No matter how meticulously you plan your trip, especially the overseas ones, there are certain unavoidable occurrences that are definitely not in your control. For instance, flight cancellations and delays, baggage and passport loss, and medical exigencies including accidents are certain occurrences on which you have absolutely no control. It is during these unforeseen contingencies when your travel insurance plan comes to your rescue.
The importance of investing in travel insurance cannot be overstated, particularly when you are travelling abroad as the cost of medical treatments is nearly 3 to 10 times higher in foreign lands as compared to India. Further, the possibility of flight cancellations/delay and baggage loss/delay is also greater in the case of international flights.
There are many travel insurance products available in the market today which means you can choose from the plethora of available options based on your specific requirements. However, make sure that you consider the following things before buying a travel insurance plan: -
Purpose and Frequency of Travel
Before investing in travel insurance, it is important to be clear about your purpose of travel, whether you are on a business tour, casual tour, or planning to study abroad since there are different insurance plans for different purposes. In addition to this, some insurance providers also offer multi-trip insurance plans wherein the insured can undertake multiple trips and get coverage for emergency medical and non-medical expenses. This is beneficial for frequent fliers as this helps in substantial saving of cost in comparison to taking multiple policies – one for each separate trip.
The next important thing to consider before investing in travel insurance is the medical coverage offered by the insurer. Irrespective of your purpose of travel, ensure that your travel insurance plan offers the following benefits since these are the most essential ones: -
- Hospitalisation Cover - In case of emergency hospitalisation or treatment due to illness or injury, the cost incurred by the insured is duly taken care of by the insurance provider.
- Pre-Existing Disease Cover - The treatment expenses of pre-existing diseases are covered.
- Double Sum Insured For Accidental Hospitalization - The sum that is insured doubles in amount once in the case of an accidental hospitalization.
- Dental Expenses Cover - The cost borne by the insured in case of dental treatment arising due to an injury during the travel is taken care of by the insurer.
- Daily Allowance For Hospitalisation - When hospitalization is between two to five days, then, the expenses for meals, communication and transportation are covered.
- Accidental Death/Permanent Total Disability Cover - Any unfortunate expenses arising out of permanent total disability or death during the trip are taken care of by the insurer.
The non-medical benefits offered by travel insurance are equally important as the medical benefits. Listed here are some of the most common non-medical benefits. Make sure to consider these before zeroing in on a particular policy -
- Trip Cancellation/Delay Cover - When the trip is cancelled or delayed beyond twelve successive hours due to an unforeseen event occurring as a result of a natural or manmade disaster, then the cost incurred is taken care of by the insurer.
- Loss/Delay of Checked-In Baggage - When the checked-in luggage is lost while in the custody of the carrier or there are more than twelve hours of delay in receiving the luggage, then the related expenses are duly covered.
- Loss of Passport - In such a case, the cost for a new or duplicate passport is taken care of by the insurer.
- Return of Minor Child - If the insured is travelling alone with child/children and is hospitalized, then, the cost of bringing the minor child to the home location is duly covered.
- Up-Gradation to Business Class - When the insured has been hospitalized for more than five consecutive days and needs to be brought back to their home location, then, the compensation for up-gradation to business class is provided by the insurer.
In addition to the above, one needs to take into account the destination that they are travelling to since certain insurance companies offer destination-specific plans. Lastly, remember not to get lured by lucrative offers or low premiums; rather, focus upon getting the right coverage.
Care Health Insurance (Formerly Religare Health Insurance) (CHIL) is a specialized health insurance service provider that offers an extensive range of customised and affordable international travel insurance plans, perfectly suitable for diverse requirements. Acknowledged for their phenomenal services, CHIL has been recognised as the “Claims Service Leader of the Year” at the prestigious Insurance India Summit & Awards. Offering cashless medical services across 7800+ hospitals worldwide, Care Health Insurance is indeed your reliable friend in times of need.