Understanding Travel Insurance for Students
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Travel insurance is a type of insurance that covers unforeseen costs and losses incurred while traveling, either internationally or domestically. Student travel insurance covers anyone going abroad for educational purposes. Whether studying in your own country or abroad, as a student, you have to get student travel insurance to cover you for unexpected medical or travel-related expenses which can occur anywhere.
As an international student, you have to get student travel insurance before embarking on your journey to cover the unforeseen. Moreover, studying abroad is an exciting prospect. There will be new places to explore, opportunities to meet people from around the world. But there's always a little nervousness, what if something happens?
However, student travel insurance will be there if something happens, that is if you have one. In this article, we will provide information in detail on everything you need to know about student travel insurance, from what to cover, to how much it costs, how to get student travel insurance, and much other important information pertaining to student travel insurance.
Understanding Student Travel Insurance
Student travel insurance is a type of insurance product that provides coverage for anyone going abroad for educational purposes. It will cover you for the duration of your stay abroad. Leaving you with one less thing to worry about as you tackle foreign languages, new cultures, and time away from home.
However, student travel insurance covers unexpected and unforeseen events that could turn your trip away from home into a real drama. It should cover everything from the loss or theft of a bank card or ID to stolen or damaged possessions. Including medical or travel-related expenses.
Every year, thousands of international students abroad need emergency medical treatment and are usually unprepared for the high costs that come with it. Besides, student travel insurance also provides coverage for medical expenses.
Moreover, in many cases, student travel insurance is mandatory to apply for a visa or enroll at a university abroad. For instance, in the United States, student insurance is mandatory for all non-US citizen students studying in the country. Furthermore, bear in mind that student travel insurance is not the same as international student health insurance. We will be giving the difference later in this section.
Who Needs Student Travel Insurance
However, pursuing higher education abroad not only allows students to gain insight into concepts of the educational world. But to also experience the everyday unknown. Leaving many with the opportunity to live away from home, develop whatever path in life they want to take.
Moreover, while this can be exciting and a chance of a lifetime, it is important that students make plans, as there's more possibility of the unexpected occurring. Therefore, you need student travel insurance so you don't have to worry about the occurrence of such costs ruing your study abroad experience. For instance, when you suddenly get sick or get into an accident, your travel insurance plan will cover the costs of your medical bills.
Likewise, when your flight is delayed and you are stuck at the airport, it will cover food and accommodation until the next flight. Also, if your passport, luggage, or any other items are stolen, damaged, or lost during your trip, it will also reimburse you for their loss.
Benefits of Having Student Travel Insurance
Moreover, if you are studying abroad and living alone, there might be possibilities for things to go wrong and you would need support to tackle the situation.
However, international student travel insurance comes with certain features that differentiate it from other types of travel insurance. Here are some of the most common features of international student travel insurance:
- Worldwide Coverage: The insurance plan covers you regardless of the part of the world you choose to study in.
- Travel Assistance: If any travel-related loss occurs while you are studying abroad, your insurer will assist you during various difficulties as per the scope of the insurance policy.
- Medical Coverage: It also provides coverage for accidents and illness. In case you get sick or injured while studying abroad. The insurance policy will protect you from huge medical costs.
- Refund on Policy Cancellation: However, many universities have standard student travel insurance plans that students may just enroll into. However, in case the university abroad does not accept the student travel insurance policy that you had purchased in your home country. Then, you can easily get it canceled. Moreover, all insurance companies come with a student travel insurance policy cancellation option.
- Luggage Loss: Also, in case of theft or loss of luggage, your international student insurance plan will reimburse all or part of the stolen items.
- Auto-Renewal: Most insurance providers or companies come with an auto-renewal option that can be used to renew the student travel insurance policy once it expires.
- Study Interruption Coverage: Moreover, this might be the most important feature of student travel insurance plans. If you get hospitalized for a consecutive month or more due to injury or illness. Then, the insurance policy will reimburse the tuition fee that you have already paid for that period.
What Does it Cover?
However, a typical travel insurance plan for students includes the following coverages:
- Medical coverage: Covers for medical treatment in case of an illness or injury.
- Reimbursement of medical, surgical, pharmaceutical, and hospital expenses in case you need medical assistance while studying abroad.
