The Schengen area is made up of twenty six countries, twenty two of which fall under the European Union (EU) and four of which fall under the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). This was done in the year 2001 when the Schengen agreements came into place to help create a better environment for the flow of people and good within the countries that shared a common border. It allowed people to explore and travel more freely without having to go through the procedure of customs multiple times. All together it helped ease the rules and regulations and made for a more conducive environment.
The requirement for travel insurance for Schengen visa was done with the main aim by the European Embassy to ensure that the travelers should be financially protected and covered while visiting Europe so as to be able to face any unexpected event that called for expenses that had not been anticipated for. It helped them travel more comfortably and enjoy their trip more without having anything to worry about. This was not just for travellers or business professionals but also for students going to Europe to get an education degree. Like others they also have the facility of getting student travel insurance online.
The European embassy has taken out a list of 110 countries, nationalities and passport holders of whom have to have visa before they can enter the Schengen area. Apart from the visa, they are also supposed to have travel insurance for the visa to be accepted. If for any reason the visa is rejected, then the amount of money of the insurance that is reimbursed depends upon company to company and should be checked beforehand. Only nationals and passport holders of visa-free third countries are exempted from having a travel insurance plan but even for them it is most definitely recommended.
Some of the countries that do require a visa are – India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Iran, Kuwait, South Africa, Ghana, Kenya, Bhutan, Bolivia, Indonesia, Syria, Russia, Qatar, Haiti and Central African Republic.
There are a lot of insurance companies that provide international travel insurance but the one that is recommended by the Embassy are MAWISTA Visum by ALLIANZ WorldWide. It is very affordable and it is accepted across all the Schengen countries. They cancel the insurance free of charge provided a proof of the visa being rejected is presented to them. The cost of the insurance primarily depends upon the duration of travel, the number of people travelling and their age. It is however not necessary to go for an insurance plan that gives 0 EUR deductibles.
The requirements for the Schengen visa insurance are:
- A minimum coverage of at least 50,000 USD which is equivalent to 30,000 EUR.
- The insurance should cover all the member states that make up the Schengen area.
- Coverage against any expense that might be related to repatriation for medical reasons, emergency hospitalization and treatment, urgent attention to health and cases of death.
Apart from these above requirements the cost that an insurance policy for Europe must cover is:
- Trip cancellation
- Trip interruption
- Emergency evacuation
- Return of minor
- Accidental death or injury
- Lost, stolen or damaged luggage
- Lost or stolen travel documents
- Travels delays because of the weather
These are just few of the factors but there are many more. A research should be done before investing in a policy. Like every policy these also have certain restrictions and events that they do not cover and these should be made a note of before embarking on a European sojourn.