Sports injuries abroad costing Britons £55m a year

11th September 2013

Britons accumulated medical bills totalling an average of £55million per year, after injuring themselves playing sport on holiday, new research from Direct Line travel insurance has revealed.

Some 31 per cent of Brits have taken part in sporting activities and of these people, one in four have experienced an injury.

Thirteen per cent were lucky enough to escape with just cuts and bruises, however one in ten ended up with ligament damage or a sprain. Six per cent broke a bone or dislocated a joint and an unfortunate five per cent suffered deep cuts or lacerations. Three per cent suffered concussion or a head injury.

Some 78 per cent of those injured required medical attention to treat injuries.  Over half (58 per cent) had to cover the cost of the treatment themselves, with 12 per cent having paid more than £100 and four per cent having had to spend over £250.  One in ten waited until they returned home to seek medical attention.

Tom Bishop, head of Direct Line travel insurance says: “It’s fantastic to see that we are such an active nation, but with one in four Britons who play sports on holiday getting injured, this research highlights the importance of comprehensive travel insurance. Medical bills and any resulting delays returning home can be very costly, and sports such as skiing, may require additional cover, so travellers should check they have appropriate cover before setting off.”

Direct Line sporting activity checklist which is suggests people should check before they go on holiday.

·         Travellers should check the list of covered activities in their travel insurance policy documentation and bear these in mind when booking any last minute activities when away on holiday.

·         If travellers intend to partake in an activity not outlined in their policy booklet, they should call their travel insurer who may be willing to cover the activity for an additional premium.

·         If would-be sports enthusiasts are taking sports equipment away, they would be wise to think about additional insurance if the value exceeds the single item limit on their travel insurance policy. Travellers may find their home insurance covers it.

Top 10 sporting activities whilst on holiday

1.      Cycling

2.      Tennis

3.      Golf *

4.      Water skiing / wakeboarding

5.      Horse riding

6.      Go-karting *

7.      Scuba diving

8.      Canoeing / kayaking

9.      Quad biking **

10.  Skiing / snowboarding *

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