Travel Insurance
Posted By Karthik

Limited vs Comprehensive Insurance – Which is Better?


Traveling to the US? Have you bought your travel insurance yet or are you confused between limited and comprehensive plans? If yes, this article is for you.

Buying travel insurance is no longer a choice but a necessity, given that uncertainties while travelling have increased in recent years, not only due to higher incidents of lost or misplaced baggage but also terrorist threats and rising health problems among younger people.

The key to staying protected against unforeseen mishaps is by arming yourself with a good travel plan. So, here’s a look at the two types of travel insurance available for travelers that you can choose between.

Limited Coverage Plans

Limited coverage travel insurance plans offer basic coverage. In comparison with comprehensive plans, limited coverage plans tend to be less expensive. The benefits and coverage amount in such plans are predefined and fixed for the covered services, also known as the schedule of benefits.

The less expensive, limited coverage plans are a popular choice due to their low premium. However, the coverage offered by such plans may not be sufficient, since they do not usually provide cover for every eventuality you are likely to face while travelling.

In case the costs exceed the fixed amount defined in the limited coverage plan, it becomes the policy holder’s responsibility to bear the expenses. In fact, the policyholder will have to pay a deductible for each injury and sickness, in case they have a limited plan. This means, if they have a plan with a deductible of $50, they’ll have to pay this deductible for every treatment, only after which the insurance coverage will begin.

Comprehensive Coverage Plans

Known to provide more or complete protection, comprehensive coverage plans are slightly more expensive due to their higher premiums. However, they are the most recommended travel insurance plans, since the medical protection offered is better and more extensive.

Comprehensive policies offer percentage-based coverage. This means that the policy will cover certain percentage of the medical bill up to an amount mentioned in the plan. After that, the policy will cover 100% of the medical bills.

A one-time deductible is another benefit that adds to the desirability of comprehensive plans. There is no need to pay the deductible each time you visit a doctor or hospital, when you have a comprehensive plan. You’ll have to pay the deductible only once in the policy.

Trip cancellation, trip interruption, baggage loss or theft, dental treatment, emergency evacuation, 24-hour traveler assistance and accidental death benefits are other common benefits that comprehensive travel insurance plans offer, although they might vary from plan to plan.

In a nutshell, limited coverage plans are best for travelers interested in basic travel medical protection during their visit to the US, However, a comprehensive plan becomes a better choice due to higher benefits and flexible coverage.

Which Plan to Choose: Limited or Comprehensive

I would recommend comprehensive travel insurance when travelling to the US, a country where medical care costs are very high. A limited coverage plan could land you in a financial crisis if you have a medical emergency.

If you are travelling to the US to participate in some strenuous activity, such as adventure sports, you cannot afford not taking a comprehensive plan to stay protected.


Having lived in 3+ countries, worked for companies small and big in USA, Middle East & India, I have a lot of stories to share about international travel, immigration and living as an NRI in the US. Add me on WhatsApp if you have any queries (+001-408-489-4785)

View Comments
There are currently no comments.

Things to carry to USA

Get E-Mail Updates!

You have Successfully Subscribed!