What is Travel Insurance?
Travel insurance is a special type of insurance policy that safeguards you when you travel. It protects you from potential issues like your trip cancellation, luggage loss, medical expenses, or other unexpected losses. This coverage applies in both cases – whether you are travelling within India or going abroad.
Usually, travel insurance is taken on the day you begin your journey, and the coverage continues until you return to India. Buying travel insurance guarantees you full protection in case of emergencies while you are in another country. It is thus a smart move to ensure that you are covered when the unexpected happens during your travel.
Importance of Having Travel Insurance
When it comes to travelling, having travel insurance is crucial for the following reasons –
- Medical Emergencies
Travel insurance is like a safety net - if you get sick or meet with an accident while you travel, it covers your medical expenses. This becomes essential as finding good healthcare can be difficult in some places. When you have travel insurance, you don’t have to stress about the cost of getting the medical care you need.
- Trip Cancellation Or Interruption
Life can be unpredictable, and sometimes you might have to cancel or cut short your trip unexpectedly. And this is where travel insurance protects the money you have invested in your trip. If something like a family emergency or sudden illness comes up, you will not be left with a financial strain.
- Lost Or Delayed Baggage
When you invest in travel insurance, you will get reimbursed for lost, stolen, or delayed baggage. This ensures that you don’t have to worry about missing your important stuff while you are travelling.
- Flight Delays And Cancellations
Travel insurance will provide coverage for all those unexpected flight delays, cancellations and the extra costs that come with them, including accommodation, meals, etc.
- Personal Liability Coverage
If you, unintentionally, cause damage to someone or their property during your trip, travel insurance has got you covered.
- Emergency Evacuation
This policy takes care of expenses linked to urgent evacuation during natural disasters, political unrest, medical crises in remote places, etc.
- Travel Assistance Services
If you have travel insurance, you will get access to 24/7 support services, providing travel details, embassy contacts, and assistance in the case of emergencies.
- Adventure Activities Coverage
Most of the regular travel insurance plans include coverage for various adventure activities, ensuring that you are safeguarded during your exciting adventures.
- Legal Assistance
Travel insurance offers legal aid and coverage for unforeseen legal costs that might come your way during your travel.
Key Features of Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is a must-have for various reasons –
- Provides Comprehensive Medical Cover
The main focus of travel insurance is your health. This is crucial because falling ill or needing medical attention abroad can incur significant expenses. But when you have travel insurance, you will be covered for the medical expenses and even repatriation, ensuring you are well-protected no matter where you are.
- Covers For Trip Cancellation
Sometimes your travel plans may change and you might have to cancel your flight ticket. Travel insurance comes to the rescue during such situations. If unforeseen circumstances force you to change your plans, it can help cover the costs. But you should keep in mind that you may not be refunded the entire amount spent on ticket booking. This is because only under very limited circumstances, the insurance company will cover for the entire cost of your trip, when cancelled.
- Compensates For Travel Delays
If you miss your transportation or face delays, travel insurance has got you covered. It not only covers the cost of finding alternative transport but also compensates you for the time you spend waiting due to a delayed departure.
- Pays For Stolen Baggage And Personal Belongings
If you lose your baggage or personal belongings, your travel insurance has got you covered. It will cover all such costs, including the expenses you incur to get a new passport.
- Takes Care Of Legal Expenses And Personal Liabilities
Buying travel insurance is a smart choice because it provides coverage if you accidentally cause injury or damage to someone else. Also, if the third party is responsible for causing damage to you or your belongings, your travel insurance can help you claim for your losses. This is especially crucial in places where there is no reliable legal aid system.
Is Travel Insurance Really Necessary?
Although it is not mandatory, it is a good idea to get travel insurance when you travel abroad. It is especially helpful if it is your first time travelling internationally, as being in a new place with different cultures and languages can be challenging. Unfortunately, incidents where tourists lose their belongings to thieves are not uncommon.
Travelling without good travel insurance puts you at many risks, especially in an unfamiliar place. Some of the risks that you might face are –
- Unexpected flight cancellations
- Luggage loss and urgent need for your prescribed medication
- Passport and wallet theft
- Trip cancellation due to sickness
- Medical emergencies in a foreign country
- Urgent hotel evacuation due to natural disasters like hurricanes, cyclones, tsunamis, etc.
- Trip cancellation due to terrorist activities at your destination.
Here are some challenges and real-time facts to take note of –
1️⃣Out of 362.6 million bags checked on direct flights with the 10 largest airlines and their partners from January to September, 2.25 million were lost or damaged, as reported by the Office of Aviation Consumer Protection.
2️⃣This year saw an increase in mishandled bags, with 93,275 more cases from January to September 2023 compared to the same period the previous year, according to the same report.
3️⃣Recent FlightAware data reveals an average of 30,000 delayed flights globally every day.
4️⃣Trip cancellations, flight cancellations, and delays are consistently the top reasons for travel claims.
