Amid all the excitement of booking a holiday, many travellers don’t invest enough time on finding an accompanying insurance policy. Instead, many plump for basic cover in order to save costs, not realising the limitations of their policy should anything go wrong. Here, we’ll take a look at comprehensive travel insurance, how this works in practice, and why every traveller should consider it, regardless of their age or destination.
- What is Comprehensive Travel Insurance?
- What is the Difference between Basic and Comprehensive Insurance?
- What Does Comprehensive Travel Insurance NOT Include?
- What Affects the Cost of a Comprehensive Insurance Policy?
- Is Comprehensive Travel Insurance Right for Me?
What is Comprehensive Travel Insurance?
As its name suggests, comprehensive travel insurance gives travellers a greater level of cover whilst away. A typical comprehensive policy might include higher levels of health or theft cover, plus additional benefits such as claiming for a cancelled trip or flight and even insurance against specific activities.
Different companies will include different levels of coverage within their basic and comprehensive policies, so it pays to consider your own needs prior to agreeing upon any deal. Comprehensive insurance is also referred to be different names, like ‘additional premium’, given that greater coverage comes with added cost. For example, at GasanMamo we refer to comprehensive cover as Executive cover.
What is the Difference between Basic and Comprehensive Insurance Policy?
The difference between basic and comprehensive insurance comes in both the cost and the level of coverage. Specifics will change from one insurer to another, but, generally speaking, the cheaper a policy is, the more limited the cover.
Our own basic travel insurance includes the likes of loss/damage to baggage and money; replacing emergency items if baggage is temporarily lost; costs for emergency expenses; cancellation of a trip, and many other benefits.
However, for an additional premium you can opt for an even more comprehensive policy. This includes cancellations due to natural disasters; higher personal accident benefits; or cover for winter sports equipment. This removes the excess payment from any claim, or the percentage/fixed amount an individual must cover on any bill. Given that 12% of trips are affected by natural disasters, you should research your choice of destination and decide on the level of potential risk.
Furthermore, GasanMamo offers annual travel insurance for frequent travellers, with both standard and executive options for cover. As you can see, there are various travel insurance packages available, all dependent on the needs of the individual, and the circumstances of their own trip.
What Does Comprehensive Travel Insurance NOT Include?
Even the most comprehensive insurance policy won’t cover you for every eventuality, so it pays to read any terms and conditions in-depth. Such a policy is unlikely to include any of the following:
- Accidents deemed to be your own fault, through inebriation or dangerous behaviour
- Specific activities – some may be covered (e.g. skiing), whereas others may not (e.g. kite surfing)
- Visiting a country that your home country deems unsafe
A comprehensive policy may also not cover you for a specific pre-existing medical condition. This will depend on the condition itself, as well as your age and the activities you have planned on holiday. However, many conditions will be covered by an additional premium, so be sure to double-check with your chosen insurer.
What Affects the Cost of a Comprehensive Insurance Policy?
The cost of a comprehensive insurance policy will depend on several factors:
Senior travellers tend to pay more for travel insurance, given the higher risks of needing healthcare whilst away.
If you have a pre-existing medical condition, it’s essential to declare this prior to travel – if not, you won’t be covered should you need to pay for urgent attention. However, coverage for pre-existing conditions usually comes at an extra cost.
- Conditions of trip
Different destinations come with different risks, as well as costs for healthcare. The length of your trip will also be taken into consideration – longer trips usually add to costs.
Even activities that don’t appear to be high risk may be deemed so by your insurer. If you’re planning a hiking trip, sailing lesson, or any sporting activities, let your insurer know in order to be aware of the coverage you’re entitled to. Some activities can be covered for an additional premium, whereas others may not be covered at all.
- Personal concerns
A study showed that the biggest concerns for travellers were about the provider they’d booked with, and so many feared delayed flights or moved reservations. You may have personal concerns about your airline or hotel and so opt to pay an additional premium as a result.
Is Comprehensive Travel Insurance Right for Me?
Travel insurance should be a personal thing, and one particular policy won’t cover the needs of another. If you have a pre-existing medical condition, you’ll likely need more comprehensive cover in order to get insured whilst you’re travelling.
Likewise, if you’re planning any physical activities as part of your holiday, some of these may not be covered even by the most in-depth policies. Take even the type of trip you have planned into account – a week on a beach in Europe would need a different type of coverage to, say, backpacker travel insurance.
When shopping around, compare the likes of basic and comprehensive travel insurance against your own trip plans, and you’ll soon start to build a picture of the kind of package that’s right for you.
The benefits of comprehensive travel insurance are clear – pay a higher premium and enjoy more coverage. It’s best to consider all of your options prior to agreeing on a deal, detailing your needs and then finding the level of coverage to match them. That way, you’ll be able to enjoy your trip with added peace of mind and concentrate on enjoying your time away.
To get started, take a look at our Executive cover and comprehensive benefits, optional extras, and annual offer on our travel insurance page.
GasanMamo Insurance is authorised under the Insurance Business Act and regulated by the MFSA.