Travel insurance is a wise choice to safeguard yourself from unforeseen costs and dangers. However, only some travel insurance plans are the same, and some can be more bother than they’re worth.
Fast Cover is a travel insurance company that provides policies for domestic and international trips. It offers a variety of cover options, including snow sports and cancellation only, and has no maximum age limit for most plans.
Here are some pointers for avoiding rip-offs and scams involving travel insurance.
Identify Your Needs
You should be aware of your budget and the type of coverage you require before purchasing travel insurance. The following are some popular forms of travel insurance:
- Trip cancellation or interruption: This covers the cost of your trip if you have to cancel or cut it short due to unforeseen circumstances, such as illness, injury, death of a family member, natural disaster, or terrorism.
- Medical: This covers the cost of medical treatment and emergency evacuation if you get sick or injured while travelling abroad.
- Baggage: This covers replacing or repairing your luggage and personal belongings if they are lost, stolen, or damaged during your trip.
- Travel delay: This covers extra expenses, such as meals, accommodation, and transportation, if your trip is delayed due to reasons beyond your control, such as flight cancellation, bad weather, or a strike.
- Accidental death and dismemberment: This covers the cost of funeral expenses or compensation for loss of limbs or eyesight if you die or suffer a severe injury while travelling.
Depending on your location, duration, and activities, you may require more or less coverage than the typical traveller. For instance, you might wish to have higher medical coverage and evacuation benefits if you’re visiting a distant or high-risk place. Have more excellent luggage coverage if you take pricey things like jewellery or electronics on your trip. You may want to obtain extra trip cancellation or interruption coverage if you’re travelling far or with a big group.
You should also check what your existing insurance policies, such as health insurance, homeowner’s insurance, or credit card insurance, already cover when you travel. You want to avoid paying for duplicate coverage or gaps in the range.
Once you know what you need, you should compare different travel insurance policies and providers before you buy. You may examine the costs, advantages, exclusions, and client evaluations of various travel insurance alternatives using internet tools and websites. Ask your travel agent, friends, relatives, or other travellers who have used travel insurance in the past for advice.
You should avoid buying travel insurance from:
- Unsolicited phone calls, emails, or flyers that offer free or low-cost vacations or travel deals. These are frequently deceptive tactics used to get you to hand over personal information or pay hidden costs.
- Tuk-tuk drivers or other local guides who offer free or cheap tours in exchange for bringing you to shops that sell travel insurance. These are often commission-based schemes that try to pressure you into buying overpriced or unnecessary policies.
- Taxi drivers or other transportation providers claim that their meter is broken or that they can give you a better rate if you buy travel insurance from them. These are often rip-offs that try to charge you inflated fares or sell you fake or substandard policies.
- Websites that look like official government sites but charge high fees for free or low-cost services in the actual locations. These are frequently imitators who attempt to con you into paying for passports, foreign travel visas, or other papers that you may obtain free of charge through the U.S. Department of State website.
- Websites that sell fake international driving permits (IDPs) that are not recognised by foreign authorities. These are frequently frauds that aim to gain money by selling worthless papers that, if used overseas, might get you into legal problems. The American Automobile Association (AAA) and the American Automobile Touring Alliance (AATA) are the only organisations authorised to issue IDPs in the United States.
Study the Small Print
Before getting travel insurance, you should thoroughly study the policy paperwork and comprehend what it covers and excludes. Additionally, you should review the policy’s terms and conditions, which include:
- The effective date and duration of the policy.
- The maximum amount and limit of coverage for each benefit.
- The deductible amount and co-payment percentage for each claim.
- The pre-existing medical conditions and other exclusions may void your coverage.
- The cancellation and refund policy.
- The claim process and requirements.
- The contact information and emergency assistance services of the provider.
You should also ask questions and clarify any doubts or concerns you have with the provider or agent before you sign the policy. You should avoid buying travel insurance from providers or agents who:
- Offer policies that are too good to be true, such as unlimited coverage, no exclusions, or no questions asked.
- Pressure you into buying policies that you don’t need or want, such as “cancel for any reason” or “cancel for work reasons” benefits that may have high premiums, strict conditions, or low payouts.
- Refuse to provide you with a copy of the policy document or a receipt of payment.
- Fail to disclose the total cost and details of the policy, such as hidden fees, taxes, or surcharges.
- Use vague or misleading language, such as “guaranteed”, “full refund”, or “no risk”.
Report and Resolve Issues
You should report and address any difficulties you have with your travel insurance provider or policy as soon as possible. You should:
- Keep all the documents and records related to your travel insurance policy and claim, such as receipts, invoices, medical reports, police reports, correspondence, etc.
- Contact your travel insurance provider or agent and explain the situation and what you want them to do. Be kind but forceful, and back up your claims with facts.
- Follow up with your travel insurance provider or agent until you get a satisfactory response or resolution. Send the issue to their manager or supervisor if they are complex, unresponsive, or unreasonable.
- File a complaint with the appropriate authorities or organisations if you are not satisfied with the response or resolution from your travel insurance provider or agent.
You may locate a trustworthy and reputed travel insurance company and a plan that meets your requirements and budget by using the advice in this article.