Should You Buy Travel Insurance?

Don’t forget to buy your life saver-travel insurance when traveling abroad. Keep reading to learn more about travel insurance and its benefits.

A vacation isn’t as big an investment as your car or your home. But it still cost a lot. You buy airfare and accommodations and a lot more things to make your travel successful and fun. Isn’t all this value worth insuring, in case some unforeseen event threatens your travel plans?

So, this article explores travel insurance; when to buy travel insurance and why is it good to buy travel insurance.

What is Travel Insurance?

Travel insurance is a plan you buy that shields you from certain money related risks and misfortunes that can happen while traveling. These misfortunes can be minor, similar to deferred luggage, or huge, like last-minute trip cancellation or a health-related crisis abroad.

Moreover, the other advantage of travel insurance is access to assistance services, any place you are in the world. Our high-quality team of travel and medical experts can arrange medical treatment in an emergency, monitor your care, serve as interpreters, assist you with replacing lost passports and so much more. Sometimes, they even help save travelers’ lives.

A couple of things you should know about before buying travel insurance:

  • Benefits change according to plan. It’s crucial to choose a plan that fulfills your needs, your budget, and your travel plans.
  • It is not possible for travel insurance to cover every situation.
  • Travel insurance is intended to cover unforeseeable events— not things that are predictable, or things within your control. If, for instance,  you wait to buy insurance for your beach trip until after a named hurricane is hurtling toward your destination, your losses wouldn’t be covered.

When to Buy Travel Insurance?

While you’re never needed to buy travel insurance, it’s a smart idea for more costly excursions. The last thing you want is to lose a huge number of dollars in non-refundable purchases on account of an unexpected occasion.

Book Within 15 Days of Trip Purchase

To fit the bill for full coverage, you quite often need to purchase travel insurance within 15 days of booking your trip. Holding up until the last moment to add a policy gives the impression to the insurance provider that you’re attempting to game the framework.

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You may likewise be needed to notify the insurance provider within 72 hours of your cancellation aim. The more you stand by to get a policy implies the fewer opportunities you have to cancel and file a repayment claim.

Additionally, on the off chance that you buy travel insurance after the release of an endangering headline, your claim may be declined as well. For instance, you won’t be covered if you purchase a travel insurance policy after everyone gets to know about the approaching tropical storm.

Regardless of whether you have already booked your trip, you can normally purchase travel insurance up to one day before you depart. You simply need to remember the above variables while making a decision if it’s already been at least 15 days since you booked your trip.

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Supplement Your Credit Card Trip Protection Benefits

Rewards credit cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred and the Sapphire Reserve provides complimentary trip protection benefits. These benefits reimburse non-refundable travel purchases, cover incidental delay-related expenses, and even offer primary rental car collision damage waiver protection.

While these trip protection benefits are amazing and cover common trip cancellation claims, you may still need to buy travel insurance for these benefits:

  • Emergency Medical Visits and Transportation
  • Pre-Existing Conditions
  • Terrorism
  • Change Fee Coverage
  • Extreme Sports

Each location has different activities and risks. Travel insurance helps protect against unforeseen.

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An essential impetus to get travel insurance can be for emergency medical help. Without these advantages, you can undoubtedly spend over $10,000 in cash for treatment and transportation costs. This can be particularly obvious in case you’re traveling globally or in a far off region, where medical expenses can be higher than expected.

Your Non-Refundable Travel Expenses Exceed Credit Card Benefits

While your credit card might reimburse up to $5,000 in non-refundable expenses, your trip might costs thousands of dollars more. In addition to the supplemental coverage, you can also be provided with a large reimbursement for the purchases your credit card can’t fully refund.

More Flexible Reimbursement Policies

Travel insurance normally has less stringent reimbursement policies than travel provider policies. However, you still need to submit supporting documentation in most cases, the small cost of buying a policy is worth the potential benefits and payout.

Some reasons why you might buy travel insurance include:

  • Cancel for Any Reason
  • Unexpected Work Requirements
  • Military Deployment
  • Personal or Family Illness
  • Legal Divorce or Separation
  • Travel Provider Goes Bankrupt

Note that each insurance provider has different cancellation policies and notification requirements.

When You Shouldn’t Buy Travel Insurance?

Although travel insurance provides security and satisfaction, it’s not always a smart purchase. These are some cases when you shouldn’t buy travel insurance.

