Your Passport to Peace of Mind: The Ultimate Travel Insurance Resource
Whether you and your family are headed to the sunny beaches of Florida or the historic landmarks of Europe, travel insurance can protect against possible financial losses if you are forced to cancel, delay or interrupt your vacation. While thinking about your holiday destination, the following information will help you to evaluate your need for travel insurance.
No policy can guarantee your safety when you're traveling, but knowing you're covered for medical emergencies or the loss of personal property may help you relax and enjoy your vacation.
Travel insurance can protect against the loss of non-refundable travel costs, such as airfare, hotel and tour expenses. Other types of travel insurance offer protection against losses due to medical emergencies, damage to personal property and even death that may occur away from home on vacation. Before buying travel insurance, check the refund policies on prepaid expenses. Some will refund your money if you cancel months in advance, but few will offer any refund if you cancel at the last minute.
Travel insurance policies aren't all the same. If you buy travel insurance, be sure to review the policy, especially the list of covered reasons for canceling your trip.
Before you buy travel insurance, review the policies you have now. If you have life, health or homeowners insurance, you may not need to buy certain types of travel insurance. Read your policy and speak with your insurance company or agent to learn what personal property and medical coverage you have while you're traveling.
Cruise and tour operators may offer cancellation waivers. Keep in mind that waivers aren't insurance policies and aren't regulated. Read all of the restrictions before you buy a cancellation waiver.
Many hotels and airlines allow you to purchase travel insurance when you purchase a plane ticket or book a hotel room. Many travel companies partner with insurance companies to offer special rates. Otherwise, travel insurance can be purchased directly with a company or through a licensed agent.
You may already have travel coverage through your credit card. Many credit cards, especially cards associated with travel such as airlines and hotels, already provide coverage that is otherwise offered by travel insurance. However, credit card companies typically require you to have purchased the room or airfare on the credit card in order for it to be covered. For example, a travel credit card must be used to purchase a plane ticket in order for any delays to be covered by the travel credit card. Simply having the credit card does not guarantee coverage.
What is and isn't covered?
The contents of this page illustrates the typical coverage found in travel insurance policies. Review your policy for detailed coverage information.
Trip cancellations, interruptions and delays out of the traveler's control
Medical expenses incurred while traveling due to illness or injury
Lost, damage or delayed baggage
Cancellations for any reason
Cancellations for specific reasons
Medical emergency transportation while traveling abroad
Pre-existing health conditions that require medical treatment while traveling
Pregnancy and childbirth
Engaging in high risk behavior, such as snowboarding or bungee jumping
Civil or political unrest at the traveler's destination
Standard travel insurance policies may not cover these items. However, travelers seeking these coverages may be able to purchase additional coverage for a higher premium.