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Blog > Travel Insurance > Should You Buy A Travel Insurance For Your Next Trip Abroad?

In the last few years, Indian travel sector has received an immense boost thanks to people in great numbers venturing out to explore the world. While travel related to business, vacations and VFR dominates the segment, travellers are also going for services like sports tourism, honeymoon packages and luxury cruises.

‘India Outbound Tourism Market and Forecast to 2018’ – A research report by iGate predicts that India will account for nearly 30 million outbound tourists by 2018. After China, India is second largest country of internet users in India, and making travel bookings online has never been easier, coupled with increasing disposable incomes, Indians going abroad for vacations is on the up. At the same time, Indian traveller is one of the least concerned about insuring their trip.

A foreign trip/holiday involves a lot of research and planning. Unforeseen medical emergencies, case of theft in foreign land etc could jeopardise all the preparation a traveller may have done. Most people often don’t realize that the cost of treatment of things like a stomach infection, food poisoning, an insect bite could end up being more expensive than your actual trip.

There are countless reasons why one must buy insurance when travelling abroad. While many countries namely Cuba, US, Turkey, France and have recognised health coverage as a mandatory condition of entry into the respective nation, leaving travellers with no choice to travel without a plan. a website that gives insights with the help from their money experts so that people learn more about their finances and make informed decisions about using it in the better way, recently, has put together a report that lists worst countries to travel to without travel insurance. While countries like UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, and Singapore made it to the list for their own set of reasons, we cannot say that this is an exhaustive study.

It is because we cannot overlook that several countries listed in this report are the ones where travel insurance is mandatory, especially the Schengen visa countries.

The Schengen visa allows the holder to travel to any (or all) of the member countries on a single visa. This is particularly beneficial for business as well as those on vacations to several European countries during the same trip.  However, many travellers aren’t aware of is that in order to obtain the Schengen visa; they must provide proof of health insurance during the application process. Post June 2004, it has been made mandatory for the visa seeker to submit a proof of possession of a valid travel insurance in support of their visa application. In the absence of travel insurance, no visa will be issued.

Two out of three Schengen visas require travel insurance

Category A, which is the airport transit visa, does not require any travel insurance.

Category B, which is the transit visa, is issued to travellers going from one outside State to another outside State and need to pass through the territories of the Schengen states.

Category C, which is the short stay visa, is the most common Schengen visa. It is issued for the purpose of tourism, business/family visit or when one has to get married in the particular State.

Check the 26 member Schengen country list here.  

Whichever country you’re visiting, you cannot overlook the fact that climatic changes and the natural habitat of your travel destination can result in unexpected illnesses/ailments, not to forget unforeseen accidents. Whether you’re travelling once or several times, the right travel policy will cover you for these unforeseen events and provide you a financial safety in the international territory.

Have any doubts/myths regarding travel insurance, decode them by reading this.

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