You must have heard about group mediclaim polices or group personal accident policies which employers usually take for covering their employees. But, have you ever heard about group travel insurance policies?
Yes, a group travel insurance plan is a less known insurance plan which employers take for their travelling employees. These plans provide all the basic coverage features which a regular travel insurance plan provides and covers international travel. There are two distinct types of group travel insurance policies available in the market. Let us understand these variants in details before we discuss the coverage features.
• Types of group travel insurance policies:
• Individually named travel policy: under this group insurance policy, the company buys a travel insurance policy for specified employees. The name of the employees which the policy would cover is mentioned in the policy document and any trips taken by such named employees would be covered under the policy.
• Number of days based policy: under this policy, the employees are not named. The company, instead, buys the policy for a specified number of days. The policy then covers any employee travelling for business up to the total number of days insured under the policy. For instance, suppose a company buys a policy for 5000 days. Now, within one year the total number of days travelled by different employees would be aggregated. If 50 employees have travelled for 12 days each, the total number of days travelled is 600 and it would be reduced from 5000 days. The policy would continue with the reduced balance of days.
• Salient features of group travel insurance policies:
• Tenure: Both types of group travel insurance policies are issued for a period of 1 year. These policies are, thus, called annual travel insurance policies.
• Duration of the trip: In both the above-mentioned types of policies, the maximum number of days for which one particular employee can travel during a year is 180 days. Travelling beyond 180 days would not be covered by the plan. Moreover, the maximum duration of one single trip is also restricted to 60 days. So, whether it is a named policy or a number of days based policy, any employee cannot get coverage beyond 60 days per trip and a maximum of 180 days per year. Similarly, the minimum travel duration per trip is 1-2 days.
• Minimum retention period: Under number of days based insurance policy, there are a minimum number of days for which the policy would charge premium. Suppose, in a policy covering 10, 000 days, the insurance company says that the minimum coverage period is 2000 days. If the company’s employees travel for more than 2000 days, after the end of the year, the premium for the balance number of days which are not travelled would be refunded back. So, if the employees travel for 3000 days, the insurance company refunds 70% of the premium paid back. However, if the employees travel for only 1000 days, the insurance company would not calculate the refund on the actual unused balance of 9000 days. In this case, the minimum coverage period of 2000 days would be considered and the refund would be 80% of the premium paid rather than 90%.
• Coverage: The basic coverage features under a group travel insurance policy include coverage for the following contingencies:
• Medical emergencies: any medical treatment availed when travelling abroad due to medical emergencies is covered under the plan. So, whether the employee gets treated in a hospital or at the place he is staying, any medical related expenses would be covered. Even dental treatments required due to accidental injuries are covered under this category.
• Personal accident: if the employee suffers an accidental death or disability, the policy pays a financial compensation for the same. Even the costs incurred in transferring a dead body to the home country are also covered.
• Personal liability: if the employee is held liable for causing harm or injury to any third party, such liability would be covered under the plan.
• Baggage or passport loss: loss of passport or loss of baggage is also covered under the policy.
• Points to remember:
• The company is required to submit periodic reports to the insurance company stating the number of days travelled by the employees till date. Also the name of the employees should also be mentioned against the number of days travelled by each.
• In case of individually named travel insurance plans, there is no premium refund.
A group travel insurance policy is beneficial for large corporates where many employees travel in a year. The plan provides extensive coverage and even refunds the premiums (in case of number of days plan). So, if you are a corporate wanting to buy a travel insurance policy for your employees, buy a group travel plan today.