May 25, 2017:
We do envy global trotters and jet setters who travel round the world and share envious stories/photos on their social media accounts. However, the reality is that when it comes to travelling, many of us prefer to save our money first for jewellery, weddings, or maybe for a house. Unfortunately, travelling comes last on their list. Moreover, there is one section of people who avoid overseas journeys due to their fear— what will happen, if God forbid, there is an emergency?
Well, it is high time people should understand that travelling to a foreign land is a life/ thought changing experience and it is necessary to undertake it as early as possible. Though, one can’t completely rule out the possibility of accidents during vacation, necessary steps can be taken to curtail their impact. As they say, precaution is better than cure, with all paperwork/ documentation for passports and visas, buy a comprehensive overseas travel insurance to secure your journey and travel freely and completely.
Let’s first understand the advantages of a foreign vacation, which are endless before delving deep into the nitty-gritty of travel insurance policies:
- Build up your knowledge: Starting from visa, required documents, currency exchange, to other travel formalities, there are various formalities which you have to take care of before boarding a flight. Even if you are taking the help of a travel agent, you will learn about the necessary paperwork when your agent asks you to sign some papers. In this way, a foreign vacation opens your knowledge with respect to current travelling rules, current world affairs and foreign policies.
- Help you gain self-confidence: On a holiday, you will be all alone to deal with unexpected situations and combat surprise turns. But when you successfully overcome them, it will give a major boost to your self-confidence and enhance your happiness quotient also.
- Make you more aware about your surroundings: Whether it is learning a new cuisine, like Thai or new language, you have a plenty of time to learn new skills when you are on a vacation. When you travel to different locations which you have never seen before like spectacular beaches, mountains, deserts, cities, you get a chance to experience different climatic conditions and how people live there.
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A new learning makes our brains more active and increases our happiness level— particularly when we enjoy it.
- Taste the life: Dig into Fondue in Switzerland or Sushi in Japan! Make friends with like-minded people or with people who are different. Learn how to interact with people from different backgrounds and cultures. What better way to see the world than experience exotic cultures, clothes, and cuisines? Indeed, travelling is a great way to appreciate the real colours of life.
- Take a break: The relaxation and unwinding help one get back to the hard grind of daily life with zeal and passion. In fact, a foreign vacation can be such an adrenaline rush that it could provide one with enough motivation to work hard and save for the next holiday!
- Get ‘Me’ time: In today’s fast paced life, we all are craving for some ‘Me’ time to do introspection. And, when you travel, you get some ‘me’ time. It allows you to let go stress and tension and just enjoy being in the moment. If you’re travelling with a partner, you will get a chance to spend some time in each other company. Needless to say, it is a great way to reignite your love.
- Broaden your horizon: A foreign vacation widens your thinking. One becomes less judgmental and more accepting of people and cultures around the globe. People travelling from India do experience a culture shock when they travel to the western world! In fact, when you travel in your youth, you learn to discern good from bad much faster than the older generation which has not been exposed to different lifestyles.
The thrill is what keeps us humans going, in our otherwise mundane busy lives. It is no wonder that many people have been bitten by the travel bug. They just pack their bags and set off to seek those moments of inner joy and moments.
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But have you ever thought, what will happen if any issue arises while you are travelling?
While, travelling rejuvenates all your senses, you can’t completely rule out the possibility of accidents or unforeseen events. After all, Harry Whittington was right when he said, “we all assume certain risks in what we do, in what activities we pursue. Accidents do and what will happen.”
Even if you are travelling, there is no guarantee that you will never face any issue. Mishaps like missed flights, loss of passport/baggage, flight cancellation, accident, health emergency, etc.; can happen even with a meticulous travel planner.
The situation becomes more stressful in a foreign land when there is no one around to help you. Now what you can do instead is to choose a proper travel insurance policy.
A comprehensive international travel insurance policy secures your vacation by covering events like total loss/delay of checked-in baggage, including handbag, personal accident, personal liability, trip cancellation, missed flight connection, etc.
Is travel insurance worth it?
Yes, it is. Nobody wants to think about the worst-case scenarios, but the reality is, accidents can happen while walking on the roads of London or enjoying Desert Safari in Dubai. Let’s understand the importance of travel insurance policy through certain examples:
Case 1: Undoubtedly, a foreign vacation involves a good chunk of your money. While no one thinks, they’ll have to cancel their trip, there is a wide range of unexpected events that can force you to cancel your trip, like someone falls sick, you’re involved in an accident, etc. You would have to cancel your trip and incur a financial loss if any of these situations happen to you.
Trip cancellation is insured: If a trip is cancelled due to riots, political turmoil, terrorist situation, medical emergency or weather condition, the travel insurer will reimburse the travel expenses.
Case 2: We’ve all seen photos of stranded passengers at airports when flights are delayed due to weather or other unexpected reasons. For instance, you are travelling to London via Dubai, but your connecting flight gets delayed due to weather condition. Now in addition to travel expenses, you would have to accrue additional expenses such as food and lodging.
Trip delay is covered: If there is a delay of more than six hours, the travel insurer will offer the coverage.
Case 3: While, travelling is considered good for health, there is still a possibility of meeting with an accident or health emergency during vacation. Here in India, your family or friend is only a one phone call away and you can immediately reach out to them in case of any issue. However, in foreign land, you will be alone to deal with any medical emergency.
Above all, the healthcare cost is very high in countries like USA, UK, etc. Even a two-day hospitalisation is enough to cost you lakhs of rupees. You would have to make immediate fund arrangement for your medical costs. Also, there would be extra expenses if due to your medical condition, one of your family members travels to stay with you in a foreign country.
Medical evacuation and expenses are covered: Whether it is a single trip travel insurance or multi-trip travel insurance policy, the insurer covers the medical expenses along with the medical evacuation for the further treatment. Some policies also cover compassionate visit of the policyholder’s family member in case of any medical emergency.
Case 4: Just imagine, you are blissfully cruising through the Angel Falls when you realise that your baggage is missing. Or worse, what if after reaching your destination, you discover that one of your bags is missing, which has all your clothes and money also. In addition to stress, there is a financial loss as well.
Travel insurance covers lost or misplaced baggage or passport: If you lose your passport or your baggage is lost or delayed, the travel insurer will pay you for your trouble.
There are some overseas traveller insurance policies which offer burglary and fire cover for the content of your home as well. It has been seen that, thieves target those locked houses whose owners are away on vacation. Thus, a traveller insurance policy is necessitated to protect the content of your house even in your absence. With this policy, you can travel without worrying about your house!
Note, no coverage is given if a house remains unoccupied for more than 30 days and the policyholder fails to inform the insurer about the same.
When a foreign trip imparts you so many benefits, there is no reason to hold yourself back. So, pack your bags and travel to unknown lands. Take up adventure and create some unforgettable memories. But don’t forget to buy a travel insurance policy!