Travel Insurance

The Best Travel Insurance in Singapore – 2018 Review

best travel insurance singapore 2018 cheapest compare

Clara Lim

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Travel insurance in Singapore is super-competitive when it comes to pricing. That’s great for us consumers, but it also means that you shouldn’t always choose the cheapest travel insurance plan you can find. You might end up with a dud if you make your decision based on price alone.

For example, ERGO TravelProtect Basic and Budget Direct Basic are super cheap but once you look at the benefits (or lack thereof) you’ll realise they’re only adequate if all you plan to do is chill at your grandma’s house in Penang all week. Otherwise, they’re as good as not buying any travel insurance at all.

 

Best travel insurance in Singapore 2018

So… how? Unfortunately there’s no way around it – you do have to do the research to find out what the insurer covers and what it doesn’t. Here’s a quick look at which insurers you should go to for your needs:

Best for Best travel insurance provider
Basic coverage (e.g. city trip to Bangkok or HK) Etiqa, FWD, Allianz, Aviva
Adventurous activities (e.g. dive trip, mountain hiking) Etiqa, FWD, Aviva, Amex (Chubb), MSIG, UOB, AXA
Insuring expensive trips & gear (e.g. trip to see Northern Lights) FWD, Allianz, Aviva, MSIG, UOB
Pregnancy coverage Aviva
Pre-existing medical conditions (e.g. asthma, heart condition) NTUC (Enhanced PreX range), Sompo (covers evacuation only)
Emergency travel assistance Allianz, AXA, AIG, Amex (Chubb)
Travel assistance in Japan Sompo GO Japan

Want to know more about which specific travel insurance plan you should get?

I’ve reviewed pretty much every travel insurance plan available in Singapore, and here I’ve compiled the best basic travel insurance plans for the everyday Singaporean. (Not all of these are lowest-tier plans. These days second-tier plans are surprisingly affordable, and sometimes it makes total sense to upgrade.)

Read on to find out which plans are best for each type of traveller.

 

Contents

  1. Cheapest travel insurance for basic travellers
  2. Best travel insurance for adventurous travellers
  3. Best travel insurance for expensive trips & gear
  4. Best travel insurance for pregnancy & pre-existing medical conditions
  5. Best travel insurance for emergency travel assistance services

 

Cheapest travel insurance for basic travellers

  • Etiqa eProtect Travel Basic
  • FWD Premium
  • Allianz Global Assistance Bronze
  • Aviva Travel Plus
Travel insurance plan Price for 1 week in ASEAN Medical & emergency coverage Travel inconvenience coverage
Etiqa eProtect Travel Basic $36.50 ($17.89 after 51% off) Medical: $200,000

Evacuation: $1,500,000

PA: $200,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $300

Trip cancellation: $5,000

Item loss/damage: $2,000

FWD Premium $25 ($20 after 20% off) Medical: $200,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $100,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $300

Trip cancellation: $7,500

Item loss/damage: $3,000

Allianz Global Assistance Bronze $40 ($22 after 45% off with promo code any45ms) Medical: $400,000

Evacuation: $500,000

PA: $35,000

Delays: $1,500

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $7,000

Aviva Travel Plus $33.61 ($23.53 after 30% off for MINDEF/MHA policyholder) Medical: $2,000,000

Evacuation: $2,000,000

PA: $100,000

✔ Pregnancy & childbirth

✔ Adventure activities (add on)

✔ Weddings (add on)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $15,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

✔ Trip cancellation for any reason

When it comes to travelling, most of us Singaporeans are pretty happy doing basic shit. Like going to Hong Kong to eat dim sum, going to Bangkok to shop, and going to Japan to take 412,523 photos of cherry blossoms. Does that make us sheeple? Sure, but who cares.

Value for money: If you’re travelling around Asia, Australia or New Zealand, and are reasonably confident that nothing weird will happen during your trip, you shouldn’t overspend on travel insurance. With the best travel insurance, you can get really good coverage under $30!

Medical & emergency coverage: Reasonable medical expense limits vary with the destination. $200,000 is good for most countries in Asia but you might want more than that if you’re going to a more expensive place like Australia or Europe. If healthcare isn’t great in your destination, make sure your evacuation limit is at least $1mil.

