Trying to compare travel insurance and weighing their respective benefits can be an onerous task and should not always be purely on that basis of the biggest discount offered.
Basic plan features to look for include coverage for lost or stolen luggage, missed flights and delays, loss or damage of baggage and other personal items, trip cancellation, and medical treatment and evacuation in the event of an accident. You also need to think about whether or not you need specialised coverage, such as policies that include extreme sports or that provide coverage in the event of terrorism. While you hope you won’t need it, you want to make sure your policy has the coverage you need when the unexpected happens.
Wise Traveller’s (WT) annual subscriptions include annual travel insurance, an exclusive benefit to Wise Traveller subscribers, and is one of the most competitive price points considering the additional benefits also included, starting as at S$188 per year for an individual program. The only travel insurance provider offering a lower annual price for less benefit is FWD at S$171, and this is with a huge discount. While some competitors such as FWD only provide coverage for individuals starting at age 21, Wise Traveller provides coverage for all individuals up to the age of 70. WT benefits also also provide the industry standard of cancellation coverage up to 30 days prior to departure. Your included annual cover also allows an unlimited number of trips of up to 90 days each trip and offers worldwide coverage, including in the United States under Wise Traveller Secure.
One of the first things that travellers should look at are the limits for overseas medical expenses. Wise Traveller included insurance provides medical expense coverage is a minimum of S$310,000, compared to S$200,000 for FWD and SG$150,000 for the Hong Leong Group. Other competitors such as Allianz offer higher coverage limits, but the annual prices can be more than twice the annual subscription at SG$432 per year.
In addition, Wise Traveller offers unlimited coverage for emergency medical evacuation and repatriation, as well as access to 24-hour worldwide travel assistance and worldwide medical emergency hotlines. FWD, Hong Leong, and Allianz offer similar benefits, while Direct Asia and Etiqa evacuation and repatriation expenses are capped at SG$1.5 million.
When your trip doesn’t go as smoothly as planned, Wise Traveller benefits include up to SG$5,000 coverage for lost or damaged bags, compared to the SG$3,000 limit offered by travel insurers such as Hong Leong, FWD, and Direct Asia and SG$2,000 by Etiqa with strict limits per item.
If your baggage is delayed, World Traveller benefits offers more than many similarly priced travel insurers. WT will provide SG$200 per six hours, up to a maximum of SG$1,000. FWD also offers SG$200 per six hours, but does not offer additional compensation for longer delays. Etiqa offers Sg$100 per six hour delay, maxing out at small SG$200.
If for some reason you have to cancel your trip, Wise Traveller will reimburse up to SG$10,500 in costs, compared to FWD with a limit of SG$7,500. Etiqa and Hong Leong both offer cancellation coverage up to SG$5,000.
If you’re interested in extreme sports, World Traveller’s annual policy provides coverage for scuba diving, bungee jumping, and hiking. With Wise Traveller Premium including skiing, skydiving and trekking. Some competitors like Direct Asia offer coverage of several extreme sports as an optional benefit.
Wise Traveller is also more than just a travel insurance option, as membership also includes the benefits of travel planning and access to discounts at over 150,000 hotels worldwide, a well as access to car rental and airline discounts. In addition to including medical and trip insurance, WT helps you make sure your travels go smoothly from the start by connecting you with the right travel providers for transportation and accommodation. Whereas many travel insurers don’t provide car rental excess coverage at all or offer it as an optional benefit, WT subscriptions also cover up to SG$1,350 in car rental excess.
Disclaimer: Any comments or opinions provided in this article are informal commentary only and cannot be considered as specific advice to be acted upon. All information was correct at the time of publishing and may change without notice. The author, The Wise Traveller and any associated partners or third parties accept no liability for the manner in which this article is considered, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided within this article. Wise Traveller includes annual travel insurance as a complimentary benefit, with other benefits, of annual membership, The Wise Traveller travel insurance benefit is not provided for sale.