Do you know that most travel insurance plans do not cover pre-existing medical conditions?
This was shared virally in Singapore recently of some Singaporeans who were on holiday overseas and had to wait for 36 hours just for an indemnity form before they can start to queue up for an emergency aircraft medical evacuation. Their insurer refuses to evacuate him until they confirm that it is not pre-existing conditions. They made the family wait and sign indemnity forms before agreeing to evacuate him back to Singapore. Paperwork > life.
Your annual or single travel insurance may not cover pre-existing medical conditions
This is not new. Most travel insurers do not cover pre-existing medical and health conditions for single and annual travel insurance plans.
For example, if you have pre-existing heart problems, and while you are overseas enjoying your holiday and suffer a heart attack, your travel insurance may not cover your medical expenses and medical evacuation and repatriation
Not every travel insurance is the same. Most travel insurance coverage DO NOT cover pre-existing medical conditions for all travel claims. Do check with your insurance adviser or insurance brokers (brokers have more than 1 insurers to offer to their clients) for travel plans that provide coverage even for pre-existing conditions.
Which insurers cover pre-existing medical conditions for travel plans?
Check with your advisors or brokers. Here are some insurers that we have asked and found that provides extensive coverage for pre-existing medical conditions for travel insurance.
Liberty Travel Insurance
MSIG travel insurance covers preexisting for only medical expenses for hospitalisation in overseas – limits on emergency evacuation due to pre-existing conditions.
NTUC – limits on emergency evacuation due to pre-existing conditions.
In case of emergency health problems, insurance helps.
In the event of unfortunate events such that medical attention and evacuation is needed, you do not want it to be delayed just because the insurer needs to check whether the event (stroke/heart attack/coma, etc…) is a pre-existing condition not covered by the travel insurance.
UPDATE: HM Consultancy will gladly help anyone to make your travel insurance claims FOR FREE, even if you are not our clients. We have been in this industry for more than a decade and we believe in giving back to our society without any expectations. Do let us help you with any claims issues.
We are still updating this page frequently when we have frequently asked questions to our whatsapps and emails 🙂
How long does it take for a travel insurance claim?
Travel insurance claims typically takes 5 to 24 days to be settled once you submitted the required documents (such as doctor’s receipts) and claim forms.
Simple claims such as medical reimbursement only takes a few days for the insurers to accept and prepare for either sending a cheque or direct deposit to your banking account.
More complicated claims such as lost baggages or disruption to travel plans due to personal emergencies may take a few weeks to assess and require questionings and additioanl forms.
Do not be alarmed if your travel insurance takes more than a month. In many cases, they need to verify the incident with the airlines, hotel or check on the news for verification. It is not uncommon for insurance companies to take 2 months or more for complicated cases, however their service agent should make the effort to update you on the long processing required.
What is a covered reason for trip cancellation?
There are various reasons insurers cover for trip cancellations, such as injury or illness of insured, travel companion, family member, or business partner.
Cancellation due to safety precautions for natural disasters on destinations such as earthquakes, typoon, hurricane etc. Most insurers also covered man-made disasters such as terorrism, airport, or airline strikes etc.
Does travel insurance cover failed or bankrupt travel agencies, airlines or hotels?
Yes. If your travel agencies or airlines faced bankruptcy or financial ruins, insurers may also pay out for such trip cancellation once you are unable to file claims with the agencies or airlines.
Do note that insurers should be the LAST RESORT, ie, travel insurance will only pay out if the travel agencies, airlines, or hotels are NO LONGER ABLE to compensate you for the failed booking.
Why should I buy travel insurance in advance or annual plans?
Buying a plan in advance of the date is of the same price if you buy just before you fly off. However you get EXTRA benefits just by buying earlier. The insurance company will now insure you in the case of bankrupt travel agencies or airlines that would not be able to refund you.
If you had wait till the last day to buy travel insurance, you would not have this extra perk of covering you from the day you bought airline tickets or travel agency package.
Similarly, buying an annual plans cover you for all these extra perks too at no extra costs.
What is covered by travel insurance?
Most insurers offer 2 or 3 types of travel insurance package. The most basic (also the most affordable) usually offer the most simple and basic type of coverage.
Medical fees reimbursement, emergency evacation due to medical conditions, or repatriation of remains etc are all widely covered in all types of travel insurance. You are most likely also covered by luggage losses, travel delays etc.