Your Trip Cost Is Relatively Low

In case you are just driving six hours to visit distant relatives, you probably won’t feel the need to buy travel insurance because you might only lose a couple of hundred dollars in non-refundable expenses instead of several thousand. No one wants to lose money, but buying insurance for every small trip can prove to be expensive than the payout benefits when you finally file a claim.

If your expenses comprise plane tickets and hotel rooms only, the carrier might reimburse or offer credit. Travel insurance reimbursement only occurs if the travel provider doesn’t offer reimbursement first.

You Already Have Trip Protection Benefits

Your car insurance provider or travel credit card may already offer rental car collision and theft security. On top of that, buying travel protection implies you’re paying extra for minor advantages. That is cash you could be spending on your excursion instead.

Prior to booking travel insurance, check your current credit card and insurance benefits guide first. It additionally is considered good to check the travel provider’s cancellation policy. In the event that you travel during storm season or snowy season, you have to understand how they treat such whether conditions. Check their own explanation of canceling plans too. You might have the option to be able to get a one-year credit to rebook your trip.

You Wait Too Long

You need to buy travel insurance within 10 to 15 days of booking your travel reservations

to get the best rates and coverage amounts,. After this date, you might be required to pay a higher premium or settle for a reduced policy.

If your personal or work circumstances vary after the travel booking date but before you buy a policy, you can also endanger your claim eligibility. Although, this case is pretty rare but it still happens. If a hurricane (or another extreme event) develops and becomes known to the public, you’re probably too late. The early bird gets the worm, especially when it comes to travel insurance.

Travel insurance can be a financial blessing for large, non-refundable travel expenses. Whether they stem from medical reasons, extreme weather, or local events, travel insurance can be worth its weight in gold. Even if it doesn’t make sense to buy travel insurance for this trip, acquaint yourself with policies and with your credit card travel benefits for future planning.

How Far In Advance Do I Need to Buy Trip Insurance?

For the ones traveling just once or twice a year, the best plan for them is single trip travel insurance. You can book this plan in advance and the coverage begins on the day you purchase it. So, for the vacation you have been planning for a long time, it is always smart to buy travel insurance in advance as safety for the time in between booking everything and actually going. Single trip travel plans expire on the date of return you mention while booking.

For frequent travelers, the annual trip travel insurance can be bought up to 30 days in advance and the coverage starts on the stipulated dates while buying the policy, so you must make sure that your travel plans begin on the purchase date or on the date you buy your flight tickets so as to cover the guaranteed pre-departure coverage. The annual trip plans last around 12 months from the day you choose them to begin.

However, if you are taking a gap year or career break, a travel insurance plan can be booked up to 60 days in advance and provides two years of continuous protection.

When is it Too Late to Buy Travel Insurance?

Many travelers are uncertain when to buy a travel insurance policy.  The answer will be based on what coverage is crucial to the traveler.  A policy can be purchased before the trip is even booked, all the way until the day before departure.  However, coverage can vary based on when the policy is purchased.  Generally, it is beneficial to purchase the policy early.  Take Into account the following items when comparing travel insurance plans.

Pre-Existing Conditions

Coverage for pre-existing medical conditions is one of the most repeatedly asked about topics with travel insurance.  It is typical for a policy to exclude pre-existing conditions, but offer a waiver of the exclusion.  The waiver is obtainable if the policy is bought within 9, 14, 21, or 30 days from the trip deposit date. This means the first payment made towards a trip starts the clock on whether this coverage is available. Otherwise, CSA and HTH offer the waiver if the policy is purchased before the final trip payment. The waiver does not add to the premium cost, either the policy was purchased in time to cover pre-existing conditions, or it is too late, and the policy will exclude pre-existing conditions.

Cancel For Any Reason

Cancel for any reason permits the traveler to cancel a trip without clarifying why.  This benefit is also only available for a temporary period of time from the deposit date, up to 30 days, so buy early to avail this coverage.

Foreseeable Events

When a policy purchased is critical when it comes to disastrous events that impact travel, such as volcanic ash or civil unrest. Travel insurance is meant to cover unexpected events out of the traveler’s control.  Once a situation is considered predictable, a new policy will not cover anything related to the anticipated event.

