Travel insurance is protection against anything bad that can happen while you are travelling. This can range from losing your luggage to losing your life. The basic categories under a travel insurance policy are:
- Medical insurance
- Emergency evacuation
- Accidental death and dismemberment
- Travel protection
- Baggage protection
Travel insurance plans in Kenya typically combine coverage from all the above categories. So, the way to save money is buying what you need and leaving what you don’t need. Let’s examine each of the above categories in detail.
This covers any medical bills you might have from going to a hospital abroad. In some countries, you might not need it because health care is freely accessible, even for foreigners. But, not so in most other parts of the world where even a quick visit to a hospital or a doctor could run you thousands of dollars. Remember that travel insurance is not a substitute for the medical insurance plan that you have back at home, it’s just protection against accidents and illness overseas. You can’t use like normal medical insurance, but it will cover you if you get hospitalized from disease while abroad. That being said, if you’re already paying for medical insurance, your plan may already offer global health care coverage. If you travel regularly, we recommend you find a medical insurance plan that already offers global coverage.
Emergency Evacuation and Accidental Death and Dismemberment
Nobody likes to think about dying or serious injury, but when you are in trouble abroad, you want this sort of cover. Emergency evacuation insurance pays for you to be airlifted to a local hospital or flowing all the way back home. Imagine that your travelling somewhere remote where you get injured and need a helicopter ride to take you to the hospital. Helicopter rides are not cheap. You may also get into a serious accident in a country where the health care system isn’t good. Emergency evacuation insurance pays the bill to fly home to a local hospital. Without insurance, these risks can lead to bankruptcy.
Travel protection reimburses the cost of your trip if you find that you have to cancel at the last minute. With travel protection, you get back the money you paid for air tickets, reservations and advance payments. Determining whether you need this comes down to the kind of person that you are. If you’re the kind of person who likes to book everything in advance, then it makes sense to buy travel protection. But, if you prefer to arrive at a destination first, you probably don’t need it. Also, keep in mind if you buy your air ticket using your credit card, you may have some travel protection insurance from your credit card, so just double check before you make a purchase.
This covers anything lost or damaged on your flight. Airlines are liable for any baggage lost or stolen up to a certain limit. And, if you bought your air tickets using your credit card, you may have some baggage protection coverage as well. Just make sure you check the limits and get insurance for anything over limits already provided on your credit card. You can also cover your possessions against theft, loss or damage. If you carry around laptops and camera equipment you may already have coverage through your home insurance, so just check your policies to be sure you aren’t buying duplicate coverage.
Selecting Your Travel Insurance
A number of insurance companies in Kenya offer comprehensive travel insurance. Whichever plan you choose, Make sure it includes the following coverage:
- Covers the country you are visiting.
- Adequate protection for your valuables.
- 24-hour assistance.
- Medical coverage for injuries and illnesses.
- Protection from natural disasters, civil unrest, war or anything else that might turn your trip into a headache.
What’s Not Covered by Travel Insurance?
Finally, remember, most plans do not cover the following:
- Extreme sports such as skydiving, hang gliding, bungee jumping or snowboarding.
- Any accidents that happened when you were drunk or high.
- Car accidents that involve a third party.
Submitting a Travel Insurance Claim
If anything does happen, you will have to file a claim to get reimbursed. No matter which company you choose, your insurer will need evidence of the loss. So, remember to keep track of your receipts for tickets, hotel bookings or whatever electronics you carry with you. Filing a claim can take a lot of time and there is a ton of paperwork, so make sure you double-check everything before you send it in.
How to Pick a Travel Insurance Plan
When it comes to picking a plan, The Insurance Guru is a good place to start. We are an industry leader in travel insurance. Our Insurance Gurus will help you compare the pros and cons of each plan. For more information, please request a quote.