For premium travel insurance, the sum assured would be many times more than the basic. It will also include many add-on premium insurance, such as coverage of your house valuables from burglary, theft and even pet emergency at your home while you are traveling overseas.
Do check the insurer terms and conditions for more details.
How do I appeal a travel insurance claim?
If you face rejection, do take note of the rejection calmly and see if you have other sufficient documents to appeal. Do not take it personally as travel insurers are large corporate businesses that face large amounts of paper claims daily. They need to assess and pay out only when they are confident it is genuine.
Read the rejection carefully (you can even email us for help), find the reason why and seek to get the properly needed documentation needed. It may be an endorsement letter required from the airline, the hotel, or a travel agency that confirms the incident that occurred. Or a police report is needed etc.
In most rejection, it is usually the lack of documentation that proves the incident.
How long does an insurance claim take to payout?
It may take 5 to 24 days to process a claim but it is not unheard of for travel insurance companies to takes 2 months or more to process complicated travel claims.
Once the claim is processed and accepted, it may take 7 more working days for them to file a cheque for you to bank in. Some insurers will also directly bank in the money in your banking account (if your travel insurance claims form has a portion for you to fill in your name and banking account details)
Most companies do accept emails and scanned copies, but for cases with higher payouts, they may ask for the original documents for verification
What are the common travel claims?
Some of the common travel insurance claims in Singapore over the years are:-
Delay in flight coming home
Loss of luggage.
Sickness and medical treatment while overseas
Sickness and medical treatment within 7 days after returning home from trip
Theft or pickpocket of valuables while overseas.
The collapse of travel agency/airline without refunds
Emergency changes to rush home due to unforeseen personal events
Emergency evacuation due to a natural disaster (New Zealand volcano eruption, for example)
Do travel insurance check medical records?
Yes only after there are medical claims for travel insurance. Most travel insurance companies highlighted that pre-existing conditions are not covered while the person is traveling with travel insurance. They will NOT check nor ask for documents when you purchase the policy.
Once a claim is filed, however, they may ask for medical records and to see what they can help to provide in claims.
There are more and more travel insurance that covers pre-existing conditions. In those cases, they will check medical records in the event of claims. This is to ensure that they have proper records and data for their claim records.
What items travel insurance does not cover?
Travel insurance does not cover a lot of items. It is far easier to check what is covered under travel insurance’s schedule of coverage.
In a simple summary, do note that travel insurance does not cover large scale events such as man-made war, natural disasters, etc.
This is normal as such a big scale event would have caused many companies to collapse in financial ruins.
However, for humanitarian reasons, insurance companies do try to payout when they can, reasonably. For example, the man-made disasters of 9-11 world trade center collapse was declared by President Bush of America as a declaration of war. Both war events and terrorism events are not covered by insurance companies.
For this situation, as the number of affected are not as large scale as feared, almost all the insurance providers payout successful to all the families of the victims.
In any travel disruption caused by natural disasters and/or war or terrorism, insurers may have the terms and conditions not to pay, but it is in their interest to help the policyholders like you.
Travel insurance covers cancelled or delayed flights
Is there a difference in claims quality for the same claims between different companies and pricing?
Paying more for a premium brand means you get better quality and better peace of mind.
A few years ago, a political strike in the airport at Phuket means Singapore tourists are stuck there and unable to fly home normally on their airlines.
Tourists who bought Company A Travel insurance are contacted by Company A representative, bused to Bangkok and flew home at the insurer’s expense.
Tourists who bought Company N travel insurance are bused home from Phuket all the way south to Singapore, a much longer and tiring journey.
In both cases, the travel insurers did the right thing to bring them home. Just that travel insurer A paid more money to let its customers enjoy more.
What credit cards have travel insurance?
Most premium credit cards would have basic cover, especially those offering miles for spending. Most credit cards would have at least coverage for all the debt and spending incurred on the card for the user if the user met with an accident during travel.
What documents should I try to keep for travel insurance claims?
If you have medical treatment, do keep receipts and doctors’ notes (if any). It would be preferable to pay with a credit card so you have an SGD exchange rate noted in the credit card transaction too.
If you encountered crimes, do make police reports at the country where it happened so you can have the documents for claims.
In the event of any flight delays, do ask the airline for official notes and documentation for your claims.
Any problems from car rental vehicles, do have an official note and/or invoice if you have to pay for any damage caused.
