Travel Insurance 101: Things You Need to Know

Key Points

  1. Travel insurance is a type of insurance that covers the costs and losses associated with travelling.
  2. Travel insurance is a great way to protect yourself from unforeseen events, such as lost luggage and medical expenses covered while travelling.
  3. Don’t wait until the last minute to purchase your travel insurance.

With more people vaccinated and travel being on everyone’s mind, the world feels like it is again reachable. Travel restrictions may not yet have been fully lifted, but there are still many places that can be visited without worry.

As we know, travel restrictions are expected to re-open gradually rather than all at once. We’ll see some countries loosening their imposed limits early on while others will follow later.

It’s a good idea to take precautions before you go on your next adventure. Travelling in the post-pandemic world can be a daunting experience, especially when you know that many things could go wrong while you’re away from home.

International travel is an exciting but risky experience that can result in accidents. Although the percentage of plane crashes is lower each year, it is essential to purchase travel insurance to ensure you have peace of mind when travelling.

When travelling, it is essential to purchasing travel insurance if you are unfortunate enough for any accidents or emergencies. The cost may seem daunting at first, but buying this extra layer of protection can help save your life and money if accidents happen!

What is travel insurance?

Travel insurance is a type of insurance that covers the costs and losses associated with travelling. It is good protection for those travelling domestically or abroad.

If you’re planning on travelling to countries with a mandatory travel insurance requirement, purchase specific coverage for COVID-19 treatment, hospitalization and more.

What does travel insurance cover?

A common question is, what does travel insurance cover? Some of us might think travel insurance covers only luggage loss or flight delay, but it is more than that. Below are some key features of travel insurance products that you need to know, according to the General Insurance Association of Malaysia (PIAM).

  1. Loss of luggage
  2. This will cover accidental loss or damage caused by the carrier and any items that get stains during transport!

  3. Loss of passport and money
  4. You are eligible for reimbursement of expenses if your lost passport was reported within 24 hours. Additional hotel charges, travel and other costs incurred in the country you visited will be reimbursed too.

  5. Death and permanent disablement
  6. You usually are covered for death and total permanent disablement within 365 days following an accident. The compensation will depend on the type and benefits your insurer offers.

  7. Hospitalization and medical expenses
  8. Covering the costs of your hospitalization, medical expenses and daily allowances up to a maximum number of days if you are hospitalized for 24 hours or more.

  9. Repatriation
  10. The insurer will reimburse the cost of returning remains to the home in case of accidental death.

  11. Curtailment
  12. You will be reimbursed for any expenses incurred due to loss of travel or accommodation paid if your journey is cancelled.

  13. Hijacking
  14. Your insurer may pay you up daily to the specified maximum number of days if your journey is interrupted for more than 12 hours due to an act of hijack.

Travel guidelines in Malaysia

With the recent outbreak of COVID-19, many countries are now requiring travellers to have travel insurance that covers related medical expenses.

Visitors to Malaysia

The government has made it compulsory for non-Malaysians who travel to Malaysia to acquire COVID-19 travel insurance coverage. Malaysians do not need to purchase it if they travel within Malaysia.

Malaysian travelling to Singapore

With the COVID-19 virus sweeping through Malaysia, purchasing travel insurance is essential. If you are a Malaysian and ready to travel to Singapore, you must purchase a minimum coverage of S$30,000 for COVID-19-related medical treatment and hospitalization costs in Singapore. Under the VTL, fully vaccinated travellers from Malaysia can enter Singapore without quarantine.

Why should I purchase travel insurance?

There are several reasons why you should consider purchasing travel insurance before your next adventure.

  • Expensive medical cost
  • Medical costs are always an issue when travelling to another country. Depending on where you’re going, your medical expenses could cost more than initially planned and cause quite a bit of stress.

    The small cost of getting a simple and affordable insurance plan dramatically outweighs any potential high costs you may face in a medical emergency overseas.

  • Wide coverage
  • As mentioned above, travel insurance covers your medical costs in other countries and provides additional benefits. A travel insurance plan protects you from something even as minor as missing a flight connection or losing some baggage.

  • Affordable and easy to access
  • People think that travel insurance is expensive and a hassle to purchase, and the truth is, it is straightforward to get one. When you buy your flight ticket, you can choose to purchase travel insurance as an add-on.

When should I get travel insurance?

Don’t wait until the last minute to purchase your travel insurance. The earlier you buy it, the more coverage and peace of mind it provides for when unexpected circumstances arise on a trip, so don’t procrastinate!

Exclusions for travel insurance

One of the most important things to remember about travel insurance is that it comes with specific exclusions. We listed down some of the standard exceptions below.

  • War risks
  • Suicide and insanity
  • AIDS
  • Provoke murder or assault
  • Childbirth or miscarriage
  • Hazardous sports
  • Baggage delay and loss of baggage and personal effects due to seizure or destruction under quarantine or customs regulation


Travel insurance is a great way to protect yourself from unforeseen events. In today’s world, many risks can happen to you on your travels. You might get sick or injured and need medical care, which could cost a lot of money back home. Still, with travel insurance, these worries become less daunting as it covers most expenses.

If your wallet gets stolen while travelling, your insurer will provide a cash advance to you to meet your travel-related expenses. The visa rejection cover ensures that you are fully compensated for any fees related to your application being refused. But this is if there’s no fault or negligence on the part of the insured person.

Purchasing a travel insurance policy is highly encouraged as it provides the protection you need in an unknown land. However, it’s essential to research and find the right policy for yourself. Choose one that suits you the most and protects you adequately. Once this step has been taken, simply relax while enjoying yourself on vacation!

Related: Types of Insurance in Malaysia You Should Know

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