I was not aware that people travelled abroad without insurance unless one has limitless funds...don't suppose our Queen bothers!! Recently a dear friend went from UK to Tenerife and suffered a brain haemorrhage over there. They flew him back in air ambulance at a cost of about $30,000 (Plane, nurse, doctor etc) Sadly he died soon after getting back to UK. The point is that if he was not insured his wife would have had to take out a second mortgage to pay the air costs...
so as I say, I would not venture abroad without cover.
Best wishes from Coach