UPDATE: HM Consultancy will gladly help YOU to make your claims for FREE, even if you are not our clients. Just contact us directly via email or WhatsApp.
We have been in this general insurance industry for more than a decade and we believe in giving back to our society without any expectations. Do let us help you with any claims issues (For General Insurance). We believe good deeds and kindness makes the world a better place. Contact us for general insurance inquires in Singapore
Scroll all the way down if you need any Singapore’s insurance claim department’s office numbers or email address or website.
We are updating the list to help Singaporeans with financial coverage. This should be the page for all general insurance, business insurance, fire insurance, home insurance, maid insurance, car motor insurance claims all-in-one page you should share with everyone!
If you just heard of us, the founder of HM Consultancy has been in the motor industry for more than a decade and has a great team to push for better backend work for motor insurance processing, lower premiums for motorists and businesses.
We specialize in business insurance and motor insurance, do let us know if you need any help!
Insurance company contact and websites for Claims in Singapore
Scroll all the way down for a list of insurance company contact number for claims. The website is also listed for you to visit directly to get claims forms, documents needed, and more information on how to file for claims.
The same claims may have slightly different document requirements from different insurance companies.
General Insurance claims FAQ questions and guide
General insurance such as home, maid, personal accident, motor car, business, group health, and other personal insurance- inevitably you will face a claim. We provide some simple FAQ questions and answers in this article to see if you can get a quick answer for simple insurance claim questions.
What are the common general insurance claims in Singapore?
Motor car insurance
Home fire insurance
Maid injury or sickness claims
Business staff accidental plans and WIC (work injury compensation insurance)
Will I be able to claim if the other party refuses to cooperate? Especially for motor car insurance when the other driver refuses to report.
You should still report to your insurance and provide as many details as possible. This can be common in motor insurance claims as the other party refuse to report to their insurance and delays occur. However, if they do not report and defend themselves, the insurers will still take action with the details provided by the only party (you) and it will be one-sided.
The claims amount will still be successful, just that it may take longer than usual.
No for some policies that are sold as a package. Premium will not go up for Home insurance, Maid Insurance, Personal Accident, and most simple business package insurance. In extreme examples, they may refuse to renew your policy if they are uncomfortable with too many claims.
Yes for general insurance tied to your car, business or activities. The insurance premiums for car insurance, business etc will generally go up. However, it will not go up as much as the amount of the claim. It will only go up as a means of reminding the business or policyholders to be more cautious
Do insurance rates go up after a comprehensive claim?
Yes, insurance rates do go up after a comprehensive claim. The good news is you can shop around for other insurers for better and cheaper quotes.
How much does insurance go up if you make a claim?
For business insurance, it can go up from 5% to 50% based on existing quotes.
For car insurance, 5% to 100% for premiums and complete loss of all your NCD (No claims Discount).
For car insurance, Singapore insurers tend to increase premiums by 5% to 20% for minor claims. There are some motorists who have premium increased by 50% and more due to major accident claims.
This is an increase on top of the removal of any NCD (No Claim Discounts) that you may have. (means if you have 50% NCD, you pay at least double more of your current insurance premiums after making a claim on a car accident.)
If you met with 2 accidents in a single year, your current insurance company in Singapore will reject to renew your policy. You have no choice but to seek another cover and pay a much higher premium.
Fortunately, you can always turn to another insurer for better quotes. However, as you have to declare meeting with an accident within the past few years, other insurers will likely charge higher rates too. Do more shopping with big insurance brokers and agents and they may seek better rates from the numerous insurance partners they have.
How do insurance claims work? What is the claim process?
You send in your forms, along with all necessary documents, including any reports, receipts, etc.
The insurance company acknowledges your forms and takes a few weeks to assess.
They may contact you if they need more information on your claims.
If no issue, they will reimburse the expenses you have paid by mailing you a cheque or depositing the amount to your bank account.
General Insurance for the whole family
How long can you make a claim after an accident?
After an accident, you should report this to your insurer as soon as reasonable possible for claims. If there are injuries, you need to report to traffic police.
Reporting fast avoids any delays or the other party reporting on you with his own story without you knowing.
How are insurance claims calculated?
An assessor in the insurance company will check on all your claims and ensure it fulfills their terms and conditions in your policy. Once he verifies the proof and document, he will check the maximum amount payable to you.
How do insurance companies pay out claims?
