Top Five Travel Insurance Tips for International Travelers
What is Travel Insurance?
Travel Insurance protects you from any substantial losses that may result from a variety of situations and unforseen circumstances. Some of these situations may include, lost or stolen baggage, cancelled trips, medical emergencies and supplier defaults.
Okay, so you have your Passport, your bags are packed, and your tickets are booked. You are all set to take a trip around the world. Now, have you ever given it thought of what would happen if you had to get hurt or fall very ill on your international trip? Perhaps this is the most important thing to take into consideration when planning a international trip.
Most Travel Insurance Policies covers the standard Medical Insurance coverage and emergency medical evacuation Insurance. These are known to be the most important reasons to purchase Travel Insurance.
First of all, let me tell you more about the types of travel insurance coverage:
Trip Cancellation Coverage
This is the most important and most common type of travel insurance, and generally covers all non refundable payments and/or deposits when a trip is cancelled or interupted by unexpected or unforseen circumstances.
Trip Delay Coverage
This coverage provides reimbursement for any expenses that is incurred when a trip is delayed.
Accident & Medical Expenses
This covers any costs incurred due to injuries and/or illness while traveling.
Medical Evacuation & Emergency Transport
This basically covers any transportation costs to a hospital or any other medical facility. Needed when a medical emergency occurs on your travel, and transportation is needed.
This covers any payments and/or deposits that is lost due to the financial default from the travel supplier.
Baggage Loss & Delay
This covers any losses for stolen or lost baggage and goods while travelling. In some cases, this is covered by the airlines.
Before boarding the plane, please follow my top five tips for making the right choices regarding your travel insurance.
1. Health and Accident
Without Health, Accident and Medical Insurance, you are taking a serious risk when it comes to international traveling. When traveling on Employer based, private health insurance and sponsored health insurance programs, any medical care recieved in another country may be limited. Make sure you read and understand your health insurance plan, and understand the difference between “Emergency” and “Urgent Care” In these cases, you will need to pay for the expenses with your money, out of your pocket. Only once you are back from your trip, you may claim and file for reimbursement. Before going overseas, rather check with your health insurance provider to see what exactly is covered before you leave. If in any way you are concerned that your insurance might not be enough, find a medical insurance policy to fill the gaps. Many health, accident and medical insurance policies offers a 24 hour assistance line to help international travelers find their way.
2. Medical Evacuation Coverage
A very important and essential coverage when it comes to international traveling. Instead of focussing on what medical care will be covered, focus on the limits of the medical emergency coverage. Once again, make sure you read and fully understand your insurance policy. Typical insurance policies will cap payments for emergency and medical transportation, which is fine if it’s only an ambulance that is needed. International travelers usually fall short when it comes to the need for an “Air Ambulance” The Medical Evacuation Coverage is the type of insurance that you hope you never have to use, but are glad to have it in time of need.
3. Protection from Unexpected and Unforseen Circumstances
Also known as Trip cancellation and interruption coverage. This type of protection usually comes in handy if you become ill on your trip. Trip-Cancellation Insurance will take care of this by paying for any non refundable costs for the trip. This protection also covers non refundable costs such as, hotel bookings, air transport cancellation fees, and cruise-line cancellation fees. Make sure you cover yourself now. Refer to your travel insurance policy for details.
4. Terrorism Coverage
This may be a wise buy. Recently most travel agencies and travel insurance policies have started to include the “Acts of Terrorism” type of coverage in their plans. This insurance allows you to cancel or interrupt an international trip. For example, if the U.S State Department issues a advisory, recommending American travelers to avoid a certain country, the travel insurance policy will pay for any cancellation fees if you decide to cancel or shorten your vacation. many other insurance policies focus more on the actual cities than the countries. These type of policies will fully reimburse you in such cases. Make sure to check with your Travel agency as well as your insurance provider to fully understand how this coverage works before you purchase.
5. Other Travel Insurance
Travel insurers now also provides you with a host of other helpful services, such as, emergency contact numbers while abroad, translation services, replacing of lost or stolen passports and documents, and money transfers. Make sure that your insurance provider is solid and has good availability. Luckily most insurance providers have very comprehensive policies which automatically includes redundant coverage. This makes your international trip more simple and convenient.
It’s important to shop around and make sure you find a insurance provider that best suits your needs. In most cases, insurance providers will allow you to assemble a custom made plan with the coverage you want.
Hope this information helps you in making the wise choice before you attempt to travel abroad.