Covid uncertainty doubles demand for travel insurance policies: report

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There was a spike in demand for travel insurance policies in FY21-22 from pre-covid levels in FY19-20 amid fears of another wave of Covid -19, according to a study by Go Digit General Insurance between April 2019 and March 2022.

According to the report, Digit sold over 12.8 lakh travel policies in FY21-22, a jump of over 100% from the pre-covid year of FY2019- 20.

In the first four months of 2022, the insurer sold 75% of the total number of travel policies it sold throughout FY21, given heightened awareness and continued fear of another wave of Covid-19.

“It also indicates that more Indians are now taking out the required insurance coverage when traveling,” said Go Digit General Insurance.

The report pointed out that between April 2019 and March 2022, most claims were settled in the 2019-20 financial year as more Indians traveled before covid.

Additionally, in the current calendar year, the highest number of travel claims were settled in March, almost 120% more than in January.

Vivek Chaturvedi, Head of Direct Sales and Marketing Director at Digit Insurance, said: “Travel cancellations, cancellations and flight delays have always been the leading causes of travel complaints. Events such as poor weather conditions, changes in travel plans and airline punctuality, among other causes, can affect travel plans.”

“Before covid-19, travel insurance was not taken seriously, especially by domestic travellers. However, more and more Indians are now buying travel insurance to ensure that unforeseen mishaps do not disrupt their routes. The category has also evolved over the past few years, with some insurers now offering innovative and tailored products.”

The report also states that compared to FY20-21, FY21-22 saw 3.5 times more flight delay claims. However, for claims due to canceled flights, the number was 3.5 times higher in FY20-21.

Also, the highest number of travel policies were purchased on the BOM-DEL (Mumbai-Delhi) route in the three fiscal years between April 2019 and March 2022.

Specifically, all-risk cancellation, operator flight cancellation, rebooking, and operator flight delay were the top causes of travel claims.

Go Digit General Insurance also said demand for single-trip policies jumped 215% in FY21-22 compared to FY20-21. In FY22, the company sold nearly 11.7 lakh of one-way travel policies, an increase of 215% from FY21.

Men filed 66.5% of the total applications received between April 2019 and March 2022.

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