Besides an itinerary, the location you want to visit and the accommodation, there are things you need to consider before travelling abroad – travel insurance. Although it may seem trivial, most vacations don’t always go as planned. There is the possibility of uncontrollable situations such as cancelled flights, lost luggage, severe illness or most worryingly, accidents while travelling abroad.
5 Important Travel Insurance Must-Know for a Peaceful Vacation
What is travel insurance? Travel insurance is an insurance policy that offers financial compensation in the event of an unexpected event that may affect your vacation plans such as an accident and so on. This article will help you understand the important aspects related to travel insurance to prevent your dream vacation with family or friends from turning into an unexpected nightmare.
1. Flight Delay
Most of you have probably faced a flight delay situation while on vacation. Although it is a common situation, it is not a desirable vacation experience.
If you have travel insurance, you are entitled to compensation in the event of a delay in the flight schedule due to certain problems such as mechanical issues, aircraft maintenance or weather factors.
Some insurance companies offer an automated insurance claim process to make things easier. Although the compensation that may be received may not be equally compensated for the time wasted, it can at least cover the cost of additional expenses used to buy food, books, etc. during the waiting period.
However, if you miss your flight due to your own error or negligence, it is not covered by your travel insurance. You are therefore advised to plan your trip well to avoid such a situation.
2. Lost / Delayed / Damage Baggage
The process of waiting for your baggage after a long journey can add to your fatigue. It becomes even more frustrating if you realize that your baggage is missing or is arriving later than scheduled.
Although the probability of such a situation occurring is very slim, it does not mean that you should ignore the possibility that this problem can occur. Although you can claim lost or delayed baggage from the airline, it isn’t the same as having travel insurance.
This is because the claim process from the airline is usually long and complicated usually takes a long time and the claim process that needs to be done is not as easy as the claim process with the insurance company.
Hence why you need to get travel insurance. At the very least, it can minimize the impact on your vacation should your baggage be damaged, lost or delayed.
3. Medical Emergency
Emergency situations such as suddenly falling ill to being in a car accident are things you want to avoid while on vacation. Medical-related expenses abroad are often higher than domestically.
Having travel insurance can to some extent cover any treatment costs abroad such as consultation costs, room fees, diagnostic charges and any other expenses arising from the hospitalization.
Besides that, in the event should you have an untimely departure during your vacation, especially if it is abroad, a travel insurance coverage plan allows your family members to make a death benefits claim easily without the complicated process.
As you may already know, the process of bringing the body back to the home country is not easy – it is a complicated process and can be expensive. Travel insurance can lighten the burden on your family by making it easier for them to make a claim in the event of death.
Travel Insurance vs Medical Insurance and Personal Accident
You probably think that you no longer need to buy additional protection policies such as travel insurance before travelling abroad since you already have medical insurance or a personal medical card.
However, medical insurance and travel insurance are two entirely different things.
Although personal insurance does cover some aspects such as death claims, injuries and so on, it does not cover some other aspects or risks related to your trip such as lost luggage, cancelled flights or accidents at the place of travel.
While medical insurance only covers you in the event of a health emergency within the country. Travel insurance acts as additional protection in the event of any risk such as an accident or injury while you are abroad that requires hospital treatment.
4. Lost Documents, Money and Passport
In the unfortunate event despite all precautions taken, there is still a potential incident of theft or loss of personal items such as mobile phones, credit or debit cards, money or in the worst case, your passport, especially at tourist hotspots. These situations can occur either due to negligence such as being misplaced, left behind or stolen by pickpockets.
By having travel insurance, losses due to such situations can be minimized. Although travel insurance does not guarantee the safety of your belongings 100 percent, it can at least reduce the risk of loss if the items were lost or stolen.
In the case of losing a passport, a travel insurance policy can help you financially while obtaining a temporary travel permit, covering any losses (that may occur) thus guaranteeing your safe return home.
Usually the cost of transportation to the embassy, phone calls to the home country, and the printing of any important documents including accommodation throughout the process of obtaining a temporary permit until completion are covered by the insurance company.
That said, the insurance company has the right to reject the claim when the incident of lost goods occurs due to its own negligence. For example, the insurance company will not accept a claim if your mobile phone is lost because you left it on the table in a restaurant and someone else took it.
While having travel insurance protects you from unexpected incidence during your travel, it does not mean you can be both carefree and careless.
Easy Steps If Your Passport Is Lost While Travelling Abroad
Following are the steps to take if you are faced with a lost passport situation and need to get a temporary travel permit to return to your home country:
- Report the incident to the police immediately;
- Go to your nearest home country embassy and apply for a temporary travel permit;
- Documents such as a birth certificate, a police report, and an identity card are among the documents that may be required;
- The usual process of obtaining this permit usually takes three to five days. This means you have to extend your stay while waiting for the permit to be ready;
- Upon completion, you can return to your home country. Immediately replace your passport to avoid problems in your future abroad travel.
5. Sudden Cancellation
Planning a trip and having to cancel it at the last minute can be a huge disappointment especially when you have to the losses. That is unless you are covered by travel insurance. For example, if your travel partner or you suddenly fall ill on the day of travel, you may be entitled to a refund for all the expenses you have spent on booking airline tickets and hotel reservations.
Choosing the Best and Comprehensive Travel Insurance Plan
There are many things to consider before purchasing travel insurance that suits your needs and budget for your vacation abroad. Here are some factors that need to be emphasized before buying travel insurance:
- Compare policies and take the necessary coverage according to your budget;
- Understand the insurance terms in the insurance policy carefully to avoid misunderstandings – some insurance companies offer different coverage policies depending on the company’s policy;
- Make sure the chosen insurance company has a good foreign cooperation network abroad. This is to make it easier for assistance to be provided in the event of any unwanted event or situation;
- Choose an insurance company that offers or provides 24/7 emergency assistance services. This is because accidents or unforeseen situations can happen at any time;
- Familiarize yourself with the things that are covered and can be claimed. This is important so that there are no misunderstandings when claiming.
Get travel insurance and financially safeguard yourself from unwanted incidents and mishaps. Don’t allow a thoroughly planned and supposedly memorable vacation to become a bitter and unforgetful experience.
If you are looking for the best insurance online, visit Qoala for more info. Qoala provides a range of insurance from travel insurance, car insurance, motorcycle insurance, home insurance, personal accident insurance and health insurance from various top insurance companies in Malaysia. With just a few simple steps, you can buy or renew insurance that suits your needs and budget.