Travelling to another state in India is like visiting a new country. It is an enjoyable experience and a way to explore new cultures and marvel at the differences that India as a country provides. It is also break from the monotonous, daily routines.
However, there is always a concern, what if you fall ill in a city away from home or are stranded in a due to flight cancellations? Domestic travel insurance can help with contingencies on a domestic trip.
What is Domestic Travel Insurance?
Domestic travel insurance is an insurance plan that covers contingencies for travel within India.
Features of a Domestic Travel Insurance Policy
Some of the common features for a Domestic Travel Insurance Plan available in India include:
- The plan covers the policyholder and family members travelling with the policyholder
- Coverage is provided for the duration of the trip
- The maximum duration of cover is limited to a year
- Premium would depend on the destination, sum assured, age of the covered members and the duration of the trip
- Age restrictions may be applicable, with minimum age at 18 years and maximum at 65 years
- The cover includes both inbuilt coverage benefits and additional benefits
- Option to choose additional extensions by paying an additional premium
- Low premium for most plans
Coverage provided by a domestic travel policy
Every Domestic Travel Insurance Plan has in-built features as well as extensions that can be bought at an additional premium
Most Common In-built Features
Though the actual cover provided by travel insurance varies across providers, the most commonly in-built features are:
- Medical emergency cover – Cost incurred for illnesses, accidents and other medical emergencies faced during domestic travels are covered under the plan. This will include ambulance costs, doctor’s fees, hospitalization costs, etc.
- Cancellation or delay of booked flight –Costs incurred due to delayed and cancelled flights are covered. The travel insurance plan will include new flight booking and hotel stays
- Loss of baggage – Misplacement or loss of baggage at an airport are common occurrences and are usually covered by a domestic travel plan. It may also include expenditures incurred for alternate clothing and amenities.
- Personal liability – Financial liability arising from causing accidental harm or damage to another individual or third-party property. The domestic travel plan will pay the financial compensation on the policyholder’s behalf
Most Commonly Featured Extensions
Extensions help increase the scope of cover of a policy. An additional premium has to be paid for choosing each available additional cover. The most common extensions include:
- Compassionate visit cover – A return airfare ticket for a family member visiting the policyholder at a hospital in another city is covered
- Personal accident cover –This cover pays a lump sum benefit, which is usually equal to the sum insured under the plan, in case the disability and death during the policy year
- Trip cancellation –In case of trip cancellations due to unavoidable circumstances, the domestic travel plan will reimburse advance bookings such as flight tickets and hotel reservations.
- Home burglary insurance –Loss due to burglary and damages to the policyholder’s home while they are travelling domestically are covered. The cover allows protection from the time you leave your home until the time you return.
- Medical evacuation and repatriation –Expenses incurred to evacuate the policyholder from the city of travel to another city or preferred hospital are covered. It also covers repatriation costs of transporting mortal remains of policyholder to the city of residence.
- Adventure sports cover –Costs for injuries and medical treatments incurred from adventure sports are extensions available with certain domestic travel insurance plans.
Exclusions under the plan
Though in-built and extension allow for a comprehensive scope of coverage, there are certain exclusions which are not covered.. Some common plan exclusions include–
- Travelling against the advice of a medical practitioner
- Pre-existing illnesses and associated complications
- Suicides and self-inflicted injuries including deliberate injuries
- Contingencies faced because of alcohol or drug abuse, serving in the armed forces, terrorist activities, war and related perils, nuclear radiation and contamination
- Maternity expenses
- Mental health disorders such as depression and associated problems Infections suffered due to AIDS or HIV
- Acts of criminal nature and any consequent loss suffered
Buying a domestic travel policy in India
In India, several general insurance companies offer domestic travel insurance. However, to choose the best one, it is imperative to compare the plans for premium, cover provided, etc.
- Coverage available – As stated earlier, the plans feature both inbuilt and additional coverage. Look for a plan with the maximum in-built features along with extensions suiting unique travel needs.
- Premium – Do not look at the premium alone – look at the premium to be paid for the cover the domestic travel insurance provides. Keep in mind, higher cover translates into higher premium..
- Claim settlement process – Check out the claim settlement process of the insurance provider. An easy process with a good track record of claim settlement are necessary for choosing the plan.
Points to remember before buying a domestic travel plan
When buying a domestic travel plan, remember the following points for a smooth experience –
- You will need documents including identity proof, age proof and residence proof. Copy of the travel itinerary and travel tickets are to be shared with the insurance company while making a claim.
- Check for sum insured, coverage limits and deductibles. Keep in mind, applicable deductibles are out-of-pocket expenses
- Bbuy the policy for the complete tenure of the trip
- Specify the destination to the company when buying the plan
- Keep the contact details of the company handy to contact them in case of an emergency
- Opt for the required coverage features for a more comprehensive policy
A domestic travel plan is a cost-effective and affordable yet important addition to your domestic travel trips. Make sure to compare and buy the best insurance plan when planning a vacation or business trip within India.