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Student travel insurance

Heading abroad to study or travel? Maybe you're planning a gap year to study, or want to spend a few months backpacking.

Before you jet off, it's worth making sure you're covered with the right level of travel insurance. This is where we come in to lend a helping hand.

If you're ready, you can compare quotes now. Or, just keep reading to learn what travel insurance you should consider for your trip.

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Important information

Insurance products don't cover known events. These are major global incidents that can pose risks or disrupt travel, like the COVID-19 pandemic.

This exclusion applies if the event was a 'known event' when you took out an insurance policy. If you travel to a place with a known event, your travel insurance won't cover you. An example of this is the conflict ongoing in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

If you travel against Foreign, Commonwealth and Development (FCDO) advice, your travel insurance won't cover you. The same goes for failing to meet your destination's entry requirements.

What is student travel insurance?

Student travel insurance is a type of travel insurance designed for registered students who are studying abroad.

Student travel insurance provides all the things you'd expect from a standard travel insurance policy. For example, baggage cover and emergency medical treatment. But, it can also provide cover for academic-related problems, such as the cost of course fees in certain situations. Phew.

What does student travel insurance cover?

  • Emergency medical treatment, if you need to receive emergency medical treatment while you're abroad.
  • Course fees if you're studying abroad. These fees may be covered by student travel insurance if you need to cancel or interrupt your studies for an unforeseen event. For example, illness.
  • Repatriation, if you have to return home to the UK due to illness or injury.
  • Travel disruption, if you can't travel due to bad weather, mechanical problems, or strikes.
  • Baggage and personal items, if your personal belongings are accidentally damaged, lost, or stolen.

What's not covered by student travel insurance?

  • Manual and volunteer work. Student travel insurance usually excludes working while you're abroad. For this, volunteer travel insurance might be a more suitable option.
  • Travelling against FCDO advice, if the FCDO advises against travelling to a certain country, but you go anyway.
  • Alcohol and drugs, if illness, injury or death occurs due to the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Skiing or extreme sports. If you want to do high-risk activities as part of your travel, like rock climbing, you'll need specialist cover like activity travel insurance.
  • Undeclared pre-existing medical conditions, if you need to receive treatment for an undeclared pre-existing medical condition.
  • Malicious or illegal behaviour, if something happens as a result of malicious or illegal behaviour you do, such as breaking the law.

How much does student travel insurance cover?

The price of your student travel insurance is dependent on your personal circumstances, as well as the nature of your trip.

Let's take a look at how much your student travel insurance could cost, depending on which insurance policy type you select:

Can I get a student discount on travel insurance?

If you're a registered student, some insurance providers might offer you a discount to take out a policy with them. But, it's important to keep in mind that the cheapest policy might not be able to give you the level of cover you need. So, it's important to compare policy details as well as prices.

1The cheapest price for a single-trip travel insurance policy. Based on a 20-year-old with no pre-existing medical conditions, travelling in Spain for 1 week. Confused.com data, June 2024.
2The cheapest price for an annual multi-trip travel insurance policy. Based on a 20-year-old with no pre-existing medical conditions travelling in Europe. Confused.com data, June 2024.
3The cheapest price for a backpackers travel insurance policy. Based on a 20-year-old with no pre-existing medical conditions travelling in Europe for 1 month. Confused.com data, June 2024.

Choosing the right student travel insurance policy

Backpackers travel insurance

If you want to go backpacking, backpackers travel insurance could be a suitable option. This type of policy can cover multiple countries on a trip lasting 1 to 18 months, and offers more comprehensive cover than a standard policy.

This makes it ideal for long-term backpackers.

Gap year travel insurance

Gap year insurance is ideal for students and young adults wanting to take a year out to travel.

It can provide cover for extended trips lasting up to 18 months, and can cover everything from medical emergencies to certain types of work.

Volunteer travel insurance

Thinking of volunteering abroad? Volunteer travel insurance insurance can cover you for certain types of work abroad, including manual work and work involving animals.

This insurance is ideal for students planning to volunteer during their travels.

Group travel insurance

If you're travelling with more than one person, it might be more affordable to take out combined cover with group travel insurance

This policy can provide cover for all members of the group, making it ideal for friends travelling together.

What policy add-ons can I get?

There are a few policy add-ons you can consider including on your policy for an additional cost.

