One would think that going on a relaxing vacation would entail less risk of injury or illness than on a normal week. While it clearly depends on one’s lifestyle, the fact is that for most of us, even a leisurely beach holiday is a dangerous activity compared with our daily lives. All kinds of things can go wrong, threatening not only our vacation fun and the week’s budget, but even our lives. It doesn’t take an adventure traveler climbing up mountain cliffs to increase one’s risks. Just crossing the street between the hotel and the beach is enough.
According to the World Health Organization, when it comes to preventable mortality among travelers, injuries top the list. In fact, injury-induced death is one of the leading reasons people require repatriation and medical evacuation, high on the list along with death by natural causes (old age or heart attack). When compared to death by infectious diseases, a person is over twelve times more likely to fall victim to an injury. Motor vehicle accidents are at the top of the list of causes, since many countries in Asia have somewhat lax standards in driving and vehicle design.
Still a leading cause of injury, and totally preventable cause, is the lackadaisical attitude people tend to bring with them on holidays. Risky behavior and excessive drinking are common culprits. Traveling on a tour group is no exception – as people often think the tour guide is going to somehow prevent any problems from occurring.
While nothing can protect us from pure carelessness, a good insurance policy can go a long way to ensuring a problem during the holiday doesn’t turn into a financial nightmare. Insurance policies come in all shapes and sizes. Any online travel insurance company can fill a website with a long list of benefits, but to be sure, the fine print is all-important. For example, some companies will deny coverage for medical evacuation (commonly referred to as “medivac”) or repatriation of remains if the incident in question was caused by a natural disaster, such as an earthquake or tsunami. Singaporeans traveling around Asia are all too familiar with disaster situations, as it seems to happen more around this region than anywhere else in the world. Statistics back that up, citing Asia, in particular Southeast Asia as being the most likely place in the world where one may encounter a nature-induced catastrophic event.
So when it comes to shopping around for travel insurance, don’t just go looking for the cheapest travel insurance Singapore has to offer, but look for the cheapest with the most comprehensive coverage. A good travel insurance company will also have a broad, global network, staffed with people who are available to help 24 hours a day, 365 days a year (and one more day every four years). A little bit of preparation and preventive effort can make all the difference between a fun holiday and a disaster holiday. But if disaster should strike, for whatever reason, keep that insurance card with you at all times.
The writer is an expert in the field of Travel Insurance Protection with focus on Cheapest Travel Insurance Singapore and Online Travel Insurance.
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