8 tips for a successful travel insurance claim
As I have written in a previous post even the best-laid plans can go astray, especially when it comes to insurance. You need insurance when traveling overseas to protect yourself, your belongings and your family.
IT IS A MUST
You need to pick a policy that will cover you for your own personal needs and you must read the fine print. This is something I really wish I had prepared a little better for before it happened to us. Hindsight really is a great thing.
So here are some tips for insurance, once you have to make that dreaded claim.
1: Never Give Up.
They want you to give up and go away…don’t. If you truly believe you did all in your power to ensure your safety, fight it.
2: Don’t Be Afraid To Be Onto Them.
Again they want you to go away, keep on them, ask questions and keep them to their own deadlines that they are supposed to stick to (and they know it)
3: If You Are Not Happy, Ask For It To Be Reviewed.
After I was told our claim was denied the first time I thought that was it. I didn’t know I could fight it and as much as they are supposed to tell us we can dispute it I found that info was not really made available. Luckily I remember something about it coming up in a blog I had read. So I disputed it…4 times all within the company our insurance was with.
4: There Is Outside Help Too.
If you are finding it hard to get through to your insurer, you can call the Ombudsman. They gave us some really good advice when I really felt like it was not worth fighting for it anymore. They also put us onto a company that would help us as well if the internal view process didn’t go in our favour either.
5: Know What You Have To Get For Proof.
We had to have a police report reporting the theft and what was stolen. We had to get this from the city it was in. We were on a train in Naples so we had to get it to Rome where we ended up. This is really important...if you don’t have it you can be in some trouble. Also, some companies will charge you or make you get it translated into English. If you can call your company as soon as possible to find out what information you have to provide, it may be costly but will help you in the end.
For medical we found it was very difficult. With Willow, we took her to the doctor because she had been unwell with temperatures and was lethargic. The insurance company wanted a letter from the doctor stating what was wrong, how she could have gotten sick and what we could do to get her better. The doctor also had to supply a letter that stated what her prognosis was, the long-term medical plan and a recovery plan. We decided it was within our budget to cover the costs as bed rest was the doctor’s order!
6: Be Descriptive.
Many people believe less is more, not with insurance. If you remember what happened or think you do write it down. Record it straight away and try your best to remember what was stolen. If you are asked for more information elaborate as much as you can. Any slightest detail can help…but it can be a double-edged sword. Again remember, they want you to go away they don’t want a successful travel insurance claim.
7: Don’t Get Angry.
While sometimes I really wanted to throttle the person on the other end of the phone it will really do you no good. Try with all your might to keep it together. We feel the pain of what happened to us, but these people have probably become accustomed to all sorts of calls. In no means be a walk over but try to be on your best phone behaviour.
8: Don’t Freak Out.
My mind had a field day with the what if’s. I had to seriously apologise to a friend when I got home as I just did not appreciate his emotions after he had a bag stolen. I was really upset at the time but after some thought (there’s that hindsight thing again) we were all ok. Yep, there are some photos we will not get back but all four of us came home and that is the most important thing. Even more important than a successful travel insurance claim
It is a travellers nightmare having to make a claim but you would be crazy to go anywhere without it. This includes places close to home. I have read so many reports of Australians going over to Asian countries that are close enough to us and not getting insurance, “we aren’t going for that long” and “What is the worst that can happen?” are the top things we are constantly hearing. No one likes to think about the what if but just as many would be less happy with a massive medical bill or being stranded in a foreign country without help. Our world is becoming a different place as the years come and go…that is by no means a reason not to travel but it is a reason to cover more of your bases. This year I have been asked by family members and parents about different insurance policies for different places people are travelling. My advice has been to shop around, and get the policy that will incorporate all the activities you will be doing but even considering travel insurance is the first and most important step.
We hope these tips for a successful travel insurance claim help you when you make a claim. Have you made a successful travel insurance claim? Was it easy or hard to settle?
Feel free to read about the experience we had with our claim here