Do I Need Travel Insurance?
No matter what you might think at the moment, travel insurance is mandatory for traveling. It can considerably minimize financial risks associated with traveling, like illness, canceled tours, accidents, theft, emergency evacuation and theft.
Every single situation is different when traveling. The money that you can lose when something bad happens varies from case to case but this is not the only thing that matters.
We also have to understand the fact that without travel insurance, it can be close to impossible to deal with health costs associated with numerous types of accidents and illnesses. We simply have to travel just with travel insurance, especially when going to another country.
There are countless travel insurance packages that you can opt for. They usually cost between 5% and 12% of the trip’s total value. Price is normally affected by price the most, together with other factors.
The travel agents always recommend getting travel insurance and this is definitely the best thing possible. The agents will offer advice and information to listen to.
Just remember the fact that there are insurance packages, like trip-cancellation coverage, applied as reimbursement-only. This means you pay for the expenses and then submit paperwork for the insurer to give you back the money. Always be careful with this type of coverage.
Travel Insurance Coverage Types
There are many things that can be said about travel insurance policies and types. Everything mentioned below should be seen as a guideline. It is always possible that things are different with the policy you get.
Always know everything about what is included and what is not included.
This is highly useful for any traveler. Canceling or interrupting prepaid travel is expensive. For just a small fraction of the entire cost you can remove the risk associated with losing money when a trip is canceled.
The highly-experienced travelers usually avoid getting trip-cancellation insurance since they are 100% sure that nothing will cancel their plans. The problem is that you cannot actually control everything that leads to trip-cancellation.
The standard interruption insurance policy or trip cancellation policy includes nonrefundable financial losses or penalties incurred as prepaid flights or tours are canceled due to acceptable reasons, like:
- A person traveling cannot do so because of death, layoff, sickness and many other acceptable reasons.
- A member of the family gets sick at home and you have to get back home.
- The airline or tour company cannot perform the promised service or goes out of business.
- You need a fast emergency flight or you missed a flight due to reasons you cannot control, like a strike, weather problems or car accident.
Simply put, if you or any of your travel partners break a leg just days before the trip, everyone can bail out, as long as everyone is insured. You just do not lose all the money that you paid. Also, if you have an accident on day one of the trip, you get reimbursed for some of the remaining tour.
There are numerous situations that might or might not be covered. You need to know exactly what is covered when you get the trip cancellation insurance.
An alternative is to get the “any reason” policy. This will offer around 75% percent reimbursement no matter the reason why you cancel your trip. However, this does involve a higher premium.
Always check with the medical insurer before you get such an insurance policy. This is because something might already be covered by the health plan you have. There are numerous US insurers that do offer oversea coverage but not all do. For instance, Medicare does not.
Although the health plan you have does offer international coverage, this does not mean that you should not get an extra medical travel policy.
Medical insurance practically covers medical problems you have when you travel. As before, you have to check what is covered and what is not covered.
When we travel, it is possible that we have really expensive and valuable things with us, like smartphones, laptops, digital cameras and jewelry. This is an investment that has to be protected.
Theft insurance travel coverage is especially useful when we travel with valuable items. However, getting such coverage is not as easy as it might seem.
Remember that the way in which insurance companies determine object value values from one to the next. Be sure that you are aware of this or you might end up with the real value of your items not being covered.
Also, before you leave, you need to take a full inventory of the high-value items that you bring with you. You do this by creating a list of makes, models and serial numbers. You should also take photographs so you have proof. When something is stolen, such information is paramount for the police and the insurance company.
Other Types Of Travel Insurance
Based on your own situation, other types of travel insurance you can consider include:
This covers costs associated with transportation to a location where appropriate medical treatment can be given if an emergency happens. Usually, this is not covered by the medical insurance plan that you have at home. Such coverage can get you back home after an accident happened but usually, it covers getting you to a place where you can be treated.
When luggage is lost, damaged or delayed, this type of travel insurance is activated. Baggage insurance is usually rare to separately buy since it is often included in the comprehensive travel insurance policies. There is also a cap when being reimbursed for items like eyewear, camera equipment, electronics and jewelry.
When you are already covered through the policies of the airline, be aware of limits. If you need more, get baggage insurance as an extra.
This is practically an extra life insurance policy that covers people when flying. However, this is just a rip-off since the plane crashes are really rare. It practically makes no sense to spend money on such travel insurance.
To sum up, there are many different types of travel insurance policies that you can opt for. Some are highly beneficial while others are only good in some specific situations. It is really important that you carefully read policies so that you know what is good for you and what is not.