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Annual vs single-trip travel insurance – how to choose the right plan

This article was first published on 20 September 2015 and updated on 13 August 2018

Traveling for the holidays soon? You could be wondering, like most people, whether annual travel insurance or single trip insurance would be a better choice.

Figuring out which plan you should take, however, is a simple matter of knowing what you need to safeguard your trip.

What is a single trip insurance plan?

Single trip insurance plan

ProsCons
Affordable for infrequent tripsCostly if multiple trips in a year
Good for long trips (up to 180 days)Need to re-purchase for every new trip

If you will be travelling somewhere on a vacation or for the holidays, then it is most likely that a single trip insurance will suit you.

This kind of policy will cover your basic needs like emergency medical assistance, ticket reimbursement upon flight cancellation, personal liabilities, and your personal belongings.

Single trip policies are valid during your entire trip. There may be a maximum of days, mostly up to 180 days, but it depends on your provider of choice.

However, most companies offer an extension of coverage in the event that you may need it.

Single trip insurance can also be modified to a family trip premium if you’re going to bring other family members like your children.

Single trip insurance policies are sometimes more affordable and are more specific to your travel needs.

That said, it’s affordable only if you seldom travel within the year. If you travel frequently, the cost will add up, at which point you’re better off with an annual travel insurance plan.

What is an annual travel insurance plan?

Annual travel insurance plan

ProsCons
Affordable if trips are frequentCostly if you travel infrequently
Valid for trips during the yearCoverage duration per trip is short (up to a month)

Also commonly known as multiple trip insurance, an annual travel insurance plan can cover up to 365 days.

You can go and take several number of trips per year. However, there is a maximum number of days that your policy can only cover per trip, which is usually 30 or 31 days per trip.

For people who travel frequently, multiple trip insurance should be the choice for a few reasons:

This kind of travel insurance is more practical and will save you more money if you plan ahead to know how much travelling you will be having in a calendar year.

It is also more convenient because you do not have to purchase a new insurance every time you have to go on a trip.

Another advantage is that you will not have to worry about getting covered by a policy in case you decide to take a last minute trip.

Deciding between single and annual travel insurance

At this point, the clear distinction between a single and annual travel insurance plan falls under two factors – cost and travel frequency.

Cost is closely related to your travel frequency. Travel less, and it’ll make more sense for you to get a single trip insurance plan just for those one or two trips in the year.

Travel more, and you’ll realise that it makes more economic sense to go with an annual insurance plan that covers you through the year for one lump sum.

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