5️⃣Tourist-heavy countries often witness frequent travel scams.
In case of the above circumstances, travel insurance acts as a financial safety net to provide protection against unexpected events that can mess up your travel plans. Even though it may seem like an extra cost, it can be really helpful in such situations.
Deciding on travel insurance depends on where and how you are travelling. If you are going on a local trip with minimal costs and a low-risk spot, you might not feel the need for extensive coverage. However, when it comes to international journeys, especially to places with high medical expenses or uncertain political situations, having travel insurance becomes more crucial.
Your decision to invest in travel insurance should match your specific situation and risk tolerance. Evaluate various policy options, compare insurance, factor in your needs and preferences, and balance the potential benefits against the expenses. Travel insurance brings peace of mind and financial security and ensures you can relish your journey without worrying over unexpected hiccups.
What Does A Perfect Travel Insurance Plan Cover?
Travel insurance offers coverage for the following situations to help ensure you are protected throughout your journey –
- Medical Emergency
The primary reason to consider travel insurance is for medical emergencies. You may not be able to predict what might happen during your travels, and unexpected illnesses or injuries can disrupt your vacation and strain your finances. In some countries, medical treatment costs can be high, making it essential to have travel insurance. It covers emergency hospitalisation expenses, including treatment for pre-existing health conditions if they become life-threatening.
In international travel insurance, additional beneficial features may include coverage for medical evacuation and treatment in your home country. These benefits provide added security for tourists facing medical emergencies.
- Loss of Passport and Personal Belongings
Imagine arriving at your destination only to find your baggage mishandled at the airport, causing stress and uncertainty. To avoid such situations, attach identification tags to your belongings for easy tracking.
However, unforeseen events can still occur. This is where travel insurance comes into play. A comprehensive travel insurance plan not only alleviates the financial burden but also provides peace of mind by covering common mishaps, such as delayed or lost checked-in baggage.
A travel insurance policy also includes coverage for the loss of vital passport documents. In case of any such incidents, promptly report the issue to the local authorities or the nearest police station and inform your insurance company.
- Travel Destination Risks
Your travel destination may also be susceptible to other detours and risks like earthquakes, cyclones, hurricanes, etc. These natural disasters can spoil your international trip.
To safeguard your travel plans, you should consider purchasing an international travel insurance plan. Choose a policy that provides ample coverage for risks associated with specific destinations. This thoughtful step ensures that unforeseen events will not disrupt your travel goals.
- Trip Delays, Interruptions or Cancellation
Trip delays, interruptions, or cancellations may happen due to unexpected reasons, like adverse weather, etc. in the country you are visiting. These situations can lead to extra expenses for accommodation and food.
However, with the right travel insurance policy, you can be reimbursed for these additional costs. Search for a travel insurance plan that specifically covers trip delays, interruptions, or cancellations. This way, you can enjoy peace of mind, knowing that unexpected travel hiccups will not weigh heavily on your wallet.
- Personal Liability
Personal liability coverage is a valuable aspect of travel insurance policies. It is crucial to consider the possibility of unexpected incidents where you might be held responsible for damages to a third party or their property.
When purchasing travel insurance for your international trip, take a moment to review the policy details and ensure it includes personal liability coverage. However, be aware that there might be exclusions, so it is essential to check the policy wording.
What is Not Covered By Travel Insurance Plans?
When it comes to travel insurance plans, it's crucial to know what's not covered. Take a closer look at your travel insurance online to understand both the inclusions and exclusions.
Here are some situations typically excluded under your travel insurance policy –
- Travelling to a country without having a valid visa
- Overstaying your visa
- Travelling for medical treatment only
- Travelling with a terminal medical prognosis
- Travelling against your doctor's advice
- Pre-existing diseases and related issues
- Disability report prepared by a close relative
- Pregnancy-related issues or associated medical treatments
- Any injuries or illness resulting from suicide, attempted suicide, or self-inflicted actions.
- Events linked directly or indirectly to drug use, alcohol, hallucinogens, or any intoxicants.
- Engaging in any illegal activities, such as crimes, riots, etc., during their trip.
- Injuries sustained while participating in hazardous activities.
Add-On Covers / Optional Covers In Travel Insurance Policy
When you opt for a travel insurance policy, you have the opportunity to boost its coverage with add-ons. These add-ons serve as extra layers of protection, reducing the potential financial strain in case of unforeseen events.
By incorporating these add-ons, you are essentially fortifying your policy. However, it's important to note that adding more features will also increase your premium. Therefore, it's wise to choose add-ons that genuinely enhance the value of your policy.
Add-Ons Provided By Insurance Companies
Some of the add-ons offered by insurance companies include –
- Trip Delay Delight
If your trip faces delays or cancellations, you can rest assured that your financial loss is covered. Whether it is a single trip, round trip, or multiple trips, the policy will provide coverage based on the respective limits stated in the policy.
- Schengen Coverage
Travel insurance also includes coverage for expenses related to repatriation due to medical reasons or urgent health conditions. This includes emergency hospital treatment and loss of life.
