Traveling is truly an exciting thing. Almost every person feels excited when preparing for a trip. To be a pleasant and stress-free experience traveling should be well-planned. Travel planning includes different aspects and one of them is travel insurance.
It’s one of the main parts of travel planning and it can be quite complex and confusing.
Traveling around the world without insurance brings some risk. A variety of things can happen when you travel. Lost or stolen luggage, flight cancelation, damaged electronics and devices, personal injury, illness, death of closed one.
Travel insurance is definitely an important thing when you are traveling abroad. It helps you be prepared for unexpected situations where you need to make expenses.
It should not be considered an unnecessary expense. It’s simply a protection against the unknown. It’s still an investment but without it you may lose thousands of dollars. The purpose of travel insurance is to cover certain financial risks which you are not able to meet.
It’s a detail that is often overlooked but it’s vital for your own peace of mind and you need it for your trip. Travel insurance offers you coverage for unexpected expenses during emergency events.
One of the main benefits of travel insurance is that it offers a sense of security and it can be considered something as a back-up plan in case of unexpected money expenses.
You may not always need travel insurance, if you are planning an inexpensive trip for example. But if you are planning costly reservations or a big international trip, getting travel insurance is recommended.
According to the statistics, in 2018 around 65.8 people had travel insurance which marks a 49% increase in the number of people covered by travel policy in 2018.
The choice of an insurance company isn’t an easy one. It’s good to do research first before choosing travel insurance services.
You should choose the right insurance plan that is suitable to your needs. Consider different travel insurance options to find the right one that suits your specific circumstances.
Different factors affect the cost of travel insurance. You should determine what your own travel insurance needs .When choosing which travel insurance plan to buy, learn what are the different travel insurance products, how much they cost and what things they include and exclude.
In this article we will offer you some helpful tips about how to choose the right travel insurance company.
Most common travel insurance types of coverage:
Travel medical insurance
Such a plan offers you health insurance when you are away from home. It works similarly to a standard health plan. This type of insurance cannot be used for routine medical checkups.
These travel insurance policies have some limitations on coverage if there are pre-existing medical conditions. If you plan to travel to another country, it’s recommended to get travel medical insurance.
When choosing a travel insurance company, it’s good to compare travel insurance policies of different providers. In this way you will find an insurance plan that is suitable for your needs and personal budget.
Most travel medical insurance plans include recreational activities, but they often don’t include adventure sports, organized sport events, competitions.
So if you plan to take part in an adventure sport event, you need to get a special travel policy that covers competitive and adventure sports.
Trip cancellation, interruption and delay
Trip cancellation coverage offers you a reimbursement for prepaid expenses that cannot be refunded. These are cases when your operator goes out of business or you need to cancel your trip due to several reasons. These can be a natural disaster, personal illness, the illness or death of a family member who is not on the trip with you.
So, if you cancel your trip, trip interruption insurance offers coverage for the nonrefundable cost of that part of your trip which you didn’t use.
Trip delay coverage includes expenses such as food and accommodation during a delay in your trip. For example, if your flight is cancelled because of bad weather, trip delay will cover your expenses during the delay.
Most travel policies include all these three policies. Some travel insurance companies provide their clients with additional layers of coverage with an extra cost.
Rental car insurance
If your rental car was damaged in an accident, in a natural disaster or damaged by vandals, this type of insurance covers any expenses needed for its repairment. It doesn’t cover liability insurance .
This type of insurance covers medical treatment or damage to other vehicles if you are held accountable for a motor vehicle accident.
Baggage and personal belongings
This travel insurance coverage is designed for lost, stolen or damaged during traveling. There are certain insurance plans that cover extra expenses such as baggage delay that lasts a certain period of time. Insurance for homeowners or renters cover personal belongings.
Most travel insurance plans include this. Your travel insurance company offers you a 24-hour hotline which you can call, if you need help. For example, you can use this hotline to contact a doctor or lawyer, to find your lost luggage or to book a flight after a missed connection.
Emergency medical assistance, evacuation or repatriation
This type of insurance plan covers medical expenses in case you get sick or get injured during a trip. Medical evacuation for example covers the expenses for your transport to the nearest hospital. Medical repatriation covers the expenses for your transportation to your home country.
What does a good travel insurance plan offer?
When looking for a suitable travel insurance company you are likely to encounter a variety of companies with different policies and terminology which is sometimes overwhelming.
High coverage limits
When searching for a reliable travel insurance company, you should look for a company that offers high coverage for medical expenses .
Most often travel insurance companies will offer you up to $100 000 in coverage care, but if you choose a more expensive policy, you will get coverage for a higher amount.
Some insurance companies can have a small limit in their coverage when it comes to damaged or stolen electronics. If you want a higher amount of coverage, you have the option to buy supplemental insurance.
A good travel insurance plan offers coverage for the following:
- coverage for most countries in the world
- stolen, broken or lost possessions such as baggage or electronics, jewellery, documents.
- 24/7 emergency help and services
- cancellations of hotel bookings, flights, transport arrangements
- emergency evacuation and care
- strifes in the country you are visiting
- illness or death of a relative
Ways to pick up the best travel insurance ?
Let’s consider the pros and cons of each of your options for travel insurance:
With a credit card
Most types of credit cards offer secondary car rental insurance that covers car damage which your travel insurance doesn’t include.
Some credit cards offer you the option to get trip cancellation or car rental insurance. This option is available if you use the credit card to book the trip or the car.
This option offers free coverage which is its main advantage. But you are not able to customize it according to your circumstances.
With a travel agent/travel reservation site
You can get travel insurance upon booking a flight, making a hotel reservation or using a car rental service.
The main advantage of this method is that it offers an easy buying process. Also, its coverage isn’t expensive. The downside of it is that the coverage can’t be customized.
With a travel insurance company
Travel insurance companies offer you the option to buy insurance directly from their website. The advantage of this option is that you can get an insurance plan that suits you best. You can also make a comparison between prices and policies in an easy way.
A disadvantage can be the fact that you may need to compare multiple policies and this is time-consuming.
What factors determine the cost of the travel insurance?
A standard travel insurance plan will usually cost around 4% to 8% of the cost of the trip. The price of the plan depends on several factors.
Trip duration and price
The more expensive and longer your trip is, the higher the cost of the policy will be.
Amount and breadth of the travel insurance policy
The more risks a travel insurance covers, the higher its cost will be.
Local health care cost
If the cost of your local health-care services at your destination is high, the cost of your trip insurance coverage will be high too.
If you have any current medical conditions, the price of your travel insurance will be high too.
The older you are, the more the travel insurance will cost.
Things travel insurance doesn’t include:
- Accidents that happened during extreme adventure activities, if you don’t pay for extra coverage in advance
- Cases when you leave personal belongings unattended and they get stolen
- Lost or stolen cash
- If some of your belongings get damaged during baggage handling
- Incidents caused by drug/alcohol use
- Pre-existing medical conditions