You probably spent months planning your next big trip, ensuring that your passport, itinerary and reservations are all in order. But have you thought about the chance of a sudden trip cancellation due to unforeseen circumstances? If not, you may want to consider adding “purchase travel insurance” to your checklist of things to do.
A Comprehensive Travel Insurance Plan
Most people do not consider that their well-planned trip could be cancelled or delayed by something out of their control. But the financial burden of such an event could be quite costly. Travel insurance can provide financial relief in the wake of a wide-range of unforeseen situations that can result in trip delays or cancellations, including illness, death, severe weather or financial default of an airline or cruise line.
When purchasing travel insurance, you should make sure that your coverage is comprehensive and will provide personal assistance to help you with contingency plans. Comprehensive plans should cover claims resulting from a trip cancellation, stolen passport, bankruptcy of an airline/cruise line/tour operator or weather.
Check Your Health Insurance
Many people think that their health insurance provides coverage for all medical expenses. However, health insurance benefits for Americans traveling outside the U.S. can vary greatly. Here are some questions you may want to consider asking prior to embarking on a trip:
Health Insurance Provider
- What is my potential coverage?
- Do I have coverage for international medical air transportation?
- What is the procedure in the event of an emergency?
Travel Insurance Provider
- What kind of evacuation benefits does the policy offer?
- Will somebody be available to help coordinate care?
Purchasing a Policy
With so many choices among providers and benefits, it is important to do your research to avoid purchasing an insufficient policy. It is generally recommended that you do not book travel and purchase travel insurance from the same provider. Consider speaking with your auto/homeowner’s insurance agent, or contacting providers directly. Other options include*:
Third party providers have more generous benefits and specialize in this market. Insuremytrip.com, Squaremouth.com and TripInsurance.com are aggregator sites that provide comparisons from several insurers along with a wide range of insurance offerings.
Direct providers, include CSA Travel Protection, GeoBlue, and Global Rescue or MedjetAssist.
Depending on the location or cost of your next foreign trip, it may be worth booking a comprehensive travel insurance policy to provide you with assistance and protection in the event of a trip cancellation, trip interruption or medical emergency.