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Extreme sports require maximum cover

16th August 2010 Print

Whether they are planning to Flashpack India, Island-Hop Thailand or explore New Zealand in a VW Camper during their gap year, like it or not, students are almost certainly going to find themselves making the most of cheaper extreme sports and adventure activities on their travels.

That’s why leading online travel insurance provider is encouraging parents to make sure their kids are fully covered – and know what they won’t be covered for – when they head off on their gap year. offers peace of mind for parents back home, with a 24/7 worldwide medical assistance helpline,* and a backpacker policy that offers cover for a wide range of extreme and adventure sports. Sarah Findlay, Online Marketing Manager explains why this is so important.

“The International Travel Insurance Journal (ITIJ) recently published a list of 15 activities frequently excluded from insurance policies,** and I’m pleased to say that’s Backpacker policy offers cover for 10 of these, including Scuba Diving, Abseiling and Canyoning. The policy covers more than 25 different sports and activities as standard, and can be tailored to cover up to 100.

"There are of course some sports that we cannot cover even through add-ons, as this would push up the cost of policies dramatically. And as we know gappers are usually on a budget, we want to make sure they can afford cover for most activities. So it’s important that they check their policy documents carefully, and familiarise themselves with what is and is not covered.

“Some of the more unusual sports for which does offer cover, which may sound to many parents like new dance moves, include Snow Kiting, Hydro Zorbing and even Heli-Skiing!

“Thankfully you are unlikely to know, until you see the photographic evidence, that your son or daughter has leapt from a plane, abseiled a 300 foot cliff or bungee jumped from the highest bridge in New Zealand. But, for some unfortunate gappers, the news of their latest escapade reaches their parents in a less palatable form - via a doctor at the local hospital.”

Sarah Findlay continues “For many students, a gap year is a once in a lifetime experience, and we believe gappers should take every opportunity going to make that experience one they'll remember for the rest of their life - for the right reasons! We understand that thrill seeking attitude and want our insurance to give them the freedom to have a fantastic time abroad - after all, gap year travellers have a reputation for thrill seeking to uphold!

“By making sure their adventurous offspring are fully covered for adventure activities and extreme sports, parents will be able to sleep easy back home safe in the knowledge that if something does go wrong, they won’t have to arrange or fund expensive medical treatment on the other side of the world. And they can stay in touch through the 24 hour helpline too.”

When buying Backpacker insurance, it is quick and easy to select extra cover for more extreme activities, as required, meaning you only pay for the level of cover the gapper needs.

ITIJ Frequently Excluded Activities:


Ice Hockey
Off-piste Skiing***
Scuba Diving

Not Covered:

Power Boating

* Helpline provided by ONE Assist Ltd, telephone number appears on the policy wording
**‘A Sporting Chance,’ ITIJ May 2010
*** Off-piste skiing is covered if you are within the boundaries of a recognised resort area designed for public use and are not skiing in areas marked out of bounds or hazardous by the piste authorities.

The Backpackers Travel Insurance policy offers tailor made and flexible cover for backpackers and gap year student, including:

• All destinations worldwide covered (unless FCO advises against travel)
• Up to 12 months cover
• Cover available for up to 100 hazardous activities at four different levels
• For backpackers up to the age of 45 years
• 24 hour worldwide emergency & medical assistance

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