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Top Common Reasons For Travel Insurance Claim Rejection

Insurance is essential to planning any trip, providing financial protection against unexpected events that could disrupt your travel plans. However, many travellers face disappointment when their insurance claims are rejected. Understanding the common reasons for these rejections can help avoid pitfalls and ensure a smoother claim process.

In this blog, we will delve into the top reasons for travel insurance claim rejections and offer insights on how to avoid them, whether international or domestic travel insurance. India has many places to travel as well.

1. Pre-Existing Conditions

One of the primary reasons for travel claim rejections is pre-existing conditions. A pre-existing condition refers to any ailment, injury, or medical condition for which the insured had symptoms, diagnosis, or treatment within 48 months before the start of the policy. The insurance company will likely reject the claim if a traveller with a pre-existing condition seeks treatment abroad. The decision is often based on the attending physician’s assessment, who might declare the condition as pre-existing.

How to Avoid This:

Clearly disclose all pre-existing medical conditions when applying for travel insurance.

Understand that most travel insurance policies exclude coverage for pre-existing conditions.

Consult with your insurer to check if any plans offer limited coverage for pre-existing conditions.

2. Lack of Coverage for Specific Losses

Many travellers fail to thoroughly review their policy details, leading to assumptions about coverage that might not be accurate. This misunderstanding can result in claim rejections.


  • Baggage Delay Under Student Plans: Most student insurance policies cover baggage loss but not baggage delay. A student might assume both are covered and file a claim for delayed baggage, only to be rejected.
  • Trip Cancellation Cover: Some travellers believe that trip cancellation coverage applies for any reason. However, it only covers specific reasons like hospitalisation, sickness, injury, or death of an immediate family member. Claims outside these reasons will be rejected.
  • Baggage Delay (Return to India): Many policies do not cover baggage delays on return journeys. Travellers need to be aware of this exclusion to avoid claim rejections.

How to Avoid This:

  • Carefully read the policy wordings and understand the specific coverages and exclusions.
  • Compare different travel insurance plans to select the one that best fits your needs.
  • Clarify any doubts with your insurer before purchasing the policy.

3. Insufficient Documentation for Expenses

Insurance claims require adequate documentation to support the expenses incurred. Failing to provide necessary proofs can lead to claim rejections.

How to Avoid This:

In case of baggage delay, retain all original receipts and bills for expenses related to the claim, such as those for clothes, toiletries, and accessories. Submit comprehensive documentation as the insurance company requires for claims like baggage loss, passport loss, and flight delay.

4. No Approval for Medical Treatment

Another common reason for claim rejection is seeking medical treatment without prior approval from the insurance company. Additionally, routine medical tests not necessitated by treatment recommendations are often excluded from coverage.

How to Avoid This:

Always obtain prior approval from your insurer before undergoing medical treatment abroad.

Understand that routine tests like blood pressure or blood sugar checks will not be covered if not part of a recommended treatment. Contact your insurer or assistance provider immediately in case of a medical emergency to ensure all procedures are followed.

5. Delay in Reporting Claims

Timely reporting of claims is crucial. Delays in notifying the insurance company about a claim can result in rejection.

How to Avoid This:

  • Report any claim to your insurance company or assistance provider as soon as possible, ideally while still abroad.
  • Use the insurer’s toll-free numbers or email to inform them of your claim immediately.
  • Keep a record of your communication with the insurance company regarding your claim.

Tips for a Smooth Travel Insurance Claim Process

Understanding the travel insurance claim process and being prepared can significantly reduce the chances of your claim being rejected. Here are some additional tips to ensure a smooth claim process:

  • Understand Your Policy: Thoroughly read your policy document and understand the coverage, exclusions, and terms and conditions.
  • Disclose All Information: Provide accurate and complete information about your health, travel plans, and any pre-existing conditions when purchasing the policy.
  • Keep Detailed Records: Maintain detailed records of your trip, including receipts, medical reports, and communication with service providers.
  • Stay Informed: Stay updated on any changes to your policy or additional requirements from your insurer.
  • Communicate Promptly: Report any incidents to your insurance provider promptly and keep them informed throughout the claim process.

Travel Insurance Claim Process

  1. In case of an emergency during your trip, promptly inform your insurance company by calling or emailing them.
  2. Use the contact details in your policy document, such as the toll-free number or email address.
  3. A Claims Service Representative will assist you in registering your claim.
  4. The representative will explain the claims process and provide you with the supporting documents required for your specific coverage.
  5. Download the relevant claim form from the insurance company’s website or as directed by the representative.
  6. Submit the duly filled-in claim form along with the supporting documents.
  7. A surveyor appointed by the insurance company will assess the submitted documents.
  8. After the assessment, the insurance company will decide whether to approve or reject your claim.


Final Word

Travel insurance is a vital safety net for travellers, offering protection against unforeseen events. However, to fully benefit from your policy, it is essential to understand the common reasons for claim rejections and take proactive steps to avoid them. Choosing the right travel insurance policy and being aware of its terms and conditions can save you from the frustration of a rejected claim. Whether you opt for international travel insurance or domestic one, being informed and prepared is key to a hassle-free travel experience.

Christopher Stern

Christopher Stern is a Washington-based reporter. Chris spent many years covering tech policy as a business reporter for renowned publications. He has extensive experience covering Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, and the Federal Trade Commissions. He is a graduate of Middlebury College. Email:[email protected]

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