Everything You Need To Know About Travel Insurance in Malaysia - GoBear's Ultimate Guide
Let's dig into the details of travel insurance. This guide tells you how to choose the best travel insurance, what does it cover and how to file a claim.
What is travel insurance?
A policy that covers accidents to the insured and losses arising from a journey whether by air, sea or land.
Why is it important?
Protection against your worries or unforeseen events (see below 1d) during your trips.
What are the different types of travel PA available in Malaysia?
One-way / Single trip vs. Annual plan
|One Way / Single||Annual|
|Duration Per Trip||Up to 6 months||Up to 3 months|
Individual vs. Family or Group
|Definition||One or a group of adults||At least 1 adult and any number of children*|
|Age Coverage||19 to 80 years||
Adult: 19 to 65 years*
|Advantages||Multiple travel plan options||A lower rate with higher coverage benefits shared amongst family members in total|
|Disadvantages||Higher premiums for better coverage||Limited product choices|
Conventional vs. Takaful
|Principle||Profit for shareholders||Mutual for participants|
|Basis||Risk transfer||Co-operative risk-sharing|
|Value Proposition||Profits maximisation||Welfare and spiritual satisfaction|
|Management Status||Company Management||Operator|
|Form of Contract||Contract of Sale||Wakala or Mudarabah|
|Surplus||Shareholder account||Participant account|
|Anything Special?||-||Umrah/Hajj trip to Mecca with Badal Haji benefits|
- Badal Haji: Obligatory Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca) on behalf of those who are unable to perform the Hajj due to sickness, old age or dies before fulfilling part of the Five Pillars of Islam duties
- Mudarabah: Islamic contract which one party supplies money (investor) and the other provides management expertise (entrepreneur)
- Wakala: Agency or delegated authority where the principal appoints a wakil to carry out specific job on behalf
When and what does it cover?
Many travelers may not be aware that they are covered for up to 60 days prior to trip commencement. It is always prudent to buy your travel insurance once the trip is confirmed to safeguard yourself against unforeseen circumstances. For example, in the event of a last-minute flight cancellation or medical-related illness before your trip, you will be protected by your travel insurance policy.
What is covered before you depart for your trip?
- Trip cancellation – Typically 30 or 60 days before departure date or the policy issuance date, whichever is later
- Personal Accidental Death & Permanent Disablement – 3 hours before you leave your home or office for a direct journey to the place of embarkation
- Missed Departure – due to a public transport service disruption
What is covered during your trip?
- Personal Accident benefits
- Medical Expenses (Overseas/Domestic) - hospital income, alternative medicine, compassionate visit, etc.
- Emergency Medical Evacuation & Repatriation
- Loss/Damage to Luggage and Belongings
- Trip Cancellation/Postponement/Curtailment
- Travel inconveniences allowance – flight, baggage, etc.
- Insolvency/Closure of travel agency
- Personal liability
- Terrorism/Hijacking/Kidnap, etc.
- Travel assistance service – 24-hour emergency assistance
- Bonus cover – Lifestyle benefits (e.g. golf, home, pet, child, cards, rental car), misuse of hotel facilities, loss of entertainment tickets, etc.
What is covered after your trip?
- Personal Accident benefits
- Loss or damage of baggage and personal effects
- Baggage damage by a common carrier
- Follow-up medical treatments in home country – after an occurrence of an incident
What should I be aware of before making my payment?
Application requirements are as follows:
Adult: 18 to 65 years old*
|Citizenship||Malaysian, PR and foreigner|
*Subject to insurer’s Policy Wordings
2. Covered Regions
Domestic, Asia, Europe, worldwide including or excluding USA and Canada.
Multiple destinations are allowed given that the trip must depart from and end in Malaysia.