Let's take a look at them:

Winter Sports insurance

If you plan to ski or snowboard, you'll need to think about a winter sports add-on. Standard student travel insurance doesn't provide this cover. But, a winter sports add-on can. For example, it can cover things like losing your ski pass, or needing mountain rescue.

Gadget insurance

If you're taking expensive tech with you, you might want to add gadget cover to your standard student travel insurance policy. This way, you'll be able to have the peace of mind your electronics are covered against loss, theft or accidental damage.

Adventure insurance

If you're planning to do certain types of high-risk activities while you're away, like rock-climbing or scuba diving, you might not be covered by standard travel insurance. If so, it could be a good idea to consider adventure travel insurance.

Cruise insurance

Student travel insurance doesn't usually cover cruises. So, if you're setting sail on a cruise you might need to add cruise cover to your travel insurance policy.

Top tip: read the policy terms and conditions carefully before buying, so that you'll know what policy add-ons you need.

Does student travel insurance cover studying abroad?

Yes. Whether you're going abroad for a year or just a term, student travel insurance can cover you financially while studying abroad.

Student travel insurance might be a requirement of your university or college for studying abroad. And, in certain countries, like Cuba, it's compulsory to be medically covered as part of your visa with travel insurance.

It's generally not legally required when studying abroad. But, a student travel insurance policy can give peace of mind before and during your trip.

Will my university cover me for doing part of my course abroad?

It's possible that your university could cover you for studying abroad through their own travel insurance policy.

But this can vary from university to university. In some instances, you might find that the coverage level offered by your university's travel insurance policy isn't enough to cover you completely.

Here's a few things to consider:

  • Check if your university provides cover. Speak with your university to find out if you'll be covered by their travel insurance policy.
  • Read the policy details. If you're covered, read the policy's terms and conditions carefully. There might be certain exclusions that affect you, such as cover for emergency medical treatment, or your tech equipment.
  • Think about your needs. Depending on what your university offers, you might find that you need a higher level of cover. For example, if you plan to travel after your studies, or you want to participate in adventurous activities.

If you find that your university's travel insurance isn't suitable, you could consider taking out a personal policy. This can ensure that you have the level of cover needed for your personal circumstances and travel plans. Sorted!

What our travel insurance expert says?

"Studying abroad is a great opportunity to experience a different culture, learn a new language, or explore the world. But, being away from home for longer periods of time comes with increased risk. Having the right student travel insurance policy could give you peace of mind that if anything happened, you're covered."

Alvaro Iturmendi - Confused.com travel insurance expert
Travel insurance expert Confused.com logo

How to compare quotes

Tell us about your trip

Head over to our quote page to begin.

Then, select what type of travel insurance you'd like, and let us know what region you're planning to travel to. 

Tell us a bit about you

We'll then need some information from you, like any pre-existing medical conditions you might have.

We'll also need to know if you'll need additional cover, and if you want to include anyone else on the policy.

Compare quotes

Now, you can begin comparing quotes to find the travel policy that best suits you.

And, if you take out travel insurance through us, you can get an eSIM with up to 2GB of roaming data*. Yay!

*eSIM comes with pre-funded credit and the amount of data received in exchange will vary based on the specific country you select. Compatible devices only. T&Cs apply.

Does student travel insurance cover working or volunteering abroad?


Student travel insurance won't typically cover working abroad. But that doesn't mean that you can't participate in volunteer activities, or get a part-time job while you're away. If your trip is going to involve volunteer or manual work, you might want to consider working abroad travel insurance, or volunteer travel insurance.

It's important to check VISA requirements for the country you're travelling to before taking on any work during your trip. If you're going abroad for academic purposes and have a student VISA, it might not cover working abroad. Or, it might have a limit on how many hours you can work per week.

Can I get student travel insurance if I have a pre-existing medical conditon?

Yes, you should be able to get student travel insurance with a pre-existing medical condition. Pre-existing conditions include things like diabetes or heart conditions or other illnesses or injuries that you've been diagnosed with and received treatment for.

If you have any pre-existing conditions, there's a chance that your student insurance travel policy could cost more. This is because insurance providers might consider you to be at a higher risk of needing to make a claim.

If you're unable to find cover, don't panic. The Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) has a directory of travel insurance providers with Money Helper. The providers included can offer cover to those with pre-existing medical conditions.

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