If you’re on the lookout for comprehensive travel insurance to protect you on your trip, make sure you get what you’re paying for.
Comprehensive travel insurance is an absolute must if you plan to travel abroad, whether for a short three-day holiday with the family or a month-long business trip.
The question, though, is what exactly should you look for in a comprehensive travel insurance package? Here are some of the vital aspects you should never miss, as well as a few useful options for an even more extensive policy.
Medical and Life Coverage
This is one of the first and most important aspects you should check for, especially where accidents are concerned. Specific areas should include emergency assistance, hospital expenses, disability, accidental death, loss of income, a hospital allowance for incidental expenses and even an option for medical expenses covering crime or terrorism.
Trip Cancellation/Disruption Coverage
It's advisable to get cover in case you are forced to cancel your trip or find yourself unable to travel on schedule. This is where cancellation and disruption coverage comes into play. Specific fields to look for include cancellation for any reason and coverage for travel delays experienced by your airline. Do note that some plans will only reimburse the expenses of a cancelled trip if they are caused by events that are beyond your control. Make sure that you identify whether you are getting a "no-questions-asked" cancellation clause or one that hinges on a cancellation due to outside factors.
Baggage/Personal Possessions Coverage
The items you bring along on your trip also need to be covered under a policy. Lost luggage and personal effects, delayed arrival of luggage and personal effects, additional coverage for electronic devices, additional coverage for jewellery, coverage for documents, and even coverage for the direct loss of money are all individual considerations to take note of.
This is our first ‘optional’ but useful component of a good comprehensive travel insurance package. Some policies expand coverage to include children or dependents for significantly less than what you’d pay for a separate individual to be covered to the same extent. Just make sure you understand the degree of coverage, as some providers offer a watered-down version.
Car Hire/Auto Rental Coverage
If you plan to make use of a vehicle while traveling abroad, you will definitely want auto rental coverage included as an optional extra. The last thing you want to do is pay good money for a damaged car that you don’t even own.
Hazardous Activities Coverage
If you plan to engage in activities that involve a risk of harm to yourself – examples include hiking, skiing, paragliding, diving, spelunking or even hiking – you will have to include coverage for hazardous or sporting activities. Be very specific about the activities you have in mind, and make sure all guarantees are in writing so you can take part in the sports without fear of footing the bill in case something goes wrong.
Personal Liability Coverage
Last but definitely not least, you may want to include coverage in case you find yourself on the receiving end of a lawsuit. Traveling to different countries with different laws puts you at heightened risk of breaking laws that you aren’t even aware of. Tacking on personal liability coverage to your comprehensive travel insurance policy will provide a generous buffer in case a suit is brought against you. Do note though that personal liability coverage will not work if criminal intent is proven, so it’s not a get-out-of-jail-free card for the would-be crook!
Keep all these aspects in mind and you’ll have a much easier time looking for a comprehensive travel insurance package that best covers your needs while still staying within your budget.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Patrick Chong is the Managing Director of Insuremore. We provide comprehensive travel insurance and offer a range of policies including single-trip, multi-trip and family insurance. For all your travel cover needs, Insuremore can help you in the quickest and most cost-efficient way.
By Lisa Jeeves