Nowadays chances of accidents, burglary or any other unfortunate event occurring while you travel, has become alarmingly high. In most cases, your journey will go without any untoward incident but why take risks when you can easily avail a travel insurance policy and get adequate coverage for yourself as well as your loved ones. If you or a member of your family becomes injured during your journey overseas, the last thing you want to worry about is not having the financial means to get treated or be repatriated. There are several circumstances that could cause you trouble while travelling, such as trip cancellation, emergency medical treatment, etc., but with the right travel insurance you are well-protected and can travel worry-free.
What is Travel Insurance?
Travel insurance is a type of insurance that provides coverage in case of any unforeseen incidents such as medical expenses, loss of baggage, trip cancellation, terrorist activities/hijacking, evacuation, and so on which occurs while traveling abroad or within one's own country, for which you have not been financially prepared for. Travel insurance protects you from any kind of risk while you are travelling abroad. Travel insurance offers comprehensive Medical Coverage, Personal Accident Coverage, etc. You should definitely get a travel insurance plan if you are planning to undertake a journey overseas, since it’s relatively cheap and can protect you from any unnecessary expenses and risk.
It is easy to purchase a travel insurance plan since it can be availed at the time of booking a trip, to cover the exact duration of that trip, or buy a "multi-trip" policy that can cover unlimited number of trips within a set period of time. You can also apply for travel insurance online and this is the quickest and most convenient method and also, there are many offers, deals and discounts on premium that are offered when you avail travel insurance online in Singapore. Some insurers offer lower and higher premium options on medical expenses since it varies from country to country and some countries, like the US, have extremely high medical costs. Some travel insurance policies also offer travel assistance around the clock, including concierge services and extend help during emergency situations while traveling.
Types of Travel Insurance Policies
When you purchase travel insurance you have to choose from 2 types of policies, namely, Single Trip and Annual/ Multi-trip Cover.
- Single Trip Travel Insurance, like the name suggests, covers a single trip that begins and ends in Singapore and the trip should not exceed 182 consecutive days.
- Annual Travel Insurance provides coverage for all trips which start and end in Singapore. Each trip generally should be for less than 180 days.
- Annual Multi-Trip plans are meant for frequent travellers because it provides maximum coverage and also ensures convenience. With an Annual Plan you can make unlimited number of trips during the tenure of the policy, as specified in the policy schedule. Each trip should not exceed 90 consecutive days.
If you travel frequently it is best advised to buy an Annual Travel Insurance. The highlights of this plan is that you can enjoy significant savings, and with a single policy, you’ll be covered for an entire year.
Types of Coverage
Some of the most common risks that are covered by travel insurance plans in Singapore, are:
- Emergency repatriation
- Medical emergency
- Repatriating remains in case of death
- Trip cancellation
- Enable return of a minor to Singapore
- Compensation for trip interruption
- Accidental death, disablement or injury
- Funeral expenses overseas
- Cover for delayed baggage
- Loss of/damage to baggage, personal effects or travel documents are covered, with provision to replace essential items.
- Trip delays due to airline schedules
- Acts of terrorism such as hijacking.
- Weather related delay in travel
Benefits of Travel Insurance
Some of the benefits of travel insurance are as follows:
- Medical / hospitalization expenses that are incurred due to illness or accident are covered.
- Dental treatment expenses are reimbursed.
- Loss of passport and other travel documents is covered under almost all travel insurance schemes. Issue of duplicate documents abroad and related expenses in the currency of the country you are in are provided by the insurer.
- If your baggage is lost or delayed there is a provision for buying essential items like clothing, toiletries and so on.
- If there is a flight delay or cancellation and you are held back till the next flight, you will be given a fixed allowance.
- Some policies also give a home insurance in case your home was burgled, household items were destroyed/damaged, etc., while you were overseas.
Key Features of Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is a legal contract and you should thoroughly go through the policy wording and coverage details before committing yourself to the scheme. Let's take a look at what each major part actually does:
Medical Expenses & Emergency Evacuation
Hospital costs in countries like the USA can be shockingly high per day, while emergency medical evacuation back to Singapore can easily exceed thousands of dollars. A good travel insurance provides cover for emergency evacuation, medical expenses and emergency dental cover, etc.
Travel insurance policies usually cover the cost incurred if your trip has been cancelled due to some unforeseen circumstances such as illness, an accident or a death of a close relative. The important thing here is that in order for this to be applicable, travel insurance has to be bought while booking tickets and not just before the date of the journey. Only a few travel insurance plans cover cancellation including non-refundable pre-booking charges if your trip has been interrupted.
