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Post Covid Travel Insurance Trends: A Survey by ICICI Lombard

Indians begin travel post-pandemic but with caution. More mindful about buying travel insurance for their trips. USA, Europe top travel destinations.

  • 14 Sep 2022
  • min read
  • 184 views

The pandemic has altered many of our behaviours, especially how we travel. With the COVID-19 lockdown extending for nearly a year, most travellers found their options limited, which has changed their outlook on travel. People are more careful with travel, but they want to travel.

Now more than ever, travellers are researching their destinations before leaving and looking to the travel industry for directions. Where can they go? Is the current situation safe? Are the COVID protocols followed? In response, travel companies worldwide have found themselves emphasising cleaning protocols, allowing more flexibility in itineraries, waiving off cancelling/rescheduling fees, and keeping travellers updated on changing regulations. 

To find out more, ICICI Lombard, a leading travel insurance provider in India, recently conducted a survey to understand the mindset changes regarding travel post the pandemic. The reports show notable differences in travelling behaviour across age groups, demographics, the reasons for travel and travel destinations.

 

The survey also revealed that over half of respondents plan to travel post the pandemic, and over 94% will purchase travel insurance for their trip -giving rise to a new breed of 'safety-first' travellers.

 

As travel continues to evolve, here are the broad travel trends that we'd possibly witness in the post-corona era:

Most popular travel destinations post pandemic

USA, Canada and Europe most sought-after international travel destinations by Indians post Omicron

travel destination

Older age groups are travelling closer to home as compared to youngsters

Older age group prefer destinations closer to home

Most common reason for travel post pandemic

Travelling for business (1.2x) and medical (2x) reasons increased while dropped for education/ holiday trips

Most common reasons for travel post pandemic

Younger age group mostly travelling for education while older age group for holiday and business

Younger age group mostly travelling for education

Emergence of 'safety-first' travellers

Indians become more self-conscious towards buying travel insurance



Before the pandemic, even though the awareness of travel insurance policies was 76%, only 50% purchased a travel insurance policy unless not mandatory. 

But this attitude has changed significantly since the outbreak of the virus. Today 90% of people are concerned about their health while travelling. This has increased the number of people purchasing travel insurance from 50% to 76%.

Awareness on availing travel insurance policy on international trip:

Pre-pandemic - 76%  
Post pandemic - 90%

More Indians buying travel insurance post pandemic

Travel insurance purchase behaviour 

Post pandemic, 64% - travellers consciously searched for a travel insurance before their international trip vs 54% - travellers in the pre pandemic years. Only 22% bought as it was “mandatory with flight ticket”.

Travel insurance purchase behaviour

Since travellers are now aware of the risk of not being covered, travel insurance becomes as essential and, in some cases, as necessary as having a valid passport. The demand for pandemic coverage has also led the insurance industry to create new products to meet those needs.

Today an international travel insurance plan typically covers medical expenses for COVID-19, trip protection & baggage coverage, emergency medical care & evacuation. These policies also include coverage of trip interruption and delay coverage if the policyholder contracts COVID-19 while travelling.
As people resume travelling again, armed with vaccinations and travel insurance policies, Covid coverage is the key reason for buying travel insurance for most respondents.


Travel insurance as necessary as a valid passport

Post covid, medical expenses including Covid coverage no.1 reason to buy travel insurance 

Reasons to buy travel insurance

In conclusion

People's outlook while travelling abroad have changed significantly post the Covid-19 virus outbreak. The pandemic has driven travel insurance from a commodity to a necessity. Customers have intentionally started seeking out travel insurance to remain covered in case of any unfortunate events during their trip. Both awareness and adoption to opt for travel insurance has increased significantly post-pandemic.

Covid coverage is the critical benefit travellers seek while looking for travel insurance – not just medical coverage but even for non-medical coverage such as hotel & trip extension. Post pandemic, the future of travel will include reassuring these ‘cautious’ travellers in many ways. Just as 9/11 changed air travel measures worldwide, the pandemic is making travellers more mindful of health & hygiene protocols during their trips abroad.

Also read:

  • travel medical insurance abroad
  • travel insurance information
  • travel insurance
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