Multiple Trip Payments

It is common for travel plans to be booked and paid for in portions. Because the first trip deposit decides for how long some benefits are available, many people are not confident of how much the trip cost to insure if there are more trip payments to be made.  The first option is to only insure the amount paid out of pocket at that time. When additional trip payments are made, the traveler can update the travel insurance policy with the new trip cost and pay any difference in premium at that time. This step is essential for the coverage benefits only available for a limited time based on the deposit date.  Every time a new trip payment is made, the traveler has a new set of 9, 14, 21, or 30 days to update the policy to keep those coverages. The benefit of this option is that only actual out of pocket amounts are being insured, however, the disadvantage is this option is a multi-step process. The second option is to assess what the final trip cost will be and insure that amount upfront. The advantage here is not having to think about updating the policy later unless the estimate is exceeded, however, the disadvantage is insuring trip cost that is not at risk yet.

Other Coverage

There are other, less asked about, coverage benefits only available for a short time from the deposit date. These can involve financial default, terrorism, and cancellation for work reasons.  Again, based on the policy, these can be available from 9-30 days from the initial trip payment.

No Good Reason To Wait

Maybe the most convincing reason to purchase a policy early is that there is no advantage to waiting.  Almost every policy will cost the same whether quoting 10 months before departure or 1 day before departure.  Also, trip cancellation coverage begins the day after purchase.  So, for the same price, a traveler could have trip cancellation coverage for 10 months or 1 day.

In short, travelers can wait until the day before departure to buy travel insurance. However, shopping early can result in additional coverage at the same cost, more available coverage options, avoiding the issue of foreseeable events, and covering a longer period of time for the same cost.

Is it Good to Buy Trip Insurance?

Travel insurance policies have various features that help cover you and your belongings while you’re on holiday. Here is why it is good to buy travel insurance.

Emergency medical cover

Medical cover is a significant part of your travel insurance policy. The amount you need may sound immense however the expense of medical treatment abroad could cost you thousands of dollars. With no travel insurance, you would need to cover your own medical bills abroad– and this could be extremely costly. Also, make sure to inform your insurer regarding any previous ailments that affect you or a relative going with you, regardless of whether it appears to be minor or unessential. By not being 100% clear, you are taking the risk that your insurer may decline to payout. You’ll likewise need to educate your insurer about any conditions that develop between taking out your policy and making the excursion.

Cancellation, curtailment, and missed departure

Travel insurance will normally compensate you if you need to cancel or shorten your trip for various reasons, for example, sickness or deprivation. It’s essential to check the terms and conditions of your policy to see precisely what is covered, however, as the conditions where you can make a cancellation or curtailment claim can be limited. Your cover ought to likewise incorporate the expense of getting you home. Missed departure will cover you if you fail to catch your plane/ship because of public transport failure or an unexpected postponement.

Personal belongings and money

Travel insurance typically covers you to a specific limit for lost or stolen stuff and assets. Just as a general breaking point for lost and taken possessions, most travel insurance policies will restrict what you can claim for single things and every precious thing. You might need to top up your home contents insurance for assets away from home in case you’re taking costly gadgets, for example, cell phones and tablets, watches or jewelry away with you. Travel insurance policies additionally restrict the amount you can claim for lost and taken money and traveller’s checks. So, check the terms and conditions of your policy and avoid carrying a lot of money around with you.

Personal liability cover

Personal liability is a significant if seldom utilized, feature of travel insurance. It covers you in the event that you face legal bills, which may emerge should you unintentionally injure another person or harm their property while you’re abroad. Other policy elements often contained in travel insurance policies include personal accident cover, legal expenses insurance, sports equipment insurance, and cover for disasters or unexpected events.

So, keeping the above-discussed points in mind it is evident that travel insurance plays a vital role in your life and can prove to be very useful when it comes to claiming your amount in case of a mishap or emergency.

Charles Bains

Charles Bains

Charles Bains started his insurance career as a marketing intern before pounding the pavement as a commercial lines agent in Orlando, FL. As an industry journalist, his articles have appeared in a variety of trade publications. His insurance television career, short-lived but glorious, once saw him serve as the expert adviser on an insurance-themed infomercial (yes, you read that correctly). Having recently worked for various organizations, coupled with his broader insurance knowledge, Charles is able to understand our client’s needs and guide them accordingly. He is a gem for Insurance Noon as his wide area of expertise and experience have been beneficial in conducting further researches to come up with solutions and writing them in a manner which is easy for everyone including beginners to comprehend.

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