October 11, 2018

What Does Travel Insurance Cover?

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Why spend extra money on travel insurance? Take a look at the benefits included in most plans and how they might help you.

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There's a ton of variation in travel insurance. Benefits and coverage can be all over the map (pun intended.) But most plans are made up of four general types of coverage.

Cancelled Trips

Travelers are usually familiar with - and most interested in - coverage for their travel plans. This benefit is designed to cover the cost of your plane tickets, resort/hotel rooms, tours, or cruise tickets. Most non-refundable, pre-paid travel expenses are covered. Baggage coverage is also included.

Each policy has its own list of covered reasons for canceling. In general, insurance will cover you if:

  • You get sick or hurt before your trip.
  • You lose your job.
  • There's a death in your family.
  • The airline goes out of business.
  • Your destination is destroyed by a natural disaster.

Baggage coverage usually extends to:

  • Luggage lost or delayed by the airline.
  • Luggage that is damaged by the airline.
  • Belongings that are stolen while you're traveling.

Medical Help

What does travel insurance typically cover for flights?
Travel insurance covers the cost of your plane tickets if you need to cancel because of illness or bad weather.

Most people don't think about getting sick or hurt on vacation. From a case of the sniffles to a twisted ankle, you may need to see a doctor. In most cases, your domestic insurance won't cover these expenses (it's a good idea to check on this before you leave, though).

Travel insurance covers medical expenses for issues that arise on your trip. Every plan has a list of covered benefits. Most plans include:

  • Outpatient doctor visits for a new illness or injury.
  • Inpatient hospital treatment for a new illness or injury.
  • Medication prescribed while you're on your trip.

There are some notable exclusions, found in almost every policy. Most plans won't cover:

  • Pre-existing conditions.
  • Pregnancy-related expenses.
  • Hazardous sports like bungee jumping, rock climbing, and parachuting.

Emergency Evacuations

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What's worse than catching a cold or having a minor accident on vacation? Getting really sick or seriously injured. If you're not in a major city, you may need to travel to a better hospital. Or you might need to come home. When this happens, travel insurance can arrange an emergency medical evacuation. This could happen by air ambulance or on a regular flight with a medical escort. An air ambulance can easily cost $50,000 or more. And there's a good chance your domestic insurance won't cover the cost.

Travel insurance also covers the return of your mortal remains. This means your body is returned home if you die while traveling. Obviously, no one wants to imagine they'll die on their vacation. But insurance companies provide this benefit because they know it happens. And they know how to deal with the aftermath.
Emergency evacuation benefits usually pay for:

  • Transport to the nearest adequate medical facility.
  • Taking you home after you're discharged.
  • Bringing a family member to join you while you are in the hospital.
  • Flying your body home in the event of death.

Assistance

How late can you buy travel insurance?
You can purchase travel insurance anytime - including the day of your trip.

Travel insurance can support travelers in less urgent situations, too. Looking for a local restaurant? Need help replacing your passport? Dial up your insurance company for assistance. Think hotel concierge, only you'll have access to a whole team of people.

Most travel insurance companies offer a 24/7 hotline for things like:

  • Language translation.
  • Finding a local embassy.
  • Replacing your passport.
  • Arranging sightseeing tours.
  • Tracking delayed baggage.

What Is the Cost of Travel Insurance?

The price for travel insurance is often based on a percentage of your trip cost. Usually about 5% to 10%. Policies can range in price from less than $100 to several hundred dollars. If you choose to add on optional benefits, the cost will increase.

Is it worth it to buy travel insurance?
Is the amount you paid for your trip more than you can afford to lose? Then you might consider travel insurance a good investment.

What Does Travel Insurance NOT Cover?

Every policy is different, but you can be sure most plans won't cover:

  • Canceling a trip just because you changed your mind.
  • Canceling a trip for medical reasons without a doctor's note.
  • Getting medical treatment for a pre-existing condition.
  • Alcohol or drug-related injuries.
  • Arranging a medical evacuation without contacting your insurance first.

More from CreditDonkey:


Is Travel Insurance Worth It


How Much Does Travel Insurance Cost


Medical Evacuation Insurance

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