Sainsbury's Bank Travel Insurance Review: The Features You Need?

Sainsbury's Bank Travel Insurance Review: The Features You Need?

Extra perks like Scheduled Airline Failure, Delayed Departure and Trip Abandonment, plus longer trip lengths make this an interesting option to consider.

Good for

  • Baggage, Scheduled Airline Failure, Delayed Departure and Trip Abandonment on all plans
  • Longer trip lengths
  • Extended Gadget cover available

Bad for

  • No travel disruption option from comparison sites

Editor's Rating

4.0/5.0

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.

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Not only can you buy groceries from Sainsbury's, but you can also buy protection for your holidays with travel insurance from Sainsbury's Bank. Their comprehensive cover includes the standard Baggage, Emergency Medical and Cancellation, plus you'll get cover for Scheduled Airline Failure, Delayed Departure and Trip Abandonment on all plans. Read our review to learn about Sainsbury's Bank travel insurance features and prices—plus we'll explain the main differences between buying direct from the Sainsbury's Bank website versus buying through a comparison site like Compare Cover, to help you decide where to buy.

Choosing the best travel insurance for you will depend on factors like price points and features that you might find valuable. Please use the information in this review to help you understand the nuances of various plans to help you narrow down your options.

Sainsbury's Bank Travel Insurance Review: What You Need to Know

Sainsbury's Bank offers a range of holiday cover plans to suit a variety of budgets and coverage needs, from those looking to cover a cheap-and-cheerful holiday with a budget option for a cost less than £10, up to those needing insurance for more valuable holidays worth up to £7,500.

There are basically two ways to buy Sainsbury's holiday cover—direct from their website or from a comparison site like Compare Cover. What's the main difference? Basically, the plans offered from comparison sites are cheaper and, as a result, provide lower cover limits and have higher excess levels—that said, the most premium plan available from comparison sites ("Premier") offers higher limits across some categories than the cheapest plan available direct ("Silver"), despite a lower price (e.g., Premier offers £5k of Cancellation cover per insured person, but the Silver plan only provides £3k of Cancellation cover).

The Sainsbury's plan with the highest cover (£7.5k Cancellation and £3,000 of Baggage) is the Platinum plan, which is available direct from the Sainsbury's Bank website. Therefore, broadly speaking, those needing this level of cover would be best served buying the Platinum plan direct from the Sainsbury's website. Those who don't need that much cover may very well find a cheaper deal from a comparison site like Compare Cover. But see below to understand some of the other differences between plans bought direct or from a comparison site.

Are Mobile Phones Covered? Mobile phones are covered (up to £500 or £750) on all plans bought direct through Gadget Cover. If you buy through a comparison site you can add Optional Gadget cover to any policy to get £1k, £2k or £3k of total gadget cover (max £500, £750 or £1,000 per item), depending on the plan. This will cost you on the order of £12 to £64, depending on level of cover and type of plan. Similarly, the regular Gadget cover that's already included on plans bought direct can be increased to these higher levels, but it will cost a bit more than on the comparison site—between £10 and £82.

PlansAdd-On Gadget Cover LimitPer Item LimitSingle Trip Add-on CostAnnual, Multi-trip Add-on Cost
Direct from Sainsbury's BankSilver£1,000£500£10£26
Gold£2,000£750£13£38
Platinum£3,000£1,000£22£82
From Compare Cover comparison siteEssential£1,000£500£12£21
Standard£2,000£750£18£36
Premier£3,000£1,000£22£64

To see a list of other companies that offer a gadget travel insurance add on please see our article, Travel Insurance Companies with Optional Gadget Cover.

Does Sainsbury's Bank Travel Insurance Cover Trips in the UK? Holidays in the UK are covered under Sainsbury's Bank Annual, Multi-trip policies, so long you have prebooked accommodation for a minimum of 2 nights.

