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Shark in Gaantsbaai, South Africa (2012-03)

Cheat sheet: Insurance Questions


Do not travel without health insurance. Some insurance policies cost lest than a dollar a day. But when you get injured or seriously sick you’ll be grateful for someone to not only pick up the bill but also fly you home. Get some advice from a professional. Before you start on your trip talk to an independent insurance broker. Your insurance broker can also help you when there are problems on the road or when your plans change. Of course you may also search online. But don’t forget to read the small print.

Here are a couple of questions you should ask your insurance (or insurance broker) about any kind of insurance you want to be using during your travels:

  • Which countries are covered? Which are excluded? What about the USA?
  • What if I go to country or region that is on the foreign office’s travel advisory list? Will I still be covered in these countries?
  • Is transport home included? In the event of death – will my remains be returned home?
  • Which additional conditions apply? Do I need to have insurance in my home country / country of residence?
  • How do I file a claim? What papers do I have to file? By when do I have to file a claim? For health insurance: Do I have to get permission from the insurer before I seek treatment?
  • How can I extend the contract while on the road when my plans change?
  • How long am I allowed to stay in one place?
  • Am I covered when I visit home / my country of permanent residence?
  • Am I covered if I work?
  • Do I need to be registered in my home country or have a permanent residence there?


Do you have anything to add? Thoughts? Opinions? Let me know!

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