Singaporeans are among the most avid travellers in Asia and travel insurance are commonly available. However, travellers would do well to know about some common sticky situations in which insurance claims may be refused.
1) Valuables and loss due to personal negligence
Travel insurance policies often explicitly state that the loss of personal valuables due to negligence is not covered.
Furthermore, some basic schemes also exclude the loss of jewelry in overseas trips, whether or not it is the result of negligence.
2) “Known Events”
Some insurers, such as NTUC Income, have a specific exclusion with regard to “Known Events”.
Claims arising out of such “known events” may thus not be admissible under the policy coverage.
3) Mode of transport
If you are going on packaged tours, you should be aware that occasionally, deaths and disabilities resulting only from travelling via public transportation (a.k.a. “public conveyance or common carrier”) are covered under the most basic of travel insurance packages.
4) Disease outbreaks
Although medical claims for illnesses contracted overseas are covered, insurers may stop short on compensating for losses from travel delay or air travel reschedule as a result of disease outbreaks.
5) Trip cancellations
In certain insurance policies, trip cancellations are valid for a small list of events which occur 30 to 60 days prior to departure. Such events may for example be limited to deaths or serious injuries to immediate family members or civil unrest at the destination countries.
6) Reporting of loss
As in the terms and conditions of most other forms of insurance, for travel insurance claims to be admitted, insurers generally require reports to be filed either with the police (or with parties such as airlines in the case of loss luggage) within 24 hours of the occurrence of the incident or accident.
7) Length of trips
For frequent travelers, insurers often offer a multi-trip “one-year plan” in which a travel insurance policy is in effect over a year and activation is not required for each trip. Despite the nature of such plans, such policies do provide not long term coverage.
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