What does travel insurance cover? How does it work? Do you still need Covid-19 coverage? Here’s an all-rounder’s guide to travel insurance and everything you need to know!
It’s the holiday season! We’re sure most of us are planning to travel overseas for a quick relaxing break with many countries lifting their COVID-19 entry restrictions (especially hot destinations like Korea, Japan, and Taiwan). Travellers can’t wait to book their next flight out and celebrate the holidays with a bang. However, the concerning issue of new COVID-19 variants popping up across the globe has always been at the back of our minds and we’re sure most of us have asked ourselves this question — do I still need COVID-19 coverage?
Spoiler alert: The answer is yes, definitely. While we might all think of ourselves as ‘immune’ or ‘invincible’ to the virus after catching it once (or a few times), the reality is that there’s always the possibility of us catching it again overseas. And with insurance, it’ll definitely soften the monetary and emotional sting of interrupted travel plans. So if you’re thinking of resuming your globetrotting dreams worry-free, check out this list of things to note when picking the right travel insurance plan!
How Does Travel Insurance Work?
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Simply put, travel insurance provides travellers with peace of mind and financial protection against the risks of travel. This includes anything that might incur financial losses, such as flight cancellation, delays, and baggage loss.
While most people would purchase travel insurance for big-ticket trips just to be safe, it’s still advisable to purchase some coverage for trips closer to home as well. The common misconception is that travel insurance is costly. When in reality, there are many affordable plans that offer many different forms of coverage. When it comes to insurance, you get what you give.
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What Does Travel Insurance Cover Exactly?
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The coverage can vary depending on the plan you purchase. But typical travel insurance policies provide coverage for three areas: Financial protection, Protection for your well-being, and Personal belongings.
Here are some benefits to look for when looking for a suitable policy:
|Benefits||How It Benefits You|
|1. Baggage Delay & Loss||✅ Depending on the policy, you can actually receive insurance to reimburse the cost of your essentials, such as clothes, toiletries and even chargers if your bag is delayed or lost. |
✅ For delayed baggage, it must be delayed over a number of hours to receive coverage — with the typical range being anywhere from 6 to 24 hours.
✅ As for baggage loss coverage, insurance reimburses the cost of your suitcase and belongings, even if it was stolen or damaged during a covered trip.
|2. Trip Cancellation||Sometimes, unforeseen circumstances occur and you might have to cancel your trip. However, you can receive insurance to reimburse you for prepaid non-refundable costs due to reasons like: |
✅ Natural disasters
✅ Death of a family member
✅ Jury duty
✅ Stolen passport or visa
|3. COVID-19 Coverage||✅ With the pandemic still raging on globally, you can receive insurance for costs incurred if you have to cancel, postpone, or shorten your trip due to the virus. |
✅ There’s also insurance for medical expenses and emergency medical evacuation if you ever have to be sent back home due to COVID-19.
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What Should I Look Out For When It Comes To COVID-19 Coverage?
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Depending on who you may be travelling with and what your travel company provides, you might want to consider if you prefer to get COVID-19 coverage as an add-on benefit to an existing plan or as part of a new insurance plan.
While most travellers always opt for the cheapest option, be sure to look out for the limit of COVID-19 coverage in the policy to see if it’s sufficient to cover the cancellation cost of air tickets, accommodation and itinerary. You always want to ensure that the trip cancellation limit is more than sufficient for all related costs.
Additionally, your trip destination plays a huge role when it comes to deciding on the best plan. Countries like the United States, Germany, and Switzerland have high medical costs and depending on your condition, a few nights’ stay at a hospital might incur a hefty bill. As such, it’s always important to check if your plan limit covers these costs and if the insurance that you purchase covers the countries that you are flying to.
Lastly, before you run online to purchase your insurance, consider if you prefer an online insurance plan or having one through an agent. While it might be pretty straightforward to have an online plan, the real pain comes in when you have to file your own claims. In a situation where you will be overloaded with medical and travel costs, filling in administrative file claims might be the last thing on your mind. With insurance that comes with an agent, all of these processes will be much easier and smoother for you as you can contact your agent and have them file your claims for you.
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When Should I Buy My Travel Insurance?
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Now that you’ve purchased your flight tickets and booked your accommodations, you’re probably wondering when you should purchase your travel insurance. The simple answer is, “as soon as possible”.
Ideally, you should purchase your coverage no later than 15 days prior to your trip. It’s important to note that while you still can purchase insurance after the 15-day marker (even when you’re on your trip), the coverage will definitely cost more and you might not be eligible for certain benefits.
For a better gauge of travel costs, it is suggested that travellers wait until they have reserved their seat on the plane before purchasing as more information on your flight will help you to make a more informed decision.
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What Are Some Recommendations For Travel Insurance Plans?
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When it comes to price and coverage, the HLAS COVIDSafe Travel Protect 360 Enhanced Plan is your best bet! With COVID-19 coverage of up to S$200,000 and a quarantine allowance of up to S$1,500, you can enjoy a stress-free vacation anytime anywhere. For the average insured adult (70 years and below), you can expect to receive the following benefits:
|Overseas Medical Coverage||S$150,000||S$250,000|
|Overseas Medical Expenses due to COVID-19||–||S$50,000|
|Trip Cancellation due to COVID-19||–||S$1,000|
With the HLAS COVIDSafe Travel Protect360 Enhanced Plans, you can receive COVID-19 coverage of up to S$200,000 and a quarantine allowance of up to S$1,500 if you are quarantined overseas. The best part is that you can make adjustments to your policies if you are travelling with family, which allows you to be eligible for trip cancellation coverage if your trip is cancelled because of one person in the family.
Now with YouTrip’s HL Assurance travel insurance promotion, you can receive up to 65% off when you purchase the HLAS COVIDSafe Travel Protect360 Enhanced Plans through our app. Simply purchase any of the Enhanced plans to get 40% off and check out with your YouTrip card to get an additional 15% cashback. For customers who have an existing HL Assurance plan in the past but didn’t make any claims, you are entitled to an additional 10% off any of the Enhanced plans.
A Guide To Travel Insurance: Is Covid’19 Still Essential? — Find out more HL Assurance Travel Insurance here
You’re Now Vacation-Ready!
It doesn’t hurt to stay prepared when on your travels. Better safe than sorry! So now that you’re a travel insurance expert, you’re ready to jet-set around the world worry-free! As always, don’t forget to use your YouTrip Card to lock in our ever-reliable wholesale exchange rates. A little goes a long, long way — especially if you’re off on that shopping spree or foodie tour!
As Singapore’s favourite multi-currency wallet, we aim to get those pesky fees out of the way and help you save on your travels. With the best foreign exchange rates, no longer will you have to deal with those long queues at money changers! So if you’re looking for a go-to travel card, sign up for your complimentary YouTrip card today with <YTBLOG5> and get FREE S$5 in your account! Then, head over to our YouTrip Perks page for exclusive offers and promotions — we promise you won’t regret it. For more great tips and articles like this, join our Telegram (@YouTripSG) and subscribe to our free weekly newsletter here or down below.
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Stay safe and happy travels!