If we had to come home early, would our partner/companion be able to cancel their holiday too? What if the flight is delayed (when isn't it?) or our baggage is stolen?
It's all to easy to just take whatever policy is offered to us when we book our holiday, either at a High Street travel agent or a gay-specific company. But don't! Have this checklist in front of you and shop around - it could make a lot of difference.
What kind of policy do you need? Many people buy insurance every time they travel. However, an annual policy can be significantly more economical. Check if the company offers you annual cover.
What are the premiums and the extent of cover? Some policies may be cheap but they're next to useless if they don't provide you with adequate protection. Ask about the levels.
Are you interested in a two year policy? They are out there but can lock you in for two years with penalties if you want to leave. This means that if a better deal comes along during this time, you don't have the flexibility and choice to take it. Not a good idea! A better alternative is to buy a policy that gives you a lower premium when you renew. In other words, a 'thank you'. Then, you have all the flexibility you need.
If you choose an annual policy, is there a maximum number of days in a year that you can travel? If so, shop around - it's perfectly possibly not to be limited in this way.
What is the excess? This is the amount that you have to meet if you make a claim, before the insurance kicks in. If you have a medical condition, this can be high and put you off seeking medical attention.
Does the policy fully respect same sex relationships so that you partner is treated in the same way as a spouse? If not, and one of you has to return home, your partner might not be able to claim.
Carrying this point on, does the policy treat same sex parent families equally? In our quest for equality, we mustn't forget that an increasing number of lesbians and gay men are or want to be parents.
Are you offered a special couple premium? This can work out to be significantly more economical than having to take out two separate policies. Check if a special rate is available on single trip as well as annual policies.
If you want to play sports when you are away, are they covered? If they are more risky, there may be an extra premium to pay. Check what this is.
How can you book your insurance? Can you do it all in one phone call and pay by debit/credit card? Can you pay by cheque? Can you go to a web site and pay on line? If so, are you paying through a secure server?
Is the company gay owned and gay run? This may not matter to you. However, would you feel more comfortable or like to support a company that understands the issues we face? Have they got a track record of providing this service to us or could they be jumping on the band-wagon? This can be especially important if you are HIV+, where experience and confidentiality are important.