3 Types of People Who Should Get Annual Travel Insurance

Singaporeans love to travel. With round trips tickets from Singapore to other destinations in SE Asia costing S$100 to S$200, it's not surprising that people find it relatively affordable to plan a weekend getaway in other countries. In fact, people travel so much that there are roughly 60 million passing through Changi Airport every year compared to only 5.6mn people living in Singapore. One implication of this is that Singaporeans love purchasing travel insurance as well.

However, if you are going on a trip with an air ticket that only cost you S$100 to S$200, spendingS$40 on a travel insurance policy each time you travel can quickly become quite burdensome. For frequent travellers, there is a simple solution to this problem: people who travel at least 5 to 6 times in a year could save a meaningful amount of money by purchasing an annual travel insurance.

Below, we profile 3 different types of people who could benefit meaningfully from buying an annual travel insurance plan.

Business Travellers in Emerging Market Countries

Frequent business travellers easily get on a flight at least once a month. For them, buying an annual travel insurance should be a no brainer, especially if they travel in emerging market countries, since travelers in these regions most frequently encounter situations when they can make a claim. And just by having one annual plan, you can receive claim benefits multiple times whenever your flight is delayed or cancelled.

For instance, consider a businessman who travels about 12 times a year (roughly once a month) in SE Asia. Since the cheapest basic travel insurance costs about $20, he would have needed to spent about S$240 on his travel insurance if he bought a single trip policy on each of his trip. Instead, spending S$130 on an annual plan can save him more than S$100 right off the bat.

Not only that, even if 1 of those flights had some complications (i.e. cancellation, delays, etc.), you could've received more than enough to offset the whole cost of your insurance. As a reference point, in December of 2016, 24% of flights in Singapore was delayed, with an average delay of 50 minutes. One can only imagine how much worse it could get if one were to travel to less developed countries than Singapore.


Backpackers are all about enjoying new experiences at a bargain. While saving is always good, it is wise for backpackers to have an annual travel insurance in case of sickness or other emergencies.

For instance, it is not uncommon to find your flight to be cancelled or delayed in tropical regions due to poor weather condition. What's even more common is getting your luggage lost or stolen during your trip. When you are travelling for an extended period of time, you could run into all kinds of situations that require you to have some kind of downside protection.

An annual travel insurance can be a great way to protect yourself against theft, sickness or travel complications especially if you are on a trip across several countries. According to ValueChampion's analysis, the cheapest annual travel insurance policies cost only about S$130, and can be used as your health or medical insurance while you are overseas as well.

Fervent Skiers and Snowboarders

Singapore is not the most popular vacation spot in the world. Therefore, a lot of people travel to places like Bali for scuba diving, or for Japan or Australia for skiing. The thing with these activities is that they can be quite dangerous, and it's generally a good idea to have medical insurance coverage in the country you are in so that you can be treated right away in case of an emergency.

An annual travel insurance is a great way for sports fans to get medical and personal accident coverage while they are overseas. Especially for people who love to ski or snowboard, it's quite common to travel few times a year to enjoy these activities, making an annual plan well worth the money. Hopefully you won't actually get injured and make a claim, but these activities can easily result in serious injuries that require surgeries that easily cost thousands of dollars. Injuries happen when you least expect them, and it's always a good idea to have your downside covered in case of an extreme scenario.

Duckju Kang

Duckju (DJ) is the founder and CEO of ValueChampion. He covers the financial services industry, consumer finance products, budgeting and investing. He previously worked at hedge funds such as Tiger Asia and Cadian Capital. He graduated from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics with honors, Magna Cum Laude. His work has been featured on major international media such as CNBC, Bloomberg, CNN, the Straits Times, Today and more.

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