TRAVEL INSURANCE TIPS
For Your Next Outdoor Adventure
Insurance for your outdoor adventures has become more important in recent years. Insurance is an important part of your trip because it can minimize the unpleasant consequences of certain situations. Since 2009, adventure travel has growing by 65% per year. In 2016, this type of tourism was worth over 200 billion dollars. We can divide outdoor adventures into separate categories: “Hard” adventures, including climbing, caving, and tracking, are considered high-risk adventures and “soft” activities that include all other tourism activities.
Are you worried about unexpected health problems when you travel? In that case, you certainly need travel insurance. Travel insurance will spare you high costs if, for example, you suffer an accident and need medical help. The expenses for that service will be covered by your insurance policy. We will familiarize you with travel insurance and give you some tips about what to consider when selecting an insurance policy.
First, we will tell you what types of travel insurances exist: vacation plans and travel medical plans. Vacation plans are the top-selling type of travel insurance, representing 94% of policies. They include coverage for the following situations: delayed trips, canceled trips, interrupted trips, medical emergencies, emergency evacuations, delayed baggage, and lost baggage. Travel medical plans cover medical emergencies, medical evacuations, and life insurance. These plans are primarily for passengers traveling abroad.
Now we will tell you about the costs of travel insurance. First, you should understand that costs for travel insurance depending on several factors. An insurance company considers numerous factors when deciding the price of your travel insurance policy. We will mention a few of these so that you understand what we are talking about.
When you are buying travel insurance, you must pay attention to every detail of that process. Many travel insurance companies do not sell what you think they are selling. You must carefully review and read every contract that you sign. This means that you must review the coverage to see which activities your travel insurance company excludes from their policy.
You may find that the description you read on the Internet or on a flyer or brochure does not match the a description that you get in the insurance office. This is the way that business often works these days, so you must be careful or you will experience regret later. If certain activities aren't mentioned in company's offer, you need to ask your agent about them.
Be sure to examine the limits of your medical coverage. Some insurance policies cover all medical expenses when you are injured during an activity on your trip, and some do not. Understanding the specifics of your policy will help you plan your activities during your trip, providing you with information about possible expenses you might face.
If the policy does not mention medical expenses, you will need to ask for clear information about this area of your insurance. You need to know if medical coverage must be added for an additional cost in order to purchase a full insurance policy.
Also, check whether your travel insurance covers the expenses of medical evacuation to your home. In other words, if you are seriously injured, your travel insurance company has the obligation to arrange your safe trip and evacuation home if your condition allows you to be transported. You need to understand that emergency medical evacuation is not the same as medical coverage.
You might find yourself in a difficult situation in which you need transportation to the hospital or another location where doctors can help you. This won’t be listed under medical coverage and might not be covered by your travel insurance. You must ask your travel insurance company if it is included in your travel insurance plan or not.
Medical evacuation coverage is often connected with repatriation. Repatriation means that if someone dies during his trip, insurance will cover the recovery of the body and will pay the trip home.
When buying your insurance, some companies separate some sports activities from other activities. This means that you won't get any coverage when you get injured doing them. You must ask about this and whether it is separated or sold together. For some extreme sports, you might have the option of paying extra to add coverage if something should happen.
If you are traveling to a ski resort or a beach for surfing, you will probably carry a lot of luggage, with equipment for skiing or surfing. You will have to protect your equipment. In most of cases, travel insurance companies will not cover anything if your equipment is stolen. This policy is paid additionally or separately from your basic travel insurance.
When you buy a travel insurance policy, you are not necessarily secured for everything on your trip. Often, you will have to pay extra to secure your belongings or yourself in certain situations. Every insurance company has a Free Look period. This means that after the plan has been, you have a period of time, typically up to fifteen days, to return your policy and have your money refunded. A Free Look gives you the opportunity to check over your policy up carefully to avoid any possibility of misunderstanding. A Free Look is a good thing because you can change the policy and ask for any accommodations that suit you.
Undeclared Pre-Existing Medical Conditions
A pre-existing medical condition is defined as a disease or illness that you have had in past. When you are purchasing your travel insurance, you will be asked if you have any medical conditions relevant to your coverage. If you fail to report previous health issues that you have experienced, that will make your travel insurance invalid.
The travel insurance will cover medical issues or injuries that occur while you were on your trip, such as asthma or epilepsy. On the other hand, a traveler that didn't report that he had epilepsy and then suffers an attack while he is on a vacation will not be covered for any medical expenses that were incurred because of his health problems.
In order for the expenses to be covered, a pre-existing medical condition has to be declared and accepted by your travel insurance company.
If you want to experience extreme sports and extreme activities during your trip, you will probably have to pay an additional fee to your insurance company, as standard policies do not cover any injuries or accidents while engaging in most of these activities. When you are buying your policy, you must check with your agent to see which activities are covered because they tend to vary from company to company. For instance, motorcycling and ski diving may be on the list while bungee jumping isn't.
This is why you have to be specific. If you don't do this, you are risking a lot. If you suffer an injury from a dangerous activity, your hospital bills may be several thousands of dollars. If you are heading for a destination intended to experience high-adrenaline sports, it would be wise to purchase additional insurance.
Alcohol and Drug Abuse
There is one scenario in which you will certainly not receive money from the insurance company. When you suffer an injury due to drug or alcohol use, nothing will be covered by travel insurance. For example, if you fall and break your arm while inebriated, you can be sure that you will pay the entire cost for your medical treatment.
Use of a medication that isn't prescribed by your physician will be treated by many insurance companies as drug use. While on your vacation, if you lose your medications, you should contact your insurance company and ask for specific directions. Also, the use of any prohibited drugs will make your travel insurance invalid.
You should be aware that expenses that are incurred because of your negligence won't be paid by a travel insurance company. For example, let’s say you fail to procure all the necessary documents for your trip. If you miss a flight or are delayed because of this, your travel insurance will become invalid.
Be very careful when preparing to travel and always check your passports, visa requirements, and all other necessary papers. This might be tedious, but it is a process that can't be avoided.
Your travel insurance won't cover expenses when you visit a volatile area. Some travel insurance companies follow the recommendation of the World Health Organization about unstable areas. Check their website to see if any of your destinations are on the list, or ask your insurance company if there are any destinations on your trip where your insurance policy won’t cover expenses.
If you engage in reckless or prohibited activities, such as visiting a restricted area, any injuries and outcomes will not be covered by your insurance. For example, imagine you have traveled to Brazil and you are on Copacabana Beach, having a great time. Although Brazil isn't an unstable country, some parts of its territory are. You will be advised not to visit favelas because the crime rate is enormously high in those areas. Your insurance won’t be valid if something happens to you while you were there.
Also, illegal and fraudulent actions are excluded by travel insurance. If you participate in fraud and suffer an accident because of it, your insurance will be invalid. This applies to any criminal activities which the travel insurance policy holder commits during his trip.