Hazardous Sports Coverage: Who Needs It?

When you apply for a travel medical insurance plan, you may notice an option for Hazardous Sports coverage and wonder “Who needs it?”

Hazardous sports are any activities that are deemed risky by the travel insurance industry because risk equates to higher-than-average rates of injury and/or death. If you are visiting a new country and try out a new sport, your medical costs, evacuation expenses, and even repatriation charges will not be paid by your travel insurance company if the injury or death was the result of your participation in a sport listed as excluded in your travel insurance plan document.

Specifically, if you are at a resort and are offered the chance to go parasailing, you better check your travel insurance documents first. If the winds push you into a building and you suffer serious injury as the result of trying this sport deemed hazardous by your insurance company, you will be paying for your medical costs out of pocket and your claims for reimbursement will be denied.

Most US based comprehensive travel health insurance policies do offer Hazardous Sports Coverage as an optional add on with some extra premium. If you are planning to indulge in some extreme hazardous sports, then you should inquire and select an appropriate policy with the optional Hazardous Sports Coverage.

The following are the hazardous sports excluded from nearly all comprehensive  travel insurance plans – but this is only a partial list.

  • Base jumping
  • Snowboarding
  • Rock climbing
  • Parasailing
  • Snow skiing
  • Water skiing
  • SCUBA diving
  • Hang gliding
  • Paragliding
  • Bungee jumping

And those are just to name a few. New sports are being created all the time, especially at resorts and other tourist destinations.

Must Read: Slideshow: Most Common Adventure Sports and their Risks

Buying a Hazardous Sports Coverage Rider

Hazardous sports can be recreationally based or identified as ‘extreme sports’ so they cover a wide range of activities that are regularly offered to tourists in nearly every country. US-based comprehensive travel medical insurance plans do offer hazardous sports coverage as an optional rider that can be purchased with a slightly higher premium.

If you plan to enjoy a sport on your trip – or think you may  have the opportunity to do so – purchasing this coverage is the only way to be sure your medical, emergency transportation, evacuation, and repatriation costs will be covered by your travel health insurance company.

Travelers who have no inclination to try a sport while they are traveling do not need this coverage. Think carefully, however, about who is going on this trip because if your teenage son or daughter is coming along and they have the chance to try rock climbing on the cruise ship, you may need to purchase the rider for them in order to be safe.

Most elderly parents and regular tourists may not need this coverage. So make sure you make the right selection. Unless you are planning to participate in extreme sports, you do not need to opt for this coverage. Travelers planning on participating in adventurous hiking or mountain climbing should considering purchasing Mountaineering Insurance. If you have any additional questions, email us at support@visitorscoverage.com.

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