What Is Travel Insurance And Do You Really Need It?

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Are you planning to go on vacation overseas? Are you looking to take the whole family with you? Are you wondering if you should buy a travel insurance policy for your trip?

A survey revealed that 38% of American adults will likely get travel insurance for their next international trip. Moreover, 88% noted that protection from cancellations as the reason for buying insurance. In other words, people want to get their money back in case their trips don’t push through.

But what is travel insurance? Is it only about protection from flight cancellations?

Continue reading below as we break down the benefits of a travel insurance policy.

The Basics of Travel Insurance

What is travel insurance? Though most people view travel insurance as an add-on for long trips, the reality is quite far from it. Let’s dive into it below:

What Is Travel Insurance?

At its most basic, this insurance helps cover the cost of medical expenses, cancelations, and lost baggage during a flight. It may also cover accidents during a flight.

Travel insurance works for every kind of trip, regardless of the distance. This is because disruption happens when you least expect it. These disruptions can deplete your funds if you do not have insurance.

In essence, travel insurance covers expenses that are not part of your budget.

When Is Travel Insurance Coverage Helpful?

To appreciate the beauty of travel insurance, you need to understand the different ways it can help you. Let’s take a look at some of them below:

Medical Issues

First, travel insurance provides coverage for various medical issues. When you visit a foreign land, you will have to try their local delicacies. But sometimes, some of the local foods may upset your stomach.

Unfortunately, your Medicare does not work while you’re abroad. This is where travel insurance comes into play. It can cover your standard hospital tests.

It can also cover emergency medical expenses. It also provides dental benefits in case you lose a tooth.

In more serious cases that merit medical evacuations, a travel insurance policy can also shoulder the expenses. These evacuations involve emergency transportation via helicopter. These evacuations are costly, to say the least.

Additionally, your travel insurance can also cover your specialized transportation. This involves bringing you back home as soon as your condition becomes stable.

Trip Delays and Cancellations

As we mentioned earlier, most of the travelers who buy insurance are looking for coverage during trip cancellations. Studies reveal that 80% of flights in the United States don’t arrive on time. During such cases, you need to find a hotel where you can stay in the meantime.

Apart from the accommodations, you also need to pay for your meals and other expenses.

Travel insurance coverage with travel delay benefits can shoulder all of these expenses. Generally, travel insurance providers employ a reimbursement method. This means they will give back everything you spent on food and lodging during the flight delay.

Moreover, there will be times when you need to cancel your trip. Some of the common reasons for cancellations include illnesses and family emergencies. In such cases, your travel insurance can pay for the nonrefundable travel expenses.

Keep in mind that insurance providers have varying stipulations concerning the value of reimbursements. For example, if you purchased a package tour, it will come with a refundable amount for cancellations.

If the tour said you can only refund $200 from your $1,000-dollar trip, then the travel insurance will only reimburse $200.

Protection for Your Belongings

Stories of missing baggage are nightmarish for travelers. Mishandled baggage results in your schedule’s disruption. Sometimes, you get your baggage back with your luggage sustaining notable damages.

During these cases, travel insurance can provide ample protection. Baggage delay benefits can reimburse for the actual value of your baggage. It can also cover the repair or replacement of missing items.

Similar to trip cancellations, protection for belongings may come with reimbursement limitations. Thus, you need to find an insurance provider that offers the best deals.

Unforeseen Events

Unexpected events like natural disasters cause all sorts of complications on any trip. In Iceland, for example, volcanic eruptions caused massive disruptions affecting most of Europe. The country had no other choice but to cancel flights.

But with insurance coverage for natural disasters, you can rest without worrying about your accommodation and food expenses.

In some cases, you may find yourself in an accident while on vacation. A car accident, for example, may leave you in the hospital for several days. Under such a circumstance, you need to hire a personal injury lawyer while letting your travel insurance shoulder the expenses.

Accidental Death

Last but not least, travel insurance coverage offers financial assistance for accidental death. This can cover not only the traveler but also the other family members.

Should a fatal accident occur, the insurance will give money to your beneficiaries. Like other coverage types, accidental death also comes with limitations. Insurance companies will not cover death due to accidental drug overdose, among others.

In case you have existing life insurance, you may forgo accidental death coverage. But if you have money to spare, spending on accidental death coverage will give your beneficiaries more money.

Important Reminders

Don’t buy the first set of insurance you can find. Remember that they all offer different stipulations. Keep these things in mind:

Cover All Your Destinations

If you are traveling to multiple countries, make sure your travel insurance covers all your destinations. Double-check the policy to ensure that it covers all the countries you are visiting.

Cover All Your Belongings

Generally, travel insurance should cover all luggage including their contents. If you’re carrying expensive equipment, confirm with the provider if they will cover it or not.

Keep Track of the Duration

Make sure the policy covers all the days of your trips. This is crucial since you do not know when emergencies will happen.

Buy Early

Lastly, buy your travel insurance early. This will help you prepare for the other expenses. This will keep you from scrambling to submit all requirements at the last minute.

Travel Without Worries

What is travel insurance? You can consider it as a backup plan in case you lose your baggage or when a flight gets canceled but it offers more than that. Understanding its benefits is one of the elements of a more enjoyable trip.