Travel insurance can compensate for most financial losses that you may suffer during a trip, whether they are incurred within or outside the country. But before you go ahead and invest in a policy, it pays to research the topic a little more thoroughly. While travel insurance can be claimed in certain situations, there are a number of instances where your insurance will not be able to cover your expenses.
It’s important to know the distinction so that you can decide whether or not to pay the extra fee and take the policy.
Exclusions of Travel Insurance
While meant to provide financial cover for most mishaps, travel insurance isn’t applicable in certain situations. Some of these are:
1. Dangerous Activities
Most travellers try their hand at various adventure sports while on holiday. Whether it’s white-water rafting, rock climbing, or dirt biking, there’s always a chance that you might get hurt.
If you sustain an injury during one of these activities, your medical bills won’t be paid by the travel insurance company. You’ll have to bear the expense yourself.
2. Acts of War or Protests
Travel insurance policies ordinarily don’t take into account any losses from war or unrest in the country you’re visiting.
If your destination is in close proximity to the affected location, and you’re afraid of peripheral attacks, you’ll need a ‘cancel for any reason’ coverage to claim your ticket money.
And if you’re in a country currently experiencing these situations, any consequences caused directly or indirectly due to factors like terrorism and conflict won’t be compensated by your insurer.
3. Pre-existing Conditions
If you’re travelling to a new destination with a medical condition like diabetes, and you need to buy insulin, the insurance won’t compensate for your expenses. Any pre-existing medical conditions need to be disclosed before you take a travel insurance policy, and your insurer isn’t obliged to cover those expenses.
Even pregnancy is regarded as a pre-existing condition and any expenses with regard to it need to be handled by you.
4. Cancelled Tours
Say you’re flying to Germany where you’ve made a booking with a tour company for a trip around Europe. If you cancel the flight to Germany, your insurer will refund the money. But if the company cancels the tour, your travel insurance won’t cover the expenses of your trip.
It’s likely that you’ll receive a refund from the tour company itself, but other costs like airfare or the amount you will have to spend on a hotel won’t be handled by your insurer.
5. Lost Baggage Returned in 24 Hours
Sometimes, flight authorities tend to misplace checked-in baggage. If you haven’t received your luggage 24 hours after arriving at your destination, you’ll be compensated by your travel insurance provider. If you receive your belongings before that, the insurer isn’t liable to provide any coverage.
Do You Really Need Travel Insurance?
Travel insurance differs from medical and life insurance, because you can purchase a scheme only when you have to travel. Considering the amount you’ll be spending on your trip, the low cost of insurance is worth it. And not signing up for a policy could cost you more in the long run.
For example, health insurance schemes often fail to provide medical coverage in other countries. So if you’re going overseas, travel insurance can take care of your medical expenses, if your policy allows for it. If you want to find an overseas scheme that will suit your requirements, then go ahead and find the right international travel insurance plan.
If you’re in unfamiliar territory and far away from home, the thought that you may get injured or fall sick and not have enough funds to take care of yourself is a worrying one. But if you’ve got travel insurance, you can enjoy your vacation completely free from anxiety.
How to Decide on the Right Plan
If you want to invest in a policy before your next trip, here are a few questions that you need to ask yourself:
How Often Do You Travel?
You can pick a policy based on the frequency of your travel. If you’re looking to visit your parents for the Diwali holidays, an insurance policy to cover that single trip should suffice. But if you’re used to travelling often, a policy that provides multi-trip options might be a better choice.
If you’re a frequent traveller, you can try out the Gold Multi-Trip Plan, which offers 30, 45, and 60-day coverage on international trips.
Where Are You Travelling?
If you plan on flying within the country, you should opt for a policy plan that provides domestic coverage. Even if you decide to fly internationally, there’s no need for a policy with a worldwide cover. If you plan your trip in advance, you can tailor your policy to provide coverage specifically in the country that you’re visiting.
How Extensive Do You Need the Coverage to Be?
If you’re carrying valuable items like cameras or laptops, you might want to pay a little extra for an insurance scheme that covers loss of property by theft. When you’re travelling with the bare essentials, a low-cost policy should be enough to cover the basics, like your medical expenses.
Before picking a policy, you need to assess your needs and select one that suits your requirements.
So, when you’re planning your next trip, take a look at various travel insurance schemes and their conditions before selecting one. It might be an added expense, but could potentially save you a lot of money in a sticky situation.