Let Your Trip Be Safe And Pleasant
As there is rise in a travelling-related accidents or losses it has become essential to have travel insurance when you plan for any trip. The article provides an overview of inclusions, exclusions and eligibilities of some of the companies
There has been a surge in travel and tourism across India. People at least plan a trip once a year domestically or abroad in order to get rid of their monotonous life. With this the possibility of uncertainties also increases. Travellers may face eventualities like personal accident, medical emergencies, etc. While travelling various difficulties arise such as trip cancellations, trip delay, baggage loss, loss of passport during the trip, etc. All of these eventualities come with cost which might impact the finances. Therefore the question is whether such eventualities can be avoided? The answer of course is ‘No’. No one can avoid these uncertain events, but can we protect ourselves from such unforeseen events occurring during a trip and get compensated for the same?
Yes, whenever you plan a trip you should have travel insurance which insures uncertainties related to travelling. Investing in suitable travel insurance is advantageous. We can say travel insurance is the mainstay while planning to travel. With increase in frequency of uncertain events on a daily basis, it has become vital to have backup in order to protect ourselves from such unexpected emergencies. The following graphs depict the number of Indian nationals travelling domestically as well as overseas (outbound tourism):
*Source India Tourism Statistics 2019
As can be seen from the above graphs, there is a continual increase in tourism domestically as well as overseas. With this we can see the importance of travel insurance while travelling in order to have a safe and pleasant journey.
What is Travel Insurance?
Travel insurance is offered by general insurance companies covering you against any unforeseen situations while travelling on vacations, business trips, etc. Always make sure that you have the right comprehensive travel insurance covering all your needs against any mishap which could create a financial burden. This insurance provides coverage against the following incidents:
✓ Medical expenses
✓ Medical evacuation
✓ Loss of passport
✓ Baggage loss
✓ Trip delay
✓ Loss of personal belongings.
The dilemma that most travellers face is whether to buy travel insurance or not? Is it worth the cost or investment? Here, you have to always keep in mind that the percentage of facing unexpected situations is always high when travelling. As everyone knows, medical expenses costs in countries like the US, UK, etc. are much higher than in India. Also, it is quite common to find that airlines misplace luggage. There are also incidents of missing the flight or getting physically injured during an incident of a plane hijacking, etc. Loss of passport is another common occurrence. All this can cause both mental and financial stress. Therefore, in order to have a hassle-free trip you should invest in travel insurance before you leave. This is your investment as your savings won’t get hampered due to any eventualities.
Features of Travel Insurance Policies
1. Emergency Hospitalisation, Evacuation and Medical Treatment:No one can predict a medical emergency that may require hospitalisation in a foreign country. By having adequate travel insurance, you don’t have to be concerned about medical expenses as it will get covered under the policy. Emergency evacuation expenses are also covered such policies.
2. Trip-Related Adversities: You may face adversities during your trip such as cancelling a trip due to some emergency or a delay of your flight. You get compensated if you lose any money due to delays or cancellations.
3. Cashless Treatment: We do not visit a hospital when on a holiday, and if we have to visit due to some emergency then it can become a financial burden at the time of the trip. So, this type of insurance covers hospitalisation or provides medical treatment at an empanelled hospital of the insurer. You can get cashless service in which all your medical bills will get settled directly by your insurer.
4. Coverage for Baggage or Passport Loss: On an average almost 4 million baggage items get misplaced or misdirected at airports every year other than those that get stolen. Not just that but tourists getting targeted by pickpockets at tourist locations is very frequent. Under such scenarios it is beneficial to have travel insurance which insures your loss of baggage as well as passport.
5. Available for Frequent Flyers: Many people travel frequently due to their business or professional needs. In such scenarios it’s tedious and frustrating to take travel insurance every time there is a need to travel. Therefore, for such a target audience there are options of buying insurance policies that insures ‘x’ number of travels for a person.
6. Family Coverage: If you are travelling as a family, it is expensive to get individual insurance policies. Therefore, getting all the members insured under a single policy is recommended.
