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Many of our members are experienced travellers and need little advice. But, it’s a subject that is regularly mentioned in the Support Group. Navigating travel insurance when you have lung cancer might seem daunting, but it’s entirely doable with the right guidance. Every patient's circumstances are unique and, therefore, this advice is intended to be for guidance only. Patients should make sure they do what is right for their own situation.

Some of the links referred to below are to Travel Insurance Explained | Putting Customers First


Holidaying with lung cancer may require some extra planning, but it’s well worth the effort for the joy and relaxation it can bring. Speak to your cancer care team to ensure you’re fit for the journey, especially if you have brain mets. They can provide a health status letter, crucial for insurance claims and accessing healthcare abroad, although there may be a charge.

Raymond and his family in Canada

When planning your holiday, think about booking through a travel agent, especially if you're concerned about the possibility of needing to cancel your trip. Our members have found that using a travel agent can significantly simplify the cancellation process. While good medical travel insurance is crucial, managing cancellations on your own can be complex and time-consuming. A travel agent can handle these difficulties on your behalf, often making it easier to recover your travel costs without the hassle. This service can be particularly valuable for anyone dealing with health uncertainties, ensuring that you can book your holiday with greater peace of mind. Check that the travel agent is abta/atol registered.

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Timing the booking of a holiday and taking out travel insurance can sometimes be awkward if you are waiting for scan results or for a procedure. Sites like can be useful as you can often cancel the hotel without penalty. This might be relevant if you are booking a UK holiday. Some airlines offer flexible tickets but at a cost.


Pack an up-to-date prescription list and necessary medical documents if you’re travelling with injections or controlled substances. Keep your medications in your hand luggage to avoid loss. If you're on TKI medications, remember some can heighten sun sensitivity; pack broad-spectrum sunscreen, wear protective clothing, and increase your fluid intake to stay hydrated. Check the entry regulations for medications into your destination country to avoid issues at customs - these regulations could be quite onerous and complex.

Government advice on taking medicines in or out of the UK  HERE.

Adjusting your medication schedule across different time zones can be tricky. Plan this adjustment with your healthcare provider before your trip to ensure continuity in your treatment.

Carry enough medication for your trip plus extra in case of delays, and always have a written summary of your medical condition and treatment details. This should include contact information for your doctors, details about your diagnosis and a medication schedule to assist any local healthcare providers if necessary.  You might find this form is useful FORM.

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For UK residents travelling in the EU, the GHIC provides access to state healthcare at reduced costs but does not cover all medical or repatriation costs. Complement this with a comprehensive travel insurance plan to cover additional health issues not included under GHIC. 


Apply for a card HERE.

​​Many travel insurance providers either refuse to cover some medical conditions or quote a premium that can often cost more than the cost of the holiday. Seek out specialised insurers who provide coverage for medical conditions.  These companies are often recommended by healthcare communities because they understand the intricacies of cancer treatments. They provide policies specifically tailored for cancer patients, ensuring you receive the coverage that matches your unique health situation.


Ian in China

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When seeking travel insurance, it's important to understand how insurers define "terminal." In most cases, this term refers to patients who are expected to live for 12 months or less, although some policies may specify a shorter period, such as 6 months. This definition can significantly impact the type of coverage available and the benefits you might be eligible to claim.

If the Insurer asks whether you have a terminal condition, you should ask them to define what they mean by terminal.  They should ask whether you have been given a prognosis of less than 12 (6) months.

Rick & Lois in Copenhagen

Having direct discussions with insurers may be more effective than completing online forms, especially when explaining complex conditions like ALK+ lung cancer. Phone conversations allow you to comprehensively explain your health status and treatment regime, ensuring the policy covers all necessary aspects, particularly if you are being treated with targeted therapies.

Answer all questions honestly and fully.  Failure to do will invalidate the policy.

All changes in health after taking out travel insurance must be notified to the travel insurance provider on both annual and single trip cover FURTHER INFO.


Emma and family


When arranging your insurance, it's important not to overlook the potential benefits of including your family in your policy. While family travel insurance may not be right for everyone, it can offer significant peace of mind if it aligns with your travel plans. Such coverage ensures that your loved ones are also protected against unexpected changes in travel plans due to your health conditions. Always check with your insurer about the availability and terms of family coverage to determine if it's the right choice for your situation

Deb in France

Don’t settle for the first quote you receive. Speak with several insurers to find the best deal. Always scrutinise the fine print carefully, particularly concerning medical repatriation, which can be crucial in emergencies. Comparing different options will help you understand which policy offers the most comprehensive coverage at the best value. Look for reviews and ratings of insurance providers to gauge their service quality and reliability.


Kevin & Lynne in South Africa

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Joanna in Italy

Using a credit card to pay for the holiday gives an added layer of protection. If you rely on travel insurance provided by your bank, check that pre-exisitng conditions are covered.

Make sure that you have copies of all booking receipts in case you have to make a claim. Take screen shots of any relevant text messages ,eg flight delayed FURTHER INFO.


Members of the charity’s Facebook Support Group can search “Travel Insurance” and read what other members have posted about their experiences.


Click  HERE to view a presentation, arranged by EGFR Positive UK, by an insurance provider that specialise in medical conditions.  The charity has no involvement with the company.

Below are some insurers you could try (we do not endorse these and there are many others).

Anyone with lungs can get lung cancer.

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