Thailand Considering Making Travel Insurance Mandatory

People looking to stay at a Family resort in Koh Samui or head for anywhere in Thailand might be forced to get compulsory travel insurance the moment they set foot on the country’s soil.

The Office of Insurance Commission recently forwarded legislation that would mandate any travellers heading into the country to pay a 20-baht (52p) premium at airports, which will, in turn, go towards going into a fund aimed at providing cover in the case of death, up to a million baht (҄£26,000).

The legislation is currently waiting for approval from the Tourism and Sports Ministry, upon which it’ll be forwarded to the cabinet. The idea behind it is to provide confidence and peace of mind to foreign visitors who travel to Thailand, to assuage the fears that have cropped up following a couple of incidents involving tourists.

Axa Travel Insurance Head Nel Mooy stated that, should the bill come to pass, travellers should still get their own policy to cover them, as the mandated policy doesn’t cover injuries and illnesses, while a typical care allowance with standard insurers are usually capable of covering around £15million.

Ney Mooy notes how important it is to have insurance to ensure that travellers have medical care coverage, as medical expenses in foreign countries can be quite expensive, pointing to the recent incident where they had to pay a claim worth £164,000 for a British tourist that got caught in a road traffic accident.

Travellers, she warns, need to make sure that their insurance also covers more than their stay in a Family resort in Koh Samui or wherever; as it should also cover the activities that they’ll be engaging in during their stay in another country, like scuba diving or rafting, for example. She also recommended that tourists spending their holidays in foreign countries get a travel policy in their homeland, no matter what, as those policies can cover more than just medical expenses, like cancellations, delays, loss of luggage, and other incidents. In her words, it is simply a must have.

Admiral Travel Insurance noted how one in four UK travellers leave the country without ensuring they have the relevant cover, which is problematic given that medical bills can easily stretch into the thousands. The travel association, Abta, believes that one in every five people travel without insurance.