Baggage Insurance comes into picture when you lose your baggage during your trip due to theft or any other mishap. The losses incurred due to such mishaps might put you in some really big troubles and ruin your trip. In order to get compensated for the damage or loss to your luggage while on your trip, you can always rely on baggage insurance plans.
What is Baggage Insurance?
Baggage insurance is a type of insurance that protects the accompanied baggage of a traveller from any unforeseen damage or loss. The term ‘Baggage’ refers to the personal items or goods belonging to the insured traveller that he carries during his travel. Therefore, a baggage insurance policy covers any damage or loss to the personal items or goods of the insured traveller during his domestic or international trip. It provides comprehensive coverage to the accompanied baggage from any loss or damage due to unforeseen events such as fire, theft, riots, strikes, accident and terrorist activity.
Travelling is a fulfilling experience for most people where the whole focus is on enjoying and exploring new places. Facing an unfortunate incident that damages or results in loss of your accompanied baggage will not only ruin the vibe of the trip but would also incur unnecessary expenses. This is where baggage insurance comes to your rescue and helps you continue with your trip without any obstruction.
A baggage insurance policy also protects the insured’s check-in baggage from any damage or loss caused during the flight or by the airline staff. It also covers any delay in the arrival of the checked-in baggage by the airline in the form of reimbursement of any expenses incurred on essential items such as clothes, toiletries, medicines, etc. In fact, some travel insurance policies also provide protection to the additional baggage purchased during the trip.
Baggage insurance can be purchased as part of a travel insurance policy as well as a standalone insurance policy. The traveller can make a decision on the basis of his requirements and thus, ensure a stress-free trip.
Features of Baggage Insurance Policy
Here are some of the features of a baggage insurance policy:
Comes as a part of travel insurance as well as an individual policy
Available for both domestic and international travel
Covers additional baggage purchased during the trip
Benefits of Baggage Insurance Policy
A baggage insurance policy is one of the smartest decisions that you can take for your smooth travel. This is because a policy for accompanied baggage comes with numerous benefits for the insured traveller. Here are some of the benefits of buying a baggage insurance policy:
Compensates the Lost Luggage Cost- In case you lose your baggage or its contents during the trip, a baggage insurance policy compensates the cost of the missing items or the cost of the lost luggage as per the situation.
Reimburses the Incurred Expenses - In case you incur any extra expenses on buying essential items such as toiletries or clothes because your baggage was delayed, lost or damaged, the same will be reimbursed under this insurance policy.
Travel Stress-Free - If you have a baggage insurance policy by your side, you can travel domestic or international without any stress. This is because any damage or loss of your luggage will be covered by the policy, allowing you to focus entirely on enjoying every moment of your trip.
Types of Baggage Insurance
People travelling within India or abroad are quite different from each other. Naturally, their travel needs can differ from each other. Therefore, it is important for a traveller to find an insurance policy that fulfils their travel needs. In an attempt to fulfil the requirements of different kinds of travellers, baggage insurance in India is divided into three categories:
Single Trip Baggage Insurance
This is a type of baggage insurance policy that covers any damage or loss of the accompanied luggage of the insured traveller for a single trip. It begins with the start of the trip and expires as soon as the trip ends. This type of baggage insurance is suitable for people who travel occasionally, mostly as tourists.
Multi-Trip Baggage Insurance
This is a type of baggage insurance policy that protects the luggage of the insured traveller against any unforeseen damage or loss for multiple trips. The exact number of trips that are covered under this policy depends on the terms and amount of premium paid by the insured traveller. This type of travel insurance is best suited for frequent travellers and business travellers.
Baggage Insurance for a Specific Item
This is a type of baggage insurance policy that covers a specific item which has been insured by the traveller from any loss or damage throughout the duration of the trip. This type of baggage insurance is made for people who travel with expensive and valuable items and any damage or theft to such items can lead to huge financial loss. For instance, you can get your laptop, professional camera, musical instruments, etc. insured under this type of baggage insurance policy.
Inclusions of Baggage Insurance
Before you buy a baggage insurance policy, it is important for you to know the extent of coverage offered. Take a look at some of the most common inclusions of a baggage insurance policy:
Loss or Damage to Accompanied Luggage- A baggage insurance policy covers any loss or damage caused to the luggage that you carry during your domestic/ international trip. Accompanied luggage can be of two types:
Travel Bags-Travel bags refers to the suitcases, trunks, duffel bags, etc. which you use to carry your personal items while travelling.Any loss or damage caused to these travel bags during the journey will be covered under the baggage insurance policy.
Carry On/ Hand luggage- Carry-on luggage or hand luggage refers to the smaller items such as purses and laptop bags that you do not submit with the airline staff as check-in baggage. It is the cabin baggage that you carry with yourself while travelling on a plane. Any loss or damage caused to the carry-on luggage is covered under a baggage insurance policy.
Loss or Damage to Contents of Travel Bags- In case any damage is caused to the contents of the travel bags or its contents are stolen, your insurance provider will cover the cost if you have a valid baggage insurance policy.
Delays in Delivery of Check-in Baggage- There aretimes when the delivery of check-in baggage is delayed by the airline staff. In such cases, your insurer will reimburse any expenses that you incur on buying essential items such as clothes, medicines, and toiletries.
