It pays to know your way around travel insurance if you’re planning an adventure anytime soon. Many take out a policy as a standard without knowing what they’re covered for. Others omit this step entirely, taking a risk over an informed choice.
Here we’ll answer ‘what is travel insurance?’, focusing on the pros, cons, and essential things to note before agreeing on a policy.
· So, What is Travel Insurance?
· What Are the Benefits of Travel Insurance?
· What are the cons of travel insurance?
· Hidden Realities
So, What is Travel Insurance?
Travel insurance guards against unforeseen happenings that take place during a holiday. A basic package will likely cover you against medical bills and compensate you for theft. More comprehensive policies can cover your flight or the right to a refund if you have to cancel.
What are the Benefits of Travel Insurance?
What benefits one traveller may not benefit another. Overall, a travel insurance policy can cover your health, monies spent, and most possessions and cut down on everyday worries:
Few countries have the standards or largely-free costs associated with the UK’s NHS. Travel insurance will cover the cost of most health scares, no matter how large or small.
· Refunds for travel delays
Those who opt to book early tend to find the best holiday deals. A Forbes study showed the majority of travellers (64%) are concerned about flight delays and cancellations. Circumstances can change in the 6-12 month wait between booking a trip and taking off.
And, of course, no one can decide when a health issue or personal accident might happen. Furthermore, freak events might lead to a cancelled flight, or unforeseen problems might see your chosen hotel close its doors. Travel insurance will often compensate you for such events.
· Theft or loss
Most policies will cover you for an airline causing lost luggage. Or if you have the misfortune of being the victim of a robbery.
· Peace of mind
Knowing you’re insured against any mishaps is a feeling that’s not to be underestimated. Packing suitcases, arranging dog sitters, and getting to the airport on time are all major causes of anxiety. A travel policy certainly reduces the stress factor of travelling.
What are the Cons of Travel Insurance?
The following are areas that put some people off booking travel insurance. Although it’s worth considering these alongside the cost and heartache that can stem from an unforeseen occurrence:
· The cost
If you’ve already shelled out a tidy sum for a fantastic week in the sun, adding more cost for something you may not need could deter you from taking out a travel insurance deal. To cover all eventualities, insurance can seem expensive. However, one survey showed that 18% who take out a travel plan use it. So there’s almost a 1-in-6 chance that an investment will be worthwhile.
· Difficulties with evidence
Corruption or cultural misunderstandings in some parts of the world may mean it’s difficult for you to acquire all the evidence needed to file a claim.
To give any claim the best possible chance of success, speak to your insurer as soon as a misadventure occurs. They’ll advise the evidence you need should you have a bag snatched or rack up a large hospital bill.
It is worth remembering that just 2-5% of claims fail to pay out. However, being prepared with the proper evidence certainly helps.
· It may not cover your hobbies
Those who enjoy adventurous activities may find it difficult to get coverage for these while they’re away. Even if you’re an expert surfer, jet skier, or horse whisperer, the average policy may count these as dangerous activities. Tell your insurer before agreeing on a deal if you plan to do more than sunbathe and sip pina coladas.
Given the potential happenings that may lead to an insurance claim, every policy naturally comes with terms and conditions. Be sure to read this in detail so you’re fully aware of your rights before you travel.
A policy will likely cover or compensate you for lost or stolen luggage caused by an airline or thief. But not any high-value jewellery or electrical items. Travel insurance will rarely cover you for a misfortune deemed your fault. So, be just as responsible whilst away as you are at home.
Learn more with our article on What does travel insurance NOT cover?
What is the difference between trip and travel insurance?
Sometimes used interchangeably, trip insurance should specifically refund the cost of your holiday should you need to cancel it. Travel insurance covers almost any other eventuality and may include trip insurance within an overall policy.
Does travel insurance cover hotels?
Travel insurance covers most aspects of the hotel as part of any holiday. The most likely scenarios include receiving a refund in the event of a cancellation. Or compensation if a flight delay eats into your hotel time.
Does travel insurance cover flight cancellation?
Travel insurance can cover flight cancellations, delays, and missed connections. Such benefits are not usually standard and are included in comprehensive travel insurance policies.
Can I get travel insurance after travel?
You cannot insure a holiday that’s passed, but you can take out a policy once you’re there. Your options will be more limited compared to booking in advance. So to cover your needs, arranging a deal well before your flight date is better.
Does travel insurance cover travel?
It can cover most eventualities when travelling, as most of these can occur anytime. If you become ill mid-journey, you can still claim for any diagnosis or medication required.
The best way to avoid any unpleasant surprises when travelling is to know your rights when it comes to travel insurance. Never assume that a policy will cover you for a specific occurrence or activity – double-check the terms and conditions. Look for both inclusions and exclusions and if anything remains a grey area, speak to your insurer before you travel.
GasanMamo Insurance is authorised under the Insurance Business Act and regulated by the MFSA.’