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Is an annual or single trip travel insurance policy better?


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Q:

As an infrequent traveler of about 3-4 times a year, would you recommend an annual or individual policy? Most travel will be done with my family of three with my spouse and 5-year-old child.

A:

With the prospects of going on holiday be it individually or with the family, all thoughts are towards the final destination and the activities that lie ahead. Not much thought is ever given to the infrequent but aggravating occurrences of lost luggage, flight delays or an accident whilst enjoying such activities, hence why travelinsurance is often overlooked.

First and foremost, travel policies can be broken down into individual trips or annual policies both of which can have a family inclusion. They can be as cheap as HKD180 for an individual 7-day trip for those that are infrequent travelers, annual plans for frequent travelers ranging from HKD1000 -2000, family plans from HKD2000 - 4500 for those travelling with a spouse and kids, or more comprehensive plans which include short-term medical allowances which is often quoted in USD. Those that wish to choose Travel Insurance with an inclusion of a more detailed medical cover would be ideal for situations where such services might be expensive for immediate needs such as the US or the UK. 

What exactly does travel insurance comprise of? The main area of concern would have to be the medicalexpenses incurred should there be a personal accident or medical issues that needs attention whilst overseas. From a medical perspective should an accident arise, expenses for treatment of injury, medical evacuation from a destination, and hospitalization costs. Small particulars could also include a need for a China card in order to receive treatment may also be taken into account. From a personal accident perspective should one have some form of permanent disablement or even death, travel insurance will cover such more critical events. These would be the needs from loss of sight, speech or limbs to total disablement, to accidental death- all subject to a percentage cover. 

Whilst PA and medical allowances may be on the extreme side, travel insurance also covers more commonly occurring situations, which would normally be associated with travelling.  Looking at these situations that happen before even arriving at a destination could include baggage delay coverage which entitles emergency purchases if delays surpass 6 hours, reimbursement of expenses for travel delays and re-routing of trips which surpass 6 and 12 hours respectively should items need to be bought, reimbursement of expenses in the event of trip cancellation or curtailment to cover the inconvenience. These types of cover would cater towards the minimization of aggravation and disruption by necessary compensation.

 

For those events that occur within the duration of the trip, cover includes personal money loss of cash or travelers’ cheque due to theft or loss and rental vehicle expenses when incurring an accident or even a loss. A final coverage potential could be the need for personal liability coverage should you/family member be responsible for accidental bodily injury/property damage to a third party. An example of this could be a child tobogganing, losing control and running into a bystander causing a bodily injury. Although an accident, personal accident coverage would cover the potential necessary medical and legal costs incurred. 

Travel insurance is tailored to each individuals’ needs. Premiums range from individual trips, to annual packages for an individual, to annual packages for a family. The number of people, their ages and the duration of the trip all need to be taken into account when calculating premiums. For someone travelling to Asian destinations only, may be able to purchase travel insurance on an annual destination with listed Asian countries. Should a more worldwide coverage be needed, a global package would be preferential with the additional short-term medical portion if traveling to the US or UK where large medical expenses may accumulate. 

Finally, premiums are subject to certain limitations. Age restrictions include children under 18 and elderly over 70 tend to have a percentage limit unless additional coverage is requested. Maximum duration periods also set at 184 days for single journey and 90 days per trip for annual policies. Plans are also only available to Hong Kong residents and will not cover pre-existing medical conditions unless taking out more comprehensive cover with international cover which normally gets quoted in USD.

For more information about Travel Insurance, both in Hong Kong and around the world, or to speak to an expert CCW Global Insurance broker, please contact CCW Global Today. Alternatively you can request a free travel insurance quotation by completing the short form at the top of the page. 

 

Answered on: 13 July, 2017 10:43


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