Today, you can insure almost everything. Standard insurance products include offerings for household effects, private liability, car, legal protection, travel assistance, valuables and fine art, life, or a directors and officers’ liability insurance. Most of these insurance products are similar across different countries, meaning comprehensive coverage is generally easy to find. If this is not the case, a sales representative from an insurer or an independent insurance broker will be able to assist you to find a suitable solution for your coverage needs.

However, it is important to choose an advisor you can trust, as advisors have access to private and confidential information of their clients and discretion is of utmost importance. The last thing you want to be common news is your ownership of a high-value artwork or prized family jewels.

As a global citizen, there are two types of insurance cover that may be of particular interest, which we shall explore here in a bit more detail.

Kidnap and Ransom Insurance

In some countries, kidnapping is a serious issue for wealthy families. Sometimes, kidnapped persons are brought home on the same day if the criminals receive their requested ransom. High net worth individuals (HNWIs) are susceptible to criminal and kidnap risks; however, these days, more and more victims are coming from middle-class populations. Increasingly, kidnap targets tend to be youths and students, as parents are highly likely to pay ransoms.

Although a client may afford to pay a ransom, there are other costs involved with such an event, including the costs of crisis management and legal advice, which is why HNWIs should consider this type of insurance. To hire Rambo is not the best advice in such a situation; professional negotiation teams with skills and experience, as well as discretion, are most important — and don’t come cheaply. Kidnap and ransom insurance providers tend to provide 24-hour access to qualified crisis management teams and can conceptualize a communication strategy, liaise with local police and public authorities, and organize wide-ranging assistance for relatives.

International Health Insurance

Global citizens are usually financially independent but often have little time to review their insurance situation. Tax planning, citizenship and residence planning, real estate, investment counseling and the like all sound much more interesting and important than health insurance, which is frequently forgotten about, until one falls ill or is involved in an accident.

A low coverage health insurance plan often has a similar marketing premium to a high coverage plan; however, the two options offer vastly different protection. Furthermore, differences will also be noted with respect to service experience when claiming, and general responsiveness to queries. In fact, in the long run, a low coverage plan tends to be more expensive, as there will be a notable gap between the coverage and the service a client gets from the insurance provider. That is why it is important to remember that there is much more to consider than simply premium payments when evaluating health insurance coverage — premium payment is only the tip of the iceberg.

Reputable international health insurance coverage can even be the difference between life and death, because in an emergency you may need rapid intervention and – again – an experienced team at hand to rush you to the best medical care available at a critical time and sometimes in remote locations. Having this protection allows you also to seek medical counsel from the best specialists and hospitals. Furthermore, certain treatments are only possible in particular countries, and sometimes only via the arrangement of a specialized insurer, and international health insurance offers global solutions. In this regard, it is important to understand your coverage rights, especially when it comes to worldwide treatments and free choice of doctor and hospital. This is even more relevant as the rise of medical tourism is giving fuel to the trend of persuading clients to select cheaper country/clinic options even when they do not necessarily have to (based on their available coverage).

There are other variables to consider when selecting an international health plan, including online claims experience, coverage exclusions and limits, and risk factors for younger or older people. For younger clients, it is advisable to confirm a decent policy as soon as possible, as the later you join the more likely an insurer will refuse coverage or include restrictive exclusions within the plan. Younger clients should also note that while heart disease and cancer diagnosis are more common for senior citizens, young clients are more likely to be afflicted with respiratory issues, digestive disorders, back and muscle pains, and mental disorder, and should ensure sufficient coverage for these.

Often clients prefer to select a cheaper international insurance because they may have another health insurance plan in their home country. However, as a global citizen, opting for a low international premium — and thus low coverage — is not advisable. Two low-cover health insurance plans cannot replace one good plan: it is best to choose a reputable international cover instead of placing your reliance on a local plan. When in doubt, it is worthwhile to obtain further opinions and advice, so that you get the best solution for your needs – which may well be also to simply have a really good local plan where you are mainly based. Important is just that the options are clearly understood, and likewise what happens in a real emergency and for advice on the best healthcare when needed, which is where an experienced international health insurance consultant can play an important and sometimes even critical role.