Insurance

Thailand Expected to Require Travel Insurance

If you’re planning a trip to Thailand, an increasingly popular tourist destination for Canadians, be aware that the Thai government is considering making proof of travel insurance mandatory for foreign visitors. The reason: state hospitals are losing at least $88 million USD a year treating visitors. Data from the Conference Board of Canada indicates that 244,000 Canadians visited Thailand in 2016, 7.3 percent more than the year previous. Current figures show that numbers are growing at a rate of 5 percent. According to published reports, officials at the Thai Ministry of Tourism and Sports consider travel insurance an urgent necessity and are working to get legislation enacted as quickly as possible. Officials at the ministry have stated that as soon as the rule is put into effect, all visitors will be required to show proof of travel health insurance along with their other entry documentation upon arrival in the country.…

Insurance and Consumer Resources: Why Ingle Believes in the Power of Content

The Travel Health Insurance Association of Canada has released a “Bill of Rights” for consumers of travel insurance. This document essentially outlines the basics of what consumers can expect from travel insurers, as well as their own responsibilities when they apply for coverage. This is the kind of clear content we believe consumers of travel insurance need to have. And that’s why we’ve been dedicated to producing such content from the very beginning. Here at Ingle, we strongly believe in the importance of consumer education—and that starts with providing clear, accessible information. We strive to be open and authentic, to empower consumers to ask questions about the insurance products they buy. We want consumers to understand their coverage, to know their own responsibilities when it comes to purchasing insurance, and to know what they have a right to expect back from their insurer. That’s why Ingle has a dedicated content…

Visitors to Thailand Could Soon Require Proof of Travel Insurance

Thailand’s Tourism and Sports Ministry has put forth a proposal that would require all visitors to present proof of travel insurance coverage upon entering the country. With tourism on the rise in Thailand, the ministry says these measures will protect hospitals from being on the hook for the cost of medical care provided to travellers with no way to pay. Thailand would not be the first country to enact rules like this. A number of European countries already require proof of adequate travel insurance coverage before you enter their borders. And it’s not only the country’s hospitals that would be protected under this plan. For travellers headed abroad, travel insurance coverage is vitally important, as the cost of medical care outside one’s home country can be frighteningly expensive. And should you require transportation back home for continuing medical care, an air evacuation can cost tens of thousands of dollars—which is…

Need Travel Insurance? Report Your Pre-existing Conditions

Are you hesitant about applying for travel insurance because you have a pre-existing medical condition? Don’t be. If insurers turned away all applicants who have some medical imperfection or take certain medications, or who are required to visit their physicians periodically, they would go out of business. Travel insurers understand that very few people are in perfect health, many take medications for common ailments, and as people age they are expected to become more proactive in maintaining their good health. As a result, most individual travel policies today will cover many with pre-existing conditions, so long as the conditions are reported and insurers have a clear understanding of the conditions in question, and how they are being treated and maintained. But you must reveal them when applying. Most policies will, in fact, allow coverage of certain pre-existing conditions if they have been stable and controlled over certain periods of time…

Travel Insurers Issue a Consumers’ Bill of Rights

Recently we reported on provincial and federal regulators’ recommendations to reform the travel insurance marketplace and make it more user-friendly—more transparent, less complicated, easier for customers to apply and be sure they are getting the coverage they need. Fortunately, the Travel Health Insurance Association of Canada (THIA) has over the past two years been developing a consumer Bill of Rights designed to empower purchasers in their dealings with sellers of insurance and—just as important—with administrators and claims managers who service their products right through their full life cycle. The intention of the Bill of Rights is to give you a voice, leverage, a clear declaration of what you have a right to expect from the insurers you choose to deal with—as well as what your own obligations are in making the coverage contract work for you. Here is a full reproduction of the Bill of Rights which THIA has just rolled…

Travel Insurance & Food Allergies: Make Sure You’re Protected During Your Travels

When my baby boy was first diagnosed with a number of severe food allergies, I was devastated. All I could think about was all the delicious food he—and we—would miss out on. Peanut butter, once a staple in our home, was now banned. Much-loved bakeries were now off limits. If my husband and I wanted Asian takeout, we’d do so guiltily, after the baby was in bed, and then disinfect our table, countertops and anything else our food may have come into contact with. As time passed, I realized that his food allergies would make it challenging, if not impossible, to take part in other much-loved experiences, like travel. Not only would we need to contend with eye rolls and exasperated sighs on airplanes (not to mention seating areas covered in crumbs that could kill from previous passengers), we’d need to research where it is safe to eat out, and…