Pre-Existing Conditions: As part of the online application you'll be asked a series of brief medical questions. If you have a medical condition, Sainsbury's Bank may be able to offer cover for some pre-existing medical conditions, for which you'll probably be required to pay a higher premium. Pre-existing conditions are only covered if they've been fully declared, accepted and paid for.

How do Sainsbury's Bank Prices Compare

Generally speaking, holiday cover from Sainsbury's Bank is around the average cost of travel insurance, with policies bought from a comparison site coming in below average and plans bought direct from Sainsbury's Bank coming in above the average cost, regardless of whether your travel plans will take to you Europe, America or elsewhere, as you can see in the following chart.

chart showing prices of Virgin Money travel insurance plans compared to the market average

Nectar cardholders can get a 20% discount on direct policies, making the plans from the Sainsbury's Bank website even more attractive. This discount does not apply to the premium for pre-existing medical conditions and enhanced gadget cover.

Insurance quotes can vary significantly from day to day and according to each individual's details, so please just use this data for general educational purposes only; your quotes may reflect a large degree of variation.

Cost of Sainsbury's Travel Insurance Add-Ons

per insured personEssentialStandardPremierSilverGoldPlatinum
SINGLE TRIP PLANS
Winter Sports
Worldwide£13£16£22£33£39£55
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.£11£13£17£28£33£45
Europe£6£7£9£18£21£28
Gadget
Worldwide£12£18£22£10£13£22
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.£12£18£22£10£13£22
Europe£12£18£22£10£13£22
Golf
Worldwiden/an/an/a£7£8£11
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.n/an/an/a£6£7£9
Europen/an/an/a£4£4£6
Cruise
Worldwide£5£6£8£12£14£19
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.£4£4£6£10£12£16
Europe£1£1£2£6£7£10
ANNUAL, MULTI-TRIP PLANS
Winter Sports
Worldwide£13£15£23£22£26£38
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.£10£12£17£17£21£30
Europe£6£8£11£16£19£27
Gadget
Worldwide£21£36£64£26£38£82
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.£21£36£64£26£38£82
Europe£21£36£64£26£38£82
Golf
Worldwiden/an/an/a£7£9£13
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.n/an/an/a£6£7£10
Europen/an/an/a£5£6£9
Cruise
Worldwiden/an/a£-n/an/an/a
Worldwide excl. USA, CAN, Carib.n/an/a£-n/an/an/a
Europen/an/a£-n/an/an/a

According to our research, the average cost of optional Gadget travel cover in the market is around £35 for Annual, Multi-trip policies and £13.50 for Single Trip policies, providing around £1,500 of total gadget cover on average.

Buying Direct vs Using a Comparison Site

Generally speaking, the cheapest Sainsbury's Bank holiday cover plans are available through comparison sites, whereas the plan with the highest cover is available direct from the Sainsbury's Bank website. Beyond that, there are pros and cons to both sources in terms of features and price points. We'll try to explain some of the differences to help you decide whether buying direct or through an aggregator comparison site better suits your particular needs. Below, you'll find a table detailing the differences in Standard excess, upper age limits and maximum trip lengths. You'll notice that these details are generally more favourable on plans bought direct rather than from a comparison site—depending on your needs and situation, these details may or may not be worth the added cost to you.

Differences between Direct and Comparison Site Policies

SilverGoldPlatinumEssentialStandardPremier
DirectComparison Site
Standard Excess£100£50nil£150£95£70
Upper Age Limit—Single Tripno upper age limitno upper age limitno upper age limit85 years85 years85 years
Upper Age Limit—Annul, Multi-Trip80 years80 years80 years75 years75 years75 years
Maximum Days per Trip—Annual62 days62 days92 days22 days32 days45 days
Maximum Days per Trip—Single94 days94 days94 days94 days94 days94 days
Maximum Winter Sports24 days24 days24 days24 days24 days24 days

Buying Sainsbury's Bank Direct

The travel insurance plans bought directly from Sainsbury's Bank offer a few perks not available on comparison sites, such as Travel Disruption (e.g., protection against travel and booked accommodation losses due to fire, flood, earthquake, storm, volcanic eruption, some strike, airport or Channel closures, etc.) and some Gadget cover (to help protect your mobile phone, etc.). In addition, for an extra cost you can add travel insurance add-ons like golf or wedding cover to plans bought direct. These add ons are not available from comparison sites.

