Subscription Modal Banner
Weekly newsletter subscription
Get SingSaver’s top tips and deals, plus an exclusive free guide to investing, sent straight to your inbox.

I agree to the terms and conditions and agree to receive relevant marketing content according to the privacy policy.

Success Tick Icon
Congratulations on successfully joining Singsaver Newsletter

Which is Better: Individual Or Group Travel Insurance?

Alevin Chan

Alevin Chan

Last updated 14 December, 2022

Individual travel plans cost more than group plans, but offer more customizability. Here are three things to consider when deciding between individual or group travel insurance

Travel insurance policies are offered in two configurations – one for individuals, and one for groups or families. 

As you’d expect, individual travel insurance only covers one person, whereas group plans offer coverage to several persons at once. 

And in case you’re wondering, family plans are simply another name for group travel insurance. Some insurers don’t even require the insured persons to be related, but there are others who offer more family-oriented benefits and market them as family plans.

At their core, both individual plans and groups plans work the same way, offering the same scope of coverage and benefits. However, there are some crucial differences in the way both work, which can make choosing one over another not as straightforward as initially expected.

Let’s dive in for a closer look. 

Read these next:
Travel Insurance Plans For Stolen/Lost Phones
Claim Up to S$1,000 on Camera Equipment With Travel Insurance
Top 3 Things Travel Insurance Should Cover (And How Much)
Best Types Of Travel Insurance Plans For Each Trip

At a glance: Individual travel insurance vs group travel insurance

Individual policy

Group policy

Higher cost per person

Lower cost per person 

Full policy limit available to each individual

All insured persons share one policy limit 

Offers more customizability, eg pre-existing conditions, adventure cover etc

Less flexibility, may not fit all group members 

Cost per person

Perhaps the strongest factor in group travel insurance’s favour is the potential for lower cost per person. This is due to insurers applying a bulk discount for group policies, or alternatively, allowing you to include family members at no extra charge. 

In this way, group insurance brings down the cost of insuring each person, often ending up cheaper than travel insurance plans for individuals. 

In comparison, individual travel insurance policies usually cost more per person than a group plan – even if the benefits and coverage are similar across both plans. 

Policy limit

The undeniable advantage of getting a single travel policy is the entire policy limit is available to each individual. That’s to say, if your plan offers S$300,000 in overseas hospital benefits, the entire sum is reserved to meet your needs. 

In a group policy, while each person may be entitled to a stipulated benefit, there is also an overall policy limit imposed. This can drastically reduce the benefit received by each person. 

Here’s an example, purely for illustration:

Source: Direct Asia


The screenshot above shows Direct Asia’s Family Travel Plan’s benefits offered for overseas medical coverage and medical expenses upon returning to Singapore.

Notice that while the lowest tier of the plan offers up to S$150,000 coverage per adult or child, this is stymied by a limit of S$375,000 for the entire family. 

This is equivalent to 2.5x of the limit accorded to each person, which means that if three or more persons in your travel group requires medical attention, the maximum coverage available to each person shrinks to only a portion of the individual limit.

It’s important to stress that this doesn’t necessarily pose a problem, as not every traveller may require the same scope or type of treatment, even if multiple persons meet with injury. 

Still, it is worth noting that because of policy-wide limits, there is a higher potential of a gap in coverage when faced with extreme situations, and this risk increases when more persons are included in the group.

This can be somewhat ameliorated by choosing a higher-tier plan. For instance, going up one level in Direct Asia’s plan will bump up the family limit to S$500,000, allowing more breathing room. 

Another tip is to limit the number of persons included in each policy, splitting up the entire group over two or more policies as necessary. In the same vein, some insurers impose a maximum limit per group policy. 


Individual plans have got group plans beat for this one. 

Travel groups may comprise travellers with different needs, whether due to:

  • Age – older travellers may require higher coverage, compared to younger adults and children 
  • Health statuses – some travellers may require coverage for pre-existing conditions
  • Schedules – some friends may want to extend their trip 
  • Preferences – not all may want to go bungee jumping 

As such, a single group travel plan may not be able to satisfy all travellers, and trying to fit everyone into a group policy may inadvertently create problems.

Choosing a plan based on common needs only will mean some group members could only be partially covered. Going the other direction and attempting to cover every activity and need may require the group to pay for coverage and benefits that are not necessary across the board, which means wasting money. 

These issues can be neatly avoided by simply going for individual travel policies that are tailored to each traveller’s needs and preferences. This way, every person pays only for the coverage they want. 

Individual or group travel insurance – which is better?

Both individual and group travel plans have their benefits and drawbacks. 

A group policy can help you save money, but are better suited to highly homogenous travel groups. On the other hand, individual policies cost more, but offer a closer fit for each person travelling with you. 

We say, don’t sweat it. When in doubt, prioritise coverage over cost. The difference in premiums is likely to be minor, and ultimately not worth agonising over. 

Read these next:
Best Covid-19 Travel Insurance Plans (2022)
Best Travel Insurance for Travellers with Pre-Existing Conditions
Best Types Of Travel Insurance Plans For Each Trip
Here Are the Best Family Travel Insurance Plans in 2022

An ex-Financial Planner with a curiosity about what makes people tick, Alevin’s mission is to help readers understand the psychology of money. He’s also on an ongoing quest to optimise happiness and enjoyment in his life.