How much insurance will I get with my credit card?

Are you ready to travel once more? The first place to look for travel insurance would probably be your credit card. You can find out from your bank whether you can get this benefit. You may already have the insurance you need.

Does the travel insurance on your credit card cover lost luggage, trip delays, medical expenses, and/or roadside insurance? Will you be covered when travelling overseas? Would you need extra cover over and above what your travel insurance in South Africa is offering?

You might already have the protection you need for travelling if you have a credit card. Or it might not be enough. Here's everything you need to know about travel insurance and your credit card.

How will I know what my credit card covers?

Not every bank offers you travel insurance with your credit card. You might have to shop around for a banking institution that does if that is what you need. You can consider these points when weighing your options:

  • Maximum benefit. What is the maximum benefit for each type of protection you require?
  • Types of coverage. What types of cover does the travel insurance they have include? You might need to find one that offers you specific types of coverage.
  • Medical coverage. Every credit card offering is different. Some cards will offer secondary medical cover. What this means is that you will have to put in a claim on your medical insurance first. Most medical insurance for travel is primary and not secondary.
  • Trip cancellation benefits. Your credit card insurance might offer you a trip cancellation benefit. This is especially important during a pandemic where travel is restricted. Some travel insurance won't cover your trip cancellation.
  • Other benefits. It's a good idea to find out what other added benefits are included or excluded. They might also not offer you protection against airline or hotel bankruptcy.

What to look out for when taking out travel insurance

More than what is covered, you need to know how much the insurer will pay out for each insured event. Here are a few common questions to ask when taking out travel insurance. You can find out if the travel insurance on your credit card covers all these eventualities, and if not, what will be covered.

Illness abroad. It is a good idea to factor in the costs of falling ill while travelling abroad or having an accident. How much would transportation cost to the nearest hospital, and what will a specialist cost in a foreign country? Once you are back in South Africa, will your medical treatment be covered? What about mandatory quarantines upon arrival?

Car rental damage. Will my travel insurance waiver car rental collision damage? Will it cover insurance for rental car theft?

Baggage theft & delays. Will I get a pay-out for essential personal belongings if my baggage is delayed? These usually include clothes and toiletries if your baggage is lost or stolen. The trip insurance will also pay out for commercial carrier baggage delays. Check how many days you could be covered for.

Travel accidents. Does my insurance cover me for travel accidents? Find out whether you will be covered for accidental death and other eventualities.

Emergency evacuation. Is transportation covered during emergency evacuation costs. Find out how much medical air will be paid out to you. Should a family member become ill or injured during an emergency evacuation, will transportation costs be covered?

Emergency dental work. If I need emergency dental work done, will my travel insurance cover me?

What is not covered by my credit card insurance?

Credit card travel insurance can be limiting. You might find that your cover does not include the basics you need. On the other hand, you might find that the very basic travel insurance you get is sufficient.

It is a very personal choice. There is never a one-size-fits-all credit card insurance plan. You might want to search for any strings attached in your policy wording. Perhaps a condition would be to buy at least part of your tickets with your credit card, for example.

Even if you have a comprehensive travel insurance plan, claiming could prove tedious. You might need authorisation for treatment from a doctor. This could delay treatment.

Your credit card travel insurance could be a good backup plan even if you decide to take out extra travel insurance. To ensure exclusions don't catch you off guard, it is a good idea to read the fine print. If it is not mentioned in the agreement, chances are it is not covered.

Other questions to ask about credit card travel insurance cover

  1. Will my credit card insurance cover be enough to cover the risks of my entire trip? This is especially important for international travellers.
  2. What will be deducted from emergency medical costs? Will there be enough insurance to cover a medical emergency? Will my credit card insurance cover an evacuation?
  3. Am I covered for trip interruptions and cancellations?
  4. Will my travel companion also be covered by my comprehensive travel insurance policy? Asking questions about cover for children and friends is a great idea. Will I have cover for employees going with me on a trip?
  5. If I have an accident and am hurt, will my insurance cover a trip to the closest medical facility? 
  6. Are my pre-existing medical conditions covered in the city or location I am travelling to?
  7. Are my meals and accommodation paid for if there are travel delays? This is necessary cover for emergency situations.
  8. Is my luggage paid for if it is lost or stolen?
  9. What is the maximum trip length I am covered for? Is there a time limit?
  10. Will I be reimbursed for essentials because of delays?

Once you have the answers to the above questions, you could be in a strong position to make a decision.

Get the Credit Card that supports your lifestyle.

African Bank does not offer credit card insurance. However, if it is a lifestyle you might need to support, we have you covered. Banking does not get much easier than this! You can make an instant impression with your African Bank Credit Card! Use your African Bank Credit Card wherever you are. We offer you a full mobile and online banking service.

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