Some think of travel insurance as being another in a long list of unnecessary travel expenses. Travel can be very expensive, especially if it’s international.
You have to worry about all the documents that you’ll need to be able to cross borders, and then you have to worry about exchange rates. Of course, you’ll have to pay for your flights which can be extremely costly, and you’ll need to worry about transportation once you get there. Will you be taking a taxi or bus everywhere you go, or will you be able to rent a car? If you do rent a car, you’ll need to purchase insurance for that. Then you need to worry about where you’re going to stay, and will have to pay for each and every meal.
Indeed, all of these expenses can add up very quickly.
When planning for international travel, especially on a tight budget, many choose to cut out any expenses that they feel are unimportant. Unlike passports, visas, lodging, food, flights, and transportation, insurance is a cost that is not needed for you to be able to get to your destination or enjoy yourself while you’re there. However, your financial protection is very important, and it’s an expense that you might think about moving to your list of travel priorities when it comes to spending money.
With the fun of international travel comes a lot of risk.
Individuals that can be easily identified as tourists are more likely to become the target of robbery and burglary. As a foreigner, you may also be more likely to become ill due to the fact that your immune system might not be strong enough to fight off new viral strains with which it could come in contact.
In reality, anything that you normally do in your home country carries more risk while you’re abroad.
What can you do to manage all of this risk?
There’s nothing better that you can do than to be prepared. Do your research on the country or countries that you’ll be residing in, and make sure you plan for all possible contingencies.
Be prepared financially by making sure you have enough money saved up to pay for additional flights, additional days in hotels, or additional transportation that you might not have planned. You should also spend quite a bit of time familiarizing yourself with the foreign country’s currency and exchange rates. This can protect you from being tricked into spending more money on an item than it’s worth.
Take some time to understand the culture in the country in which you’ll be residing. This can help you to blend in, and thus prevent you from being targeted for certain crimes.
If at all possible, you should bring at least two friends or family members with you on your holiday. It would be preferable to have both male and female members of your group. This will also protect you from crime.
Travel insurance has been mentioned a couple of times already because it can be so helpful in many situations, even ones that you might not realize are out there and occurring with other travellers.
First of all, when it comes to medical expenses, you may or may not realize that your insurance policy probably won’t cover medical expenses that are charged to you while you’re abroad. As a traveller, you are at a higher level of risk to get sick than those residing in the country. You’re both mentally and physiologically less familiar with your surroundings, not to mention the fact that you might have to deal with jet lag which could cause you to lose sleep.
Imagine needing to stay a few nights in the hospital after becoming ill. If you plan on doing any sort of extreme sport during your travel, as many do, you’re at a much greater risk of being injured. These medical situations can be extremely costly, and without insurance, you’ll be entirely without protection. While most travel insurance policies will charge extra to cover extreme sports, the option is available to you.
There’s no telling what could happen while you’re at your final destination. What if there was a natural disaster? In these cases, evacuations are often necessary which can mean that you’ll need to pay for transportation and additional lodging. You may even become stranded in the foreign country for a time. This can be very costly as you’ll have to pay daily expenses, and might even need to pay for additional flights to get you home.
Travel insurance covers these kinds of expenses.
What if you or a family member dies while abroad? Of course, nobody likes to think about this, but it does happen. Not only would the medical expenses leading up to this likely be very costly, but you’ll also have to worry about a number of other costs, such as getting the body back home. Will their life insurance policy cover events like this? You may want to check.
Before even arriving at your final destination, there are a number of things that could, and often do go wrong. Depending on where you’re travelling, you might have to contend with several connecting flights. What if you were to miss one of these flights? Without insurance, you may have to pay for a new flight all on your own. If you haven’t budgeted for that, you may not be able to continue your holiday at all. What if your baggage is lost or stolen? Unfortunately, this happens rather frequently, and you could lose a lot of money needing to replace all of these items once you eventually arrive at your destination.
Travel insurance can cover all of these expenses. This protection can help you to relax and enjoy your holiday, rather than worrying about all of the things that could potentially go wrong.
If you do want to look into these options further, Medical Travel Compared can help you to find and compare rates from different insurance companies.