Are you one of those who has a trip coming up in 2 days, and are now frantically searching online for an appropriate travel insurance to buy? Travel insurance is one of those things many of us neglect, either by not getting one and regretting when the unfortunate happens, or scrambling to buy the first one in sight because we’ve got no time to research.

If you’ve bought travel insurance previously, you might have noticed that prices can differ by 20 to 30 percent between policies offered by various insurers, and coverage can be vastly different as well. So if you are looking for tips on how to get the most comprehensive travel insurance that is the competitively priced, here are some tips for you.

Get Free Travel Insurance With Your Credit Cards

One of the best ways to enjoy free insurance is to make use of your credit cards. Some of the credit cards designed for travel rewards come with complimentary travel insurance. For most of them, you need to charge the payment of your air ticket to the credit card in order to be eligible for the free travel insurance coverage.

This also means that you get to accumulate your air miles while getting free insurance coverage. We have created a list of the best credit cards with complimentary travel insurance, which include AMEX Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer credit card, the Citi PremierMiles Visa Card, OCBC 365 Card, DBS Altitude Visa Signature Card as well as Maybank credit cards.

However, do note that each card issuer provides varying amounts of travel insurance coverage, and some, such as the Maybank credit cards, actually provide complimentary coverage for spouse and dependent children as well. So do remember to check whether these are sufficient for you; if not, it’s always best to take up your own travel insurance.

Picking An Annual Plan May Be Cheaper

Do you travel at least 5 to 6 times a year? If you do, it may make more sense to subscribe to an annual travel insurance plan instead of buying individual plans each time you travel. According to our research, the average price of a basic global travel insurance plan comes up to about S$53, and an annual plan costs around $280. This means that buying an annual plan would be worthwhile if you make about 6 or more trips a year.

Another factor to consider may be whether you want to take up a family plan. Family plans can offer more value for money if you are travelling together as compared to buying individual plans for each person on the trip.

A Basic Plan May Be Enough

Depending on your needs, the length of travel land the region of travel, you may want to take up a basic plan which is cheaper instead of a comprehensive one. Let us take a look at some common claims people may when it comes to travel insurance:

  • Before the trip – trip cancellation, financial default of travel agency
  • During the trip – trip interruption due to strike, loss and delay of luggage, medical expenses, personal accident

When deciding whether you should choose a basic or premium plan, the key difference usually lies in the amount of coverage the policy provides. If you are going for a relatively short trip with a light luggage, a basic plan may suffice since a slight mishap will likely see you coming back home within a short period of time.

On the other hand, if you are travelling to a high-risk country that is known for having natural disasters during certain times of the year, paying a little more for a more comprehensive coverage can allow you to travel in peace.

Research and Compare

To ensure you get the most competitively-priced travel insurance, always remember to leave time for research. While you may find that going to each individual insurer’s website and taking notes of their coverage will cost you an insane amount of time, you can make use of great travel insurance comparison reviews like ours to help you make a decision.

Making comparison is the easiest way to ensure you get the most bang for your buck, but remember that it is not just about choosing the lowest price. Some factors you should compare includes the duration of your trip, your trip destination, the price range, the travel inconvenience benefits provided, as well as additional coverage such as emergency services, 24-hour help-desk and extreme sports coverage.

Written by Lynette Tan

This article originally appeared on ValuePenguin

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ValuePenguin is personal finance company based in New York. DJ is responsible for building ValuePenguin’s presence in Asia, from researching personal finance topics in the region to building relationships with financial and media institutions. He previously worked as an investment analyst at leading hedge funds in New York including Cadian Capital and Tiger Asia. His expertise is in the global technology, consumer and financial industries. He graduated from Yale University with a degree in Economics, and speaks Korean, English and Mandarin Chinese.

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