Travel inconvenience coverage: If you’re flying somewhere like Indonesia that’s prone to natural disasters, check that these aren’t excluded in case you need to cancel your trip. But really, you’re more likely to get hit by travel or baggage delays than anything else. The $1,000 or $1,500 that the best travel insurance policies offer is a good limit on travel delays, but personally I don’t mind lower as long as there are cheap accommodation options near the airport in case I get stranded. Your mileage may vary.

Ease of purchase and claims: Travel insurance should be as hassle-free as possible. Ideally, it’s something you can purchase online on your phone and claim through a web form with just snapshots of your documents. Also note that some insurance companies take forever and a day to process your claim, while others are willing to commit to a decent time frame, e.g. 10 working days, for settlement.

Looking to buy the cheapest travel insurance? Compare all Singapore travel insurance policies by price and coverage first.

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Best travel insurance for adventurous travellers

  • Etiqa eProtect Travel Basic
  • FWD Premium
  • Aviva Travel Plus
  • American Express My VoyageGuard Essential
  • MSIG TravelEasy Elite
  • UOB Insure & Travel Essential
  • AXA SmartTraveller Essential

 

Travel insurance plan Price for 1 week in ASEAN Medical & emergency coverage Travel inconvenience coverage
Etiqa eProtect Travel Basic $36.50 ($17.89 after 51% off) Medical: $200,000

Evacuation: $1,500,000

PA: $200,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $300

Trip cancellation: $5,000

Item loss/damage: $2,000

FWD Premium $25 ($20 after 20% off) Medical: $200,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $100,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $300

Trip cancellation: $7,500

Item loss/damage: $3,000

Aviva Travel Plus $33.61 ($23.53 after 30% off for MINDEF/MHA policyholder) Medical: $2,000,000

Evacuation: $2,000,000

PA: $100,000

✔ Pregnancy & childbirth

✔ Adventure activities (add on)

✔ Weddings (add on)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $15,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

✔ Trip cancellation for any reason

American Express My VoyageGuard Essential $37 ($24.05 after 35% off promo) Medical: $500,000

Evacuation: $500,000

PA: $125,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $800

Trip cancellation: $5,000

Item loss/damage: $3,500

MSIG TravelEasy Elite $59 ($29.50 after 50% off) Medical: $500,000

Evacuation: $1,000,000

PA: $200,000

✔ Entertainment / sports tickets

✔ Adventure activities

✔ Weddings

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

UOB Insure & Travel Essential $32 Medical: $300,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Adventure activities except airborne (e.g. skydiving)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $3,000

AXA SmartTraveller Essential $54 ($32.40 after 40% off promo) Medical: $300,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $6,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

Maybe your holiday isn’t complete until you’ve checked out all the dive sites in the vicinity, done some white water rafting, scaled a mountain or two (without a guide, of course) and seen the surroundings from the vantage point of a parachute.

I’ve definitely done one or two of those things and realised only after the trip that it wasn’t covered by my travel insurance. To pick the right plan, look out for the following features.

Activity exclusions: The plans shortlisted in this section are very lenient, but it doesn’t hurt to double check that your planned activities are not excluded from coverage. Find the policy wording on the website, hit Ctrl+F and type in “exclusions”, and read carefully. Even the best travel insurance policies may exclude your next adrenaline rush.

Overseas medical expenses: If you’re going to a place with good healthcare, chances are it’s also expensive, so you’ll want to make sure you have a reasonably high limit for overseas medical expenses – at least $200,000.

Emergency medical evacuation: If you’re going to a place with poor healthcare and would get better treatment back home, make sure that the evacuation limit is high. You’ll want at least $1mil. Yes it sounds high, but there’s no way to tell how much an air ambulance would actually cost. Some basic versions of the best travel insurance plans even have unlimited evacuation, so don’t feel like you need to settle for less!

Emergency assistance services: Ideally, you should buy from an insurance company that’s well-known for its emergency assistance services. Believe it or not, some don’t even have a 24-hour emergency hotline!

Heading on an exciting overseas adventure? Compare all Singapore travel insurance policies by price and coverage first.