- Companion Coverage: This means that your insurance policy will provide the cost of travel and the stay of your immediate family member to be with you in case you are hospitalized.
- Coverage for luggage and personal belongings: Provides reimbursement for all or up to a certain amount for the loss, damage, or destruction of personal luggage, including valuables, electronic gadgets, sports equipment, etc.
- Trip Cancellation/ Interruption Coverage: This type of coverage reimburses the student for any form of fees, non-refundable travel expenses, or lost deposits relating to cancellation or delay of the insured person's trip incurred due to certain unexpected circumstances. However, your insurance plan will also pay for food and accommodation during your waiting time, if that's necessary.
- Personal Liability Coverage: Liability refers to the state of being legally responsible for something. Therefore, if you cause personal injury or property damage to someone else, the insurance policy reimburses for the consequential losses, up to a certain amount.
How Much Does it Cover?
However, just like other policyholders, students have varying needs when they are transferring to a foreign place for studying purposes. That is to say, you can specifically design a plan for yourself as per your needs as well.
Moreover, you can choose how much coverage you want. There are different policy maximums. Which is the maximum amount of money the insurance company will pay for a claim. There are usually different amounts for different coverages, such as medical bills and loss of belongings. However, the exact amount that the insurer or insurance company pays for any occasion will be specified clearly in the policy details.
Eligibility for Student Travel Insurance
However, there are very few requirements for signing up or purchasing a student travel insurance plan. Here are some of the requirements one must meet in order to be able to purchase a student travel insurance plan:
- You are a student who will take a course at a university abroad
- Be in an internship with a company abroad (paid or unpaid)
- You must be part of a vocational training program abroad
- You are part of a working holiday program
- Be a volunteer abroad
Moreover, students are eligible to get a student insurance plan only if they are 16 years of age and above. Also, there's a cut-off age after which you will no longer qualify for student travel insurance. This is usually above 35 years of age. A particular person above 35 years is not eligible to purchase the insurance plan.
How to Get Student Travel Insurance
However, since you have made up your mind to purchase a student travel insurance plan. Then, the next step is to find which policy is best for you But before we move to that, let's take a look at how one can get the insurance. They are as follows:
- Directly from an insurance company
- Online - You can also get insurance plans online through international insurance companies offering student travel insurance. You will have to visit their website and complete other necessary information required for purchasing the insurance plan. You can check out AXA travel insurance.
- Through online travel insurance agents or brokers. Purchasing an insurance plan in this way will allow you to compare several plans from different companies before making your final choice.
Tips for Choosing the Best Insurance Plan
Moreover, here are a few tips that help you in deciding the insurance plan that is best for you:
- Firstly, do not buy the cheapest plan you find. Everyone wants an affordable insurance plan, but going for the cheapest isn't a good idea. A cheap student travel insurance plan will probably not provide you with all the coverage you need in times of emergency.
- Secondly, read the insurance policy carefully. Make sure that you know what exactly you have coverage for in the policy.
- Check if it meets the requirements of your school and the student visa requirements. Many foreign places in the world like the United States have special insurance needs that you are asked to fulfill in order to enter the country. Likewise many schools abroad. For instance, in the US, students with the F1 visa have to follow guidelines given to them by their school.
- Moreover, read the policy exclusions as well. Learn what you are not covered for in the policy.
- Find out how you can make an insurance claim
- Also, find out if the insurance company has a helpline you can reach out to for emergence assistance.
- Finally, take your time and do research on the company, read reviews from previous clients or customers.
In addition, the insurance coverage is valid within the time frame you selected before purchasing the plan. The coverage starts from the moment you depart your home country for your studies abroad. Moreover, bear in mind when purchasing the insurance policy that the longer the time frame for your coverage, the more costly the policy will be.
Furthermore, you should get your travel insurance within 15 days from the time you will schedule or pay for your trip abroad. Otherwise, you may not be able to get full coverage for certain unforeseen events such as trip cancellation or delay if you purchase the insurance plan at the last minute.
In conclusion, travel insurance is only mandatory as part of the visa process. That is to say, if you apply for a student visa, most embassies will request proof that you have obtained adequate travel insurance for at least the beginning period of your stay in the foreign country.