Best Travel Insurance for Extreme Sports and Outdoor Adventures (2022) – AsiaOne | Gmx Pharm

We all know friends who are adrenaline junkies. Those who enjoy taking crazy risks and wild adventures around the world. Damn, maybe you’re thinking: That’s me.

We all know how important travel insurance is, but if you’re planning a ski trip, scuba diving trip, or something even crazier, then you need to know what travel insurance covers extreme sports and outdoor adventures.

Here are six things to look for when buying adventure sports travel insurance.

1. Best travel insurance for outdoor sports

Are you planning your long-awaited trip abroad with your friends for diving, climbing, skiing or snowboarding?

Remember to get travel insurance that covers your winter sports, water sports, or mountaineering and rock climbing (usually considered more dangerous).

When browsing travel insurance plans, you’ll find that sports and adventures usually fall into three broad categories:

Outdoor recreational and recreational activities: hot air ballooning, scuba diving (up to 30m/40m, guided by licensed instructors, with PADI certification), skiing and snowboarding at resorts, hiking or trekking (up to 3,000m), jet skiing, white water rafting , skydiving, paragliding, hang gliding, skydiving etc

Other more extreme sports: bungee jumping, mountaineering, rock climbing (any rock climbing that involves ropes and equipment)

Competitions (not covered by all insurance companies except Direct Asia): marathons, ultramarathons, biathlons, triathlons

This table is a general comparison. Click on each travel insurance rating to see the specific outdoor activities they cover:

travel insurance Outdoor Recreational Activities Bungee climbing
FWD Travel Insurance Yes Yes
NTUC Travel Insurance Scuba diving, skiing, winter sports, hiking, trekking only no
AIG Travel Insurance Yes Just rock climbing
AXA travel insurance Yes Yes
MSIG Travel Insurance Yes (no winter sports) Bungee jumping only
Singlife with Aviva travel insurance Buy riders no
DBS Chubb Travel Insurance Yes Yes
Great east travel insurance Yes Yes
Sompo travel insurance Diving, hiking, trekking only no
AIA travel insurance Yes Just rock climbing
Etiqa Travel Insurance Yes Bungee jumping only
Direct Asia Travel Insurance Buy riders Buy riders
Citibank Travel Insurance Diving, white water rafting, hiking, trekking, skiing, yacht only Yes for Citi PremierMiles, Prestige, Ultima
Tokyo Marine Travel Insurance Yes Yes
UOB Travel Insurance Diving only no
OCBC Travel Insurance Yes Yes
AMEX Travel Insurance Yes Yes

2. Exclusions from travel insurance for outdoor adventures

Even if your travel insurance plan claims to cover outdoor adventures and extreme sports, there are still exclusions — aka activities — that your insurance company is unwilling to cover. Here are a few key examples:

Any professional competition or sport in which you are paid, sponsored, or financially rewarded in any way

Any casual contact sport or MMA class such as Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ)

Mountaineering or climbing with ropes and climbing equipment

Expeditions to inaccessible, remote or previously unexplored places

Be a pilot or crew member of an aircraft (except for your commercial flights, e.g. SQ)

You may be surprised that most marathons are not covered by travel insurance as there is a grand prize you can technically win.

Now you might say that you probably won’t play any of these sports. But there are different standards between insurance companies as to what is allowed, so always check your terms and conditions before purchasing your travel insurance.

Lazy? Scroll up and read our travel insurance reviews instead. We combed through policy texts and terms and conditions for their outdoor adventure and extreme sports coverage.

3. Personal Accident Personal Disclaimers

While some travel insurance policies seem to have comprehensive coverage, you need to make sure the activity you are undertaking is covered by Personal Accident or Personal Liability.

For example, if you have Singlife with Aviva travel insurance and have decided to also purchase the Adventurerous Water Sports driver, you are covered for all the usual scuba diving (up to 40m), white water rafting, kayaking, sailing, wakeboarding, etc. insured .

You must scroll to the bottom of your policy wording to view the terms and conditions. Singlife with Aviva travel insurance states that it covers you for the following:

In other words, if you are seriously injured in one of these activities, your Singlife with Aviva travel insurance will cover emergency medical expenses, your death and any damage you cause to property in that accident.

However, if you look at Etiqa travel insurance you will see that the plan will cover you for personal accidental death. Some outdoor activities are excluded from personal liability, such as:

  • Accidental Death and Permanent Disability
  • Medical emergency care
  • Personal Liability

These are precisely the activities where you are more likely to have an accident. So don’t forget to check the fine print!

ALSO READ: Travel Insurance Guide (2022): What Travel Insurance Do I Need?

4. Outdoor activities that are usually excluded

Some activities are covered by your travel insurance, but only in certain circumstances. This is not unrealistic either. It does mean, however, that you must ensure that your activities do not exceed the limits set by your travel insurance. These are examples of some activities not covered by your insurance:

Canoeing or whitewater rafting without a qualified guide or Grade 4 and above (the International Scale of River Difficulty).

Off-piste skiing, or skiing outside the officially sanctioned boundaries of a ski resort.

Mountaineering beyond 3,000 meters above sea level.

Underwater activities using artificial breathing apparatus to dive deeper than 30 meters.

Although some of these activities are covered by certain travel insurance policies, they do have limitations on their coverage, so be sure to stay within the specified limits.

5. How much do extreme athletes cost?

Some travel insurance companies require that you expand your travel insurance plan to include winter sports enthusiasts or horseback riders for adventurous outdoor pursuits. While it may seem unfair to greatly increase the premium price, note that most of the time this will also increase your coverage for other categories within the same plan.

How much do these winter athletes and sport riders cost?

There are currently two travel insurance plans that require you to purchase sport riders.

Direct Asia Travel Insurance: $81.40 to $105.16 per week

Singlife with Aviva Travel Insurance: $7.45 to $14.36 per week for the adventurous water sports or snow sports enthusiast

6. I need sports equipment insurance

If you are a die-hard skier or scuba diver then this section should not be new to you. If you plan to take your own sports gear with you on a trip, you need to be aware of how much your travel insurance will cover for you.

If your gear can cost a few hundred dollars, you should definitely invest in a plan that will ensure you don’t lose out if your gear gets stolen or damaged.

7. Do you have adequate emergency medical supplies for evacuation?

This is especially important if you plan on diving, hiking, or skydiving. Since you most likely won’t be near a decent medical facility should something happen, you may need to arrange for an emergency medical evacuation.

Check that your travel insurance covers you adequately for such an occasion. Whenever possible, choose policies that give you at least $500,000 of medical evacuation coverage, even if you end up paying a little more.

ALSO READ: Covid-19 Travel Insurance: How to Make Your Claims

This article was first published in MoneySmart.

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