A simples guide

Travel insurance for visiting India

Planning your trip to India can be bamboozling. There’s just so much to do – making sure you have a visa, getting the right sized photo for it (you’ll need a square picture not the usual passport shaped one), packing enough hand sanitiser and (of course) something to quell your tummy should you succumb to the dreaded ‘Delhi belly’.


But there’s one thing that you might overlook that’s possibly the one thing you really should do – and that’s book your travel insurance

Do I need travel insurance for India?

You should always make sure you have travel and medical insurance when you go away and India is not a destination to forget it for. Always check that your policy will cover you for emergencies as well as flights back home if you suddenly need to return because of illness. 

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What should I think about when choosing India travel insurance?

India’s more than ten times bigger than the UK so there’s plenty to see and do, so make sure you’ve got cover for all eventualities. Think carefully about what you might be getting up to; India’s a great place for exploring whether you choose to go trekking, white water rafting or even go on an elephant ride. But some of these activities could be considered risky by some insurers so check exactly what your policy covers, or more specifically, what you need it to cover.

You’ll also need to make sure that whatever travel insurance to India you choose, sufficiently covers you for theft or loss of your belongings. Think about what you carry around with you on a daily basis – your smartphone, jewellery, the contents of your purse or wallet then add to that everything that you might pack in your suitcase. Don’t underestimate what it might cost you to replace all your clothes, toiletries and any electricals you bring along like your tablet, laptop or even hair straighteners.

Think carefully about medical cover, you won’t get what you’re used to at home when you’re thousands of miles away in India. If you do become ill and need treatment, you’ll probably end up in a private hospital where costs can be high so always protect yourself. Make sure you’re covered by your travel insurance from India to the UK if you do need to come back. Check in advance whether your insurance policy will pay doctors and hospitals directly or reimburse you later and make sure you keep all documentation for your claim.

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Helpful tips...

It’s a long way away so you’ll want to be prepared – we’ve put together this list of helpful tips to make your trip as smooth as possible:

Visa: If you’re a British citizen and you’re visiting India solely for a holiday (this includes visiting friends and relatives) then you can apply for an eTourist visa (or eTV). You’ll need to make sure your passport has at least two blank pages (for your visa going in and coming out) and it should also be valid for at least six months from the date you arrive in India. There are some exceptions so always check first.

Currency: The Indian rupee is the official currency (₹ or R)

Language: There are 23 official languages but Hindi is the most spoken (around 40% of the population speak it). English is also widely spoken.

Tipping: Tipping is welcomed and as a tourist you’ll probably be regarded as wealthy. In restaurants, tipping 10% of your bill is a good start, if you’ve been particularly impressed with service then it’s at your discretion how much more you give. Taxi drivers won’t expect tips unless you’ve made unscheduled stops. If you’re using a guide or driver, then it’s entirely down to you what you choose (and can afford) to give.

Once you’ve ticked off your visa you can then start with the real planning and that includes your comprehensive India travel insurance. That’s where we can help you. We think we’re pretty good at comparing the market and we’re confident that we can help you find the best travel insurance to India to suit your needs; so sit back and let us do the searching for you.

Won’t I need lots of vaccines and isn’t tummy trouble inevitable?

Not necessarily and no, the infamous Delhi belly is not obligatory. You should always speak to your doctor at least one month before you go to discuss what you might need and to make sure you’re fighting fit. You may be advised to have Hepatitis A, Tetanus and Typhoid vaccines, they are usually free on the NHS.

If you’re shunning the usual resorts, then you might need a few extra jabs just to be on the safe side. And if you’re intending to venture into the wilds, you should definitely speak to your GP before turning yourself into a human pincushion.

As for dodgy tummies, if you take a few simple precautions, you shouldn’t have any trouble. It’s just about being a little bit careful about where you buy food from, checking it’s cooked thoroughly and making sure your hands are clean – which let’s be honest, are things you should be doing even when choosing your Friday night takeaway.

There’s only one thing you absolutely need to be careful of and that’s tap water – never drink it unless it’s boiled, avoid ice cubes and salads and fruit if they’ve been washed in tap water. Basically if it’s not boiled, cooked or peeled by your own fair hands, leave it (you’ll thank us later).

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