- Compassionate Visit By A Family Member
If a family member needs to make a compassionate visit, you do not have to worry about the associated expenses. This is because a travel insurance policy covers their stay and provides financial support up to specified limits.
- Emergency Hotel Accommodation For Family Members
In times of urgency requiring immediate family hotel accommodation, the online travel insurance policy has got you covered. This means that you can rest assured that any emergency situations are handled seamlessly under this coverage.
- Emergency Hotel Accommodation For Insured And Family Members
A travel insurance plan ensures swift accommodation arrangements for the insured as well. Under the 'emergency hotel accommodation for the insured and family member' section, the coverage extends to both the insurance company and a family member up to specific limits.
- Escort for Minor Child
When travelling with a minor or baby, travel insurance has your back. It will cover the expenses related to escorting a minor child up to a certain limit during your flight to ensure their safety.
- Loss Of Personal Belongings Cover
From misplaced luggage to a lost passport, a reliable travel insurance policy comes to your aid. The loss of personal belongings coverage ensures you receive assistance when facing such difficulties during your trip.
Optional Covers Offered By Insurance Companies
Listed below are some of the optional covers which you can include in your travel insurance policy –
- Pre-Existing Illness Coverage
One great feature of the optional coverage is its coverage for pre-existing illnesses. These are diseases or physical conditions that were present when you purchased your travel insurance policy.
- HIV And AIDS
This optional cover is available for individuals of any age with pre-existing medical conditions like HIV and AIDS, and it includes all complications arising from these conditions. When you travel abroad without sufficient travel insurance, there are chances that you may face a potential risk. This cover helps avoid the hassle of going through hefty medical bills during your travels.
- Maternity And Baby Cover From Day One Coverage
Travel insurance has you covered with maternity and baby protection right from the start. Expecting moms can enjoy the peace of mind that comes with day-one coverage for maternity and baby-related expenses. The goal is to ensure their journey is not just safe but also enjoyable.
Note: You should keep in mind that these add-ons may differ among insurance companies.
Travel Insurance With COVID-19 Coverage
The recent pandemic showed the risk of getting infected with COVID-19 when you travel. This is why it is essential to buy travel insurance with comprehensive COVID-19 coverage. Here’s what it offers -
- Accident & Sickness Medical Expense Coverage
It takes care of medical costs incurred due to a COVID-19 diagnosis that leads to hospitalisation during your international travels.
- Trip Cancellation Coverage
The policy offers compensation benefits if you are diagnosed with COVID-19 before starting your international journey. This trip cancellation coverage ensures that you are covered in case unexpected circumstances disrupt your travel plans.
- Trip Curtailment/Interruption Benefits
If you get diagnosed with COVID-19 while travelling, leading to your trip being cut short, the insurance company will cover the expenses incurred due to this interruption.
Types of Travel Insurance Plans In India
When it comes to travelling, having a reliable travel insurance plan is crucial. Now that you already know the importance of safeguarding yourself, the question is: which plan suits you best? There are a wide range of travel insurance plans in India tailored to different purposes, durations, and natures of trips. As you make your choice, ensure you thoroughly evaluate both the coverage and premium.
Here are some of the various travel insurance options available in the market –
- Individual Travel Insurance
If you are travelling solo, an individual travel insurance plan would be your best choice. It is designed to protect you from various unforeseen situations during your trip.
- Corporate Travel Insurance
The corporate travel insurance plan provides coverage for those heading on business trips. Employers purchase this plan to safeguard their employees during work-related travels. It ensures a worry-free experience for both the employee and the company.
- Student Travel Insurance
For students heading overseas for education, the student travel insurance provides essential coverage at a budget-friendly cost.
- Group Travel Insurance
When it comes to group adventures, this plan has you covered. It shields the entire travel crew from unexpected costs or losses on the journey. This plan costs less when compared to individual plans for each traveller.
- Family Travel Insurance
You can safeguard your immediate family members under one plan with family travel insurance. It is perfect for families who love exploring together.
- Senior Citizen Travel Insurance
When you start your journey after turning 60, it comes with unique challenges. And, by purchasing senior citizen travel insurance, you can stay worry-free during your journey. It shields you from unforeseen surprises like medical bills and unexpected financial emergencies on your travel.
- Domestic Travel Insurance
When you are journeying within your country, domestic travel insurance acts as your safety net, ensuring you are covered for unexpected situations.
- International Travel Insurance
For journeys beyond borders, you can benefit from international travel insurance. Some countries even make it a compulsory requirement when applying for a visa. You can use this as your safety companion against unforeseen expenses during your global adventures.
- Schengen Travel Insurance
When heading to any of the 26 Schengen countries, it is crucial to have Schengen travel insurance. This policy safeguards you financially and offers various benefits based on your chosen policy.
