ABC of Travel Insurance



You have made the perfect itinerary , planned everything from hotels to flight to local transport immaculately and you are ready to fly to your dream destination. Wait for a second..Are you realy ready to fly?  Have to taken a travel insurance ?
Travel insurance is one of the last things people have on mind when planning a trip. I have heard from many people that taking a travel insurance is a wastage of money.

NO is the answer. Shit happens on travel so its better if we are prepared. God forbids , you might be having the best romantic walk with your girlfriend in Paris and suddenly you slip and break your leg.If you are not insured then let me assure you , you will not only spend the entire money saved for the vacation but hospitalization abroad can break your bank balance.

Never travel without a Travel Insurance. Your travel insurance not only covers medical expenses but also many things which you might have to face during your travel.

So lets see what makes a good travel insurance. If you are looking for a travel insurance check whether your travel insurance covers the following or not :

1. Total Insured Sum (Medical Expenses) : This covers medical expenses you might incur if any mishaps happens. The minimum coverage you should take is $100000. While buying a travel insurance check whether it covers Medical Evacuation or not. Its very important to check medical evacuation for any travel insurance. Remember if you are doing anything stupid like hurting yourself after getting drunk or doing adventure sports then your travel insurance might not cover the medical expenses. In cases of adventure sports most of the travel insurance companies offer an add-on , so buy that if you plan to do adventure sports.

2. Total Loss of Checked-in Baggage : We hate this but sometimes we have to face the hard fact of travelling - Loss of checked in baggage. According to SITA Baggage Report 2016 , 6.5 Bags were lost per 1000 passengers. So why to take a chance. In case of total loss of your checked in baggage you can use your travel insurance to claim the amount so that you can buy the essentials on your holiday. Ensure your travel insurance covers atleast $500 .

3. Baggage delay : After taking a long flight we always like to freshen up and get into our favorite pants. What is your baggage is delayed . Travel insurance can cover you. Most of the travel insurance gives you a coverage upto $100 if your baggage is delayed for more than 6 Hours.

4. Trip Cancellation & Interruption : Travel insurance will save you from trip cancellation. Yes that's the power of a travel insurance. While buying the travel insurance check how much the travel insurance covers you for trip cancellation/interruption. Important : Ensure you read the fine print for this as some travel insurance companies pay you a flat amount if your trip is interrupted for minimum 6hrs/12 hrs  and some pay you hourly amount. Few travel insurance company will pay you incase of the trip is cancelled due to weather disruption.

5.  Missed Flight Connection : This is important if you have multiple flights. We often miss the connected flight and end up paying a hefty amount for booking a flight ticket at the last moment. This can end you with absolutely zero balance for your vacation. Check whether your travel insurance offers this, my suggestion is to take  a travel insurance which has atleast $500 coverage for missed flights.

6. Loss of Baggage and Personal Effects : We carry a lot of electronic equipment from iPad , iPhone to DSLR , lenses , action camera etc during our holiday. What if it gets stolen. We are in soup , but worry not a travel insurance can cover you in this case. When buying a travel insurance ensure that they cover you for stolen items and depending on the kind of equipment you would carry check the coverage they are giving. For me $1000 coverage is enough.

Don't Get a Policy which doesn't cover the above points

Few Important points to keep in mind while buying any travel insurance:

1. There should be a 24 hour helpline which can be called from any country
2. Medical expenses should cover cashless transaction in case of hospitalization
3. Availability of local agent through whom you can get any reimbursement of the coverage
4. Find out which coverage can only be settled when you return back to your home country

Most important Speak to the travel insurance company before buying the travel insurance don't just buy online as there might be many hidden clauses which might not be shown online.
Any insurance company survives on non-settlement of claims hence its absolute necessary to ensure your documentation is in place when you are traveling. Ensure you have digital copies of all prescriptions , take a picture of your suitcase/contents of the suitcase at the airport with date & time stamp , carry digital copies of bills of the electronic item.

Below is the example of a good travel insurance policy which covers most of the items. Validate from the below list before buying any policy whether your travel insurance comprises of the below heads or not :