Travel Insurance: Should You Buy It or Not?

This article is a guest article written by AirHelp.

It’s summertime and many Americans are eager to book themselves well-deserved hot and idyllic getaways.

For some, this will involve planning a last minute trip to lie on a sandy white beach in a tropical island. For others it’s an ideal time to zone out by indulging in extreme sports like zip-lining or exploring a lush forest.

Two different types of holiday but both raise the same question: which trip needs to be covered by travel insurance?

When we are planning our holidays, we tend to think less of worst-case scenarios and more about what to look forward to during our trip.

However, in between booking and flying out for a vacation, unfortunate incidents can happen. Like losing one’s job, suffering a bereavement or falling ill. Taking out a policy in enough time is likely to save you money and offer you what you can’t put a price on—peace of mind.

Whether out of sheer organization, fear or impulse, reports show that a large number of Americans tend to purchase some form of travel insurance. According to research in 2015, The U.S. Travel Insurance Association reported about $1.9 billion in policies are sold annually.

In this article, we will share the benefits of buying travel insurance, how to find out what your travel insurance doesn’t cover and how best to ascertain if you need to be covered by travel insurance or not.

Reasons to Purchase Travel Insurance

Here are some reasons why you should purchase travel insurance as soon as you book your holiday to protect you from the following incidents.

Unforeseen Circumstances

A lot can happen in between booking a trip and boarding your plane, you could be made redundant or fall sick which will throw your plans into turmoil. Certain travel insurance plans offer cancellation coverage to flyers. This means that if your trip is covered, you won’t lose the money you paid for the trip.

Isn’t that a relief?

Medical Emergencies

No one likes to fall sick, period. Imagine falling chronically ill and requiring emergency medical care in a remote far-off location where you don’t speak the local language. Some travel insurance plans are designed to cover you in these dire circumstances.

Trouble in Paradise

There is travel insurance you can get which supports you with the cost of locating a safe haven when you’re abroad and serious incidents occur that put you at risk (like a political uproar).

Lost or Delayed Luggage

Getting to your final destination and discovering your luggage has not arrived can be very frustrating. To ease the blow, you can get baggage coverage when you purchase your ticket meaning you’ll be reimbursed if your luggage is damaged, lost or stolen.

With baggage delay coverage, travelers are reimbursed for essential items if their luggage is delayed for 24 hours or more.

What Does Travel Insurance Not Cover or Exclude?

Although travel insurance provides coverage for cancellations, it’s important to remember that not every reason given for a cancellation will be covered by your travel insurance policy.

When you buy travel insurance, you are typically given a ‘free look period’. This means that from the date you purchase the plan, you have a particular length of time to review its policy.  If you are unsatisfied with it, you can return it for a refund within the allocated time period.

We advise you to read your policy certificate carefully as this is how you’ll learn what your travel insurance does not cover.

Travel insurance policies also contain certain exclusions where coverage is not provided. For example, some travel insurance plans exclude losses incurred when the insured party was intoxicated or under the influence of drugs.

What to Consider when Deciding Not to Buy Travel Insurance

In some situations spending extra money on travel insurance is unnecessary.

When deciding if it’s in your best interest to forego travel insurance, we advise you ask yourself these two questions:

  • Will I put myself at financial risk if I don’t buy travel insurance?
  • Am I at medical risk if I don’t get travel insurance coverage?

The answer you arrive at will determine if you should buy travel insurance for your trip.

Get Prepared — Know Your Rights

With these tips, you have the essential information to make the right choice when deciding if you’ll need travel insurance for your next vacation.

However, sometimes despite preparation, things don’t always go according to plan during a trip.

Some flight mishaps are not in your control like an airline canceling your flight in the last minute, or a delay causing you to miss your connecting flight.

Did you know that you have air passenger rights to protect you in these types of situations?

For example, if an airline cancels your flight — providing you are eligible to make a claim — the airline is obligated to pay you flight cancellation compensation of up to €600.

Isn’t that great news?

Being aware that being protected when your trip doesn’t go smoothly is bound to give you peace of mind. And you can’t price on that.

This article is a guest article written by AirHelp. Image Credit: STIL


  1. John says

    There is a good bit of confusion between travel insurance which covers the cost of the travel and travel “health” insurance. Most travel insurance policy do offer some health benefits, but tend to be very limited. Travel health insurance policies offer much more comprehensive coverage for medical issues that arise. Conceivably, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have both, because the travel health insurance tends to be a lot more affordable than the trip insurance. Remember the trip insurance premium is going to be based on the cost of the trip, while the premium for travel health insurance is based on your age.

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