- Annual or Multi-Trip Travel Insurance
If you are engaged in year-round travel, especially in the corporate world, an annual or multi-trip travel insurance plan is ideal. This plan caters to individuals who embark on multiple journeys throughout the year.
- Single Trip Travel Insurance
If you only travel abroad occasionally, a single-trip travel insurance plan is a perfect choice. This plan is designed for those who do not frequently venture outside their home country.
Best Travel Insurance Plans in India By Top Insurance Companies
Listed below are some of the best travel insurance plans that are offered by the top insurance companies in India –
- Aditya Birla Travel Insurance
- Bajaj Allianz Travel Insurance
- Bharti AXA Travel Insurance
- Care Travel Insurance
- Chola MS Travel Insurance
- Future Generali Travel Insurance
- Iffco Tokio Travel Insurance
- National Travel Insurance
- New India Travel Insurance
- Oriental Travel Insurance
- Reliance Travel Insurance
- Royal Sundaram Travel Insurance
- SBI Travel Insurance
- Shriram Travel Insurance
- Star Travel Insurance
- United India Travel Insurance
- Universal Sompo Travel Insurance
How to Compare Travel Insurance Online
When selecting travel insurance online in India, it's essential to find the perfect plan for your needs by following these steps –
- Determine Your Needs
You can start by figuring out the specific coverage you require based on your trip's type and duration. Consider aspects such as medical coverage, trip cancellation, baggage protection, etc. Keep a close eye on the 'sum insured' - the maximum coverage amount while comparing the different travel insurance quotes. This key detail ensures you have sufficient financial protection for your journey. This is because some countries even require proof of adequate coverage under your travel insurance for visa approval.
- Range Of Coverage
When purchasing travel insurance, it is crucial to examine the level of coverage various policies offer. You can assess the specific protections that you may need for your trip and plan your budget accordingly. This ensures you get the right coverage tailored to your needs.
- Claim Procedure
Before choosing a travel insurance plan, you should check out the claim procedure to gauge its simplicity. The smoother the process, the better. You should also think about the Turnaround Time (TAT) for claim settlement. Faster settlements can provide extra peace of mind while you are on your travels.
- Claim Settlement Terms
When it comes to travel insurance, claims are resolved according to specific terms and conditions. Before selecting a policy, take a moment to familiarise yourself with the terms governing claim settlements. This ensures you are prepared and well-informed about how claims are processed.
- Cashless Travel Insurance Plans
Ensure your insurance company provides cashless travel insurance as it offers extra convenience and financial security during your journey.
- Evaluate Premiums
You should also examine the costs of various plans. While affordability matters, you should also think about the value and extent of coverage you get for the price.
- Check For Add-Ons Or Optional Coverages
Certain insurance plans provide extra coverages or optional add-ons. Hence, you should assess whether these extras suit your needs and justify the additional cost.
Why Should You Buy Travel Insurance Online?
Here are a few reasons why you should invest in travel insurance online –
- Seamlessly Compare Policies Online
Finding the right travel insurance can be confusing with so many options available. The market is packed with different providers, each offering various policies and plans. However, if approached strategically, this market competition can work in your favour.
When you compare travel insurance online, you will be able to streamline the process much better and make a list of potential providers that match your travel needs. This not only saves time but also gives you a quick overview of your options.
In India, comparing travel insurance plans online is the easiest way to explore different choices and find the one that suits you best.
- Enjoy Convenience
Securing your desired travel insurance is straightforward with an online platform. Simply grab your phone, visit our website, complete the form, and guarantee coverage for your journey. You also have the option to explore various insurance plans at your convenience at any time.
- Get Quick Policies
You don't have to worry if you have overlooked covering your journey with a single-trip insurance plan. You can easily and swiftly purchase it online before you embark on your trip.
- Delivered Straight To Your Mailbox
Opting for travel insurance online ensures a contactless experience. Your policy is issued directly to your mailbox, eliminating the need for any physical visits to the insurance company.
How To Buy Travel Insurance Online?
The purchasing process can vary based on both the insurance company and the platform used. However, here are the general steps to purchase travel insurance online –
- Go to the website of your chosen insurance provider or web aggregator.
- Select your travel destination, mention your trip's start and end dates, and share information about your fellow travellers.
- Customise the policy to match your specific requirements.
- Enter your personal details and those of any accompanying passengers.
- Receive an instant quote for your travel insurance plan.
- Make a quick online payment to secure your travel insurance coverage without any delays.
Things To Keep In Mind Before Buying A Travel Insurance Plan
You should consider these factors before opting for a travel insurance plan –
Your age plays a role in determining your travel insurance premium. Seniors may face higher premiums due to increased risk compared to the younger population. You should keep this in mind when exploring insurance options.
Travelling to a destination with elevated risks heightens the likelihood of encountering unforeseen circumstances. Insurance companies factor in both the destination's medical costs and its susceptibility to natural disasters.
- Trip Duration
The length of your trip affects the policy’s benefits and costs. Opting for multi-trip insurance is a smart choice if you plan to travel frequently within the next 12 months. However, if you are planning on a single, extended vacation, you can expect a higher premium.
