Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Travel Insurance

The Star today reported that the Tourism Ministry may require travellers leaving the country to have insurance coverage in a move to protect their loved ones. To enable this the Tourism Act will be amended. By imposing this regulation it will increase cost of traveling and it just benefit the insurance company. Even though accidents can happen anytime, but not always happens and the insurance coverage will not benefit the insured.

For example Transnasional charge 10 cents per passenger on its Express buses. 10 cents is not much and passengers pay without any question. Its a good move no doubt but every year how many times did we hear about accidents involving Transnasional buses and how many died? So the insurance all goes to the insurance company coffer and a certain percentage to Transnasional.

Many people today buy personal insurance coverage including medical insurance and some covered mishaps in foreign land. So why do they need to have another insurance coverage. It will be redundant. Public transport too have insurance coverage and does that not mean the passenger is already covered in case of accident happens.

Travel insurance should not be made compulsory but just voluntary. Ministers should not just ape what insurance companies suggest because in their mind it is money they are talking about. Then when an accident happens the process of getting the compensation is a hassle. They will always find ways to avoid paying the maximum. Car insurance is an example. I have been paying my insurance for the last 15 years and not a single cent did I claim from the insurance company. I am a good driver ka?

The Deputy Minister also said that travelers will also see travelers paying a surcharge to guard them against tour companies that go bust. Again why must the traveler be made to pay that to protect travel companies? If the travel companies go bust, then the company must be accountable. They are licensed do they? The travel agent should be the one to pay the deposit and be refunded if the group they are taking care of return safely to Malaysia.
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