They usually pay out claims in a few weeks or a few months after you submitted all your forms, necessary documents, reports, proof, and receipts, etc. They will pay the amount payable to your claims, based on policy terms and conditions by sending you a cheque or depositing the amount directly in your bank account.
Can I withdraw an insurance claim?
Yes, you can. Do note that you should withdraw only if you have valid reasons. Do not fear unnecessary consequences if your claims are valid and reasonable.
Will my insurance go up with a 50/50 claim? What happens in a 50/50 insurance claim?
In 50/50 claims, the insurance company will treat you to be 50% responsible for the claims incident.
In their assessment for future premium rates adjustment, they will take this into consideration, along with other variables (such as overall market rates, conditions, etc).
It does not mean your premium will only increase by half of the usual rate of insurance in a formula book for 50/50 accident claims, it merely means it is a factor in their consideration.
Should I call my insurance if it was my fault?
Yes and no. It depends on the situation. If you are claiming your own policy such as a motor accident, then you have to call your insurance companies. They do cover your own mistakes and cover your expenses in such policies.
For some insurance cases where you do not intend to claim and you are paying out of your own pockets, it may not be necessary to call and inform your insurance company. Do keep a record of your expenses and incident though. For better advice, do check with insurance advisers for your personal situation.
Here are some private medical institutions in Singapore, look for one that is near you and contact them for an ambulance service. Be sure that your insurance policies cover you for private medical services as the costs can be many times higher than public hospitalisation.
Hotline: 6382 8888
Blesswell Ambulance & Medical Services
Hotline: 6273 0147
AIC – AME Ambulance Services
Hotline: 6247 7080
ER Ambulances & Services
Hotline: 6222 2995
Green Crescent Mobile Healthcare
Hotline: 6788 8911
Heng Gref International Assists
Hotline: 6272 6018
Civic Ambulance Services
Hotline: 6333 3000
Private Ambulance Network of Parkway East, Gleneagles, Mount Elizabeth Hospitals
Hotline: 6473 2222
Public Government Hospitals with A&E (Accident & Emergency Services)
The government public hospitals with A&E services to serve the public.
General Tel: 6472 2000 378 Alexandra Road, Singapore 159964 AH Contact Page
NUH – National University Hospital
Emergency Tel: 6772 5000 Main Tel: 6779 5555 5, Lower Kent Ridge Road, Singapore 119074 NUH Contact Page
Private Hospitals with A&E (Accident & Emergency Services)
These are private hospitals in Singapore that has A&E services for those people who prefer private medical services. Do note that your insurance policies should cover you for private medical services as the costs can be many times higher than public hospitalisation. If not, be sure that you can afford private medical services.
Mount Elizabeth Hospital
A&E Tel: 6731 2218 General Tel: 6737 2666 Ambulance Tel: 6473 2222 3 Mount Elizabeth, Singapore 228510 ME Hospital Contact Page
Yes, it is worth to buy travel insurance, because travel plans can get disrupted so easily. It may be some minor inconvenience like delay of flight for 6 hours or lost luggage, or it can be major problems like accidents or health conditions that require emergency care in the destination.
It may be extremely disruptive not just to your travels but your productive work life scheduled after your holidays. There are times where airports and flights schedule does not follow through. An example of natural disasters like the Bali volcanic eruption and dark skies that canceled all air flights. Or political protests in Phuket that blockade the international airport.
If you have friends who are in general insurance or life insurance, they will let you know a common open secret- travel insurance is one of the easiest claim policies in Singapore. This is mostly because of all the features and benefits that make is convenient to protect your travel scheme.
Lost luggage, delayed flights, medical illness during your holidays. All these make travel insurance worth getting it.
Do Not blindly buy any travel insurance from airlines, hotel booking sites. You can probably get a better deal, or a greater coverage annual plan from insurance brokers or agents.
Who are the best travel insurance companies for comparison?
There are many great travel insurance companies in Singapore, and many of the best deals depend on seasons and promotion. So if I write in here that Axa travel insurance or DirectAsia plans are the best travel promotion in 2019, it may not be true by the time you read it. For the best price, it may depend on seasonal promotion
Having said that, with the value and reputation of the travel insurers, most of the large general insurers provide great value and features for vacationers like us! The popular ones are HL Assurance, FWD Travel insurance, Chubb travel insurance, Allianz Singapore, Etiqa, Sompa etc.
