Can UK nationals get valid travel insurance for Iran?
Replies: 36 - Last Post: Jun 10, 2013 11:44 AM Last Post By: stuartwholmes
Feb 3, 2013 4:23 AM
15I contacted Worldnomads when I was going to Iran and they confirmed they wouldn't cover it.
Flightcentre told us they would cover us for Iran (for reasons unrelated the travel warning) and their insurance policies are reasonably priced.
Ensleigh also told us over the phone they would cover us and we brought off them since we have used them before. Another staff member later told us we weren't covered so some conflicting information there! Luckily we didn't have to test whether we were covered.
I suspect with UK companies even if they will cover you it could be difficult for them to get money in Iran on the spot.
Another option is to ask tour companies who still offer trips to Iran which company they use. The comany Dragoman uses (sorry don't remembe the name) said they would cover us but wanted a detailed itinerary before quoting a price.
Feb 3, 2013 4:47 AM
16again, try bupa. you can chat to one of their people over the internet. and they will insure "war zones" so iran is far, far safer than this category. I used them last year, and again, will cost you much less than 400gbp.
Feb 4, 2013 4:26 AM
Try the above link, this is who my policy is underwritten by.
Feb 4, 2013 4:30 AM
18sorry wrong link, here's the real one. I was wondering is it so much cheaper for us in Ireland, because
A we have only a travel advisory not a travel warning, or ban
B Were a neutral country
C were drunk
Feb 4, 2013 4:33 AM
19AHHHHH as i pull my hair out!! Heres the real link, third time lucky
Wow and I'm not even drunk(yet)
Feb 4, 2013 10:19 AM
20There are western-based tour companies still offering group tours in Iran (as #15 alluded to) and they require each person to have insurance. It must, therefore, be obtainable and not at a really high cost or they would not be able to fill their tours.
You may want to contact several of those companies to find out who they recommend to their customers for insurance.
Feb 5, 2013 1:54 AM
21I have a lot of work to do now following up all these links - thanks everyone. In the meantime I was contacted by someone posting on TA, who has lived in UK for quite a while and now returned to Shiraz. He's just about to email me the policy documents for a different Iranian insurance company which he describes as being like the Halifax (a UK bank and I have an account there as it happens) and he recommends that I ask my friends in Iran for confirmation that this is a reliable and well-known Iranian company - i.e. not a scam, which I will do. Plus he just sent me his work email address, which my friends can also check. Hopefully then I can have complete confidence in taking his advice.
As someone already pointed out, it might be difficult for a European company to get me repatriated if they can't get money into Iran due to sanctions, so maybe using an Iranian-based company makes more sense because they would be ideally placed to arrange (and pay for) any emergency care + book me onto a new flight back to UK if necessary.
I'll post again when I've got more info. I think this insurance issue is so important, but on the other hand I don't think anyone should be put off visiting Iran - I've been told that some of the perceived problems with visas, etc, are about 'saving face' (by the Iranian governmennt possibly) - politics is a complicated business.
Feb 5, 2013 2:55 AM
Feb 5, 2013 5:10 AM
23Absolutely I will! It might take a couple of weeks though because I plan to make extensive checks before passing on any info. I have no interest in promoting individual companies until I'm sure that they do what it says on the tin, as our TV adverts say. I'll get my Iranian friends to check things as far as possible, but they're busy people with work to do and exams to take, etc, so it might take some time.
Now all we need is the definitive advice on exactly how a UK national can get a visa code + get it stamped into their passport, with the least possible trouble to ourselves and at the lowest possible cost. Maybe I'll make that my next project ...
Once again, thanks everyone!
Feb 7, 2013 2:44 AM
24Interim update from OP - an Iranian tour company called Incredible Iran has recommended 'Bimeh Iran' for travel insurance and they can arrange this for me + post the insurance certificate by Royal Mail in advance of my planned travel dates. So far, so good.
Will update later when my Iranian friends have confirmed that both Bimeh Iran and Incredible Iran are credible companies. I'm a very suspicious person ... but better to be suspicious than ripped-off. Will post new thread when I get confirmation that this is a good way to get travel insurance for Iran (or not).
Feb 9, 2013 6:18 PM
25So, is it a problem for a UK national to use ? >> http://global.ihi.com/
Feb 11, 2013 3:30 AM
26Not sure what you mean. If I've missed something, I'd be keen to hear about it. My Iranian friend confirms this is a trusted insurance company and is going to phone Incredible Iran this week to discuss with them - my friend is recently qualified as an attorney in Iran so will be checking small print. Incredible Iran (presumably) will find a way that I can pay them in advance. They've said that they will post the insurance certificate in advance of travel, by Royal Mail.
I hope I've covered everything and I can't see anything on the weblink to ring alarm bells but I'm anxious to know if I should check anything else because medical insurance is very important to me. Thanks for your help so far.
Feb 11, 2013 3:42 AM
27What wrong with using ‘Bupa’.
Try this link >> http://global.ihi.com/
Feb 11, 2013 5:01 AM
28Because possibly it would be cheaper and safer to use Bimeh Iran or other trusted Iranian company, than to book through BUPA - but I'm still checking all options recommended so far on LP TT. I'm lucky that I have help from friends in Iran - I've known them for a long time now and they have my best interests at heart. They wouldn't let me book my travel insurance with a company which didn't offer safe cover for foreign nationals.
My concern is not just about price, it's also about trust and knowing that you will be given best possible medical care in Iran and repatriated if necessary without the possible hassle of EU-based companies having trouble getting cash into Iran (to pay for a flight back to UK with medical assistance, etc, which could be very, very expensive).
Maybe you know something I don't .. if so, I'd be really grateful for more information so that I can ensure I have adequate insurance cover for my proposed trip to Iran, now delayed until September/October 2013.
If you know anything which might persuade me that BUPA would be a more reliable option than Bimeh Iran or other well-respected Iranian insurance company, I'd be happy to hear it.
Feb 13, 2013 11:48 PM
29I have two annual insurance policies: a BUPA one from work which is a freebie, and an Aviva one which comes with my bank account. Contrary to what people have said above, my BUPA policy will not cover me for countries where the FCO has advised against travel. The bank account one (1st Direct) will cover me as long as I obey "the instructions of the local authorities", i.e. not taking part in a riot or doing anything else stupid.
InsureandGo would also apparently cover me for £25 for my 11 day stay.
As I don't have friends in Iran, I 'd rather go for a UK-based option, so I don't have to worry about the language barrier.
Good luck in finding the right insurance policy for your needs!
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