Travel Insurance


Frequently Asked Questions

A) For the same trip, I was not able to claim from my insurer, but my travel companion’s claim was successfully made with another insurer! Why must there be exclusions in the first place?

Travel insurance should be there to cover me for all my travel inconveniences and losses.

Travel insurance policies range from basic plans with limited sections of benefits and low limits, to comprehensive ones with wide ranging benefits and generous limits. Correspondingly, the premiums for different levels of insurance policies may also differ substantially. Coverage, benefits and terms and conditions differ among products and insurers. And like all life and general insurance policies, travel insurance policies have exclusions to keep their premiums reasonable. It is important that you do not base your decision on premium alone. Always choose an insurance policy that best fit your needs. A list of factors that you should consider before purchasing a travel insurance policy can be found in question 3c under “About Travel Insurance”.


B) Why are earthquakes, tsunamis and other natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes, volcanic eruptions etc. classified as Acts of God and not covered usually under travel insurance?

Most insurers provide cover for Accidental Death or Total Permanent Disablement, Medical Expenses and Medical Evacuation arising from Acts of God. However, due to the wide extent of impact of such events, coverage provided under Trip Cancellation, Trip Curtailment or Baggage and Personal Effects etc., may differ. Be sure to check your policy wording to verify the type of benefits offered prior to purchase. Even if the policy provides coverage for such events, it is important that you take added precautions to protect your life and belongings. Look out for news on the destination you are travelling to. Should there be an impending natural disaster or strike, check the latest Travel Advisory issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the Consular Information / Travel Advisory or your airline’s webpage for current travel notices. Consult your travel agent or airline if it is safe to proceed with the trip.


C) For those who unfortunately lose their lives during travel, can their family members claim from the deceased’s travel insurance policy?

Travel insurance policy does cover Accidental Death/ Permanent Disablement due to an accident. This is applicable for both life and general insurance.


D) Is nuclear radiation covered?

All travel insurance policies carry a total exclusion on nuclear risks. The cover excludes any loss, damage, illness caused directly or indirectly from the existence or escape of nuclear, ionising radiation and contamination by radioactivity from nuclear fuel.


E) In the wake of unrest in the Middle East, does travel insurance cover civil unrest, commotions, demonstrations and war?

Generally, most policies will provide cover for riots and civil commotion situations particularly for Personal Accident and Medical Expenses related sections. This applies as long as you were already there when the outbreak occurred and you are an innocent bystander. Riots and civil commotion are also typically listed as an insured event under the Travel Delay section. Some policies also provide cover for this under the Trip Cancellation and Curtailment sections as long as the outbreak was an unexpected event and did not occur prior to your departure.

However policies have different terms and conditions, you should read your policy carefully and keep a look out for news of the destination that you are travelling to. Most policies have a total exclusion on war risks which will exclude any losses arising directly or indirectly from war. Some policies may offer some form of restricted cover for war risks, usually only under the Personal Accident section and subject to the outbreak being an unexpected event after you had already departed for your trip, and as long as you are an innocent bystander.

Again, you should be aware of what your policy covers and be alert to events in the destination that you are travelling to.


F) Will all medical expenses incurred during travel be covered?

Read the policy contract carefully to find out what is and what is not covered. For example, pre-existing conditions are generally not covered in most policies. There can also be limits on how much you can claim for medical expenses.