The Observer (Kampala)

18 December 2012

Uganda: Thinking of Traveling This Festive Season?

opinion

The festive season is here and excitement is running high. Parties and wedding celebrations are in high gear.

Ugandans in the Diaspora are making their annual visits back home, while foreign visitors make the journey for different reasons.

Meanwhile, residents make their own plans for travel both within and outside the country. With this excitement, caution is often neglected, with painful results. Depending on one's means of transport, certain insurance policies are a necessity and should thus be included in your holiday budget.

If air travel is your option, then travel insurance should be acquired. Many people buy travel insurance simply because it is one of the requirements for visa acquisition. It is easy to underestimate the benefits accruing from the purchase of such insurance.

Diana, who was on her honeymoon in Paris, thought nothing could go wrong. After all, she had planned it perfectly to the last detail. This was until a sudden stomach bug landed her in hospital and got her bedridden for a couple of days. This was compounded by the high medical expenses the newlyweds had to pay.

All this and more could happen to any traveler. So many times, we are only interested in getting to our destination and back, and experiencing the joy that comes with it; we often forget the numerous things that could go wrong. The inconveniences brought about by such events are precisely the reasons travel insurance exists.

Depending on the level of coverage of the travel insurance you have purchased, you could be compensated for delayed and lost luggage, delayed flights, medical expenses up to specified limits and so much more. Therefore, take your time to negotiate appropriate travel insurance cover and limits with your insurer before purchasing insurance this festive season.

However, if road travel is your option this festive season, then watch out for next week's article, where I will be advising you on the must have insurance policies to protect yourself and your family. Till then, Season's Greetings!

The author is a chartered insurer and works with the Insurance Regulatory Authority of Uganda.

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