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Travel Insurance

When my travel went wrong and I regretted not buying an international travel insurance

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I and my family were going to the USA for a family holiday. My younger brother lived there and we decided to stay with him for our tour. My children were excited as it was their first international holiday. As I was discussing my itinerary with my brother, he asked whether I had insured my trip under a travel insurance plan. I waved his suggestion aside saying that I didn’t need one. He tried driving home the importance of an international travel insurance plan but I dodged the subject. When the day of our departure arrived, I was looking forward to the trip. Little did I know of the unpleasant surprises which lay in my way!

As our journey commenced, we faced multiple contingencies and I regretted ignoring my brother’s advice. Do you want to know what happened with me and my family?

  • We missed the connecting flight

Due to bad weather in New Delhi (my city), our flight took off later than scheduled. The result – we reached Dubai late which was our stop over As a result, we missed our connecting flight. The next flight was scheduled for the next day. My kids were getting restless and I had to book a room in a nearby hotel for accommodation for the day we had to wait. I made a spot booking and parted with thousands to get a room.

  • My son suffered a fracture and was hospitalized

After reaching the USA, we went to the famous Disneyland. Mine and my brother’s kids were overwhelmed with the place. They went berserk exploring it when my son fell down and fractured his leg. We rushed him to the hospital for treatment. When I was handed the bill, I was in for a shock. I thought medical inflation in India was high but USA was another matter altogether. The hospital bill was enormous and paying it put quite a big dent in my savings.

  • Our return trip got delayed

My son’s injury made us stay in USA longer than we had planned. Though we didn’t incur additional expenses on staying (we were staying at my brother’s house), we had to cancel our pre-booked tickets which cost a lot of money. My savings went already for a toss and I had no choice but to draw further my savings to book our tickets for a later date. Needless to say, I ended up paying a higher fare as the booking was emergent.

These series of unfortunate incidents looked like they were straight out of a tragedy. I kept piling on expenses and my trip budget went way overboard. As I was mulling my situation, my brother reminded me of my mistake of skipping an international travel insurance plan. He told me about the coverage features and I realized what a blessing a travel insurance plan had been for my dilemma.

As I found out, an international travel insurance plan covered all the contingencies which I faced. It covered medical treatments availed abroad in case of a medical emergency, paid for missed flight connections and also covered trip delay or cancellation. Besides these coverage features, the plan also provided cover for:

  • Medical evacuation
  • Repatriation of mortal remains
  • Loss or delay of baggage
  • Loss of passport
  • Hijack distress allowance
  • Accidental injuries faced when travelling
  • Legal liability
  • Emergency financial assistance, etc.

With such an exhaustive coverage list, an international travel insurance plan covered all possible contingencies which we might face when we travel to a foreign destination. What about the premiums?

Surprisingly, the premiums charged for an international travel insurance plan were quite low and affordable. Where we spend lakhs on planning and undertaking an international trip, we can surely spare a few thousands on a travel insurance plan, especially given the coverage we get.

My travel plans went awry and I regretted not buying an international travel insurance plan. Why should you make the same mistake? An international travel insurance plan gives financial assistance in case of any contingency and thus protects our finances. My mistake proved costly but you have been forewarned. If you are planning a foreign trip, whether for business or leisure, make sure to add an international travel insurance plan to your travel checklist and travel worry-free.

Marjorie Johnson

The author Marjorie Johnson

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