Purchasing travel insurance is pretty simple these days since it can all be arranged online. Policy documents, exemptions, contact numbers and anything else you need to know is available on the insurance company’s website. What is less publicised and known about is what to actually do if you need to make a claim.
It is understandable that people panic in emergency or unexpected situations, but a little bit of composure should allow things to be sorted out pretty quickly. It’s easy to get caught up in worrying about what might happen. But there’s usually nothing to worry about. There are a few simple points you need to remember that will allow you to ensure things work out okay.
Multiple copies of your vital information, stored in different places, is always useful and sometimes a godsend. Keep one on you at all times if possible. Policy number and your insurers contact details are of greatest use to you in an emergency situation.
The sooner you contact your insurance company the better. In cases of medical emergency this is important. In non-life threatening cases, and where you don’t have full details of your policy with you, it might be best to contact the company to see if you’re covered before you opt for whatever insanely expensive treatment you may need.
Considering the medical implications, theft is not such a big deal but can mess up your holiday nonetheless. In extreme cases immediate action is necessary, such as getting replacement funds and documents. For smaller cases you can wait until you return home to contact the insurer. but make sure you get a police crime report to prove your claims.
Be aware, in developing countries with high numbers of foreign tourists, this is seen by many police as a waste of their time. You might have to give officials a small bribe to make progress. While this may seem alien to us, is some countries it is standard procedure.
Another common claim is for baggage lost by airlines, hotels or transport companies. The thing to watch out for here is accountability. It’s important that, if possible, some sort of admission of culpability is obtained to forward to your insurer. It wouldn’t be unheard of for an airline to deny losing something even after their staff admitted to the fault at the time.
In the information age getting in touch with your insurer, even if you’ve lost your wallet with all the contact details in, isn’t usually going to be that difficult. Even if you don’t have a policy number to hand, the staff at the insurance office should recognise your name and be able to confirm your details through some sort of password system set up when you bought the policy.