(PRWEB) March 22, 2007
Relying on the free travel insurance available as part of a credit card facility, medical aid cover or insurance policies, could leave travellers stranded in a foreign country without sufficient cover for adequate assistance or medical treatment. An innovative new website created by Travelinsure (http://www.travelsure.co.za) allows travellers to obtain customised travel insurance, which is delivered to their e-mail instantly. No waiting periods, no paperwork - just the right coverage at the right time.
In the excitement of arranging a dream holiday, many people will be tempted to gloss over the administrative details. Unfortunately, dream holidays can turn into nightmares without the right travel insurance to offer comprehensive protection when things go wrong.
From tsunamis and malaria infection to broken bones, heart attacks and stolen or lost luggage - these unexpected events are some of the real risks today's travellers face.
"Consumers often rely on the travel insurance available as part of their credit card facility, medical aid cover or insurance policies," says Dave Stewart of Travelinsure. "Travellers usually only have a vague idea of what these covers entail, because the details are not carefully explained and the policies are seldom customised to meet specific individual needs."
In most cases, the traveller would need to request the full details of the cover packaged within credit card facilities or insurance policies from the financial institution or insurance company. Travel agents also offer travel insurance, but are unlikely to dampen the traveller's enthusiasm by getting into details of an insurance contract.
"So while it is easy to simply rely on the cover packaged into a credit card facility or insurance policy, the one-size-fits-all approach taken by these covers introduce the risk of travellers not receiving the cover they expected - an option that could be extremely expensive in the long run," explains Stewart.
This fact is clearly evidenced by the many complaints received by the short-term insurance Ombud. Most of the complaints relate to the fact that the limits of the cover are only brought to the travellers' attention after an event that gives rise to a claim has taken place.
These limits define the amount of cover the travellers will have if they fall ill or are injured in a foreign country, where medical costs may be much higher than at home. Also important are the exclusions and conditions of the policy. For example, any injuries or losses related to pre-existing medical conditions, chronic illnesses, hazardous activities, terrorist acts, acts of war, civil disturbance or riots are excluded by many policies.
"There is only one way travellers can protect themselves against claims being repudiated, and that is by getting a copy of the policy, reading it carefully and ensuring they completely understand the terms, conditions, exclusions, limits and their responsibilities in terms of the policy," says Stewart.
This seldom happens, though, as in the excitement of buying plane tickets and booking luxury hotel rooms, very few consumers want to read the fine print on an insurance contract. Often, time is also of the essence, making it even less likely that consumers will take the time to study the insurance cover.
"The result is that thousands of travellers fly off to their destinations, not knowing what cover is in place and what procedures they should follow if something happens," says Stewart.
"Fortunately, there is an alternative, made possible by the phenomenal advances in technology and provided by the new and innovative website http://www.travelsure.co.za. This travel insurance solution is instant, paperless and very affordable. In addition, it can be customised to meet the traveller's exact needs for a specific trip, so travellers don't pay for additional cover they don't need."
This interactive travel insurance solution, underwritten by Regent Insurance Company Limited, allows travellers to obtain an instant quote online, based on the actual number of days they are travelling. If the quote and the terms are accepted, payment is made by credit card and proof of cover is delivered instantly to the traveller's e-mail.
"Even immediate cover for an emergency visa application can be arranged at the click of a mouse, and travellers can be assured that the cover is sufficient and tailored to their needs, whether credit card top up, business travel insurance, leisure travel insurance, or cover for snow sport or golf," explains Stewart. "The cover is flexible and allows travellers to add optional extras, such as baggage cover.
"Having the right travel insurance will ensure that minor inconveniences such as lost luggage, flight delays and the cancellation of events will not ruin a holiday. It will also ensure travellers can enjoy complete peace of mind that they are fully covered to receive the best treatment and evacuation services in the event of a medical emergency or a disaster," Stewart concludes.