When you travel, either for business or pleasure, any number of things could go wrong. Flights can be delayed, luggage gets lost and health emergencies sometimes, unfortunately, can result in a need for urgent (and expensive) medical attention. If you are travelling in EU countries, you should always carry an EHIC card that you can get free, and that entitles you (as an EU resident) to reduced cost or free medical attention through the state medical system of the country that you are visiting. For all other eventualities, and if you are travelling outside the EU, travel insurance is essential to ensure your trip goes smoothly.
Considering the benefit that it can give you and the money it can save travel insurance offers great value. However, it is very important that you get all the cover that you need out of your policy, and therefore you should read the small print very carefully before signing up for a policy. As standard, you should expect to be covered for medical emergencies, flight cancellations and repatriation. Replacement of your important documents and your personal possessions are usually included in your policy, albeit subject to a small excess (typically £50-60). You should print out your policy documents and keep them somewhere safe on your person while you travel, because if you need to make a claim, you will usually need to make it within 12-24 hours of the incident occurring. If you have any concerns at all about the policy, call the insurer before you buy - this has the added benefit of testing out their customer service, a useful piece of research in the event of needing to make a claim from overseas.