To say that COVID-19 has left an indelible mark in our lives is an understatement. Global lockdown measures have brought the world almost to a standstill. As cities start to reopen, there are plenty of speculation, especially where travel is concerned. Some of the world’s airlines such as Thai Airways have filed for bankruptcy, and there may be more to come. With so many uncertainties revolving around travel, there’s one thing you can be clear on: travel insurance; and we are here to help.
Things to know about travel insurance in the new normal
The pandemic exclusion
COVID-19 has been declared as a pandemic by the World Health Organisation on 11 March 2020. Most standard travel insurance policies have a pandemic exclusion, which means that any claims arising from the coronavirus will not be covered. Check your policy wording and get clarification from your insurer if you are unsure.
If you have an annual travel insurance plan or if you purchased your single trip policy before the cut-off date of the coronavirus pandemic, you are still covered up to a certain extent. This may sound vague but that’s because there are a few factors to note and various potential scenarios. When in doubt, check with your travel insurer.
Example 1: You have decided to cancel your upcoming trip that results in cancellation fees or loss of deposit, then depending on your policy benefits, you can make claims for this.
Example 2: You have decided to travel in spite of travel restrictions and knowledge of COVID-19 being a pandemic (refer to previous point), but claims arising due to COVID-19 will not be covered.
Change of travel dates
With limited flights departing from Singapore, you may need to change your travel dates (again), and make corresponding updates for your travel insurance. The good news is most insurers are flexible when it comes to changing travel dates for your policy but you need to do so before the policy start date. It’d be wise to consider the ease of change process when choosing your travel insurer.
About cancellation and refund
In general, you need to cancel before your policy commences (aka the travel start date in your policy) for any chance of refund. Always refer to your policy wording for more details.
Did you know? Customers holding or who have held Tiq Travel Insurance annual multi-trip policies that expire between 1 March to 31 December 2020 will automatically receive a 6-month policy extension, to help cover the opportunity cost of being unable to travel due to COVID-19.
Some travel insurers such as Tiq by Etiqa Insurance are not offering travel insurance at the moment. Due to COVID-19 and travel restrictions imposed by the government of Singapore and other governments around the world, all non-essential travel should be avoided. Hence, the temporary suspension of the sale of new travel insurance policies.
Proper planning is more important than ever
If you are still going ahead with your travel plans, ensure that you have proper coverage (see above points). Also, you should monitor your flight regularly before departure. Contact your airline to check if there’re such as a medical clearance that you’ll need to meet before travel. Here are some useful tips for healthy and safe air travel.
Be sure to check the entry requirements of your transit location(s), and intended destination. For those who are planning to enter Malaysia, you have to be prepared to pay for cost of mandatory quarantine. While this may sound like a no-brainer, it is good to find out if you are still able to access your accommodation and buy food. Better be safe than sorry.
Is it safe to travel again?
We wish it is safe to travel but until travel restrictions and further official advice are given, it is best to stay safe at home. For those who are suffering from severe travel withdrawals, we hear you. Here are 4 unique travel experiences that you may want to explore from the comfort of your home. Stay safe!
Information is accurate as at 28 May 2020. This policy is underwritten by Etiqa Insurance Pte. Ltd. (Company Reg. No. 201331905K). Protected up to specified limits by SDIC.
Tiq by Etiqa Insurance Pte. Ltd.
A digital insurance channel that embraces changes to provide simple and convenient protection, Tiq’s mission is to make insurance transparent and accessible, inspiring you today to be prepared for life’s surprises and inevitabilities, while empowering you to “Live Unlimited” and take control of your tomorrow.
With a shared vision to change the paradigm of insurance and reshape customer experience, Etiqa created the strong foundation for Tiq. Because life never stops changing, Etiqa never stops progressing. A licensed life and general insurance company registered in the Republic of Singapore and regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, Etiqa is governed by the Insurance Act and has been providing insurance solutions since 1961. It is 69% owned by Maybank, Southeast Asia’s fourth largest banking group, with more than 22 million customers in 20 countries; and 31% owned by Ageas, an international insurance group with 33 million customers across 16 countries.
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