International travel in India has increased exponentially over the past few years and so has the need for a travel insurance cover.
According to World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) report, 25 million Indian tourists travel abroad every year for vacationing. It is estimated that India will account for 50 million outbound tourists by 2020.
More travellers want to experience offbeat places and are willing to go on adventurous trips but despite this, while planning a trip, Indians don’t consider travel insurance as one of their priorities for their journey.
This is because most people fail to understand what travel insurance actually covers.
To help you make informed choices as travellers , let’s first understand the basic types of covers under travel insurance in India.
Basic Travel Insurance Policy
A basic travel insurance will primarily cover your emergency medical care and loss of belongings while travelling. However, you can add other covers such as:
- Burglary at home at the time of travel
- Reimbursement if your flight gets delayed for more than 12 hours
- Coverage of bounced/cancelled bookings of hotels and airlines
Travel insurance also covers personal liability. For instance, if someone sues you for damage to property during the period of your insurance and is caused by an occurrence to which this coverage applies, the company will pay up to the amount stated in the policy.
The medical benefits of a travel insurance policy include accidental death or injury during the trip, expenses incurred on account of injury, sickness etc.
There Are 2 Basic Types Of Travel Insurance
1.Domestic Travel Insurance
The domestic travel insurance promises to have your back at every step when you’re travelling within the country.
This cover mainly looks into all your critical travel mishaps mentioned above.
The cover also reimburses the cost of round-economy airfare and hotel of an immediate family member in case of sudden hospitalization on the trip.
A domestic travel insurance will cover accidental medical emergencies or assistance required in India. It additionally reimburses for transportation, treatment and medical supplies in case of hospitalization or will compensate for death/injury while boarding or already on a flight.
2.Overseas Travel Insurance
An overseas travel insurance is a must-have while you’re travelling abroad, not only because it shelters your primary covers as mentioned above but offers protection for a number of contingencies during an international trip.
- The insurance policy extensively covers, loss of passport, documents, baggage loss and baggage delay.
- It covers you in case your checked-in luggage is lost while in the custody of your airline due to theft or non-delivery at its destination
- It also covers accidental death & dismemberment, emergency medical evacuation which includes transportation, medical treatment, medical services and supplies necessary during an emergency evacuation
- Additionally, an overseas policy will also cover fraudulent charges on your credit/debit card. This cover rescues you not only when you lose money but when you lose money where help is not easily found.
A travel insurance policy also covers students who travel abroad for education. A student travel insurance policy is a must for students as it largely protects the individual from study interruption, health cover, sponsor protection and compassion visits.
The student travel plan further covers mental and nervous disorders, rehabilitation for drug and alcohol addiction.
Tips To Choose The Best Travel Insurance Plan For You
Before you choose a travel insurance plan, ask yourself these questions:
1.WHERE AM I GOING?
Your destination determines the size of the cover or the amount of insurance money (Sum Insured).
Since medical cover is the main feature of travel insurance, decide the sum insured on the basis of how expensive medical services are in the country or city you are travelling to.
For instance, Medical treatment is significantly costlier in countries like the US and Canada than in South East Asia. This will cause the premium paid on the insurance by you to go higher.
2.WHAT WILL BE THE DURATION?
Longer the trip, higher the premium!
If you are a frequent flyer, opt for annual multi-trip policies to save money. These plans are valid for a year and usually cover any number of trips abroad, each trip having a maximum duration of 30-45 days.
Annual multi-trip plans turn out to be cheaper than the single-trip policies for each trip. This is because the insurance company doesn’t have to bear additional administrative expenses.
3.WHAT WILL I DO?
Is it a sleep, eat and sightseeing holiday or do you plan to be more adventurous?
If your itinerary includes sporting activities such as trekking in difficult terrains, skiing, water sports, etc, you must fill the gaps in your travel cover.
Though a regular travel insurance plan will not cover risks involved in these activities, you can get special coverage on request at an extra cost.
Similarly, if you are above 65, you can opt for plans for senior citizens that have features such as coverage for pre-existing illness in special situations, higher sum insured, accidental death and dismemberment cover.
4.Which Policy Should I Buy?
Always compare the plans. Don’t buy only on the basis of the sum insured and the premium you have to pay.
Conduct a comparative analysis of companies and their offerings like online services, claims process, toll-free number, payment options, network of hospitals etc
Also remember, since so many different covers are clubbed in one policy-medical, accident, passport and baggage loss, personal liability, trip cancellation, etc-the claim procedures differ according to the situation.
So, the next time you book your ticket, Download the AirWhizz app and apply for a travel insurance with us. We at AirWhizz have partnered with prestigious travel insurance companies such as HDFC Ergo to help you plan for any unforeseen changes that might occur.