If you’ve had a diagnosis of breast cancer, this is something you should mention to your travel insurer to ensure that you do not invalidate your policy.
Typically, breast cancer is not something that is automatically covered and insurers will want to know if you have EVER had a diagnosis, even if it was years ago. This does not mean to say that you will be declined cover or even charged more.
In our experience, it all depends on the stage of your breast cancer and current treatment regime when you apply.
How Much Does Travel Insurance for Breast Cancer Cost?
Insurers will want to assess your current health situation in order provide a quote that offers the right level of cover for your individual circumstance, and because everyone is different, there is no set costs for breast cancer travel insurance, and prices will vary from person to person.
There are certain factors that will increase the premium like having a recent diagnosis, a spread beyond the breast and if there is any planned treatment, but over time, if surgery and/or treatment are complete and as you need to see your doctor less and less, often premiums begin to decrease.
Where you intend to travel to can also make a big difference to the cost of insurance. Read our Travel Insurance Destinations Guide for further information.
You can declare breast cancer using our in-built medical screening facility right here online – it’s really simple and only takes a few minutes, and if you get stuck, you can always call us.
I’m Currently Having Breast Cancer Treatment, Can I Get Cover?
Taking hormonal treatment like Tamoxifen tablets or Herceptin is common and should not affect you being accepted for cover, but being on Chemotherapy or Radiotherapy can be a bit trickier.
That said, providing your doctor is happy for you to travel and you are planning to take your trip during a break in treatment, then it is certainly possible to get to cover. However, under these circumstances we’ve found that insurers are more willing to offer cover when travelling to areas within Europe as opposed to further afield destinations such as USA, Canada and the Caribbean.
It's unlikely that Annual Multi-Trip insurance that includes cover for breast cancer will be available whilst treatment is planned, and insurers much prefer to offer single trip cover until medical conditions are fully stable.
There are also cover restrictions that you need to be aware of, such as no or limited cancellation and curtailment cover if you receive an appointment or treatment which conflicts with your planned trip, or as a result of the awaited treatment or investigation you become unable to travel.
Can I Fly Whilst Taking Tamoxifen and Herceptin?
You are still permitted to fly if you are undergoing treatment with Tamoxifen and Herceptin, although you should always notify your doctor or oncologist of your plans.
This can affect the type of breast cancer travel insurance policy you get quoted for, and you will be asked about this during our Medical Screening process.
If you are undergoing this sort of treatment, you find it beneficial to wear travel socks and drink plenty of water to keep hydrated on the flight and remain comfortable throughout. This is because the effects of Tamoxifen can be thrombotic, and a pressurised aircraft cabin may not be suitable if the effects are particularly severe.
Again, you should talk to your oncologist about this for more information. Patients who use Tamoxifen may also want to take a look at our flying with deep vein thrombosis page.
Can I Travel with Metastatic Breast Cancer?
Sometimes known as ‘secondary breast cancer’, people diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer can travel abroad, and should always declare this at the earliest opportunity before getting quoted on travel insurance policies.
The diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer often inspires people to want to travel more and embark on ‘bucket list’ trips of a lifetime.
As long as your doctor or oncologist permits you to travel, you can attempt to take out a breast cancer travel insurance policy following this type of diagnosis.
Metastatic breast cancer travel insurance can be acquired as long as the insurance provider deems that the risk of any issues taking place aren’t too severe – although you should expect premiums to be higher due to the level of cover they will be expected to provide.
Travel Insurance After Breast Cancer
If you’re treatment has finished and you’ve been given the all clear, you’re probably questioning why you still need to declare breast cancer and if you even need take out cover for a condition you no longer have?
Firstly, if you’re cancer was diagnosed 3 plus years ago with no secondary’s, and you’re not taking any cancer related treatment whatsoever, nor have you seen a doctor about the cancer in the last 12 months, then it’s unlikely that the travel insurance providers on our panel will increase their premiums.
However, they will still include cover for breast cancer which is a great benefit! Having a breast cancer travel insurance policy means that in the unlikely event that cancer reoccurs, or you need to make a medical claim that indirectly relates to cancer or the treatment you once had for it, i.e. brittle bones or lymphedema, you will be covered and can travel with peace of mind knowing there that are no gaps in your insurance.
How Soon Can I Fly after a Mastectomy?
This varies depending on your individual case.
Some people have been known to fly as soon as 2 weeks following a mastectomy, but your doctor’s advice is absolutely critical here. Irrespective of medical advice, you should also consider how you are feeling within yourself post-mastectomy.
No one knows your body and how you feel physically as well as you do, so you should always make a careful consideration before boarding long-haul and even short-haul flights.
A mastectomy is a major operation that can take many weeks to recover from – so it’s important to wait as long as you feel you need, with medical advice in mind, before planning your trip.
Again, if you’ve undergone a mastectomy, your travel insurance will be affected, so it’s important to let your insurer know the finer details so they can tailor your policy to suit you.
The charity, Breast Cancer Care, also provide some good information about Travelling Abroad With Breast Cancer.