The toughest part of planning a holiday trip? It will be travel insurance. People don't bother or mistakenly think about a home insurance, a health policy or a credit card-lost cover is sufficient. They don’t want to spend money or do a research on a travel insurance, hopping never to use. But in certain situations it can be a senseless decision, not to insure - especially when you are travelling to a country covered by EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) or any of the other countries where United Kingdoms has a reciprocal health agreement. If your personal health or age means a policy would be extremely expensive, you could rely on local health service. In my personal experience, Travel insurers are trusted people offering good-value policies that will efficiently reduce your risk exposure.
To make it clear, classify the covers offered by the travel insurance company into three segments: Medical, Cancellation and burglary.
The most important element of travel insurance cover is for accidents and illness, because a medical condition can cost a way more than the budget of the holiday trip. EHIC covers most of the areas of illness with public hospitals in most of the European countries, it does not include the benefits such as Emergency Financial assistance and Medical evacuation. Countries like US, Canada and the Caribbean, hospital bills can soar to millions of dollars, under extreme conditions. Medical emergency services assisted by the travel insurers usually deliver outstanding care.
Always take cover for your travel tickets, because there may be some unforeseen situations where you need cancel your holiday. Cancellations cover generally works in the situation where ill-health or death of travelling companions or close relatives. I heard a couple of sad stories of trip cancelled, because of the death or illness of the family, but the insurer refuse to pay because there was a pre-existing medical condition. So be careful that, the travel insurance doesn’t pay out in the event of PED.
Burglary or loss
There are some situations where you met with stolen or lost valuables such as passport. Travel insurance will cover these situations effectively. You will get compensation for your loss, along with an immediate financial assistance, if required (situations like you lost your wallet and thus your credit card). There are other covers also for the situations like,
- Delay in Checked baggage
- Home Burglary
- Personal liability
- Flight Hijack
- Automatic extension of policy (If you want to extend your trip)
- Missed Connection/Missed departure
- Bounced hotel /Airline booking
Annual or single-trip travel insurance?
If you plan two or more holidays in a year, then an annual policy makes more sense than buying individual cover for each trip. Be aware of three things, though:
If you are having plans for multiple trips in a year, then annual policy makes sense than buying an individual cover for each trip. But for senior citizens, annual policy premiums surge more than for single trips. Taking an example of a 75 year old, a single trip policy might cost twice as much as 60 year old, but an annual policy could cost at least four times as much as single trip. So it is wise to plan accordingly.