Insurance industry is booming and has taken over our lives in the widest angle! That said, some forms of insurance are a definite must as they will always benefit in our favor. Travel insurance is definitely one such!
You might be young and fit, but if you are going for that 5 days of shopping spree in Dubai with your family then a travel insurance is as important to you as it is to your granddad who is over 85 years of age! Also, regardless of whether you are going for a 4 days trip to Thailand or a month long vacation to Europe, you still need that travel insurance!
What is covered in a Travel insurance?
Travel insurance is a lot more than just medical insurance. It covers a whole lot of things that has a big possibility of going wrong during any tour. For example, trip cancellations, delayed flights, overdue baggage, missed connections, missed baggage, loss of passport, loss of personal belongings including wallets, need for emergency cash advance, emergency hotel extension, hijack possibilities, accidental death, repatriation expenses (if at all) are some major backings one can expect from being insured. This of course is in addition to medical and dental expenses. Furthermore, most insurances also cover incidents like burglary at home, fire cover for home and other things while you are away on your vacation.
All the above is yours for just a few dollars per day! One should be crazy to not consider it just because often times nothing really happens! Well, yes, nothing will happen for the love of your travels, but things do get out of our control at times. That is when we will regret not having an insurance done!
When can you claim Travel Insurance?
Even in an in-country vacation (domestic) we might, let’s say, miss a connecting flight – Flight delays and missing connections are not a rarity – Why not claim those few bucks for all that distress it has caused you? We are human beings and we do fall sick and get hospitalized for minor reasons like food poisoning/silly accidents etc. These will set back a few hundred or thousand dollars from our travel budget especially when we are in a foreign land! We don’t want any of that happening to us. The examples are plentiful and I can go on with them! But, these are times when travel insurance comes to our rescue.
Mandatory Travel Insurance for Visas!
Certain countries (Schengen countries, for instance) have made it a norm to show their delegates a copy of the travel insurance while applying for a visa of any nature. This should be worth covering a certain amount depending on the length of the visit.
A Real Story!
Let me talk about a real case that happened to my ex-colleague. This was about 12 years back when my colleague’s in-laws were travelling back from the US after visiting their daughter. Her in-laws were all fit and fine. Just a few days (maybe 2) before flying back to their home country, their insurance expired. Now after staying 2 months in the US and being hale and hearty with things on track, they didn’t really bother to get the insurance done for the remaining few days of their stay. They probably thought they would be flying back home after all and an insurance in this circumstance would just be an additional expense for absolutely no value at all. That is where they went wrong!
Her Father-in-law had a massive heart attack midair. They had to make an emergency landing in one of the remote countries of the Caribbean. The plane made this landing and helped the couple with their emergency. The flight then left and the couple had to extend their stay for medical purposes! The expenses were not just of the long stay but also included considerable amount for the surgery that took place during the emergency. They also had to get back to their home country with new air tickets and a lot of other miscellaneous expenses followed.
Of course, health wise the old man is doing well now. However, he is still paying for that big sum which he had to loan to get things sorted! Had they covered themselves with a few dollars’ worth travel insurance, they could have avoided at least 95% of what they went through financially!
Where can you buy travel insurance? Which one to buy?
Unlike years ago, now you can buy your travel insurance even the night before your travel start date. In fact even if you have already started your tour without travel insurance, you still can go ahead and purchase one for the rest of your stay. There are a number of insurance companies that sell travel insurance online. Most often every one gives you more or less the same deal. Prices are often very competitive (although they do vary depending on the age of the traveler) and some of them even strike a bargain for long travels.
To cut the story short…
Whether a consulate demands it or not, whether it is a domestic or an international travel, it is always smart move to get yourself travel insured!