There are higher age limits on direct plans—those up to age 80 can buy/renew an Annual, Multi-trip policies; there is no upper age limit on Single trips bought direct. (But expect higher prices for older travellers.)

Buying Sainsbury's Bank via Comparison Site

Generally speaking, the best deals on Sainsbury's Bank travel insurance can be found at a comparison site like Compare Cover. In fact, the three comparison site plans (Essential, Standard and Premier) are generally cheaper than the cheapest direct plan (Silver). If price is your priority, then buying from a comparison site will likely secure you the lowest premium on a Sainsbury's travel plan.

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Protect your holiday today. Quick quotes from over 45 insurers.

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Despite the comparison plans coming in at cheaper prices, they still include some level of cover for Baggage Delay, Abandoning your Trip, Scheduled Airline Failure and (except Essential plans) Missed Departure. While Gadget cover isn't included, it can be purchased as an add-on extra for £12 to £62, providing up to £1k, £2k or £3k of total gadget cover (max £500, £750 or £1,000 per item) depending on the plan. However there's no Travel Disruption cover and the excess is a bit higher on comparison site plans.

Bottom Line: If you're looking for a budget plan, CompareCover offers three different Sainsbury's Bank holiday cover plans with prices ranging from £9 up to £75 (for a healthy, 35-year-old, individual traveller), depending on geography and level of cover (Cancellation from £1,500 to £5,000). Those looking to insure more valuable holidays worth up to £7,500 might find a more suitable policy buying direct from Sainsbury's Bank, but expect prices to be up to 1.6X higher for the added cover of the top-tier direct Platinum plan (versus the top-tier comparison site Premier plan).

Types of Sainsbury's Bank Travel Insurance Policies

Direct from their website, Sainsbury's Bank offers three tiers of travel insurance—Silver, Gold and Platinum. From comparison sites they offer three different plans, which provide lower levels of cover as you can see in the following table—Essential, Standard and Premier. All are available for Single Trips or as Annual, Multi-Trip policies.

Sainsbury's Bank Travel Insurance Cover Limits

Key Benefits (up to)SilverGoldPlatinumEssentialStandardPremier
Available From Where?DirectCompare Cover
Medical emergency expenses£10 million£15 millionunlimited£10 million£12.5 million£15 million
Cancellation or cutting short your trip£3,000£5,000£7,500£1,500£3,000£5,000
Delayed departure£25 for each full 12 hour delay up to £250£35 for each full 12 hour delay up to £350£50 for each full 12 hour delay up to £500£25 for each full 12 hour delay up to £150£35 for each full 12 hour delay up to £250£50 for each full 12 hour delay up to £400
Abandoning your trip£3,000£5,000£7,500£1,500£3,000£5,000
Missed departure£300£1,000£1,250n/a£500£1,000
Personal baggage£1,250£2,000£3,000£1,000£1,500£2,000
Baggage delay£50 after first 12 hour delay up to £200£75 after first 12 hour delay up to £500£150 after first 12 hour delay up to £750£50 after first 12 hour delay up to £200£75 after first 12 hour delay up to £500£150 after first 12 hour delay up to £750
Personal accidentn/a£25,000£50,000n/a£7,000£10,000
Gadget cover£500£750£750optional extra
Personal money£400£500£750£300£350£500
Mugging covern/a£250£500n/an/a
Scheduled airline failure£2,500£2,500£2,500£1,500£1,500£1,500
End supplier failuren/a£2,500£2,500n/an/a£1,500
Travel disruptionn/a£5,000£7,500optional extra

Other Useful Information: Policy Wording

Comments and Questions

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.