- Type Of Trip
Your insurance company examines your trip details to understand its specifics. If your adventure is filled with thrilling activities, expect a higher premium. On the flip side, a laid-back beach vacation or quiet mountain retreat may come with a more affordable premium.
Add-ons like home burglary protection, fire insurance, study interruption coverage, etc., can be added to your insurance for extra security. However, remember that these additional features come at an additional cost, impacting your overall travel insurance premium.
- Cover Amount
The total coverage you choose directly affects your premium. Opting for extensive coverage means a higher insured amount and, consequently, a higher premium. Before jumping for the highest sum insured, jot down your needs and find a plan that suits you best.
- Explore Options
You should also make it a point to not just settle with just one insurance provider. Take the time to research and compare. Look for the insurance company that offers the most benefits at the lowest cost. It is crucial to align their packages with your specific requirements before making a decision.
- Affordability and Premium
When picking a travel insurance plan, balance your budget and the premium cost. Opt for an insurance company that offers substantial coverage, quick claim processing, all at a reasonable price.
- Schengen Check
Travel insurance for Schengen countries comes with its own nuances. It varies from insurance for other visa types. You should ensure that you double-check this with your selected insurance providers to avoid any unexpected hitches during your travel plans.
Make sure to thoroughly assess the limitations that could be associated with travel insurance providers. When you compare each insurance company, pay attention to these exclusions, as these situations or conditions will not be eligible for reimbursement.
How Are Premiums Calculated For Travel Insurance Plans?
Your travel insurance premium is determined by several factors –
- Destination: Premiums change based on the risk linked to your chosen destination.
- Travel Period: Longer trips usually mean higher premiums for extended coverage.
- Age: Different premium rates apply to different age groups.
- Insured Travellers: The total premium increases when more travellers are covered by the policy.
- Coverage: The premium may go up depending on the number of coverage options selected.
Understanding these factors will help you make informed decisions about your travel insurance.
When to Buy Travel Insurance?
Deciding when to get travel insurance is linked to how many trips you plan for the year. If it is only one trip, then you should go for a single trip cover, and it is best to get it within a couple of weeks after booking your flight. But, if you are thinking of multiple trips throughout the year, it is better to secure your travel insurance well before booking any of those trips. This way, you will get all your travels covered right from the start.
Where to Buy Travel Insurance From?
You can buy travel insurance either online or in person. You can buy it from an insurance company's website or by going to their office or an agent's office directly. And make sure to compare and research different policies, whether you are buying it online or offline.
How To Choose A Travel Insurance Policy?
Selecting the right travel insurance is important, and it should match your specific travel requirements. Here's a simple guide –
- For solo trips, opt for an individual policy.
- If you are travelling with your family, go for a family travel insurance plan.
- Students heading for higher education should consider a student travel insurance plan.
- Depending on your destination, explore options like a Schengen travel plan or an Asia travel plan.
- If you travel often, you should consider an annual multi-trip plan.
Once you have figured out the kind of plan you need, check out similar plans from various insurance companies. You can compare these policies based on –
- Coverage benefits
- Premium rates
- Ease of claim settlement
- Their international tie-ups (if you are going overseas)
- Discounts, etc.
You should ensure that you pick a plan that gives you the most coverage for the best price. Choose the right sum insured and get the plan that keeps your trip secure.
Countries Requiring International Travel Insurance from India
- United States of America
- United Arab Emirates
- Schengen Countries. It is a group of 26 countries in Central Europe.
- Ecuador which includes the Galapagos Islands.
- New Zealand
List of Countries Where Indians Don’t Need A Visa/Get A Visa On Arrival
Check out the following table to know which countries let Indian citizens travel without a visa or get one on arrival -
British Virgin Islands
St. Kitts & Nevis
St Vincent & the Grenadines
Trinidad & Tobago
Turks & Caicos
Is Travel Insurance Mandatory For International Travel?
While there is no strict requirement of travel insurance for international trips, it's a smart move to get it. Travelling abroad, especially for the first time, can be a bit overwhelming. Being in a new place with unfamiliar cultures and languages can lead to unexpected challenges. Unfortunately, incidents of tourists getting targeted by thieves are not uncommon, especially in Europe where pickpocketing is a concern.
Having international travel insurance provides financial protection against such incidents. In fact, some countries, including those in the Schengen region, make it compulsory. Without travel insurance, you might face difficulties in getting your visa approved for that country. Hence, though it is not compulsory, having travel insurance is a wise decision for a smoother and more secure international journey.
Eligibility Criteria For Travel Insurance Policy In India
Travel insurance comes in various types, and each has different eligibility criteria and age limits –
Type of Plan
Family Travel Insurance Plan
Covers two adults up to 60 years old and their two children up to 21 years old.
Student Travel Insurance Plan
Available for students aged 16 to 40 studying abroad for higher education.
