How to make a travel insurance claim

Unfortunately, things don’t always go as planned when you travel. Perhaps you had to cancel or reschedule your trip due to an unexpected illness. Or your flight home has been delayed.

Travel insurance is one of those expenses that we incur out of necessity, but hope we don’t have to. However, vacations don’t always go as planned and sometimes we have to make use of our travel insurance, so here’s what you need to know to make the claim process easier.

Whatever the reason, if you need to make a travel insurance claim, we explain how to do it and what documents you may need to give your insurance provider.

What can be claimed in travel insurance?

This will depend on your travel insurance policy. Travel insurance can cover things like:

  • medical and hospital expenses abroad
  • cancellation and modification fees (such as non-refundable flights, accommodations and tours)
  • lost, stolen or damaged luggage or personal effects
  • additional expenses (such as additional accommodation and travel expenses)
  • Rental vehicle excess (if your rental vehicle is stolen or damaged and you have to pay an excess to the rental company).

What is the most common travel insurance claim?

Some of the most common travel insurance claims include lost luggage, lost or stolen money, medical expenses, and flight cancellations and delays, according to Budget Direct.

Is there a time limit for making a travel insurance claim?

The time limit for making a travel insurance claim will depend on the insurance provider. But, in general, it is recommended that you file your claim as soon as possible and within 30 to 60 days of returning home from your trip.

How to make a travel insurance claim

You can usually make a travel insurance claim online or by completing a claim form and submitting it to your provider. There is often a number you can call for help. You will need to provide relevant documents to support your claim, such as medical reports, police reports, accommodation and travel details, and receipts for the expenses you are claiming.

How do I make a travel insurance claim for medical expenses?

If you receive medical treatment while abroad, you can usually pay your medical bills and file a claim with your insurance provider for reimbursement later. Alternatively, you can contact your provider and they may be able to talk to the medical provider and pay you directly. Be sure to get a medical report confirming the injury or illness and the treatment received.

Many insurance providers also have 24/7 emergency hotline services that you can call if you are sick or injured and need help. They can help you through the process.

What supporting documents do I need?

You will need to provide documents and evidence to support your travel insurance claim. Your insurance provider will tell you what documents are required on your claim form.

Some common documents include:

  • medical reports
  • police reports for lost or stolen property, or incident reports from the relevant authority (such as the airline or hotel)
  • flight, accommodation and tour details
  • proof of ownership of lost, stolen, or damaged items, such as receipts or bank statements
  • receipts for any additional expenses claimed, such as additional accommodation.

Your insurance provider will likely be able to assess your claim more quickly if you have provided them with all the documents they need. However, you can usually file a claim even if you are waiting for some documents and attach them at a later stage.

How long does it take to process a travel insurance claim?

Once you have submitted your claim, your insurance provider will process it and let you know if you need to provide any additional documents. In general, you can expect to get a response within 10 business days; however, this may vary between providers.

What is the excess for travel insurance claims?

The excess is the amount you may need to pay for a claim you make on your travel insurance policy. The deductible will vary depending on the policy and the provider you choose. The excess should be listed in your policy documentation. If you need to pay an excess or excesses, your insurance provider must inform you during the claim process.

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