This article explains in detail the meaning of travel insurance and its benefits for the insured who are traveling outside their country. Without further ado, let us directly explain the meaning of travel insurance and its benefits.

Meaning of Travel Insurance and Its Benefits

Travel insurance or overseas medical insurance policy is not a general health insurance policy but is insurance against any untoward incident pertaining to the health and well-being of a person that requires prompt medical attention. Apart from impairment of health, it may also cover any one or all of the following clauses depending on the insurance company and the insurance plan selected.

Below are the major covered under travel insurance:

  • Medical expenses cover
  • Total loss of checked-in baggage
  • Loss of passport
  • Personal accident\financial emergency assistance
  • Burglary
  • Missed connection
  • Bounced booking of hotels and airlines
  • Dental treatment
  • Delay of checked-in baggage
  • Personal liability
  • Hijack distress and perils
  • Trip cancellation and interruption
  • Travel delay.

Insurance companies offer different types of travel insurance for different destinations. Most insurance companies offer comprehensive travel insurance specially designed for travelers, which covers the most likely contingencies that may occur.

What are the benefits of travel insurance?

An insurance company offers a wide range of travel insurance to different destinations. Most insurance companies offer comprehensive travel insurance specially designed for travelers, which covers the most likely contingencies that may occur.

Some of the benefits of travel insurance are as below:

Medical expenses

Medical expenses cover expenses incurred for availing immediate medical assistance required on account of any illness or injury sustained or contracted whilst on a trip abroad but nor exceeding the sum insured for. The policy will normally cover all reasonable medical, surgical, hospital, and nursing fees incurred overseas, as a result of bodily injury, illness, or disease, to relieve pain.

Related expenses

It covers travel and accommodation expenses for another person, to escort the client or patient home, or in the event of death, to cover the cost of returning the body or ashes home.

Dental Expenses

This clause covers expenses incurred on acute anesthetic treatment of natural teeth during a trip abroad by not exceeding the sum insured for.

Total Loss of Checked-in Baggage

This clause covers the total loss of checked-in baggage on a trip abroad. The payment for this benefit will be limited to the travel destinations specified in the main travel ticket purchased from the Republic of India and return trip to India during the trip abroad. All halts and via destinations included in this main travel ticket will also be considered for payment under these benefits.

Delay of Checked-in Baggage

This clause covers the temporary delay of checked-in baggage being transported during a trip abroad.

Loss of Passport

This clause covers the loss of a passport during a trip abroad. But it should not exceed the sum insured for the coverage. Under this insurance, if a person loss his/her passport, the insurance company will reimburse all the expenses while obtaining a duplicate passport.

Personal Liability

This clause covers the insured in the event if the insured becomes legally liable to a third party under statutory liability provisions in private law for an incident that results in death, injury, or damage to the death of such third party, or damage to their properties.

Personal Accident

This clause covers the insures for a personal accident during a trip abroad. An accident is considered to have if:

  • If the insured meets with an accident, which leads to death or disablement of the insured, the company will provide insurance coverage to the insurance coverage to the insured for: Death of insured, infection, radiation, strokes, damage to health caused by curative measures, permanent disablement of the insured, poisoning, disturbances of consciousness, accidents due to mental disorders, etc.
  • Due to excessive exertion, tendons are strained or torn, ligaments or a joint is dislocated or muscles.

Hijack Distress Allowance

This clause covers compensation in the event of a hijack of a common carrier in which the insured is traveling on a trip abroad.

Financial Emergency Assistance

This clause covers compensation of the insured in the event of a financial emergency arising due to theft, robbery, dacoity, or mugging.

Fire and Allied Perils (Home Building and Contents)

This clause covers the home or any part of the property where the traveler is residing abroad. The clause covers damages of property or damages by any of the perils, such as fire, riots, damage caused by aircraft, lightning, strikes, explosion, and other malicious damage excluding direct loss or damaged by an act of terrorism.

Burglary

This clause covers compensation for any loss or damage sustained by the insured during the stay abroad caused by burglary and/or attempted burglary, to the contents of the insured’s dwelling.

Trip Cancellation

This clause covers compensation if a trip is delayed, canceled, or interrupted due to any of the following reasons:

  • Unforeseen serious illness, injury, or death of the insured family members.
  • Termination of employment or layout, affecting the insured or the traveling companion of the insured
  • Inclement weather conditions causing delay or cancellation of the trip
  • Any fire, flood, vandalism, burglary, or natural disaster, making the insured intended place of occupancy, at the destination, uninhabitable.
  • Abduction or quarantine of the insured
  • The insured or a traveling companion being the victim of a felonious assault within ten days prior to the departure date
  • Terrorist incident in a city/destination listed on the insured itinerary within 30 days of the insured scheduled arrival.

Missed Connections

This clause covers compensation in the event that inclement weather causes a cancellation or a delay of all regularly scheduled airline flights on which the insured is or would be traveling, for three to twelve hours from the scheduled departure time. This clause covers the following:

  • Additional transportation costs to join the trip (must be the same class of original tickets purchased.
  • Reasonable accommodations and meals.
  • The non-refundable, unused portion of the prepaid expenses as long as the expense is supported by a proof of purchase and is not reimbursable by another source, the common carrier must certify the delay of the regularly scheduled airline flight.

Travel Delay

This clause agrees to reimburse the insured for the reasonable additional expenses, incurred by the insured if the insured trip is delay for more than six hours from the scheduled time until travel becomes possible. Insured expenses must be accompanied by a supporting receipt. This benefit is payable for only one delay per insured per trip on account of the unforeseen reasons mentioned in the trip cancellation and interruption clause as well as delay by the common carrier, lost or stolen travel documents, money, or passport.

Bounced Booking of Hotel and Airlines

This clause agrees to reimburse the insured if the hotel booking/airline ticket bounces due to over-booking. To claim this benefit under non-availability of accommodation on account of over-booking by the hotels or airlines, the insured should have reconfirmed the booking in advance and should have written proof of the same. Wait-listed booking will not be compensated for. The compensation will be reimbursed for the reasonable additional cost incurred in staying at a similar hotel or buying a new additional cost incurred in staying at a similar hotel or buying a new ticket, less the refund/compensation given by the airline.

Some General Condition

Travel insurance applies to sea/cruise travel as well. However, there are age restrictions that apply. The minimum age of the insured should be six months and the maximum age should be 70 years. The maximum number of travel days in a travel insurance policy is 180 days and some companies may extend the same for an additional period of 180 days, maximum. The policy comes into effect from the commencement of the trip or when the traveler boards the carrier.

Conclusion

From the above discussion on the meaning of travel insurance and its benefits, we can clearly say that it is important for tourists going abroad need to insure themselves against any sudden and unexpected mishap, such as accident, death, or sickness, which may arise when the insured person is outside his country of origin. This is especially true for tourists visiting countries such as the USA, Europe, and Australia where medical expenses are so steep that can lead one to bankruptcy.

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