Whether it’s a single trip or multi-trip insurance plan, some events and conditions may simply not be covered by your travel insurance.
Without proper knowledge of the exclusions set in your insurance coverage policy, you may quickly find yourself on your own if you’re solo travelling, or if they happen to be family travels, with a dire situation rapidly getting out of hand. So, before leaving on that much awaited holiday trip, or making that extremely important business trip to safeguard company interests, let’s have a look at some of the most common exclusions on travel insurance coverage.
1. War or any sort of armed conflict
As should be expected, travel insurance companies won’t cover the risks of travelling to a known warzone. Whether the war be declared or not, insurance providers will consider any form of armed conflict or dangerous civil unrest to be grounds enough to terminate their liability. These situations may include:
• Military invasions
• Civil war
• Mass rioting and other forms of civil unrest
It’s worth mentioning that if the country isn’t currently flagged as a high-risk or war prone country, most travel insurance companies will cover the medical expenses of injuries that result from surprise terrorist strikes.
2. Pre-existing diseases or health conditions
Although not specifically an exclusion, travel insurance providers may refuse to cover the expenses of emergencies related to pre-existing conditions, during your trip, if you fail to notify them of your medical history with this disease. Because of this, it is always recommendable to alert your travel insurance company of said medical problems, as most companies will still give you insurance coverage at the cost of a higher premium.
3. Cost of opportunity of falling ill or getting injured
Travel Insurance companies won’t usually cover the expenses of ruined vacations, cancelled business opportunities, nor the costs of not being able to retake your working schedule due to illness.
4. Self inflicted fatalities or injuries
Travel Insurance companies won’t be liable for any death or injury that may result from your own negligence or actions (although some may still cover a self inflicted death if it occurred while trying to save another person). Some examples of circumstances where insurance coverage won’t pay for medical expenses are:
• Suicide: whether successful in doing so or not.
• Narcotics or alcohol abuse: such as deaths or injuries which may occur due to impaired rational and motor skills.
• Narcotics or alcohol abuse: which may worsen an already pre-existing medical condition.
• Negligence which may lead to illness: such as not getting the mandatory vaccinations while travelling in a disease prone environment.
• Reckless driving and disregard for traffic regulations: such as deaths or injuries that may occur due to driving under the influence, committing traffic violations, driving in dangerous areas not meant for normal traffic or allowing someone else to drive your rented vehicle.
5. Extreme sports
Extreme sports and other dangerous activities are subject to evaluation by each travel insurance company individually. Some may offer insurance coverage for some of these activities, while others may simply exclude them in their policies, so it’s always worth checking with every insurance provider before making a final decision.
Keep in mind that some travel insurance companies may offer you specialized plans which may better suit you, allowing you to cover the risks involved in these extreme sports, at the cost of a higher premium.
6. Natural disasters and environmental hazards
Depending on the travel destination and the level of risk involved, some travel insurance providers may limit their coverage for natural disasters such as volcanic activity, earthquakes and tsunamis. Also, if an area is guaranteed to carry environmental hazards, insurance coverage for these risks may be extremely limited or completely absent.
Some environmental hazards exempt from coverage may be:
• Toxic contamination
• Environmental pollution
• Ionizing radiation, among others.
7. Going to a country despite being warned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore
Most insurance policies won’t cover travelling to countries deemed too dangerous by the government of Singapore. This is either due to epidemic hazards, chances of natural disasters, violence or a general lack of stability to ensure the safety of travelling Singaporeans.
8. Losing unattended personal belongings
If an item was stolen from you because you left it in an unprotected place without proper supervision, then it will most likely not be covered by the insurance policy.
9. Cancelling your trip
Simply deciding against travelling usually isn’t grounds for a claim. Depending on the insurance policy, cancelling a trip due to legal issues, or trouble getting the required travel documentation in time, might also not be valid.
Although these are the most common exclusions found in travel insurance policies, remember to always verify your policy’s full list of exclusions to fully understand the limits of your insurance coverage.