Loss or Damage to a Specific Item- In case any loss or damage is caused to a specific item that has been insured under a baggage insurance policy, your insurer will reimburse its cost of the item.
Loss or Damage to Additional Baggage- A baggage insurance policy will also cover any damage or loss incurred on any additional baggage that you purchase during the course of your journey.
Exclusions of Baggage Insurance
There a few situations where no reimbursement or compensation will be provided under a baggage insurance policy. Take a look at some of the exclusions:
Any loss or damage caused to consumable goods will not be covered under a baggage insurance policy
In case a loss or damage to the baggage is caused due to war, an act of war or a nuclear explosion, it will not be covered under this policy
Any damages or losses caused to cleaning, bleaching, renovating or repair work is not covered under a baggage insurance policy
If there is any consequential loss of an item, provided the item was already damaged before the start of the trip, it will not be covered by the insurer
A baggage insurance policy also does not cover any damage or loss of money, manuscripts, securities, deeds, stamps, bonds and certificates
Any loss or damages caused to an item which was not a part of your luggage when the trip started
If there is any breakage or loss of any fragile items like paintings, glass crockery, sculptures, musical instruments, binoculars, camera lenses, etc. during the journey, it will not be covered under this policy
If there is a damage or loss of valuables such as jewellery, watches, precious stones, fur, etc., its cost will not be compensated by the insurance provider
In case an item is damaged or lost by the carrier during transportation, its cost will not be covered by a baggage insurance policy
Any loss or damage caused to the baggage or an item that does not belong to the insurer or his family members will not be covered under this policy
In case an item is lost due to the wrong misplacement, its cost will not be covered by the insurer
If an item is lost while it was kept unattended in a vehicle with the windows down, its cost will not be indemnified by the insurance company
In case an item or baggage is confiscated or detained by the customs officials or other authorities, no compensation shall be paid to the traveller
Any loss or damage caused due to electrical or mechanical breakdown shall not be covered under a baggage insurance policy
Who Can Buy Baggage Insurance?
Any person who is travelling outside his/her city of residence can buy a travel insurance policy. This policy can be purchased by any traveller irrespective of whether he is travelling domestic or international. If the traveller is carrying any luggage during his travel, he/ she is eligible to buy a baggage insurance policy.
How does Baggage Insurance Work?
Baggage insurance works as a standalone insurance policy or as a part of a travel insurance policy. The steps that are followed in a baggage insurance plan are as follows:
The person who is travelling outside the city or country applies for a baggage insurance
The travel insurer checks the eligibility criteria
If the applicant is eligible to buy the policy the insurer asks the proposer to submit the documents
On the commencement of the baggage insurance policy the policy holder can lodger a claim in case anything untoward happens during the trip (as mentioned in the policy)
The insurer will appoint one of their representatives to verify the details from the insurerd person and the airlines
Once the claim request is approved, the basic value of the baggage is recompensed by the insurer. Or if the claim is rejected due to some limitations ( check the policy wordings for exclusions) the flyer will have to bear the loss
The policyholder can also raise the issue in the court of law if he/she is dissatisfied with the compensation amount or if it is not as promised at the time of policy purchase
Claim Process for Baggage Insurance
In case there has been a loss or damage to your luggage or your check-in baggage has been delayed by the airline with which you were travelling, you will have to file an insurance claim. Following are the steps to be followed while registering a baggage insurance claim:
Inform the insurance company or travel assistance provider about the loss or damage of your baggage. You can either call on the phone numbers mentioned in your policy document or can visit the nearest branch of your insurance company
Submit the list of items lost or damaged
A representative of the insurance company will verify the details of the claim with you as well as the airline (in case the baggage was lost by the airline or during an in-flight mishap)
In case the claim is found to be genuine, the claim amount will be given to the traveller
In case the claim is found to be unsatisfactory, it will be rejected by the insurance company
Documents Required for Baggage Insurance Claim
Each claim of baggage insurance has to be supported along with few documents. Take a look at the list of documents that you need to submit at the time of filing a baggage insurance claim:
Duly filled claim form
Copy of the baggage insurance policy
Policy document provided by the insurance company
A list of all the items/ contents of the baggage that has been lost or damaged
A copy of the police FIR (in case the baggage was stolen)
Things to Keep in Mind When Buying Baggage Insurance
There are certain crucial things that you should consider before buying a baggage insurance policy:
Make sure you have a list of all the items that you are carrying with you in your luggage. This is important at the time of filing a claim with the insurance provider as you will be required to list the contents of the bag in case of a baggage loss.
In case there is loss of baggage, you will be compensated up to your sum insured amount to the maximum. Therefore, make sure that you choose a sum insured amount that adequately covers your needs.
Baggage Insurance Providers in India
Baggage Insurance is easily available in the insurance market in India. We have listed all insurance companies in India that offer baggage insurance policies. Take a look:
Ans: Usually, an insurance company takes about 2-4 weeks to settle a baggage insurance claim. In case any additional documents are required by the insurer or if the case is disputed under the court of law, it might take more time than usual depending on the situation.
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