How to Protect Your Vacation and Yourself from Unplanned Disaster?

While we are always thrilled to share our travel quests with people, what about all those times when things didn't go so well? Sometimes, adventures may come at a cost beyond your imagination. This article is for anyone who wants to calculate all the risks their journey holds!

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* Price shown is for a 15 day trip to UK with a 1 lakh dollar coverage for an adult of age 25 years

Acknowledging the Good & as well as the Bad!

Most people associate travels and vacations with happy memories, joyful reunions or mesmerising adventures. However, this is the best aspect of travelling. What about the not so good ones?

Not enough people want to talk about trips gone wrong; from horrible accidents to getting caught in the middle of a natural disaster, the list is not short. While it’s good to be optimistic, it is foolish to ignore the possibilities that are clearly not impossible, however unlikely they seem.

Some of the most common travelling disasters have been mentioned in the section below.

Types of Disasters While Travelling

A disaster is anything with the ability to interrupt or ruin your careful planning. Naturally, only extremely uncomfortable situations will force a person into these unwanted changes in plans. Disasters cause both mental and physical agony, not to forget the additional expenses that come along. Take a look at some of the most common difficulties faced during a trip:

Accidents or Illness

Be it a mild cold or a broken limb you got during trekking, falling sick on a vacation is one of the worst things that can happen to anyone.

What You Can Do: In case of an injury, visit the nearest pharmacy if it is not a major injury. However, visit a doctor or a hospital if it is causing you a lot of discomforts. In this case, contact your travel insurance company and intimate them about this medical emergency. They will also be able to guide you to the best course of action.

Theft or Mugging

Even the safest countries in the world with a very low crime rate face this issue. Pickpocketing, mugging, and theft are all petty crimes and can be found anywhere you go. However, that does not mean you can’t take precautions for it. Mugging is a serious inconvenience and other than the loss of precious items or money, it can complicate your situation if you get hurt or lose your travel document.

What You Can Do: If you're mugged or robbed, first report to the local police and file a report. After this, immediately contact your insurer and file a claim with them. In case your passport was among the stolen items, inform them about it and contact the nearest Indian Embassy.

Lost Luggage

Airlines are infamous for misplacing luggage. Even in the case of domestic layover flights, you will often find people who found their checked-in baggage lost, damaged or misplaced. Luckily, many insurers offer coverage for delayed or lost luggage, so make sure to opt for travel insurance that offers reimbursement for this issue.

What You Can Do: After waiting considerably if your luggage is still not there then reach your airline's counter and submit a report immediately. Inform your insurer immediately and persistently speak up to the airline representative of the issue.

Delayed or Missed Flight

There may be several situations forcing you to miss your flight, however, it is still a very devastating experience especially if you have a connecting flight later or an urgent event to attend.

What You Can Do: If you miss a connecting flight, try getting a new flight on the same airline. This is the best course of action, other than immediately informing your travel insurance company about the situation. Missing a flight due to genuine, unavoidable reasons is often covered by some insurers so make sure to confirm this benefit before buying any plan.

Lost or Stolen Passport

Without a passport, you can't possibly survive in a foreign country for long. It's important for checking into hotels or visiting monuments, changing money or returning home. In case your passport is stolen or lost, you will need to apply for a new one.

What You Can Do: Keep the emergency contacts or Indian Embassy in that country handy and contact them immediately. Always carry a coloured photocopy of your passport, this will decrease the chances of losing it. If you have secure storage where you are staying, consider leaving the original one there.

Natural Disasters

Though the likelihood of this happening is low, finding yourself in the middle of a hurricane or earthquake is an absolute nightmare. These disasters are very dangerous, coupled with power outages, blocked roads and scarcity of resources during their occurrence.

What You Can Do: When a natural disaster strikes, try to remain as calm as possible. Contact the local authorities and police the first chance you get. Inform your loved ones as soon as the communication is possible so that they're not worried sick.

How Can I Protect My Trip from a Disaster?

  • Make sure to read up on weather conditions, any special requirements and some emergency medicines especially if you have an underlying health condition.
  • Make several copies of your passport so that if you're mugged or your bag is lost, you will have a copy nonetheless.
  • Always carry an emergency kit with some energy bars, water and basic first aid especially if you're in an area where these disasters are common.
  • Unless absolutely necessary, avoid carrying check-in luggage. Try packing light, or if you must have checked-in baggage then pack some extra essentials in your hand luggage so that you're not stranded without your luggage.
  • Everything of value including your wallet and credit/forex card must be secured in a sturdy bag that can't be snatched or lost among other belongings.
  • Always make an inventory of your luggage; in case of luggage loss, it'll be useful to claim reimbursement for the lost items.
  • Avoid flashing your precious items, such as jewellery or brand accessories so that pickpockets or thieves don’t target you easily.

Over to You,

Troubles come unannounced, however, most problems have reasonable solutions too. Taking necessary precautions is the best way to prepare for any issue. One of the surest ways to protect yourself from an unplanned disaster is to have a travel insurance policy every time you go on a trip. This will protect you from a majority of these contingencies throughout your trip.

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