focus on overall limit only
Legal expensesAverage £15000 limit
  • Lawyer appointment fees included
Must-have features of travel insurance

Always carefully check the age limit and compensation amounts as well as deductibles you’ll have to pay in case you need to make a claim. For medical expenses, always get your insurer to accept them before paying if you need to advance fees.

As nice-to-have features, you may want to get in addition to your ski travel insurance included features:

  • business trip insurance
  • emergency dental treatment
  • loss of passport or documentation
  • gadget cover
  • Schedule Airline Failure (at least £1500)
  • money and cash cover.

Can I get ski travel cover if I have pre-existing medical conditions?

Of course you can. 

The best option would be to purchase a pre-existing medical condition travel insurance tailored for your holidays, and add a ski cover option if not included as standard.

If you purchase ski travel insurance or any other insurance without disclosing your medical condition, that is called “fronting”. Your claim can be invalidated by your insurer, such as your entire travel insurance policy.

Can ski travel insurance be included if I purchase an annual multi-trip or a single trip policy?

Short answer: yes, it can be.

Ski, as many other sports, can be included as standard or purchase as extras on both single and annual multi-trip travel insurance policies. 

You will need to specifically dig into insurers policy booklets to see which activities are covered as standard. 

As a reminder:

Travel insurance typeExplanation
Single trip insuranceThese travel insurance policies are for one-off holidays. 
You will be covered from the start of the journey until the end.
You can decide the number of days you want to be covered for. 
Annual multi-trip insuranceThese policies are made for frequent skiers going away for ski holidays several times a year. 
You would need to check whether it is more competitive to buy two or three single trip insurance policies or an annual multi-trip policy.
Types of ski travel insurance policies

Do I need to buy specific ski travel insurance?

It depends on the travel insurance policy you purchased. This will be clearly outlined in your policy booklet.

If you haven’t bought your ski travel cover yet, we would advise you to go for an insurer providing specific cover for ski equipment, competition etc. either as standard or as full option for an extra fee.

How much does ski travel insurance cost?

You will find below indicate travel insurance price including ski cover:

Age rangeSingle trip to Europe*Annual multi-trip to Europe
18 – 35£21,86£47,01
36 – 54£29,00£29,00
55+£32,07£32,07
Ski travel insurance price

*Quotes above are for a 7 days ski holidays.

It is, however, quite difficult to give precise ranges of how much a travel insurance will cost for you as prices are based on a wide range of criteria. It will mainly depend on:

  • How often will you ski
  • If you are going on single ski trip or annual multi_trips
  • If you purchase other upgrades in addition to your ski cover such as gadget cover
  • If your teen has pre-existing medical conditions
  • The duration and destination of your stay
  • The financial limits you’d like to get in case of a claim
  • The excess amount you’re willing to pay.

What else should I check before purchasing my ski travel cover?

While shopping around for sport_name holiday insurance, always pay attention to:

  • The compensation amounts you will get for each claim (especially personal belongings compensation limit if ski is included as standard in your policy)
  • The deductible amounts you’ll have to pay in case of claim (don’t forget that extreme sports or hazardous activities lovers often need to pay extra medical excess if they got injured whilst practicing their sport) – opt for excess waiver cover if you are practicing adventurous sports
  • The exclusions you may have in your policy
  • The claim process (100% online? How many days do you have to make a claim?)
  • The maximum duration of each trip included as standard (at least 31 days)
  • The upper age limit (if you are a senior travelling).
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