Studying abroad can be just as intimidating as exciting. The experience is a life lesson in many ways. Adjusting to a new country, maintaining a tight budget, dealing with medical issues, handling unexpected events, and more. It is very easy for a situation to spiral out of your control if you are caught off-guard. But, not with international student travel insurance.
What is International Student Travel Insurance?
International student travel insurance is typically an insurance plan for students heading abroad for higher studies. It is different from usual travel insurance in two ways. One, you must be enrolled in a course in an institute or university abroad. Two, it is valid for a longer time compared to general travel insurance plans.
These are comprehensive travel insurance plans and cover much more than obvious medical emergencies. For example, ICICI Lombard’s Overseas Student Travel Insurance—Gold Plus plan compensates for the treatment of mental and nervous conditions as well.
Today, let us look at the inclusions and exclusions of an international student travel insurance policy.
Inclusions of International Travel Insurance
Health cover: It will cover the cost of any medical emergency arising out of a sudden illness. This includes both outpatient treatment and hospitalisation.
Accident coverage: You will be covered if you meet with an accident and need medical attention. The criticality of your treatment or duration will not affect the coverage.
Death/Disablement benefits: In case of the disablement or death of the policyholder, the family will be compensated for the loss. The policy will also cover the cost of repatriation of the mortal remains to the home country.
Compassionate visit: If you are hospitalised for more than 7 days,then student travel insurance will pay for the visit by an immediate family member.
Loss of checked-in baggage: Student travel insurance covers the cost of loss of baggage by a common carrier.
Loss of passport: If you lose your passport in a foreign country, your student travel insurance plan will help you in getting a duplicate passport.
Third-party liability: If you get involved in an accident, your travel insurance planwill pay for the loss of property, death, or injury to the third party.
Bail bond: If you get arrested or detained for a bailable offence, your student travel insurance provider will pay the bail amount.
Interruption of study: Interruption of studies due toa medical condition, death in the family, or the passing away of the sponsor is covered.
Protection of sponsor: In the event of the death of your study sponsor, your student travel plan will cover the cost of your studies.
Exclusions of Student Travel Insurance
Pre-existing ailments: Long-term lifestyle ailments and pre-existing medical conditions are not covered by international student travel insurance.
Self-inflicted injuries: Any treatment costs arising out of a suicide attempt or self-inflicted injuries are not covered.
Mental disorders: Mental health issues and related treatments are not covered by most general student travel insurance plans.
Sexually transmitted diseases: If you are diagnosed with a sexually transmitted disease such as HIV-AIDS, you will have to bear the cost of the treatment on your own.
Cosmetic surgeries: Student travel insurance does not cover the cost of cosmetic or plastic surgery done for body modification, except as a consequence of an accident.
Consumption of intoxicants: Student travel insurance will not cover any claim for treatment for conditions due to the use of intoxicants such as alcohol and drugs.
Loss due to negligence: If you lose your passport because of your negligence, then your insurer will not cover the costs of issuing a duplicate passport.
Loss of certain items: If only certain items are missing or lost from your checked-in baggage, then the costs of purchasing them will not be covered.
Breaching law: If you break any law of the country where you are studying then your student travel insurance will not provide any assistance to you.
War or political unrest: The policy does not cover any loss due to war, nuclear attack, or political unrest in the host country.
Things to Note While Purchasing Student Travel Insurance
Meets university criteria: Before you buy comprehensive travel insurance for studying abroad, check the features and particulars of the insurance policy. Make sure the policy outline matches the insurance criteria or guidelines set by the host university. Buy student travel insurance that is equivalent to the one prescribed by your university. Otherwise, your insurance plan can get refused or you may have to sign up for a plan offered by the university, which is usually added to the tuition fee.
Cost-effective: Going abroad for higher studies is a costly affair in itself. In countries such as the US, which welcomes scores of Indian students every year, the cost of living is exorbitantly high. Any critical illness can easily swipe off your and your family’s hard-earned savings. Student travel insurance plans are in place for the very purpose of rescuing you from unanticipated high expenses. Nowadays, the costs of insurance are also competitive so that it provides maximum coverage at a fair and manageable premium.
Wide coverage: As mentioned above, the cost of treating mental and nervous disorders is not included in general student travel insurance. Furthermore, the cost of dental treatment, which is usually extremely high abroad, is also not covered by most plans. Research well and try zeroing on a comprehensive travel insurance plan for students that promises wide coverage. For example, ICICI Lombard’s Overseas Individual Student Travel Insurance covers the cost of dental treatment, mental and nervous disorders, pregnancy-related hospitalisation, sports injuries, and more. These aspects are usually not covered by student travel insurance.