Types of Travel Insurance in India
There are various types of travel insurances available in the market. They are classified based on different factors as indicated in the chart below:
Many companies offer travel insurance, some of which are highlighted below:
Insurance company :
Bajaj Allianz Travel Insurance
Eligibility Criteria :
6 months to 60 years, 61 to 91+ years (senior citizens), 16 to 35 years (students), minimum 10 members required (group insurance
Inclusions : ✓ Trip cancellations ✓ Medical Expenses ✓ Trip Curtailment ✓ Trip Delay (up to 12 hrs) ✓ Medical evacuation ✓ Emergency Dental pain ✓ Personal Accident Cover ✓ Medical Repatriation ✓ Home Burglary coverage ✓ Emergency cash advance ✓ Daily Allowance (Hospital) ✓ Loss of passport and Baggage delay cover ✓ Hijack coverage
Exclusions ✓ Alcohol or drugs ✓ War, Civil war, Terrorism ✓ HIV/AIDS, Alternative treatment, cosmetic treatment, pre-existing conditions or diseases), not following doctor’s medical advice, suicide or self-inflicted injury ✓ Loss of passport is not covered in India when the same is left unattended, If baggage shipped separately from insured then its not covered. ✓Injuries due to participation in adventure sports
Insurance company :
Bharti AXA Travel Insurance
Eligibility Criteria :
3 months to 85 years (non-schengen), 3 months to 60 years (schengen), 3 months to 70 years (multi-trip)
Inclusions : ✓Trip/Cancellations or delay ✓ Emergency accommodation ✓ Hijack distress ✓ Daily cash allowance (Hospital) Loss of essentials (passports, documents, checked-in baggage) ✓ Legal expenses ✓ Personal accident ✓ Personal liability ✓Emergency financial assistance ✓Medical treatment, evacuation and repatriation expenses ✓Accidental death and disablement ✓Dental treatment expense ✓ Home insurance
Exclusions ✓Cosmetic surgery ✓Self-inflicted injury/harm ✓Performing risky and Professional sports ✓Non-allopathic treatment ✓ Medical expenses due to unproven treatment Illegal activity ✓Pre-existing conditions medical expense ✓Participation in warfare
Insurance company :
Reliance General Insurance
Eligibility Criteria :
6 months to 70 years
Inclusions : ✓ Medical expenses ✓Loss of passport ✓Total loss of checked-in baggage ✓ Delay in checked-in baggage ✓Trip delay (6 days max) ✓Trip cancellations and interruptions ✓Missed connections ✓Home burglary insurance ✓Compassionate visit ✓Financial emergency assistance
Exclusions ✓Suicide ✓ Self-inflicted injuries or illness Mental disorder ✓Anxiety, stress or depression ✓ Venereal diseases Alcohol/drug abuse ✓ HIV/AIDS ✓ Travelling against advice of physician ✓ Receiving or are on a waiting list for specified medical treatment ✓ Travelling to receive treatment abroad ✓ Have been given a terminal prognosis for a medical condition ✓ Loss of passport is not covered in India when the same is left unattended ✓ War or nuclear threat n✓ Loss of checked baggage - no partial loss or damage shall become payable
Selecting the Right Insurance Policy
Here are some pointers to help you select the right policy:
✓ Coverage Offered: Understand the purpose of your travel and the coverage you require and then choose a policy which has the required features.
✓ Flexibility: Travel insurance plans should be flexible enough to allow any changes in your travel itinerary before the journey begins and therefore look for flexible plans.
✓ Sum Insured: Choose an optimal coverage amount based on the destination you are travelling, the members’ travelling and the duration of your trip.
✓ Members Covered: If you are travelling with your family you should cover all the members travelling with you, including senior citizens who might need a separate policy.
✓ Claim Settlement Ratio: Higher the better as higher settlement ratio is favourable for you since it increases the probability of your claim being settled.
✓ Comparison: After considering all the above factors,compare the available plans offered by different
insurance companies and then make your final choice.