Baggage & Personal Belongings
Loss of personal belongings is one of the main reason why most people buy travel insurance. A claim may be denied if you do not take reasonable measures to ensure its security or by leaving your things unsupervised in a public place and it gets stolen, and so on. If you lose your laptop, camera and other valuables, some travel insurance plans also cover these high value items.
When you are overseas and you meet with an accident or accidentally cause injury/damage to an individual or his/her property and are held legally accountable for it, travel insurance can cover your liability and legal expenses.
- Countries: Travel insurance policies usually do not cover travel to or through countries such as Democratic Republic of Congo, Afghanistan, Cuba, Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Liberia or Syria.
- Pre-existing medical conditions: If the insured traveler already has an illness before leaving the country, he/she will not be eligible to get his/her medical expenses incurred abroad to be reimbursed.
- War: Injury, accidents or loss that are a result of war, will not be covered.
- Alcohol or drug abuse: If an injury, accident or loss was a result of drunkenness or is drug induced, it is excluded from any kind of coverage.
- Cosmetic Treatment: Treatment overseas of a cosmetic nature is not covered.
- Sports: Risky / adventure sports such as skiing, scuba diving is not covered.
Travel Insurance Premium in Singapore
Travel insurance premium in Singapore ranges from as low as $22 to as high as $89 and above. The premium rates are influenced by the extent of coverage provided - such as coverage for travel inconveniences including travel delays, loss and delay of baggage, accident benefits, overseas medical coverage, flight delays, trip cancellations, etc.
List of Agencies/Companies Providing Travel Insurance
- AIA Insurance Company
- Aviva Limited
- HSBC Insurance
- Tenet Sompo Insurance Private Limited
- AXA Insurance
- AIG Asia-Pacific Insurance Private Limited
- MSIG Insurance Singapore Private Limited
- NTUC Insurance
- QBE Singapore
- ACE Insurance Ltd.
- ETIQA Insurance
- Tokio Marine and Fire Insurance Company Pte. Limited
Frequently Asked Questions – Travel Insurance
- Is Family Travel Insurance Plan Cheaper than Single Travel Insurance Plan?
Most insurers offer family travel insurance at cheaper premium rates.
- Is it possible to buy Travel Insurance while I’m overseas?
No. Travel insurance has to be purchased before commencing a trip. Travel insurance should be purchased once you’ve booked your tickets since travel insurance also provides coverage in case of trip cancellations.
- What factors should be considered before choosing a travel insurance policy?
Travel insurance is a simple insurance product. Most travel insurance plans provide protection in case of personal accidents, medical and travel inconvenience, etc. However, according to your personal requirements you have to purchase a travel insurance policy that offers coverage on additional features such as having to rent a car while overseas or participate in underwater sports such as snorkeling, diving, and so on.
News About Travel Insurance Singapore
ERGO Launches Comprehensive Travel Insurance Product
ERGO recently announced its entry into the Singapore insurance market with the launch of its travel insurance product - TravelProtect. It has been particularly envisaged to meet business and leisure travel requirements of both the young and veteran populace. The comprehensive insurance product is perfectly designed and conceived to address potential travel risks encountered by frequent and occasional travellers - before, after and during the trip. Citing critical insights derived from its group company ERV, the popular insurance provider concluded that present day Singaporean travellers required a concrete travel insurance plan that address wide-ranging concerns. TravelProtect has several impressive features that suit unique and individual travel needs of travellers - for instance, whether the traveller needs an insurance cover on a rental car abroad or a sports protection, ERGO has the right benefits to offer. Currently, with four comprehensive insurance plans and a medical insurance cover of anywhere between SGD 25,000 to SGD 1.5 million, TravelProtect offers just the right choices for a hassle-free, seamless and uninterrupted business or holiday trip.
13th October 2016
CIMB Bank and Sompo Insurance to distribute non-life insurance products
CIMB and Sompo have tied up a deal to distribute travel and motor insurance. CIMB Bank will market and distribute the products to its 300,000 and growing customers. The products will be distributed via the branches and online. The bank is expecting 70% growth in its bancassurance over the next 3 years. Sompo is expecting the premiums generated through this partnership to quadruple by the year 2020.
14th September 2016
Ministry of Foreign Affairs warns Singaporeans to take Necessary Precautions when travelling to Belgium
Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the MFA has posted a travel notice on its website on July 19, 2016 urging Singaporeans to take all necessary precautions to ensure their personal safety when staying in or travelling to Belgium. It has mentioned that Singaporeans should avoid or stay vigilant in areas where police operations are ongoing, public gatherings and crowded places. MFA has also urged Singaporeans to purchase travel insurance and familiarize themselves with the Terms & Conditions of their policies.