Senior Citizen Travel Insurance Plan
Tailored for senior citizens up to 85 years old.
Schengen Travel Insurance Plan
Adults up to 70 years old and infants must be older than 90 days.
International Travel Insurance
Covers two adults up to 60 years old and two children up to 21 years old.
Myths About Travel Insurance
There are many widespread misconceptions about travel insurance, such as –
Myth 1: Only Vulnerable People Need Travel Insurance
Fact: Travel insurance is not just meant for medical emergencies; it safeguards you from various unexpected issues like trip cancellations, delays, lost luggage, etc.
Myth 2: Travel Insurance Is Expensive
Fact: Contrary to this myth, travel insurance is quite affordable, especially when compared to the overall cost of a typical trip.
Myth 3: Filing Travel Insurance Claims Is Complicated
Fact: The process of filing a claim is very simple. You can easily reach out to your insurance company by phone or email to initiate the claim process.
Myth 4: Travel Insurance Provides Complete Coverage
Fact: Travel insurance has its own limits and exclusions. It is important to carefully read the policy details to know what is covered and what is not.
Myth 5: You Can Buy Travel Insurance Anytime
Fact: Some benefits, such as trip cancellation coverage, have specific time requirements. Thus, it is best to secure travel insurance promptly after making your reservation without delay.
Myth 6: No Need for Insurance on Short Trips.
Fact: Even short trips can throw surprises like flight delays, lost baggage, etc. Travel insurance brings peace of mind irrespective of how brief your journey is.
Myth 7: I Am Safe in Places I Know, No Need for Insurance
Fact: Even familiar places that you often travel to come with unforeseen risks. Travel insurance covers unexpected events, like sudden illnesses or accidents and ensures that you are protected even in well-known destinations.
Myth 8: It Is Complicated To Buy Travel Insurance
Fact: Getting the right travel insurance is easy. All you have to do is visit an insurance website, click on "Travel," fill in all required details, make payment, and your policy arrives in your email.
Myth 9: The Best Travel Insurance Policies Are The Cheap Ones
Fact: When you opt for the cheapest policy, it simply means less coverage. You should find the right balance between affordability and the protection you need for a worry-free trip.
What Makes Comparison Of Travel Insurance Important?
With numerous travel insurance options available in the market, you may feel overwhelmed to choose the right plan for your needs. Take time to compare different plans before making a sound decision. By doing a thorough analysis, you can confidently select the ideal travel insurance policy that best fits your requirements and ensures a worry-free journey.
Why Compare Travel Insurance Online?
When you are planning to buy travel insurance, whether in India or elsewhere, comparing online is a smart move for a few important reasons –
- Coverage Differences
Various travel insurance plans come with different levels of coverage. By comparing them online, you can identify the policies that match your needs. This includes coverage for various situations like medical emergencies, trip cancellations, lost baggage, or other potential issues.
- Cost Comparison
The cost of travel insurance can differ significantly from one provider to another, even for similar coverage. However, when you compare travel insurance online, it helps you discover a policy that not only suits your needs but also fits your budget.
- Customization Options
When you opt to buy travel insurance online, you get the power to customise your policy. You can pick the coverage you want, add extra options, or set different limits based on your preferences and travel agenda.
Comparing travel insurance on the internet is not just easy; it saves time as well. You can effortlessly check out various policies, read reviews, and make a smart decision - all from the comfort of your home.
- Reviews and Ratings
When looking for travel insurance, check out reviews and ratings on online platforms. Other travellers share their experiences, giving you a good idea about the reliability and customer satisfaction of different insurance providers.
- Policy Details
You can also make use of online comparison tools to examine policy details like coverage, exclusions, claim procedures, additional benefits, etc. This will help you understand the terms and conditions of the policy before taking the plunge.
- Get Quick Quotes
When you check online platforms, you will instantly get quotes for various travel insurance plans. This helps you swiftly compare costs and benefits, making it easier to choose the right policy for you.
- Ease of Purchase
After selecting the right travel insurance policy, you can easily buy it online. This quick and straightforward method saves time and ensures that you are well-covered for your upcoming trip.
- Policy Updates and Alerts
Online platforms often offer tools to manage your policy, letting you make necessary updates or receive alerts about your travel insurance.
Tips To Lower Your Travel Insurance Premium
Listed below are some of the tips to reduce your travel insurance premiums –
- Tailor Your Coverage
You can initially start by considering your trip needs and only purchase the travel insurance you will actually use. You can skip unnecessary add-ons that will potentially increase the premium. This way, you will be able to save more money.
- Shop Around
You should make it a point not to settle for the first policy you come across. Explore plans from various travel insurance companies and compare them. This is because finding a cost-effective option is a breeze when you take the time to look around.
- Travel As A Group
When planning a trip with family or friends, explore the possibility of securing a group discount by obtaining insurance coverage for everyone under a single policy. Certain insurance companies offer coverage for groups, and if your group meets the specified criteria, you can purchase a single policy that extends coverage to everyone in the group.
