Purchasing travel insurance is an important part of travel planning, and finding the right travel insurance plan is important for every traveler. With travel insurance plans to meet virtually every budget and itinerary, it’s important to know what you need in your travel insurance plan. So how can you be sure you’re purchasing the plan that’s right for you? The cost varies with the total amount spent on the proposed trip, as well as age of traveler in some cases. Here are some common questions about travel insurance plans that may help you with the process.
- Why should you buy travel insurance?
If an illness, accident, or sudden change in plans forces you to cancel or interrupt travel plans, you face two major financial losses: (1) money you’ve invested in nonrefundable prepayments and (2) medical expenses that aren’t covered by your health insurance. That’s why more and more travelers are turning to travel insurance to protect their travel investment. With more booking choices, more available destinations, and more people traveling than ever before, you want to make sure you have thought of everything before you travel. Travel insurance can help provide coverage for unexpected travel problems, from a cancelled flight to a serious illness – or even inclement weather.
- How can you know you are purchasing the right travel insurance plan?
The best thing you can do to understand what is and is not covered with any travel insurance policy is to read the Description of Coverage (DOC). The DOC lists all the coverages, exceptions, and details of the policy. Have a question on the Description of Coverage? Call the company who will issue the policy and they’ll be happy to walk through any questions you have. We do not recommend purchasing the cruise line insurance coverage as it generally only covers the cruise itself, or if booking air with the cruise line, air will be included; however, pre-hotel stay or pre-paid transportation will not be covered if you need to cancel the entire trip at the last minute.
- When should you purchase an insurance plan?
We recommend that you purchase your policy as soon as you have made the first major reservation that required a significant deposit or payment. You can also wait until all aspects of your travel have been booked, so that the entire amount of the trip can be covered. However, there are often additional coverages you can receive with your travel insurance by purchasing the same day as (or soon after) you make your initial trip deposit. Make sure to look into purchasing a travel insurance plan early so you don’t miss out. Adjustments can be made to your coverage as additional items are purchased. And remember— insurance must be purchased no later than 24 hours before you travel.
- What is included in a travel insurance plan?
“Per trip” plans provide a bundled package of travel coverages to help plan for a variety of common problems travelers may face away from home, some more comprehensive than others. The plan also includes a complete listing of 24-hour travel assistance services you can access anytime, virtually anywhere for help with anything from medical evacuations to lost or delayed baggage, or rescheduling missed air flights.
Remember, travel insurance is just that, insurance against possible interruptions and delays or medical emergencies. When you consider that the insurance cost is about 5-8% of the trip cost, it is a bargain. If you don’t have insurance and your cruise vacation gets delayed by a missed flight or weather related problems for example, and you therefore miss your ship connection, then you will be responsible for catching up with the ship and expenses could include hotel, transportation such as taxis, air flights, meals, and other incidentals; suddenly your bargain cruise is not such a bargain. If insured, the insurance company will reimburse you for expenses incurred and compensate you for inconvenience as well in connecting with the cruise ship. At Getaway Dreams Come True Travel, our agent will discuss options you may wish to consider for coverage of your particular travel bookings and obtain quotes from each company; we work with Allianz, Travel Guard, and CSA Travel Protection. If you prefer, you can discuss the options with the company directly and once you choose the policy, we will purchase it on your behalf. See our other related post Is Travel Insurance Necessary? for examples of why it is prudent to purchase travel insurance.
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