The National Terrorism Threat in Belgium continuous to remain 3 out of 4, meaning the threat is still probable and significant. The Belgium police caught 12 suspects last month during a massive anti-terror raid. These suspects sought to attack prominent areas in Brussels during football matches on the weekends. The country is on an even higher alert since the truck attack in Nice, France on Bastille Day.
21st July 2016
OCBC Explorer Travel Insurance Promotion
Runtime – This is an ongoing promotional offer.
Particulars – You can enjoy discounts of up to 50% on the Single Trip Plans when you choose to make the payments using OCBC credit cards, debit cards or Online Banking.
Avail a discount of up to 25% on the Annual Plans when you make the payments using OCBC credit cards, debit cards or Online Banking.
Terms and Conditions – Please get in touch with the Oversea Chinese Banking Corporation to know more about the terms and conditions of this particular promotional offer.
MFA asks Singaporeans to be vigilant when travelling abroad
Because of terrorist attacks in different parts of the world, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has asked Singaporeans to stay vigilant when they are abroad and has requested them to register with the consulates. MFA also requested travellers to be aware of the local events taking place in their surrounding areas all the time. It asked travellers to ignore places with large gatherings and ones that are famous for demonstrations. It advised them to take all precautions for personal safety and be alert, follow instructions given by local authorities during emergency, buy a travel insurance and read all terms and conditions, stay in touch with relatives, etc. Singaporeans who are traveling abroad should eRegister themselves so that MFA can contact them, if required.
10th July 2016
NTUC Wanderlust Promotion
Run Time – This offer is valid from 1st to 30 July, 2016.
Particulars – Get insurance policy from NTUC Income for your holidays and get a chance to win Singapore Airlines couple tickets to Hong Kong.
Terms and Conditions:
- You will win tickets only if you spend minimum $80 in one transaction (after discounts) on Travel Insurance.
- Customers must apply for any NTUC Income’s Travel Insurance Classic or Deluxe single trip plan, Classic or Deluxe yearly plan, Enhanced Prex single trip plan or TravelBliss Per Trip and Annual plan.
American Express VoyageGuard Travel Insurance Promotion
Runtime – This is an ongoing promotional offer.
Particulars – Enjoy savings of 30 percent on the Essential Single Trip Plans. Avail savings of 35 percent on Standard Single Trip Plans and Superior Single Trip Plans.
Avail shopping voucher worth SGD 50 with the Essential Multi-Trip Plans.
Terms and Conditions – Please, get in touch with American Express to know more about the terms and conditions of this particular promotional offer.
OCBC Explorer Travel Insurance Promotion
Runtime: This is an ongoing promotional offer.
Particulars: On Explorer single trip insurance plans with OCBC cards, you can avail a discount of 30 percent. On the annual plans of Explorer Travel Insurance, you can enjoy 20 percent discount. Using any other OCBC debit card, credit card or online banking can fetch an additional discount of 5 percent.
Terms and Conditions: Please, get in touch with the bank to know more about the terms and conditions of this particular promotional offer.
CIMB Travel Guard Promotion
Runtime: This is an ongoing promotional offer. It will continue till 30th June, 2016.
Particulars: Avail a discount of 50 percent on your travel guard insurance scheme. The scheme allows you to enjoy several benefits like 24 hour assistance. Medical coverage of up to SGD 2, 000,000 when you are overseas, etc.
Terms and Conditions: Please, contact CIMB Bank to know more about the terms and conditions of this particular promotional offer.
OCBC Travel Insurance (Explorer) Promotion
•Single Trip Plans – This is an ongoing promotion that started on 14th December, 2015 and will expire on 18th December, 2015.
•Annual Plans – This promotion started on 22nd October, 2015 and will expire on 21st December, 2015.
•Avail a discount of 50% when you purchase Single Trip plans between 14 – 18 December, 2015 (both dates are included)
•Avail a discount of 20% when you purchase Annual Plans between up to 21st, December, 2015
•Avail an additional 5% discount on the promotional price of the Annual Plan when you purchase it using any OCBC Debit or Credit Card.
Applying for the OCBC Travel Insurance (Explorer) Promotion
•You can apply for this promotion via Great Eastern.
•You can download and login to the OCBC Mobile Banking App and apply for this promotion.
•You can contact OCBC bank via telephone on weekdays between 9 AM and 5 30 PM and apply for this promotion.
Terms and Conditions
•No other offers or discounts can be applied on this promotion with an exception of the additional 5% discount on the Annual Plans.
•For further details on this promotion or for more information on the Terms and Conditions, feel free to contact OCBC bank.