You may not simply want the cheapest. It is all about value. For example, AIG travel insurance may be more expensive than NTUC Income, but they offer more. In the Phuket airport shutdown, AIG policyholders got shuttled to Bangkok for a flight home. NTUC Income policyholders got a bus ride all the way back to Singapore
AIG travel insurance buyers may have paid a higher premium but when claims come, they get a better, comfortable resolution.
Travel insurance covers cancelled or delayed flights
Which travel insurance company is best? LEts compare!
Every insurer offers its own value, some like HL Assurance or FWD is rocking the competition with low costs, great value, some like AIG is sticking to premium pricing, with great premium coverage.
We can safely say that with great competition, every insurer is giving great value. It is not the cheapest plan you are aiming to get, nor is it the most comprehensive plan you may love it. You could get any one of the current promoted travel insurance and you will get great value because Singapore travel industry is so competitive.
Get any, as long as you are protected, it is better than forgetting!
What is the best travel insurance?
The best travel insurance is one that covers all the major event that can cause a huge hole in your pocket, such as medical coverage and repatriation in case of emergency.
It is also one that you do not spend too much time pondering about. (Your time can be spent more productive for work, or for leisure).
Which is one of the reasons why annual plans covering all trips (or all trips in a specific region) is the best, you do not need to think and buy insurance every time you plan for a vacation or business trip.
When should you buy travel insurance? Can you buy travel insurance after booking a flight?
If you are buying single trip insurance, you should do it immediately after you booked your flight or travel package from the agency.
This is because buying it immediately after you book or buying travel insurance at the last minute before you board your plane (or train, ship, car) cost exactly the same, but buying it sooner gets extra benefits at no cost.
For example, if someone meets with an emergency medical situation and has to forgo the air ticket, the travel insurance may cover that. Or if the travel agency or airline goes bankrupt and unable to honour the deal, your travel insurance may take care of the losses. If you wait till the last minute to buy insurance just on the day of departure, you will not enjoy these benefits and it is too late to seek coverage.
All these are great benefits that are stacked on with no additional fees, insurers like to encourage you to buy early. Go ahead and buy early, you never know what urgency matters occur even before your trip starts.
This is also why annual plans are great. You are covered the day you bought any flights, travel package or hotel accomodation (check your travel insurance policy for AirBnb coverage too).
Go for annual plans for any insurers, it is worth the time saved.
Can I buy trip cancellation insurance only? Should I get flight cancellation insurance?
These are very basic travel insurance and so far we are unable to find these, even with Moneysmart travel insurance comparison.
Most insurers in Singapore offers a wider range of coverage. Even if you skip the comprehensive travel coverage, the basic plan still provides a lot more than mere trip cancellation.
This is because the premiums are so low, it does not make economic senses to have the admin costs to have only trip cancellation insurance.
Is it too late to buy travel insurance? Can you buy travel insurance the day you leave?
Yes, It is not too late to buy insurance on the day you leave, in fact, you trigger most of the benefits of travel policies to start protecting you the minute you leave Singapore. The key is you have to buy BEFORE you leave Singapore/
If you landed at your destination country, or in the middle of the trip, no, you are unable to buy coverage for the trip since you left Singapore.
Do note that incidents that occurred before you bought the travel policies would not be covered. For example, if there is a travel agency bankruptcy, buying the plan later will not get you the benefits that should have been paid out.
What is travel insurance used for? Do I need travel insurance?
The biggest event that you are worried during travel is the occurrence of accidents or medical emergencies that may cost a huge bill for emergency medical treatment, and emergency repatriation back to Singapore. You want these to be covered as these are huge out-of-pocket expenses if it happens.
In the event of accidental death, a lump sum is payable to family members back home.
Travel peacefully with insurance
Other simple expenses that most package will cover are luggage losses, flights delay, thefts and loss of valuables.
You may also get covered by travel agencies closure, flight cancellation due to airline closures etc. Some package will even cover burglary or problems at your home when you are enjoying your trip at overseas.
How much does travel insurance cost? What is the cheapest travel insurance?
Basic travel insurance will cost only a few dollars per day while overseas. Even if you opt for a premium comprehensive package, it may only cost ten dollars or so per day.
If you really want the cheapest, go for the basic model package that will be available from all insurers, they just cover the major events and skip the small bells and whistles.
Get those plans that offer the best value for money, such as those from EQ Insurance or China Taiping Insurance.
How do I claim for travel insurance?
All insurers would have their claim forms online where you can do a simple google and grab those forms. For example, we have