No Licence, No Cover, Don’t Drive
I know we’ve heard it all before, motor related accidents only happen to other people. Right? Wrong. You’ve been planning that dream trip to Thailand with your sweetheart for a decade now and it’s all about to become a reality.
You’ve bought your tickets, booked your accommodation and taken out medical insurance. You’re good to go. Right? But have you crossed all the T’s and dotted all the I’s? Not all insurance is the same and you have to make sure you know what you’ve signed for.
You also need to read all the small print. You don’t want anything to go wrong. Most important – If you’re wanting to hire a car or motor scooter for a road trip around the kingdom, make sure you’ve got that covered. And while you’re about it, make sure your driver’s licence is all up to date because – No Licence, No Cover!
If you’re not covered in the event of a road accident in Thailand, you could be in a lot more trouble than you’d want to be. Let me tell you a situation that could happen should you decide to rent a scooter and are involved in an accident which lands you up in a hospital with severe head injuries. And more especially if you’re not wearing a helmet like so many locals and foreigners seem to do on Thai roads.
What you’re about to read here, you wouldn’t want to happen to you, your family or friends or anyone else for that matter Not in Thailand. Not anywhere else either. And being away from home will only make the situation even more of a problem.
A motor-related incident can happen with a blink of an eye. An accident can happen when you least expect it. And it can happen faster than you can react. Whether it’s a local or a holidaymaker like yourself, a person can be driving in front of you and then for whatever reason brake suddenly and you slam into your vehicle.
You never know when someone could jump a red light and slam into you. Worse still, you, yourself could make a critical error. But whatever the reason, it’s not going to be a pleasant one.
Now you might be thinking, I have nothing to worry about. (Hopefully, you’re not too badly injured) I have adequate medical travel insurance. I’ll be okay. I’m covered for all eventualities.
But to your horror you then discover that you’re medical aid is not covered in the event of an accident because you forgot to that you were not licensed to drive in a foreign country. You failed to get an international drivers license. All foreign countries require you to have the proper papers in order for you to drive on their roads. You also have to make sure that your medical insurance covers you for this.
So many holidaymakers who visit the South Asian nation have hopped on a motor scooter while there but few know that they need a proper licence. The decision to do what thousands of other tourists do could haunt them when motor accidents happen. And if you are badly injured, your nightmare might only just begin.
Besides the hefty medical bills that follow, if you fail to get a drivers licence, your insurer can refuse to pay. It matters not that you take out medical insurance cover, if you don’t have a licence to drive a scooter or any other mode of transport, the likelihood is your insurer is not liable to cover any hospital costs. Though scooters are Thailand’s most popular form of transport. you still need a licence to drive them.
So now you end up in the hospital and depending on how serious the injuries are, your medical bills come rolling in and they can be substantially high. If you cannot pay, the hospital staff could confiscate your passport to ensure you don’t flee without settling your account. Worse still, the hospital could stop treatment altogether.
Suddenly your dream holiday in paradise can turn into your worst nightmare. What are you going to do? You can’t leave the hospital and you can’t get a job to pay your expenses because you don’t have a work permit in Thailand. The hospital won’t let you leave to go back home and pay the money back later. So what now.
You’re in a real pickle. It’s a big problem. If your family or friends back home cannot help, you could be in deep trouble. You can pray all you like but that’s hardly going to help. Your only other option here could be to try GoFundMe and see if any strangers will help.
It’s certainly not a nice situation to be in and something you wouldn’t wish on anyone. The moral of the story. Make sure that your international driver’s licence is in order before you rent any road going transport in a foreign country and especially in Thailand.