Domestic Travel Insurance Article
The purpose of any Travel Insurance policy is to ensure peace of mind to the traveller when they leave home for a holiday or on business. It is also required to cover any unforeseen expense that may come up due to medical or non-medical reasons during the trip. One must realise and acknowledge that such exigencies are as likely to happen abroad as in India. This suggests that every traveller should protect themselves from financial loss even during their travels within India. In India, Domestic Travel Insurance is perhaps one of the most under penetrated segments of the insurance markets. Thanks to some of the Online Travel Agencies (OTA’s), Domestic Airlines and IRCTC who sell some basic coverage to online passengers, there is some penetration, but this has to be significantly increased in the coming years and is going to be one of the largest opportunities for insurance companies and distributors going forward with almost 900 crore travellers across all modes of transport annually.
The most common excuses for not buying Domestic Travel Insurance for trips within India are:
- Nothing will happen, I’m traveling for just 2-3 days and that too within India
- I don’t know where to buy a Domestic Travel insurance policy from
- The premium may to be too high and I’m already over budget for this trip
- Are there any claims actually paid for losses during Domestic trips? The claims process will be too complicated for such a small claim
The traveller could have an unfortunate accident and need medical assistance or even evacuation to a hospital from a remote location even when they are travelling within India…the common carrier (airline, train, bus) they are traveling with could lose or delay delivering their bags…their unattended home could be burgled when they are on vacation…the insured could miss their flight or train for genuine reasons while reaching the airport / railway station…there could be an untimely passing away of a family member and his/her remains will need to be transported back home…the insured’s flight could be delayed indefinitely due to technical snags of the aircraft…the trip could be cancelled or curtailed due to illness or hospitalisation…accidental coverage for Adventure Sports while vacationing…it may be interesting to note that DOMESTIC TRAVEL INSURANCE plans do offer coverage for all of these unforeseen emergencies…
Most of the Domestic Insurance plan covers include:
- Medical Treatment/Assistance:
- Personal Accident
- Personal Liability
- Emergency Hotel Extension/Accommodation
- Delay of Checked – In Baggage
- Home Burglary Insurance
- Hospital Daily Cash Benefit – Sickness and Accidental Hospitalisation
- Accommodation Charges due to Trip Delay
- Missed Flight Connection
- Trip Cancellation & Interruption
- Financial Emergency Assistance
- Liability arising from Loss of Debit/Credit Card
- Missed Departure
- Hijack Distress Allowance
- Compassionate Visit
- Family Assistance
- Total Loss of Checked - In Baggage
- Pet Care
- Bounced Booking of Airline and Hotel
- Legal Expenses
- Catastrophe Expenses
- Alternative/Replacement of Staff/Employee
Benefit Descriptions for some of them include:
- Missed Departure - In the event of missing the departure of your booked journey, the cost of your actual ticket(air / rail) will be reimbursed subject to certification by the concerned authority.
- Accommodation charges due to trip delay - In the event of the trip delay, the extra accommodation expenses incurred will be reimbursed.
- Lost ticket reimbursement - In case of a ticket loss due to which one cannot continue the journey the actual cost of the ticket will be reimbursed.
- Emergency medical evacuation - In the event of a medical emergency, the arrangements for the evacuation and transportation of the insured for appropriate & quality medical care, shall be covered.
- Repatriation of Remains – Coverage is provided up to the amount stated in the Policy Schedule for covered expenses reasonably incurred to return the insured’s mortal remains body to Your usual residence in India if You die during a Trip. Covered expenses include, but are not limited to, expenses for: (a) embalming;(b) cremation;(c) coffins; and (d) transportation.
- Replacement Of Staff (Business Trip) – the insurer shall pay upto the sum insured in respect of reasonable additional travel and accommodation expenses necessarily incurred under the circumstances in - 1. Sending out a replacement for an Insured Person; and returning the replacement following the completion of the duties necessarily undertaken. Alternately, returning the original person, back to the usual town in India or seding out the original Insured Person to complete a tour of duty following recovery from disability
- Family Transportation - If the insured is hospitalized for a long period of time following a covered hospitalization, the insurer will pay subject to SI for the the cost of round-trip economy airfare to bring one of Your Immediate Family Members chosen by You to and from Your bedside or pay the reimbursement of the hotel room charge due to convalescence after Your Hospital discharge
Some of the exclusions under the Domestic Travel Insurance Plans include:
- Any Pre-existing Condition
- Routine physicals or other examination
- Elective, cosmetic, or plastic surgery
- Suicide, (AIDS), / (HIV) infection
- Under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or other intoxicants
- Loss arising out of War, civil unrest, Terrorism
- Congenital anomalies
- Participation in Adventure Sports
- Pregnancy related conditions