Arranging a trip overseas to any destination is exciting, but it’s especially so if you’re planning to visit vibrant Dubai and indeed, the UAE in general. As one of the world’s top tourism holiday hotspots, this desert destination offers so much to solo travelers, couples, honeymooners, and families alike, so small wonder then that millions visit for an Arabian adventure each year.

The UAE is a safe, clean, virtually crime-free destination, so the need for Travel Insurance might not always be apparent, however the various benefits that policies can provide (such as medical insurance benefits), make it still a must-have purchase for any planned visit.  

What Type Of Travel Insurance Policy Can I Buy For Dubai and the UAE?

There are two types of Travel Insurance:

  • Single Trip: providing cover for a single trip with a defined start and end date.
  • Multi-Trip/Annual: providing cover for multiple trips in any one year, this is an annual policy based on a rolling 12-month period. 

What Is Single Trip Travel Insurance?

As the name suggests, Single Trip Travel Insurance is a policy designed for a one-off, short-stay holiday. If you go on holiday once a year only this could be a perfect policy for you, as it’s the cheapest travel insurance option, but travel more than that and it could be false economy. So it’s always worth carefully considering your plans for the year ahead and getting the cover that best reflects that.

What Are The Advantages Of A Single Trip Policy?

The benefits of a single trip travel insurance policy include: 

  • Cost: if you’re only planning to go away once in the year then covering a single trip is probably the cheapest option. 
  • Economy: cover can be arranged for the trip length so you only pay for what you need.
  • Timing: cover starts upon purchase which is a plus if you are forced to cancel your trip early for any reason. 
  • Suitability: typical single trip policies don’t have upper age limits or restrictions so if you’re an older traveller this could be a key factor for you. 
  • Flexibility: single trip policies can be purchased to suit the type of holiday you’re going on. Think dedicated winter sports policies or a policy with golfing coverage versus a policy to cover your citybreak where you’ll be sightseeing only. 

What Are The Disadvantages Of A Single Trip Travel Insurance?

  • Value for money: if you find yourself travelling more than once in a year, you’ll need to purchase multiple policies resulting in a total spend that’s likely to exceed that of a single annual policy.
  • Hassle:  you’ll need to plan and purchase an insurance for every trip taken. This likely will involve shopping around to find the best cover at the best price and if you have to do this for each and every trip then it could be a source of last-minute stress! 
  • Timing: get this wrong by buying your policy after you’ve booked your trip, and you could be ineligible to claim if you need to cancel your plans. 
  • Inflexible: you’re stuck to rigid dates of travel so if your plans change and you decide to extend your trip, you’ll need to arrange another insurance.

What Is Multi-Trip Travel Insurance?

Multi-trip travel insurance, also known as Annual travel insurance, is a popular alternative to the single trip policy. Again, as the name suggests, it’s designed to cover multiple trips in any one year (a rolling 12 months from date of purchase/specified inception date) and it’s a convenient, stress-free way of ensuring you’re always insured, whether your trip is planned or spontaneous.

What Are The Advantages Of A Multi Trip Policy?

Multi-trip or annual travel cover could be a good choice if you’re planning to make two or more trips over a 12-month period, however it might not be the best solution for a one-off holiday.
Benefits of a multi-trip or annual policy include:

  • Peace of mind and flexibility : spontaneous, last minute trips can be taken with confidence knowing you’re fully insured and without the hassle of having to arrange cover every time
  • Value for money: with one cost no matter how many trips you take, overall it can prove cheaper than paying for multiple, single trips
  • Tailoring: with a wide range of insurance providers offering a whole host of policies and cover options, you’re able to choose what suits you best in terms of territorial limits (geographical zones), standard cover or higher limits, and activities available (golf/skiing/climbing etc).

What Are The Disadvantages Of A Multi-Trip Travel Insurance or Annual Policy?

Whilst there are several advantages to having an annual policy, there are a few things to look out for. These include:

  • Trip restrictions: typically, most policies will have a cap or restriction on the trip duration, and this is generally 31 days. Put simply, this means that each trip cannot exceed 31 days (or the date specified in the policy). If you intend taking a longer trip, there are policies available with trip lengths of 60 or even 90 days, so shop around the market.  
  • Alignment to activities: if you plan on taking similar trips in terms of places and pastimes, then an annual or multi-trip cover could be good for you. However, if variety is the spice of life and you like to enjoy the beach in Barbados, desert dune-bashing in Dubai or skiing in St Moritz, it probably makes more economic sense to take out a tailored specific single trip policy that will reflect the region you’re visited and the activities you’ll be undertaking.

About Author

Rachel Al Mughairi

About Author

With over 34 years in the international insurance industry in a variety of senior management roles, and as holder of the Diploma in Insurance from the Chartered Insurance Institute, Rachel surely knows her insurance! With experience in London, continental Europe and the Middle East, Rachel is here to share her knowledge and help you understand more about insurance products in this easy-to-understand series of videos and blogs.