Travel insurance for holidays in Barbados

Cheaper Barbados travel insurance? Look no further.

From beaches to beach bars, rum shacks and markets in Bridgetown, Barbados can be many things. It's the hangout of millionaires and surfers alike but can be costly, especially if you like to party with the great and good. So you'll need a great value travel insurance that won't blow the holiday budget before you get there. This is the place to find it.

We offer a choice of great value policies that will give you all the benefits and cover you'll need, depending on the way you like to travel. So if you have Barbados in your sights for a Caribbean holiday of a lifetime with the family we can cover all of you at a price that's fair, even if one or more of you has a medical condition or is over 70. Our Superior policy will give you up to £10 million emergency medical expenses and gadget cover – as well as cancellation, loss of baggage, documents and money - whilst our Economy policy still offers all the basics but will save you a pretty penny. Either way, all our policies will give access to 24/7 emergency assistance wherever you are in the Caribbean.

So don't go without us!

Get a quote for your family holiday now...

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Your quick guide to travelling in Barbados

Official language(s):
English

Currency:
Barbados Dollar (BDS)

Capital:
Bridgetown

Emergency Services:
Ambulance: 511
Fire Department: 311
Police: 211

Dialling code:
+1 246

Getting around: get yourself a new licence

Barbados is just 21 miles long and 14 miles wide so there are no great distances to travel once you get there. While you can reach almost every part of Barbados by bus it is great fun to rent a Mini Moke (a kind of open top jeep) and explore by yourself. The coast road that runs along the east coast is wild and beautiful.

But before you can put your foot down you'll need to get yourself a Barbados Driving Licence. You can obtain one by showing your valid National or International Licence at any authorised car hire company. The cost for a visitors permit is US$5 for a 2-month permit and US$50 for a 1-year permit.

Weather: the sunshine island!

If you like sunshine then Barbados is the place for you! On average Barbados has over 3,000 hours of sunshine every year! The weather is generally sunny and warm all year round with an average day time high of 30°C / 86°F. If that sounds too much then don't forget that the steady northeast tradewinds will keep things cool a lot of the time.

Barbados' dry season lasts from January to June, but even in the wet season showers may be brief and pass quickly. Barbados is too far to the east in the Atlantic to be at much risk from hurricanes, with the last serious strike in 1955.

Beaches: your right to enjoy the sea and sand

Barbados has 60 sandy beaches and access is free to all of them. In fact the locals consider it their right to roam on any of the country's beaches – and that means you can too. The east coast is wild, with roaring Atlantic surf, whilst the west coast is more protected with white sanded, palm fringed beaches. The south coast has more white sand as well as coral reefs that protect the beaches from the waves. In the north the coastline is rugged, with high cliffs and the occasional cove.

Currency: it's a fix!

The Barbados dollar is fixed to the US Dollar at the rate of $1.98 BSD to $1.00 USD so it's value never changes – if you are converting US Dollars. However, that also means that the fortunes of your spending money may well fluctuate if the US Dollar performs badly against the pound.

US Dollars are accepted almost as widely as the BSD, along with most major credit cards. If you need it there are ATMs all over the island and most banks open from 8am until 3pm Monday to Thursday and from 8am until 5pm on Friday. The Barbados National Bank at the airport is open form 8am until the last flight departs or arrives, seven days a week.

Visas and charges: getting in and out

If you travel to Barbados on a UK passport you do not need a visa to enter the country unless you intend to work or study in the country. However you must have a valid return ticket and a valid passport before you will be allowed in. Also, it's worth remembering to check that the departure tax of BSD 55 is included in your airline ticket price. Otherwise you'll need to keep some cash back for when the time comes to leave.

Crime: be vigilant

Barbados is a peaceful island but in recent times there have been a number of high profile attacks on British visitors, which has led to the FCO issuing a warning to be vigilant, take care when out, avoid isolated places and don't carry large amounts of cash or wear visible jewellery.

The FCO advice says: "The majority of visits by British nationals are trouble-free. However, incidents of violent crime including murder do occur. There have been serious attacks on foreign visitors, including armed robbery and sexual assaults, as well as opportunist thefts of wallets, handbags, jewellery and personal possessions. Firearms and other weapons have been used in some of these attacks. Victims of sexual assaults have criticised the Barbados authorities' response, including the level of support received."

In the unlikely event that you do have something stolen, remember that your valuables, possessions and cash are all covered when you insure with World First.

Get a quote for your travel insurance – including gadget cover.

Electricity: adapting to local currents

Taking an appliance on holiday with you? Electricity in Barbados is 110 / 230 volts 50 cycles which means you'll need an adaptor to use your UK electrical device.

Many hotels will be able to loan you an adaptor if you haven't brought one.

Drugs and customs: don't go under cover

There are severe penalties for all drug offences in Barbados, so it would be wise to take any prescriptions with you if you will be carrying medication and to take all the usual precautions with carrying parcels and bags and doing your own packing. Also it's well worth knowing that it is an offence to wear camouflage in Barbados.

If your medication is lost or stolen while you're away, we'll cover the cost of replacing it under the medical section of our policies.

Taking medicines for a medical condition? Get a quote now.

Healthcare: do you need vaccinations?

While you don't need specific vaccinations required for visitors travelling to Barbados, you should be up to date on your routine immunisations, including tetanus-diphtheria, measles, mumps and rubella. Yellow fever vaccination certificates are required for travellers, over one year of age, travelling from infected areas.

Healthcare: medical services in Barbados

There is a health agreement between the UK and Barbados which covers people who are ordinarily resident in the UK. Under this agreement, UK residents on temporary visits to Barbados are eligible for emergency healthcare under the state health scheme on the same terms as Barbadian residents. If you become ill you should show your passport.

However, this agreement does not cover repatriation costs if you need to return to the UK in an emergency due to health concerns, which is why we always recommend taking out a travel insurance policy with good emergency medical cover in case of a serious emergency.

Looking for medical cover? Get a quote now.

Smoking: don't light up in public!

Smoking is not permitted in public places in Barbados. You should never smoke in areas where second-hand smoke is likely to affect other people. If you are caught in violation of this law you will face prosecution and if convicted may be subject to a fine, imprisonment or both.

A public place is defined as a building, place, structure or facility that is owned, controlled, managed or occupied by the Crown or a statutory board in Barbados, a place, site, building, factory, plant, workplace or other structure that is fully or substantially enclosed and a library, museum, auditorium, historic or other site of archaeological or national significance.

Beaches are not normally be considered public places, so smoking is permitted.

Barbados: Know Before You Go

For up to the minute travel news that doesn't make the headlines, check out the Foreign & Commonwealth Office's website. Their Know Before You Go site has information on all risks to all travellers in more than 255 countries and territories around the world.

See the latest information at Know Before You Go HERE.

Follow the FCO on twitter HERE.

Thinking of taking more than one holiday this year? Save with our annual travel insurance.

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