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Best travel insurance for expensive trips & gear

  • FWD Premium
  • Allianz Global Assistance Bronze
  • Aviva Travel Plus
  • MSIG TravelEasy Elite
  • UOB Insure & Travel Essential
Travel insurance plan Price for 1 week in ASEAN Medical & emergency coverage Travel inconvenience coverage
FWD Premium $25 ($20 after 20% off) Medical: $200,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $100,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $300

Trip cancellation: $7,500

Item loss/damage: $3,000

Allianz Global Assistance Bronze $40 ($22 after 45% off with promo code any45ms) Medical: $400,000

Evacuation: $500,000

PA: $35,000

Delays: $1,500

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $7,000

Aviva Travel Plus $33.61 ($23.53 after 30% off for MINDEF/MHA policyholder) Medical: $2,000,000

Evacuation: $2,000,000

PA: $100,000

✔ Pregnancy & childbirth

✔ Adventure activities (add on)

✔ Weddings (add on)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $15,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

✔ Trip cancellation for any reason

MSIG TravelEasy Elite $59 ($29.50 after 50% off) Medical: $500,000

Evacuation: $1,000,000

PA: $200,000

✔ Entertainment / sports tickets

✔ Adventure activities

✔ Weddings

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

UOB Insure & Travel Essential $32 Medical: $300,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Adventure activities except airborne (e.g. skydiving)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $3,000

Many Singaporeans get very hung up on things like travel delay benefits because these are cash payouts rather than reimbursements. i.e. you can “make money” from your travel insurance. But in truth, travel inconvenience benefits aren’t all that important if you’re going on a relatively cheap trip and if you’re only travelling around the region.

However, if you’re going on a blowout trip, like if you’ve saved for an entire year to see the Northern Lights and are bringing along thousands of dollars’ worth of camera equipment, then you’d better make sure you don’t lose all that money! Here’s what you should prioritise when looking for the best travel insurance.

Trip cancellation: You’ll want to get your hard-earned money back if the trip is cancelled or postponed for reasons beyond your control. A healthy limit would range from $7,500 to $10,000 – adjust depending on how much you expect to spend on flights, accommodation and tours. Also, make sure that terrorism and natural disasters are covered (and to what extent).

Baggage loss/damage: If you’re travelling with expensive items like camera gear, insure your belongings by looking for an overall limit of $5,000 or more if possible. Check the item sublimits to make sure you can claim at least $1,000 for a laptop and $500 per item. And be sure to hoard your receipts, or you won’t be able to prove your items’ value. Even the best travel insurance policies still require some form of proof for your claims.

Travel & baggage delays: Honestly not really crucial, but it’s nice to have a cash payout to offset the cost of an extra night’s stay especially in a place where accommodation is expensive.

Don’t risk compromising your expensive holiday! Compare all Singapore travel insurance policies by price and coverage first.

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Best travel insurance for pregnancy & pre-existing medical conditions

When it comes to the best travel insurance for pregnant people, there really isn’t much choice. The same thing is true of travel insurance for pre-existing conditions. As a result, we’re combining both categories into one table.

Best travel insurance for pregnancy:

  • Aviva Travel Plus

Best travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions:

  • Sompo TravelJoy Deluxe
  • Sompo GO Japan! (for Japan only)
  • NTUC Enhanced PreX Basic (medical coverage only) or Superior (includes travel delay/cancellation)
Travel insurance plan Price for 1 week in ASEAN Medical & emergency coverage Travel inconvenience coverage
Aviva Travel Plus $33.61 ($23.53 after 30% off for MINDEF/MHA policyholder) Medical: $2,000,000

Evacuation: $2,000,000

PA: $100,000

✔ Pregnancy & childbirth

✔ Adventure activities (add on)

✔ Weddings (add on)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $15,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

✔ Trip cancellation for any reason

Sompo TravelJoy Deluxe $49 ($26.95 after 45% off promo) Medical: $300,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Pre-existing medical conditions (evacuation only)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $6,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

Sompo GO Japan! Japan: $88 ($48.40 after 45% off promo) Medical: $500,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Pre-existing medical conditions (evacuation only)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $6,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

✔ Travel assistance hotline

✔ Cashless payment at 740 clinics/hospitals

NTUC Enhanced PreX $81 (Basic) or $107 (Superior) Medical & evacuation expenses due to pre-existing condition: $150,000

All other medical: $500,000

All other evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $200,000

✔ Pre-existing medical conditions

Delays: $1,500

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $12,500

✔ Pre-existing medical conditions (only for Superior plan)

If you’re travelling while pregnant or with a pre-existing medical condition, note that most insurance companies will NOT cover anything that happens as a result of your condition. Your options are pretty limited, but there are a couple of good ones out there.

