I broke my leg horse-riding a few years back, and had this happen back home in Stoke on Trent, I would have been looking at an ambulance, an x-ray, a cast or surgery, and a night in hospital.
Instead, it happened while i was in Cape Tribulation in Far North Queensland, a vast expanse of terribly scenic rainforest and a couple of hours away from the nearest hospital. And I am honestly not at all sure how I would have coped without travel insurance.
It took three hours to get a doctor out from the nearest clinic, who splinted my leg with sticks and shot him up with so much Tramadol that in an hour-long jeep ride over riverbeds, gullies, and rocky fields I emitted only the single observation, “Is this what tripping feels like.”
The local hospital in Mossman did have electricity, which was nice. And the staff were lovely, which was excellent. One thing it didn't have at the time was an x-ray machine.
As it happens, the closest medical facility with one was in Cairns, another hour and half away. Had I been any further north in the rainforest, the only sane way to extract me would have been by helicopter. For a pilot, a co-pilot, a doctor and a paramedic to make the 4-hour round trip could of cost our insurers over £20,000.
If I hadn't had fully comprehensive travel insurance? Well, I would have been looking at thousands of pounds of medical expenses.
If you are thinking of going without travel insurance? DON'T, just go buy it.
Hopefully, you'll never have to claim on it, but if you do need it, you'll really need it.