Additional sum assured on health cover a worthwhile option

What all does domestic travel insurance cover?

What all does domestic travel insurance cover?
—Navneet Verma
Travel insurance covers unforeseen expenses, medical or otherwise, that one may incur during a trip. The policy covers hospitalisation expenses due to injury, accidents and medical evacuation. It also covers trip cancellations, interruptions, missed flight connections, delays, hijack distress allowance and personal liability. These days, insurers also offer home insurance benefit during the duration of the travel.

I am planning a family vacation in January end to Hong Kong and Singapore. Also, in February, I need to visit Singapore for some official business. Will a single overseas travel policy cover both trips?
—Ashish Mehta
Multi-trip travel insurance covers multiple trips over a given period. you can buy a multi-trip policy for yourself whereas your family can opt for single- trip travel insurance.

Can my family get travel insurance for a 10-day drive-cum-vacation to Nepal from Kolkata?
—Arup Sen
Any exigencies experienced by you during travel by your personal car will not be covered under an international policy since it covers travel by common carriers only. However, if you face medical or other emergencies following your arrival in Nepal, you can claim reimbursement. Your car is covered for damages only in India and you will need an extension if you want the cover to be applicable in Nepal.

If I do not make a claim against my health cover, I get bonus points. Can I negotiate with my insurer to reduce my premium next year, instead of the no-claim bonus?
—Vivek Kumar
Health insurers do offer additional sum assured these days at no extra cost,  which you can utilise in future policy years. However, as for the no-claim discount, you will have to check with your insurer. That said, it would be better to opt for a higher sum assured instead of the discount on premium, if it’s available. With rising medical inflation and high cost of treatment, an additional sum assured will provide you extra cover at no cost.

What are the deductibles in health insurance? How do they benefit?
—Sandeep Patel
A deductible is a cost-sharing mechanism wherein the insurer pays a claim only if the same crosses a certain threshold. The insurer pays the amount over and above the deductible to the extent of the sum assured. It is either mandatory or, in some cases, offered as a voluntary option. The benefit is, they come for a much lower premium compared to a regular health cover.

I have taken a personal accident cover for R5 lakh. Can I claim money for any kind of ailment? Is there an upper limit on the number of claims that can be done in a year?
—Avinash Kumar
A personal accident policy covers bodily damage arising out of an accident only. Such policies cover death, permanent total disablement (PTD), temporary total disablement (TTD), etc and the insured can claim only those benefits that he/she has opted for.
You can claim up to R5 lakh and there will be no limit on the number of times you can make a claim. Do note that this being a personal accident policy, in case of a claim where the entire policy sum assured gets paid (like death or permanent total disablement), the policy will cease to exist. However, if a part of the sum assured is paid during the year, the policy will continue to remain active and further claims allowed in the particular year.

By Neelesh Garg
The writer is executive director, ICICI Lombard General Insurance
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