17/01/2018, Joanne Louhaich, Managing Director
A new year, another winter holiday and a chance to dust off your skis and hit the hills. Yet with more and more of us taking to the piste rather than the pool, it might be time to look at your insurance cover, because chances are, your current winter sports policy may not be enough, and remember, the cheapest deal isn’t always the best.
The number of people cutting back on their policies is alarming. According to the ABTA and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, (FCO) around 31% of Britons heading off to the slopes aren’t checking their insurance. A risky business when you consider that around 50% to 70% of snowboarders are likely to be injured out on the slopes, with young men between their teens and their 30’s being the most at risk of having a snowboarding accident.
More than half of winter sports holiday makers over the age of 65 don’t consider their cover before they head off on their hols. Meaning they could leave for the slopes under-insured if the worst was to happen.
Other statistics confirm how important it is not to gamble on having the right winter sports insurance. Over the last three years (in the U.S) there have been 45 winter sports related deaths reported to the FCO and people that are injured on or off piste can be counted in the many thousands.
It’s a great idea to take a quick look at ABTA’s website about winter sports travel insurance before you go away to ensure you and your party get the most out of your holiday.
ABTA offers a wide range of helpful holiday tips if you’re thinking of brushing up on your skiing, snowboarding or other skills this winter. Funny enough, the key area ABTA suggest you check first is your holiday insurance and do shop around for the best deals. You can call us or drop us a line. Our staff are well equipped for helping you find the right policy just for you. Having that extra peace of mind means you can relax and enjoy yourself even more during your winter break.
We’ve come up with our own 5 easy steps to make sure your next holiday is your best one yet.
Keeping fit means, you’re less likely to hurt yourself if you have a tumble on the slopes. Make sure you are exercising regularly and eating healthily on the run up to your winter getaway. Most skiing professionals will encourage you to focus on leg exercises.
It’s always best to make sure you are kitted out with the right equipment before you go. Check before you by that your kit is approved, padded and fits you properly. Make sure your jacket is padded well and comfortable, you’re going to be wearing it a lot!
You might want to invest in googles with changeable lenses for high and low visibility conditions while you’re out on the slopes. Ask the shop staff to help you to choose everything you need. They will be very knowledgeable and willing to offer advice! A quick tip: borrow your kit if you can or shop around on eBay for good second-hand skiing equipment. It will be a lot less expensive as shopping for skiing kit can be hefty on your pocket. Or, even better, rent it!
Just because it’s winter and bitterly cold, doesn’t mean to say the sun you under won’t have any strength to it! Newbies to skiing tend to forget and wonder why they have a sun-burned face. The sun’s strength is increased dramatically because of the rays reflected off the snow. Most people don’t use enough sunscreen on the slopes so make sure you apply plenty.
Many people make the mistake of simply going out on the slopes and skiing even when they haven’t done it before. Of course, you can do this, but you run the risk of having a serious accident if you’re not experienced. Take some skiing lessons before you travel and make sure you have an instructor booked when you’re on holiday. That way you have with someone who knows the slopes your own and will ensure your safely skiing.
It’s a good idea to look at the piste map of the resort you’re considering before you book the holiday. Simply because you can decide whether the slopes will be right for your level of skiing experience and ability. If you are deciding to take your holiday in Europe. Slopes are marked out in standard colours which are right across all resorts. The easiest ones are marked as green. The next for moderate skiers are marked out as blue. Red are for intermediate skiers and the black marked slopes are only worth taking to if you are very experienced.
Before you get on that plane this winter we recommend you read carefully through your winter sports insurance policy. Don’t forget, it’s not just the risk of breaking your leg on the slopes that the right insurance will cover you for. Lost lift passes, slopes being suddenly closed off are all common issues that even the most experienced skiers come across. If you’re taking a lot of expensive kit with you, you will want that covered too if anything happens to it while you’re away.
If you have any questions, or would like to change your cover, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. We are more than happy to help with any queries you have.
The FCO also offer a useful guide to avoiding injury and medical costs. You can find it at www.gov.uk/guidance/winter-sports-stay-safe-on-the-slopes.
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