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Getting the right insurance for a ski vacation

By SmartCoverage Team on February 22nd, 2018

At last, we’re onto the last few months of winter, but for winter sports enthusiasts this means squeezing out every last drop of winter fun. Whether you’re hitting the slopes in Whistler or bombing the hills of Blue Mountain you want to make sure you and your travel companions stay safe.

There are between 10 and 12 million active skiers and snowboarders nationwide, and although resorts won’t reveal their actual number of injuries per year, a report by the National Ski Area Association (NSAA) reveals an annual average of 48 catastrophic and 44 fatal injuries for the 2016/17 season alone. Of course, accidents happen, but with the right insurance coverage, you can make sure that you aren’t left with the headache of medical bills, as well as an injury.

Pre-packaged insurance won’t cover you

Often people don’t think they need to buy travel insurance because their credit card provider offers travel insurance as a complementary add-on, or as part of a fee, for customers. This kind of coverage comes as one size fits all and definitely will not offer the kind of support you need if you are embarking on an extreme sports vacation.

Extreme sports add-on

This should go without saying, but be sure to declare that you will be partaking in an extreme sport when purchasing your travel insurance package. Yes, this will see your price go up, but it will also ensure that you have the right kind of coverage. It is vital that you are honest with your insurer from the outset; if you fail to declare this it could void your insurance.

Your provincial insurance will only cover so much

While it is a no-brainer to take out an insurance policy if you are travelling to another country for your winter retreat, many people don’t think insurance is a necessity if they are staying in Canada. Although you might assume that your Government Health Care Plan (such as OHIP) has your back, in reality, provincial healthcare has limitations on what it covers. For starters, it will not pay for emergency ambulance among other things.  

These limitations vary from province to province, so double check to see what you’re covered for.

Baggage Insurance

If you’re an avid skier, then chances are you are travelling with your own, beloved skis. The one thing you don’t want to happen is for your equipment to be damaged or lost during transit. Ski equipment can be worth thousands of dollars, and very difficult to replace last minute.

People often forget non-emergency insurance, but baggage insurance is a wise decision for any kind of vacation-especially in the case of a ski trip. Imagine landing at your destination without the thing that the whole trip is centred around.

Consider comprehensive Winter Sports insurance

With some insurers, while declaring you are going skiing will have you covered for that sport, what happens if you get to your lodge and decide you want to try some tobogganing? If your resort offers more than one activity that might spark your interest, perhaps talk to your insurer about the option of a more comprehensive package.

Keep the drinks for Après ski

You know how they say don’t drink and drive? Well, the same goes for skiing too. Of course, everyone wants to relax and unwind on vacation, but make sure you keep that glass of vino for after your ski session.

Alcohol severely impairs your ability and in turn, can land you in danger should you embark on a skiing venture while under the influence. Furthermore, if your insurer discovers you were impaired at the time of an accident, it can void your insurance altogether.

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