- Early Bird Advantage
Buying travel insurance immediately after you book your trip guarantees that you have access to all benefits, such as the flexibility to change plans, cancel if needed, etc.
- Travel To Low-Risk Destinations
Consider travelling to places with lower risks, as they often come with lower insurance costs. You should make a precautious check if your destination is deemed low-risk by your insurance company. These places usually have fewer uncertainties, making your insurance more affordable while still ensuring ample coverage for your trip.
- Travel During Off-Peak Seasons
Save money on your travels by opting for off-peak seasons. If your schedule allows flexibility, you should consider visiting during the shoulder seasons. With fewer travellers, there is reduced demand for travel insurance during these periods, and this offers you the opportunity to decrease your insurance premium without compromising on coverage.
Claim Procedure For Travel Insurance Policies
If you face an emergency during your trip and need to claim on your travel insurance, you should follow these steps –
- Contact the insurance company immediately through the provided toll-free number or email address from your policy document.
- A claims service representative will guide you through registering your claim, explain the claims process, and specify the necessary supporting documents.
- You can then download the appropriate claim form.
- Fill out the claim form and gather all the required supporting documents.
- Submit the completed claim form and all the necessary supporting documents.
- The insurance company will next appoint a surveyor to assess the submitted documents.
- After the assessment is completed, the company will decide on whether or not to accept the claim.
What Are The Documents That Are Required For Travel Insurance Claims?
To make a travel insurance claim, you'll need specific documents depending on the situation. Here are the key documents typically required by insurance companies -
- Original ticket or boarding pass
- Copy of the passport showing travel dates
- Completed claim form
- Original bills, receipts, and vouchers
- For medical claims – medical practitioner’s notes, original admission/discharge card, bills with prescriptions
- Emergency travel certificate and a copy of the new passport (if you lose your passport)
- Details of any compensation provided by the airlines (in case of lost checked baggage)
- A letter from you explaining the reason for trip cancellation
- Copy of a cancelled cheque
You should, however, remember that this is only an indicative list and your insurance company might ask for additional documents. Make sure to provide all necessary paperwork for a smooth claims process.
How to Extend a Travel Insurance Policy?
To extend your travel insurance, it is crucial to make any necessary adjustments before your trip begins. This is because once your journey starts, the insurance plan cannot be modified. Hence, you should carefully review your travel details.
If you find the need to extend your coverage, some insurance companies allow this flexibility before the original policy expires. However, if your policy term ends before the extension, you will have to purchase a new plan from scratch. This ensures you have the latest coverage and benefits for your upcoming travels. Any changes that you require are usually processed quickly, but it might take up to 24-48 hours for the company to complete them. Once the adjustments are made, you will receive an updated confirmation and policy via email.
You should, however, keep in mind that there could be exceptions based on your insurance company and policy type. And it is wise to always check the specific terms and conditions to ensure a smooth extension process.
Decoding Travel Insurance Terms
Let's understand some key terms in travel insurance –
- Premium: The payment you make to the insurance company to buy your travel insurance policy.
- Policyholder/Insured: The person who buys the travel insurance policy and gets the benefits from it.
- Coverage:The particular protection or advantages offered by your travel insurance policy.
- Policy Period:This is the time your travel insurance stays active i.e., the duration between the departure date and return date.
- Trip Cancellation:This coverage gives you protection if you need to cancel your trip because of unexpected events like sickness, injury, natural disasters, etc.
- Trip Interruption:Coverage for costs if your trip gets unexpectedly halted or shortened due to covered reasons.
- Trip Delay:It compensates for extra costs you incur if your departure is delayed, usually after a set number of hours.
- Baggage And Personal Belongings Coverage:With this coverage, you can stay protected against loss, damage, or theft of your luggage and personal items during your trip.
- Medical Coverage:This coverage takes care of your medical expenses if you fall ill or get injured while travelling.
- Emergency Medical Evacuation:overage for urgent transportation to the closest medical facility or back home if there is a serious medical issue.
- Pre-existing Condition:A health issue you had experienced before buying a travel insurance policy. Whether it's covered or not depends on the policy terms.
- Deductible:It is a certain amount you need to pay from your own pocket before the insurance policy starts covering your costs.
- Policy Exclusions:Certain situations or events that the travel insurance will not cover.
- Hazardous Activities:These are activities that come with some risk, like extreme sports or certain adventures. You might need extra coverage for such activities. Otherwise, these could be excluded from the regular policy.
- Terrorism Coverage:This coverage protects you against disruptions or losses caused by terrorism acts.
- Missed Connection Coverage:If you miss a connecting flight or transportation for a covered reason, you can get compensation for the extra expenses incurred.
- Travel Assistance Services:This coverage ensures that your insurance company is available around the clock to assist you. They will provide assistance for medical emergencies, travel plans, and any other issues you might face during your trip.
- Proof Of Loss:Documents to be submitted for claims like police reports, receipts, or medical records.
- Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR):This coverage lets you cancel your trip for any reason and get a refund of some of your money back.
- Coverage Limits:It is the maximum amount that the insurance company will compensate for certain losses or expenses.
- Cashless Settlement:It is a process where the insurance company pays the costs of a covered loss directly, on the policyholder’s behalf. .
- Reimbursement:It is a process where you pay for expenses on your own upfront and get the reimbursement from the insurance company later up to the coverage limits.
Travel insurance serves as an indispensable pillar for any journey, providing a safety net that ensures peace of mind and financial security. As we've explored in this comprehensive guide, travel insurance goes beyond simple coverage for trip cancellations or lost luggage; it encompasses a spectrum of benefits, safeguarding travellers against unforeseen circumstances and emergencies.
- Is international travel insurance required for a visa?
Not every country insists on travel insurance for visa approval. However, it is a crucial necessity for all travellers before starting on their journey.
- Is it necessary to buy overseas travel insurance?
Yes, some countries make it a visa requirement. But even if they don't, it is essential for all travellers. When you are in a foreign country, unexpected situations can arise, like accidents, hospitalisation, passport loss, or travel hiccups, such as missing a connecting flight, delayed baggage, etc. Emergencies like a family death might also require you to cut short your trip. The possibilities are vast, but your wise decision to prioritise your family's well-being is what matters the most. Travel insurance provides the financial support you might need in such challenging situations.
- Can I buy overseas travel insurance after booking my tickets?
Yes, you will be able to purchase travel insurance after booking your tickets. Just remember that it is always advisable to get it before your departure date.
- Does Travel Insurance cover a positive PCR test?
No, it does not. If a positive PCR test is detected before your journey begins, your travel insurance will not provide coverage for it.
- What should I do if my Travel Insurance claim is rejected?
If your travel insurance claim is rejected, first carefully review your policy details. After that, you can go ahead and submit an appeal. You will receive a notification or a denial letter containing an 'Explanation of Benefits' outlining the reasons for each transaction along with the rejection of the claim.
You will need to supply additional documents and information to your insurance agency. This helps them understand and potentially rectify the reasons behind the claim rejection.
- How is the travel insurance premium calculated?
The price for global travel coverage depends on various factors – the number of travellers, the destination, the age of the travellers, the trip duration and the plan you choose.
- Are any medical examinations required before buying travel insurance?
No, you don't need a medical checkup before purchasing travel insurance. However, if you have any existing health issues, make sure to mention them when you are buying the policy. You can do this by sending an email or giving the insurance company a call.
- Can I travel without travel insurance?
Yes, it is a good idea to have travel insurance. While it is not always a compulsory requirement, some countries, like those in the Schengen area, make it mandatory. Securing travel insurance is a wise decision, providing both financial safety and peace of mind by helping cover unforeseen expenses throughout your trip.
- What would be the best travel insurance for me?
The best travel insurance for you depends on your unique needs. Consider your destination, mode of transport, specific coverage you might require, etc. Finding a plan that suits you well ensures comprehensive coverage and gives you peace of mind as you start on your travel adventures.
- Will my travel insurance offer coverage for missed flights?
If you have proof of rescheduling, you can get compensation for missed flights. Just double-check with your insurance company and review your policy to understand the coverage terms and limits.
- Do I need to give proof of physical fitness while buying travel insurance?
Generally, you will not need to show proof of physical fitness for travel insurance. But it is important to mention any pre-existing medical conditions when you are buying the policy.
- What will be the start and end dates of my travel coverage?
When you purchase your policy, you get to choose the start and end date of your trip. During this period, the benefits of the policy will be applicable. Some benefits, like trip cancellation, etc., can even start its coverage before your journey begins. The policy also covers disability that results directly from a travel-related accident within a year of your trip.
- What is single-trip travel insurance?
A single-trip travel insurance covers just one trip, providing protection until you return home. It safeguards you during that specific journey and helps you handle unexpected events that might come your way during your journey.
- Can I purchase travel insurance after leaving India?
Unfortunately, no. Once you have started your journey outside India, you will not be able to purchase travel insurance for that particular trip anymore. This is why it is essential to get coverage before you leave to ensure you are protected throughout your travels.
- Is travel insurance from India useful for frequent travellers?
Yes, if you travel often, consider getting a multi-trip travel insurance plan. This ensures ongoing financial security regardless of the number of journeys you embark on.
- Should I buy travel insurance for short trips as well?
Yes, even for short trips, it is a wise idea to have travel insurance. You never know when unexpected things might happen. Hence, planning ahead and getting financial protection in advance is a smart move, saving you from unexpected expenses during your trip.
- Can I take travel insurance after booking?
Yes, you can usually buy travel insurance even after you have booked your trip.
- Does travel insurance expire?
Yes, once your journey concludes, the travel insurance policy comes to an end.
- Is travel insurance cashless?
Yes, travel insurance plans offer both cashless and reimbursement options for your convenience.