Health insurance, liability insurance, equipment insurance – do you really need all these policies for a short ski holiday? Not every insurance policy is absolutely necessary for every holidaymaker. Others, however, can save skiers from high costs. Therefore, winter sports enthusiasts should always check before their holiday which ski insurance policies are really worthwhile and, if in doubt, take out appropriate cover. SnowTrex shows which ones are.
Why insure at all?
The following horror scenario: You come back from your lunch break at the hut to the ski racks and find an entirely different pair where you left your skis. Someone has stolen your skis, intentionally or unintentionally – it doesn’t matter. They are gone and you are annoyed. Not only that, the ski day is over at this time.
Another scenario: you crash into another skier on the slope. Torn trousers or damage to the ski are the annoying result. In the worst case, there is personal injury. Then you or other skiers may need medical attention. There is a risk of costs for transport, treatment, and compensation.
Sometimes things go badly. The ski breaks, a pole gets stuck in the lift, or you forget your ski goggles next to the tiled stove, and they melt. You can and should insure yourself against all these cases before your skiing holiday.
Insurance at a glance
Of course, the above-mentioned cases do not frequently happen, but accidents can happen at any time. And regardless of what your skiing ability is, and it is precisely in this case that it is important to be well insured.
Because if you haven’t taken good precautions, in the worst-case scenario you will not only be faced with a ruined holiday, but also with high costs. A solid insurance package for the skiing holiday therefore makes perfect sense. But which policies are really necessary?
That can’t be answered for everyone right away, but insurance is always useful when it can get expensive in an accident situation or your health is otherwise at risk.
The most important ski insurance policies are, therefore:
- a (foreign) health insurance
- liability insurance
- insurance against material damage
- travel cancellation insurance
- if necessary, travel interruption insurance
It’s the small print that counts
Before deciding which insurance makes sense in an individual case, you should check your insurance policies. Most people already have liability insurance or health insurance. But this does not automatically mean that you are covered for every eventuality on a skiing holiday.
- It is therefore critical to always check the small print:
- What exactly does your insurance really cover and how much?
- Is there an excess?
- Does the cover also apply abroad?
- What about outside the European Union?
- Sometimes policies explicitly exclude certain “risk sports”. This can include winter sports such as skiing or snowboarding.
If an insurance policy does not cover the damage in the event of a skiing accident, it makes sense to take out additional insurance.
Check your health insurance for cover abroad
It is essential to check your existing health insurance carefully: Although the statutory insurances also pay for accidents in other European countries, they only pay for the costs that would also be incurred in Germany – you have to pay for most of the rest yourself. It can be even pricier in non-European countries. Most health insurances do not cover these countries. Especially in popular skiing countries such as Canada or the USA, the costs for a simple treatment can quickly skyrocket if you are not well insured.
For most skiers, travel health insurance is therefore worthwhile. Even if no accident happens, skiing is much more relaxed knowing that you are covered in case of an emergency.
Protects you from high costs: liability insurance
But you don’t always injure yourself in an accident. Of course, no one intentionally causes damage to other skiers, but occasionally a little carelessness is enough to injure another winter sports enthusiast. What happens then?
Theoretically, liability insurance will cover you in such cases. But here, too, it is advisable to check your policy carefully. Are skiing accidents also covered? What about accidents in non-European countries?
Because with material damage, possible salvage and (long-term) treatment costs for the injured person or even compensation for pain and suffering, a minor accident can quickly become expensive without the right cover.
Protecting expensive equipment: material insurance
Unexpected costs can arise not only for injuries, but also for equipment. From skis and poles to helmets, ski boots or ski goggles – the costs can quickly add up in the event of material damage.
Of course, there are general policies against material damage that take effect in this case. But not everyone has such insurance for everyday use. In fact, there are also special policies for ski equipment that can be very useful – especially for skiing holidays with the family – and save a lot of money and hassle in the event of damage or theft.
To solve the theft of skis and boards more effectively, the crime prevention department of the Austrian Federal Criminal Police Office has developed a simple and inexpensive measure: the secure ski pass. It looks like a normal ski pass, but it is not suitable for riding the lifts; it merely looks like a real ski pass. The special feature of the card is that it contains practical tips on how to prevent theft as well as space to enter the individual characteristics of the winter sports equipment such as serial number, make and colour. This helps when filing a report and makes it much easier for the police to find a stolen ski.
For all eventualities before the trip: Travel cancellation insurance
Especially if you are going on holiday with your family or a group, you can also benefit from travel cancellation insurance. The more people travelling together, the more can happen beforehand. Someone can get sick or injured beforehand, so you have to cancel your winter holiday at the last minute. This means that, in the worst case, you have to pay not only the cancellation fees, but the entire travel costs. With travel costs, accommodation costs and ski passes, this can quickly add up without travel cancellation insurance.
For all eventualities during the trip: travel interruption insurance
Trip interruption insurance even protects ski holidaymakers if they have already started their trip and suddenly have to cancel it. So even then you are not left with the travel costs. If you have to break off the trip prematurely, all costs incurred as a result are covered, for example for means of transport such as already booked flight or train tickets and accommodation. In case of doubt, this can amount to a large sum.
For freeriders: salvage insurance
The number of skiing accidents and avalanche accidents in most of the world’s ski resorts is fortunately at an all-time low.
Nevertheless, salvage insurance may be a sensible insurance for ski holidays, especially for freeriders who like to ski off-piste. After all, should a rescue operation actually have to be carried out, these can quickly become expensive.
These policies are included in many ski insurance packages and can thus offer useful additional protection.
What is better, individual policies or the all-round carefree package?
That depends on the individual case. Those who already have good individual policies that even cover accidents while skiing may only need special individual policies for winter holidays.
But anyone who finds that their insurance cover is incomplete, does not cover certain cases at all or does not offer any protection for holidays abroad should definitely think about ski insurance.
Both the German Ski Association and the German Alpine Association offer suitable insurance packages for skiing holidays. In addition, it is also possible to take out an all-round carefree package for all eventualities directly when booking the skiing holiday. These are often very cheap and actually offer all-round protection, especially for winter holidays.
This way, you don’t have to worry about possible costs and can simply enjoy your skiing holiday.
SnowTrex offers an all-round carefree package for all trips. This includes travel health insurance, travel cancellation and cancellation costs as well as loss of luggage. It is also advisable to take out the inexpensive ski and snowboard insurance.
With this protection, you can enjoy your skiing holiday without worrying!
FAQs on insurance
That depends on the individual case. Some have excellent policies that also protect against accidents on skiing holidays. But this is by no means true for all insurances. Some policies may have gaps or do not cover accidents abroad. Therefore, check your policies thoroughly and, if in doubt, take out a ski insurance policy.
Insurance is always worthwhile if an accident or damage can be costly. On a skiing holiday, travel health insurance, insurance against material damage and liability insurance are therefore recommended.
Helicopter operations in ski accidents are rare, but when they are necessary, it can be expensive. In particular, skiers who enjoy off-piste skiing should consider salvage insurance. Often these insurances are also included in ski insurance packages.
Unexpected things often happen – and so it can always happen that you have to cancel your holiday plans at the last minute due to illness or an unexpected incident. Especially if you are going on a skiing holiday with a large group or family, you can benefit from travel cancellation insurance. Because when many people travel together, a lot can happen. Travel cancellation insurance and, if necessary, travel interruption insurance can protect you from high costs in such cases.