General exclusions & conditions: To check if a policy covers pregnancy or pre-existing medical conditions, find the policy wording on the website, hit Ctrl+F and type in “exclusions”, and read carefully.

Medical & evacuation expenses: Note that conditions may apply. For example, Sompo’s plans only allow you to claim evacuation. So if your pre-existing medical condition strikes, you have to be sent home – you can’t seek treatment overseas. And NTUC’s PreX plans have an overall cap on how much you can claim for pre-existing condition-related benefits.

Emergency assistance services: The service of the insurance company matters more than ever if you have a condition that could get life-threatening, such as asthma or heart disease. Fortunately the brands offering the best travel insurance coverage are reputable ones.

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Best travel insurance for emergency travel assistance services:

  • Allianz Global Assistance Bronze
  • American Express My VoyageGuard Essential (provided by Chubb)
  • AXA SmartTraveller Essential
  • AIG Travel Guard Enhanced
  • Sompo GO Japan! (for Japan only)
Travel insurance plan Price for 1 week in ASEAN Medical & emergency coverage Travel inconvenience coverage
Allianz Global Assistance Bronze $40 ($22 after 45% off with promo code any45ms) Medical: $400,000

Evacuation: $500,000

PA: $35,000

Delays: $1,500

Trip cancellation: $10,000

Item loss/damage: $7,000

American Express My VoyageGuard Essential $37 ($24.05 after 35% off promo) Medical: $500,000

Evacuation: $500,000

PA: $125,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $800

Trip cancellation: $5,000

Item loss/damage: $3,500

AXA SmartTraveller Essential $54 ($32.40 after 40% off promo) Medical: $300,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Adventure activities

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $6,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

AIG Travel Guard Enhanced Ranges from $33 to $39 Medical: $200,000

Evacuation: $500,000

PA: $100,000

✔ Adventure activities except airborne (e.g. skydiving)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $5,000

Item loss/damage: $3,000

Sompo GO Japan! Japan: $88 ($48.40 after 45% off promo) Medical: $500,000

Evacuation: Unlimited

PA: $250,000

✔ Pre-existing medical conditions (evacuation only)

Delays: $1,000

Trip cancellation: $6,000

Item loss/damage: $5,000

✔ Travel assistance hotline

✔ Cashless payment at 740 clinics/hospitals

When buying travel insurance, you should know that your insurance provider is not always the one providing emergency assistance.

In fact, most insurance providers take care only of financial matters like compensating you for your medical bills. They may take your phone call when you dial the emergency hotline, but when it comes to actually rendering aid and dispatching a rescue team? This part is often handed over to a third-party travel assistance or emergency assistance service provider like ISOS.

That’s why those who are super experienced – i.e. have actually gone through emergencies – are often willing to pay more for certain insurance brands. Allianz, Chubb, AXA and AIG are the best travel insurance providers that either run or are closely aligned with travel assistance outfits and are therefore known for good (and prompt!) emergency assistance.

For Japan trips, Sompo’s tie-up with Emergency Assistance Japan for its GO Japan! Plan. You can call EAJ for English or Chinese support in Japan, and they will handle all kinds of requests from making medical appointments to lodging police reports to translating menus.

Don’t just look at emergency assistance options! Compare all Singapore travel insurance policies by price and coverage first.

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Did we miss out your go-to travel insurance? Let us know in the comments.

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Clara Lim

I used to be MoneyDumb. I hung out at H&M every day and thought that a $50 lunch set was a good deal. These days, I spend my time researching the crap out of life and trying to maximise utility on micro-decisions. I'm not sure if that's an improvement.