Regardless of the purpose of your trip, it is always a good idea to buy travel insurance. Not doing so can work out very expensive if something should go wrong.
That happens far more than you think. According to a recent study by the US Travel Insurance Association (USTIA), nearly one in six Americans experience some sort of problem during a trip. Problems that having access to a good travel insurance policy could have helped them to solve quickly and cheaply.
Never just buy the first policy you are offered
However, it has to be the right type of insurance for you. A policy that is perfect for you could be totally unsuitable for someone else. That is why united healthcare travel insurance and policies offered by some other firms are available in a range of different configurations. These flexible policies are designed to make it easy to buy the level of cover you actually need.
Check the level of cover that is on offer
Before buying your policy, look at the amount of cover that is on offer. You need to be covered you for every eventuality. There is no point in buying a really cheap policy if it only covers you for a few thousand dollars of treatment. If you get sick with something like appendicitis that requires an operation and a hospital stay, that level of coverage is not likely to be anywhere near adequate. In some countries, just one night’s stay in a hospital could cost you $500. In that situation, you could still end up with a medical bill that is far higher than the level of cover you have bought.
Be especially careful about the amount of expatriation or repatriation coverage you buy. These costs are rising all the time. It is not unusual for evacuation to the nearest center of medical excellence to cost $25,000, or more. Repatriation to your own country is even more expensive, with bills of $50,000+ no longer being unusual. So, when you buy a policy make sure that the level of coverage is adequate for every type of coverage you need.
If you are planning to take an expensive DSLR camera with you, double check that it is properly covered. Be aware of the fact that sometimes there is a limit to how much an insurance company will pay out for each individual item.
Make sure you qualify
You need to make sure that the policy you are buying actually does cover you. For example, if you have an existing medical condition, ask yourself what impact that has on the policy you are buying. Are you still covered?
Be sure to comply with the small print
If you are taking medication or have recently visited a doctor, some policies will not cover you at all. Therefore, you need to check the small print and be sure that you are actually buying the right policy for you.
You also need to check whether you need to declare your pre-existing conditions. In some situations, if you do not do this you can end up completely invalidating your policy.
Check that the activities you are planning are covered
If you are planning to enjoy something like skiing, mountain biking or white water rafting you need to make sure you are covered. Before you buy it is always worth double-checking the small print to find out what activities are exempt.
When it comes to travel insurance, you really cannot do enough research. Making assumptions when buying it is never wise. Buying the wrong policy can easily turn out to be one of the most expensive mistakes you ever make.