Buying Travel Insurance Online? No Time for Haste

Misunderstanding or minimizing the content of travel insurance policies is one of the most frequent causes of claim denials—more so since online applications are gradually eliminating the advisory role of trained sales agents. Quick and easy online applications that can be completed in 5-10 minutes may fit conveniently into our busy schedules, but if they encourage carelessness or lack of attention, they can invite catastrophic consequences. Let’s look at the case reported recently in the British newspaper The Telegraph—of an English family that took a leisure trip to Berlin and on the way home found that their return flight had been cancelled for the day. Because the husband and son had urgent reasons to return to London, they took alternate and circuitous flights to get home as quickly as possible, encountering several hundred GBP in additional airfares. Bought in haste? That’s trouble The husband told the newspaper reporter that…

What Does the Term Pre-existing Condition Really Mean?

With American politicians struggling aggressively to reform their health care system, we have been hearing much about covering the “uninsured” and those with “pre-existing conditions”—concepts which to Canadians may seem alien. In Canada, virtually all residents are covered from birth so there are no uninsured—with a few rare exceptions, but those numbers are minute. And since all medically-necessary services are covered by provincial health plans, “pre-existing condition” seems an abstract term. But when Canadians travel out of the country, the term takes on life and meaning, as it is a crucial element in the validity of supplemental private travel insurance. Actually, most private American health insurance plans include coverage for “out of area” services, and those cover pre-existing conditions. So the pre-existing conditions issue in the US is primarily focused on those who have no health insurance because they are unemployed or work for small businesses that don’t provide it…

Add Proof of Insurance to Your Travel Checklist

Your travel plans are set and you’ve purchased your insurance. You may feel like everything is in place. But there’s one vital detail that some travellers can forget: you need to physically have that insurance information. Copied. And in multiple locations. Yes, that’s right. When you buy insurance for a trip, it’s imperative that you carry your policy information with you—and, equally importantly, that you make a backup copy to leave at home. Why should I bring my insurance information along? If you require medical care abroad, you’ll want access to your travel insurance details right away. Bringing along documentation that includes your insurance provider and policy number will mean there’s no delay in getting your medical bills sorted, should such a situation arise. In fact, in some cases, doctors abroad may not even be willing to treat you until they know you’re insured. What’s more, some countries are…

Take That Cruise, and Insure Your Health

This year, more than 25 million people, including more than 750, 000 Canadians, will board cruise ships in ports around the world for what has become the fastest growing vacation option available to leisure travelers. According to Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), which represents 95 percent of the world’s cruise companies, 13 new ocean liners and 13 river cruise vessels, accounting for over 30,000 additional passengers will be added to the world’s fleet in 2017 alone. And between now and 2026, 97 new ships (80 ocean liners and 17 river cruisers) with a total capacity of almost 231,000 will be added to this travel market sector. For Canadians, who have easy access to the world’s busiest cruise ports (such as: Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Los Angeles, Galveston, New Orleans, and Vancouver) there is a huge range of cruise options available, and thanks to online cruise booking services you can easily sign…

Buy Early and Stay Tuned

With more Canadians travelling for longer periods and to varied destinations (according to the Conference Board of Canada, 40 percent of Canadian outbound trips are to non-US locations) there is a greater need for travel planning well ahead of departure time. This includes travel insurance requirements to cover unexpected medical emergencies or other losses. Travel Insurance is a Two-Way Contract These arrangements should not be left to the last minute. And though buying travel insurance is easier than ever—over the phone, online, by iPad or smart phone—there is no substitute for talking directly to an agent who specializes in travel insurance, who can point out not only the benefits of any given plan, but the limitations, exclusions, and responsibilities the purchaser has in fulfilling what is a two- way contract. There are many purchasers of travel insurance who, after they complete their application and get the policy, put their…

Product Spotlight: HCC Student Secure

Ingle International has a special place in its heart for international students. Foreign exchange programs are the foundation that the Ingle name is built on! That is why our 19th travel insurance spotlight is shining on the HCC Student Secure plan. The HCC Student Secure plan covers international students and scholars worldwide, regardless of your home country or destination. As a plan purchaser, you can expect coverage for physician and hospital visits, up to 80% coverage for prescriptions, and $50 towards paramedical visits such as a chiropractor and physiotherapist. Key features include: Daily rates as low as $1.45 Ambulance by ground or air from $300, up to $50, 000 Up to 80% coverage for mental health disorders Coverage for acute onset of pre-existing conditions (speak with your student insurance representative or check policy documents for an understanding on waiting periods and limitations) Browse more features Are you or your…