Travel insurance: Things you should know before buying one

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  • Travel insurance should not be mistaken for normal health insurance by travelers.
  • Getting a refund is not easy despite having travel insurance.
  • Always read carefully about the coverage details and do not assume.

One element in travel that has become increasingly important and ubiquitous, especially after the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, is travel insurance.

Be it family vacations, business travel, a solo trip, or group travel with friends, everyone is buying travel insurance these days.

People think that buying travel insurance can absolve them of not only all petty troubles but also major unforeseen events that may crop up.

It is not simple like getting a refund for your lost duffle bag at the airport. Travel insurance involves a lot of paperwork to get a refund. It also does not entail automatic reimbursement.

Here, we explore a few myths surrounding travel insurance, knowing which can save us from being caught on the wrong foot:

Travel insurance is akin to health insurance:  

Most travel insurances cover only medical emergencies. One should not take it as health insurance. If someone breaks a leg during a trip, travel insurance will help cover that exigency.

However, it will not cover routine medical checkups that may fall during the trip. Most travel insurances only cover emergencies that take place during the trip. Moreover, overseas medical costs are not covered under most travel insurances. One can purchase add-on coverage for international travel to boost existing health insurance that will pad up during any overseas trip.

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Travel insurance is a shield for trips involving extreme sports:

Most travel insurances do not cover high-risk activities like sky-diving, bungee jumping, underwater adventures, mountain climbing, etc. One must buy additional coverage to avail contingency protection. One can take the help of a travel insurance comparison tool to find out the best suitable policy before picking one in a haste.

Any type of cancelation is eligible for a refund:

Before you purchase travel insurance make sure what kind of cancellation is eligible for a refund. Typically, travel insurance does not cover most cancellations which are otherwise considered normal by people. Impromptu trip cancellation does not elicit a refund.

There is an option to choose “Cancel for any reason” coverage. Even in such a scenario, there will be a deduction and you will not receive a full refund.  Moreover, there are many riders associated with cancellations in travel insurance.

Frequent travelers can make the most out of travel insurance:

The general impression is that frequent travelers can better capitalize on travel insurance and exact full benefits of a plan. This is far from true. Many travel insurances do not entertain trips extending more than a couple of months.

So, it is always better to find out what is covered and what is not. Even if you always live out of your suitcase, a travel insurance plan will not pad you up in every instance.

Travel insurance is very helpful for people with medical issues:

Most travel insurance plans do not cover pre-existing medical conditions. If any complications occur during the trip, claims will be denied. However, there is a host of conditions to decipher whether a waiver is available for any pre-existing conditions. It is paramount to read the terms& conditions carefully before purchasing any travel insurance.

Bottom line:

Before flying off to a destination, one should consider the best travel insurance plan according to the itinerary. While it doesn’t have coverage for every situation, travel insurance can be a safe bet in most cases to a large extent.



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