Phil Smith

Ski Insurance What You Need To Know For 20/21

One of the most talked about subjects for this coming winter is ski insurance.


As always you should read your policy carefully. At Snoworks we’ve been trawling through all the various policies on offer, asking questions and getting some great info on what’s on offer for this coming season. We’ve made it our mission to know as much about ski insurance as we possibly can. We want you fully prepared and covered for this coming winter season. It’s our mission to help you at every level and help to get you skiing this winter with confidence.

So here we go with all the variable.


The FCO, or since September 2020 now known as the FCDO, the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office, regularly change their advice for visiting countries. As everyone knows this advice is currently changing by the month, week, even day. Don’t travel, do travel, don’t travel, do travel, travel but only if essential. So you must keep your eyes open for regular changes. There are three levels of advice:
1. Safe To Travel
2. Advised against all but essential travel
3. Advised against all travel

Some insurance companies DO NOT cover you if the advice is either 2 or 3. But many insurance companies DO. Yes DO and unknown to many you can get cover even if the advice is NOT to travel (level 3). OK many people will ask why travel when you are advised not to travel, so you need to take this into account. Many people travel to areas where there is conflict, war, unrest and so on, so it’s quite common for people to travel even if advised not to by the FCDO. Research carefully. But rest assured you CAN get insurance at all levels of FCDO advice.

Check: You may book your holiday along with insurance when the FCDO say it’s safe to travel and after you’ve booked the FCDO change their advice. Which they can and do. It can even change a few times prior to travelling. You need to check that you are covered. There ARE insurance companies out there that may NOT cover you and in this case. “Hey! I booked when it was safe to do so and now it’s not, you’re saying I’m not covered.” CHECK. DON’T book insurance with one of these companies, you can get caught out and some people unfortunately have. Some people have even been caught out when the FCDO advice changed mid holiday. Not the best way to retain customers!

There ARE insurance companies out there that WILL cover you whatever the advice and WILL cover you if the advice changes, especially mid holiday. We know, we’ve done our research. Make sure you do as well. Book with a company that WILL cover you WHATEVER the advice.


You will want to know if you are covered or not. There are companies that DO cover you for Covid 19 and companies that DO NOT cover you for Covid 19. It’s a big area so read the policy. Covered if you catch it before you travel, not covered, covered if you catch it at your holiday destination, not covered. Covered for repatriation, cancellation, medical expenses, not covered. Check it all out. There are companies that cover you for EVERYTHING but may NOT cover you for skiing. “Oh no! I thought I found the perfect company then I discovered no skiing cover, what can I do?” Don’t forget you can supplement cover with Carré Neige when you buy your ski pass if skiing in the French Savoie area. So yes, why not combine covers and get yourself covered from head to toe. Don’t forget until 31st December you also have your EHIC when traveling.


Off-Piste skiing continues to to be a mystery for a few insurance policies. Of course for those in the know, it’s NO problem. You need to make sure your insurance covers you for off-piste, ideally with or without an instructor or guide. Some insurance policies will only cover you if you are with a qualified instructor or guide so make sure you read the policy. Snoworks level 4’s upwards need off-piste cover. If you’re a level 3 and a fast learner you may also need off-piste cover. Even if you do not think you will be skiing off-piste it can still be good to have cover just in case, you never know and you may want to keep your options open. Of course if you have no intention of skiing off-piste then it’s not needed but make sure you know. Check. You can always supplement your insurance with a Carré Neige when you buy your ski pass if skiing in the French Savoie area, see below. Our advice, get insurance to cover you off-piste when skiing with and without a guide.


We know age is relative. We’ve climbed and skied off the top of volcanoes with skiers in their mid 80’s and carried teenagers off slopes with fatigue after skiing down a blue! So in this day and age it’s not how old you are, it’s how old you feel. But for insurance companies that’s irrelevant. What is your date of birth? That’s all they want. Check. It’s normally over 60 but can vary. Again over 60 NO problem, off-piste NO problem. Hunt around and find the right insurance for you.


Everyone can get insurance but you may be required to declare previous or existing medical conditions. Check the small print. The last thing you want is an insurance refusing to pay out. Some insurance companies are great and will support you. A missed point here or a missed point there. But some will do anything to get out of paying so don’t leave any page unturned. We are all busy and sometimes we just rush through things and do not have the time. It’s only when the ‘you know what’ hits the fan so to speak, that we wish we had spent more time checking through stuff. So please check.


The easiest and probably the most fool proof thing for 90% of skiers to purchase if skiing in the French Savoie is take out Carré Neige when you buy your ski pass. For €3.70 per day you have full cover on the slopes including all off-piste that is accessible by ski lift. If you are ski touring away from the resort it does not cover you but there are insurance companies that DO.

In our office we’ve read many insurance policies and continue to do so. If at any point you are unsure or have a question or would like to bring something to our attention please give us a call or drop us a line. We are constantly updating our advice so your feedback is essential.

Be confident you CAN get FULL cover for EVERY eventuality on and off the mountain. TOTAL Peace of mind allowing you to focus on your skiing and making the most of your skiing experience with this winter.

NOTE: we are not a qualified insurance broker/provider so are unable to give advice on specific policy details but we will try to point you in the right direction as a result of our own searches.  We do not have information on every policy and provider and you need to make your own decisions on the type of cover you need.

NOTE: The information presented is how we saw it at the time of writing on 9 October 2020. The views expressed are personal views only and could therefore be open to error and misinterpretation. Please research and read all terms and conditions of all insurances policies thoroughly.

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Season 20/21 Your Questions Answered