Travel Insurance is an insurance which covers monetary and other losses incurred by the insured while he is travelling within his own country or abroad.
Travel Insurance generally covers medical expenditure, loss, damage or theft of baggage, including important documents like passport, visa, driving license etc, and money, legal assistance, cancellation or curtailment of trip due to unforeseen circumstances, and injury or death occurred during the trip.
It is advisable that while booking your trip, you buy travel insurance to safeguard you from the last-minute glitches and unforeseen circumstances. You can buy travel insurance from travel insurance companies or travel agencies.
If you are travelling within the United States, it is advisable that you buy travel insurance which will cover all the medical expenditure incurred due to medical emergencies since medical services are very expensive there.
Travel Insurance these days is not just a luxury but a necessity as it will protect you from incurring losses, be it financial or others, and safeguard you from unforeseen circumstances.
Types of Travel Insurance in the United States:
- Flight Accident Insurance: Flight Accident Insurance is an insurance that will provide compensation to you if you are injured or to your kin in case of your death in an air accident. This insurance is restricted to cover air accidents only and medical expenses due to some illness or other accidents are not covered under the Flight Accident Insurance.
- Flight Delay or Cancellation Insurance: Flight Delay or Cancellation Insurance is an insurance which will cover your meals, stay in hotels and assistance in making alternative travel arrangements in case your flight is cancelled or delayed due to some unforeseen circumstances.
- Trip Cancellation Insurance: Trip Cancellation Insurance is an insurance that covers travel expenditure in case you cancel your vacation or disrupt your vacation due to accident, illness, war or civil unrest and some natural disasters like tsunami, cyclone affecting the destination. This type of insurance will assist you in returning home safely and provide protection in case of damaged or lost baggage. This insurance may or may not cover medical expenditure.
In cases where unforeseen circumstances force you to extend your trip, the Trip cancellation insurance may cover meals, accommodation, car rental and telephone calls.
- International Medical Insurance: International Medical Insurance is an insurance which reimburses the medical expenditure you incurred while travelling abroad. It also covers the expenditure incurred for transporting the injured or an ill-person home or a place where he can get appropriate medical care. In case of a medical emergency, the insurance company also bears the expenditure for bringing the kin of the injured to the ill person. It also bears the expenditure for sending the body of the traveler to his home in case of his death.
International Medical Insurance generally does not cover expenditures incurred for illnesses or ailments that existed before the insurance was purchased. It also does not cover medical expenditure incurred due to participation in high-risk sports or dangerous activities. International Medical Insurance may be of short term or long term duration. The insurance may cover a single trip, many trips or renewable as per the need of the insured.
In most International Medical Insurance, the insured has to pay the deductible amount, an amount fixed while buying the insurance, before the insurer starts paying. Also, most International Medical Insurance has co-insurance i.e. the insured has to co-pay some amount for the medical expenditure along with the insurer. The percentage of co-insurance is generally decided beforehand. A 75-25 co-pay would mean that insurer has to pay 75 per cent of the amount and 25 per cent has to be borne by the insured.
The insurance is available either in individual plan or family plan which will cover medical expenses of all the family members while travelling together.
- Adventure and Extreme Sports Insurance: Adventure and Extreme Sports Insurance is an insurance which will cover injury or death caused due to participation in adventurous activities like skiing, scuba diving, paragliding, mountaineering, snowboarding etc that are risky in nature. Normally, no other insurance covers medical expenses incurred due to participation in adventurous sports.
- Student Travel Insurance: As the name suggests, Student Travel Insurance is an insurance which is meant only for students going on educational tours.
- Lost and Delayed Baggage Insurance: Lost and Delayed Baggage Insurance is an insurance which will safeguard you in case you lose your luggage or it is stolen. Some travel insurance companies may also include loss or theft of travel documents, including passport and visa.
You can choose any type of travel insurance depending on your needs but you must do a thorough research before deciding on the type of the insurance and the insurance company.