On Call International

R.D., San Jose, CA


Unbelievable service . . . all bad. My wife needed to be medevac from Lhasa, Tibet, after an emergency appendectomy. The hospital was filthy, the operating room was not sterile, everything was really below 3rd world. We had a $1,00,000 medical repatriation policy that they were supposed to be servicing. OnCall delayed, always had a form they wanted filled out, every excuse in the world. Lhasa is at 12,000 ft and she developed altitude sickness and infections because they kept not flying her out. One excuse was that the airplane would have to fly too high and that would be bad for her . . . guess they never heard of cabin pressurization. Another excuse was that it was a holiday in Japan. Better issue those people some maps. We decided that On Call would rather send a body home than a live person.

Luckily we had a small $100,000 policy with Travel Guard through our travel agent. We called them and she was flown out to Chengdu, China the next day (altitude 1,640 ft.) . Travel Guard paid the hospital fees in Chendu ($5,000) when On Call couldn't figure out how to do it. After another 10 days there she was finally released to fly home. On Call was supposed to make the reservations, but failed again so our travel agent, Travco, had to do it for them and ask them for their credit card. She finally flew out on the direct Chengdu to SFO flight.

A week after she got home they called to see if she had arrived. Incompetent, poorly trained ladies in NH answer the phone . . . if you are lucky. When you buy travel insurance, ask who answers the phone. In many cases, it is the low-cost and low-performance vendor which is OnCall. Most travel insurance companies are only brokers and really only exist to accept your paperwork and pay what they want.

My wife wrote a book about the experience, "If something should happen" that is available on Amazon and set up a website something did happen.com to make sure others don't have the same experience.