Travel Insurance 1013 min read
If you consider travel insurance to be an extra unnecessary expense, you’re not alone. Travel insurance has a bad rep around the world, with most people lamenting over paying for something they probably won’t end up needing.
However, life’s full of unexpected events – and those events don’t need to be catastrophic to ruin a trip. You never know when you or a family member might get sick or hurt, or when a flight will be cancelled (which as you probably know, happens a lot)—and it can end up costing you a lot of money.
Additionally, some aren’t aware of the different types of travel insurance that are available. If you’re not sure what type of insurance is right for you, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you get started:
There are different types of policies that one can purchase if they want medical coverage. The most basic is the medical/health policy, which covers any medical and dental expenses in the event that you (or a family member) is injured or gets sick during a trip. With this policy, you’ll also be covered for medical evacuation, which comes in handy if you need to be transported by ambulance, helicopter, etc. to a medical facility during an emergency.
Travelers have the option to purchase accidental death and dismemberment as well, which means a beneficiary will receive a set payment in the event of death or disablement, similar to life insurance. This policy covers your entire trip, from the moment your plane takes off to the time it lands back at home.
If you plan on living internationally for a period of time, you may want to purchase international health insurance. Under this policy, you and your family members will gain access to medical coverage in various locations around the world.
Trip protection ensures that you don’t have to pay extra or lose money in the event that your trip is delayed or cancelled. Similar to medical coverage, there are a few different policies that fall under this type of protection.
If you have to cancel your trip because you or a family member is sick or dies, cancellation coverage ensures you get reimbursed for any prepaid expenses.
Delay coverage will cover any expenses that result from delayed transportation. If your flight is postponed due to bad weather and you have to stay in a hotel for a few nights, this policy ensures you get your money back for the hotel.
The final type of coverage you can buy is trip interruption protection, which will cover your trip if its cut short for reasons such as illness, bad weather, airline strike, and more.
Additionally, some travel insurance companies might include baggage protection within their trip cancellation policy. In any case, always read the fine print so you know what type of coverage you’ll get in a variety of circumstances. Many types of trip protection policies can be purchased for a single vacation, but frequent travelers might want to buy it for the year so they’ll be covered for multiple trips.
Car Rental Protection
This policy covers your rental car in case of an accident. Do note that some auto insurance companies cover car rentals as well; you may want to see if your insurance company offers car rental protection and what the policy covers.
Students and faculty studying abroad may want to consider purchasing an international student health plan for their travels. This will give them access to medical care for any circumstance, from emergencies to preventive care visits.
When choosing a travel insurance agency, look for one that covers everything you might need and more. Travel health insurance plans through GeoBlue Travel Insurance, for example, include wide-coverage for a number of events, provides access to 24/7 global medical assistance, and will even help re-issue lost passports or airline tickets.
Just as you never know what might happen at home, the same is true for when you travel. In the end, it’s better to know that you’ll get the care you need, without having to dig deep into your pockets.
Photo from The Telegraph.