3. General Exclusions
Any loss, injury, damage or legal liability arising directly or indirectly from;
- Pre-existing medical conditions
- War, act of foreign enemy, radiation or contamination by radioactivity
- Acquired Immune Deficient Syndrome (AIDS), Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV)
- Suicide or self-inflicted injury, pregnancy
- Professional or hazardous sports, racing
- If you are a member of the aircraft crew
- Under the influence of alcohol or drug, mental insanity
- The consequential loss or damage of any kind
4. Claims procedure
- Notify the insurer immediately – emergency hotline or online
- Prepare the relevant supporting documents
- Boarding pass and e-ticket for all claims
- Original medical receipts and doctor's diagnosis if medical-related
- Letter from airline confirming the duration of flight change and reason of change
- Property irregularity report if your baggage is delayed/damaged
- Original receipts for additional accommodation, transportation, communication expenses, replacement cost for loss of travel documents
- Police report (lodged within 24 hours) on loss-related incident.
- Submit to the insurer within 30 days of incident
How is your travel insurance premium calculated?
|Gross Premium||Premiums are determined by the type of trip, travel duration and destination. Optional covers are also available for certain insurers to cover extra events such as extreme adventure sports, home contents cover, and more which can be added onto your travel insurance with extra premiums.|
|Commission||25% discount available via online or direct|
|GST||RM10 per policy, e.g. group policy (excl. family plan)|
|Stamp Duty||6% on gross premiums|
Tips to Get Sufficient Coverage
Consider these questions when sourcing the most suitable insurance for yourself
1. Where are you travelling to?
What is the crime rate or culture in the country travelled to – is it commonly known for thefts? Does it face frequent terrorism issues? One of the most well-known features of travel insurance is cover for personal effects and luggage. In the unfortunate event of losing your travel documents or theft of cash, your insurer will be able to reimburse you for the expenses spent and financial loss experienced.
Are there any known virus outbreaks within the country?
2. When will you be travelling?
If the country that you will be visiting has four seasons, what is the expected weather forecast?
What are some of the unusual events that might take place during this period of time?
For example, if your flight out of Hong Kong is grounded due to the raging typhoon season, you would want to make sure that you can claim compensation for the delay.
3. Who are you travelling with?
If you have senior citizens (above 70-years-old), young children (below 1-year-old) or someone with special needs such as pregnant women travelling with you, ensure that they are covered under the travel insurance. For instance, if you are travelling with your extended family consisting of your beloved grandparents, some insurers only provide reduced over (or do not cover) for senior citizens above the age 70. Do make sure that they have adequate coverage in emergency events.
3. What’s your trip itinerary?
What are the activities you will be participating in? Will you be skydiving, going on a cruise, or taking part in other adventurous activities? New Zealand is a popular skiing destination and certain insurance policies will provide extra cover for medical emergency support, travel delay, and more.
4. Bonus tips when making a successful claim
Be prepared! Submit your claims ASAP and always keep a copy of the insurance policy and receipt with you, in both hard and soft copies. Notify the police for theft or loss claims and always ensure that the insurer accepts any medical claims first. Appeal with the insurer if you feel that your claims were unfairly rejected. And as a precaution, save the 24-hour emergency hotlines in your phone, in case you need it.
Time To Get A Travel Insurance
Ideally, get covered at least 14 days before your departure from the below channels. Some insurers do provide immediate protection right before your departure.
|Agents||Advice will be given on how to choose the most suitable plan||Costs could be slightly higher due to agent commission. No discount|
|Airlines||Convenient as it is sold as a package with flight tickets||A stripped-down version from the direct insurer. They do offer comprehensive travel coverage but covered benefits may lack when compared to buying directly from the insurer|
|Credit Card||A complimentary privileged benefit to Principal or even Supplementary cardholders||A further stripped-down version from the airline travel insurance. Such plans normally only provide cover for events like accidental death or permanent disablement, trip cancellation, medical expenses incurred while overseas, loss of baggage, delayed baggage, travel delay, and is made available only for the Principal Cardholder|
|Online / Over The Counter||25% discount off or exclusive promotional giveaways||Do your own homework. You would have to do your own research to establish a plan that suits your travel needs.|