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UK Travel Insurance: Market Dynamics & Opportunities 2019

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Published Date : Jul 2019

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No. of Pages : 47 Pages

UK Travel Insurance: Market Dynamics & Opportunities 2019


This report provides an in-depth analysis of the UK travel insurance market. It looks at market size and profitability as well as changes in premiums, claims, travel trends, regulations, and opportunities. It provides a thorough overview of the market along with future forecasts.

In 2018, UK travel insurance gross written premiums (GWP) contracted significantly, driven by a reduction in the number of policies written and a decrease in the average premium. In particular, the single-trip policy market contracted heavily. A drop in the number of trips abroad for this first time since 2012 was partly to blame for reduced policy numbers, combined with greater numbers of people traveling without insurance. Meanwhile the cost of claims increased, driven by rising medical claims costs. The number of complaints registered by the Financial Ombudsman Service also increased in 2018. The culmination of all these factors resulted in a poor year for the industry.


- UK travel insurance GWP contracted by 10.8% to 548.2m in 2018.
- Travel insurance claims costs increased by 4.4%, driven by a 6.9% increase in medical costs.
- MAPFRE was the largest personal travel insurance underwriter by GWP in 2018, with a 14.8% share of the market. AXA underwrote the largest number of policies.
- The UK travel insurance market is forecast to be worth 615.2m in 2024.

Reasons to buy

- Benchmark yourself against the rest of the market.
- Ensure you remain competitive as new innovations and insurance models begin to enter the market.
- Be prepared for how travel trends and the UK travel insurance market will be impacted by socio-political and economic factors over the next few years.
Table of Contents
1.1. The future of the declining travel insurance market is dependent on Brexit
1.2. Key findings
1.3. Critical success factors
2.1. Introduction
2.2. The UK travel insurance market declined in 2018
2.2.1. The number of contracts fell for both single-trip and multi-trip policies
2.2.2. Multi-trip policies increased their share of the market despite decreasing in number
2.2.3. Average premiums decreased for the first time since 2015
2.2.4. The influence of age on premium prices
2.2.5. Insurers must do more for individuals with pre-existing conditions of all types
2.3. Travel insurance and added-value bank accounts
2.3.1. Added-value accounts remain popular with travelers
2.3.2. The disadvantages of added-value account travel insurance policies
2.4. Travel trends among UK residents
2.4.1. Travel abroad by UK residents fell in 2018
2.4.2. Holidays remain the main purpose of traveling abroad
2.5. The influence of economic, socio-political, and health events on travel
2.5.1. The state of the UK economy has an impact on travel
2.5.2. The influence of exchange rates on trips abroad by UK residents
2.5.3. Social unrest in travel destinations
2.5.4. The effect of the Zika virus lingers on
2.6. Travel insurance claims and complaints
2.6.1. The number of travel insurance claims rose again in 2018
2.6.2. Medical expenses increased, outweighing cancellations in terms of claims costs
2.6.3. More airlines going bust and more drone incidents could increase cancellation costs
2.6.4. The withdrawal of EHIC may provide a boost to insurers
2.6.5. Travel insurance complaints increased significantly despite already being high
3.1. The structure of the UK travel insurance market
3.1.1. MAPFRE is the UKs leading travel insurance underwriter
3.1.2. AXA underwrote the highest number of policies in the UK
3.1.3. Nationwide was the most popular brand for travel insurance
3.1.4. Products offered by some of the leading providers
3.2. The affinity channel saw both entrances and withdrawals
3.2.1. The Co-operative Bank entered the travel insurance market in 2018
3.2.2. Age Partnership has also entered the travel insurance space
3.2.3. John Lewis and Tesco Bank withdrew their travel insurance in early 2019
3.3. Challenger banks are entering the market
3.3.1. Revolut launched GPS-powered travel insurance in 2018
3.3.2. Other challenger banks are playing catchup and playing safe
4.1. The future size of the market will depend on the Brexit negotiations
4.1.1. Current market forecast: UK travel insurance will grow in 2019 and then plateau
4.1.2. Market forecast: smooth Brexit process
4.1.3. Market forecast: hard Brexit process
4.2. Technological opportunities in the claims process
4.2.1. The claims process could be completed online
4.2.2. Replacing the claims system with automatic payments
4.2.3. Cashless systems remove the need for upfront payments
4.2.4. Virtual GP services could become commonplace
4.3. Technological opportunities beyond claims
4.3.1. AI could be used for customer service
4.3.2. Wearable tech could play a role in inclusivity
4.4. Compulsory travel insurance could affect the size of the market
4.5. The rise of the staycation could also be an opportunity
5.1. Abbreviations and acronyms
5.2. Methodology
5.2.1. Competitor rankings
5.2.2. 2017 and 2018 UK Insurance Consumer Surveys
5.2.3. Forecasting model
5.3. Secondary sources
5.4. Further reading

List of Tables
Table 1: UK travel insurance market GWP and annual growth rate, 2013-18
Table 2: Number of travel insurance policies written, 2011-18
Table 3: Average premiums and percentage change by policy type, 2012-18
Table 4: Average premium prices by demographic, 2016-18
Table 5: Total number of outbound UK visitors by destination (000s), 2013-18
Table 6: Visits abroad by UK residents by purpose , 2013-18

List of Figures
Figure 1: The UK travel insurance market contracted in 2018
Figure 2: The number of policies fell for both single-trip and multi-trip cover
Figure 3: Multi-trip policies continue to grow their market share
Figure 4: Single-trip premiums have slowly declined, while multi-trip premiums rose over the same period
Figure 5: Outbound tourism decreased everywhere except North America in 2018
Figure 6: Holidays remain by far the most popular reason for traveling abroad
Figure 7: The UK economy saw growth in 2018
Figure 8: Real wages are fairly stagnant in the UK
Figure 9: Foreign exchange rates remain low following the 2016 EU referendum
Figure 10: Spain remains by far the most popular travel destination despite a drop in 2018
Figure 11: The total number of claims increased despite declining claims for cancellations as well as baggage and money
Figure 12: Cancellations remain the leading reason for claims
Figure 13: Total claims costs increased, driven by medical claims costs
Figure 14: MAPFRE was the UKs leading underwriter by GWP in 2018
Figure 15: AXA underwrote the greatest number of policies in 2018
Figure 16: Travel insurance market GWP will rise in 2019, before plateauing going forward
Figure 17: GlobalDatas forecasting model

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