Tourist faces thousands in medical bills thanks to tiny detail on insurance

A tourist visiting Thailand has wound up in a hospital after a motorbike accident left him with serious injuries including a fractured skull, broken ribs and a punctured lung.

Adam Davies, from Pembrokeshire, South Wales, is now facing thousands in medical costs that aren't covered by his travel insurance after failing to read a tiny detail on his policy.

The 28-year-old was holidaying on the island of Ko Tao when he was involved in a road collision on Boxing Day. His sister Jessica Davies, 30, said he came around a bend and went "straight into an electric pole" and remains in a Koh Samui hospital.

Jessica and her brother Adam Davies.
Jessica Davies is urging others to check their travel insurance after her brother Adam Davies wound up in a Thai hospital. Source: Facebook

"He has sustained multiple injuries including a fractured skull in 3 places, bleed on the brain, punctured lung, 5 broken ribs, a fractured clavicle, broken scapula, fractured ankle and other minor injuries," she wrote on a GoFundMe page set up for her brother.

"His insurance has failed to pay out, meaning he is left to find the funds himself to pay the mounting bills which will continue rising, as long as he stays in hospital."

Missed detail in policy 'small print'

While her brother had worldwide travel insurance, the policy — taken out though Lloyds Bank — would not pay for medical expenses as he'd been away from the UK for more than 31 days, Ms Davies explained to BBC. It's understood Mr Davies' policy was valid for one year but required him to return to the UK after 30 days before travelling again.

"It was something in the small print. He took out an insurance policy that enabled him to travel worldwide, that's how it was sold. But it would only insure him for one country for 31 consecutive days," she explained. She's now urging other travellers to be aware of the "small print" noting "nobody really reads it".

Island of Ko Tao in Thailand.
Mr Davies was in Thailand on the island of Ko Tao. Source: Getty

Money raised for medical costs

Ms Davies started a GoFundMe page with hopes to raise £15,000 ($26,336) which would cover her brother's medical costs. It hasn't been revealed what the cost is yet, but ongoing treatment is likely. The family has already surpassed their original target and has raised over £22,000 ($38,605).

Mr Davies' parents have flown to Thailand from Wales to be with their son at their own expense. Any leftover money raised after settling hospital bills will be donated to charity, Ms Davies said.

"We're just grateful that he has his life but his circumstances of being alone and hospitalised in a foreign country continue to have a lasting impact on his wellbeing and we're keen to minimise his distress," she said.

Aussies warned to know what they're covered for

With Aussies starting to spread their wings again, it's important they understand how travel insurance helps look after them, a spokesperson for Cover-More told Yahoo News Australia.

Unlike, Mr Davies' policy, "Cover-More travel insurance will cover the duration of your trip even if you are away from Australia for more than 12 months at a time," they said, however, all policies are different.

Because of this Cover-More urges travellers to understand exactly what they're covered for before leaving Australia. Motorcycle and moped riding cover is additional protection that can be added to your travel insurance policy for an additional premium.

"And if you can’t return home on your original date due to an unforeseeable circumstance outside your control (e.g. you are in hospital), the policy will automatically extend until you are physically able to travel home," they said.

Do you have a story tip? Email:

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter and download the Yahoo News app from the App Store or Google Play.