Student travel insurance covers travel as well as academics-related risks
Students going abroad for higher studies know many challenges await them as they suddenly become responsible for their own well-being without much external support. As a student preparing to go abroad, buying student travel insurance should be at the top of your to-do list. Not only is it prudent to buy good insurance cover, in most countries which are popular study destinations, it is also mandatory to have insurance cover. So, as you comtemplate what kind of insurance to buy, here are some ways to compare the various features in am insurance policy and zero in on a good insurance plan for yourself.
What is student travel insurance?
This insurance product is designed exclusively keeping in mind the risks associated with students who choose to travel abroad for academic purposes. This product covers health and travel related risks while the student is in a foreign country. It also provides additional cover for the student’s family in case of certain unavoidable situations involving the insured.
How is it different from travel insurance?
Travel insurance is generally for a shorter stipulated amount of time whereas student travel insurance will be spread across months or years together. While travel insurance solely covers travel related risks, student travel insurance covers travel as well as academic related risks like paying tuition fees in case of the discontinuation of schooling due to unavoidable circumstances, paying for stay of one family member when the policyholder requires hospitalisation for more than a week, payments for medical and dental treatments, etc. Having a student travel insurance cover makes you eligible for reimbursement in case of any unfortunate scenario.
Studying abroad is expensive, but what is even more expensive than that is medical treatment, which is a certainty when you are in an unfamiliar area for a prolonged time. Having an insurance cover that helps as an active backup plan is always a good idea.
How to select an insurance plan?
Most universities abroad have their own set of regulations and guidelines regarding insurance. Make sure that you pick an insurance plan in coherence with those suggested guidelines. Also look at getting insured from a company that offers you a product which is designed to suit all your needs.
Any good insurance plan should ideally cover medical expenses, evacuation and repatriation, personal accident, tuition fee, loss of checked baggage, bail bond insurance, family visit, etc. There are also optional coverages such as pre-existing illness, mental illness and alcohol-related disorder, maternity and baby cover, cancer screening and mammography, etc. These are the most sought-after covers by the overseas universities, ensuring full protection for students studying abroad. These options provide students flexibility to make their own plan by choosing the relevant covers and thus making it a university compliant plan.
How are claims settled?
The procedure followed for settling claims under student travel policies is quite hassle free, subject to prompt intimation of claim. Claims can be considered for settlement directly to the hospital (cashless settlement), in case expenses are over $500 and subject to all other policy terms. Insured may also submit all claim documents to the insurer after settlement of the bills to the hospital either during his stay abroad or on his return to India.
The writer is chief technical officer, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance