Despite the pressure to go straight on to higher education or a job after graduation, time spent abroad can be very rewarding. For many, gap years are rites of passage that offer learning and life experiences across the globe. Whether you are a taking time for a student volunteer trip or a graduate taking a year off to travel, do not forget about travel insurance. Here are few reasons why travel insurance is necessary for your gap year abroad.
Stomach bug? Food poisoning? You’re covered
Nothing should hold you back from having the best, most well-rounded experience possible during your gap year abroad. Purchasing travel insurance that covers medical costs will protect you in case of illness or emergencies. Medical coverage will put your mind at ease while you surf the coast of Bali or order a dish of the local delicacy.
Accidents happen – even with safety gear
Whether exploring the world’s natural wonders or trying new water sports, for many, a gap year is all about pushing yourself to the edge. Living fearlessly is a worthwhile experience, especially if you can do so with the peace of mind that you are protected in case anything goes wrong. Most travel insurance plans cover adventure sports and activities, so you have no reason to miss out on bungee jumping off Kawaru Bridge in Queenstown, New Zealand or Heli Skiing in Russia.
You and your luggage are valuable, protect your bags too
Spending a year exploring the globe is a trip that should be documented and remembered. However, what would you do if your camera gets snatched out of your hands on your tour of Europe? Or what if that waterproof case does not actually protect your phone while scuba diving in the Great Barrier Reef? Traveling with technology requires protection, and travel insurance will reassure you that your gadgets and travel memories are safe. And even if your memories cannot be replaced, in most cases, your travel insurance plan will reimburse you for your lost, stolen, or broken devices.
Bad weather won’t derail your holiday when you have cancellation coverage
What would a holiday be without surprises? Unexpected occurrences can lead to amazing experiences, but surprises like flight delays and holiday cancellations are unwanted and can put a damper on the trip. But that is where travel insurance can save you from distress, or at least from some of the costs. If your holiday is protected with cancellation coverage, you will be covered for most travel disruptions that occur.
Be safe rather than sorry – keep an eye out
In general, trust your instincts and remain alert enough to judge a situation. Even with travel insurance, it is never a good idea to walk along poorly lit streets at night. Instead, call for a taxi while inside a bar or restaurant. Muggings can happen, and pickpocketing is not uncommon at major tourist destinations. Keep in touch with your family and friends at home, and leave them a copy of your itinerary as well. While travel insurance will protect you from many common incidents, it is still important to be smart and stay safe.
Getting travel insurance should not be an afterthought. Once you have your flight booked and hotels picked out, buy your policy. Compare policies to make sure you have the right coverage, and purchase a policy that will cover anything you have planned to try.