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Natural Disaster Coverage: Why is Travel Insurance important?


When we think about travel insurance, many of us think about circumstances that may directly influence us such as illnesses, personal accidents, loss of property and so on. But the thing many of us forget about are bigger conditions that we don’t have control over. One such example is  natural disasters!

With an increase in worldwide events including terrorist attacks, harsh weather conditions and more, it goes without saying that an insurance provider should cover you in the event of unforeseen circumstances. This may be especially relevant if you are travelling to a destination that is considered to be prone to natural disasters.

What is a Natural Disaster?

A natural disaster is usually defined by travel insurance providers as an “earthquake, fire, flood, hurricane, tornado or volcanic eruption that is brought about by natural causes”. However, it should be noted that not all of these disasters are included in every plan’s description of coverage. Some travel insurance providers exclude specific events, so it’s really important to double check what’s covered. For example, volcanic eruptions and avalanches are excluded in certain policy plans as they are classified as “acts of God” instead.

You should check with your travel insurance provider on the available policies that provide coverage for such unfortunate incidents. Ensure that this factor is not excluded in case you see the need to cancel your trip.

Natural Disaster Coverage

There are different forms of coverage provided for claims of natural disasters and there are usually 4 categories that fall under this section.

1.   Trip cancellations and trip interruptions:

  1. Benefits will be paid if compulsory evacuation orders are issued due to a natural disaster.
  2. Benefits will be paid if the natural disaster renders your principal residence or destination residence uninhabitable.

2.   Missed connections and trip delays:

  1. Benefits will be paid if you miss a tour or a cruise, or you are delayed by more than a defined number of hours as a result of a natural disaster.
  2. Benefits will not only reimburse your unexpected trip expenses but also for the additional transportation costs incurred.

3.   Medical coverage:

  1. Benefits will be paid if you are travelling and unfortunately get injured or killed while travelling, as a result of a natural disaster.
  2. Benefits will be paid to the medical facility that treated you or your beneficiaries up to the travel insurance plan limits.

4.   Emergency Medical Evacuation & Repatriation:

  1. Benefits will be paid if you get injured while travelling on a covered trip and require medical treatment that cannot be administered locally.
  2. Benefits will be paid if you unfortunately get killed while travelling as a result of a natural disaster and the travel insurance provider will coordinate and pay for your body to be returned home.

Limits on travel insurance coverage for natural disasters

Like all insurance plans, travel insurance policies also have limits on the coverage it will pay out for reasons affected by natural disasters. Listed below are 4 such instances:

  1. Trip cancellations and trip interruption benefits are paid only if the traveller loses at least 50% of their trip due to compulsory evacuation orders.
  2. If your destination is adversely affected by the storm, it must be uninhabitable for a claim to be processed.
  3. Non-medical emergency evacuation coverage pays for all reasonable expenditure incurred for your transportation to the nearest place of safety.
  4. All coverage comes with maximum limits that place a cap on the amount a travel insurance provider will pay. Anything that spills over this amount will have to come out of the traveller’s own savings.

It should be noted that every travel insurance provider and their policies vary according to the company’s definitions and conditions that are always mentioned in their agreements. You should take the time and effort to read through the policies and the accompanying fact sheets to know exactly what coverage you will receive for natural disasters.

Travel Insurance with Natural Disaster Coverage

Our travel insurance plans will cover you if your trip gets disrupted or you find yourself stranded because of natural disasters. We will also provide you with coverage if there has been an unexpected civil commotion that prevents you from continuing with your scheduled trip. You will also be covered for additional hotel stays and costs incurred on your return to Singapore.

Our personal claims specialists will also be available to help you during a stressful situation, so don’t worry, we have you covered! To find out more about our policies and to get a quick quote, click here.