It’s often a difficult topic to talk about, but it’s a very important one. Clients come to me excitedly to plan their well -deserved vacation. Nobody wants to talk about the chance of possibly canceling the trip later and facing steep penalties. But as your trusted adviser, it is my job to protect your vacation investment.
There are many different insurance products and different tour companies and cruise lines also offer their own protection plan. It can be a lot to sort through, but I’m always here to help evaluate what is the best option for your vacation.
Travel insurance mainly does 2 things: Trip cancellation coverage and medical benefits.
Trip cancellation coverage reimburse you any non-refundable fees and penalties travel companies want to charge you should you cancel your trip after you pay. I understand you do not reserve a trip thinking of cancelling it. There are many reasons that are unexpected and not within your control that can happen, causing you to cancel at the last minute and face steep penalties enforced by tour companies, hotels, and airline and cruise line. Maybe there can be an unexpected injury, or accident… there can be a severe storm causing airport closure locally, but not in your destination… or, there can be airline worker strikes, even a missed connecting flight due to delays… all these are not something you can plan or control. However, the tour or cruise still operates and you are still expected to show up or pay fees. It’s already bad enough you do not have a vacation, but imagine having to pay all of it and not have a vacation! Usually, the travel insurance premium is calculated based on your non-refundable trip cost. The more penalties you will face, the higher the premium. Thus, the more reason to have insurance coverage to protect your financial investment.
The second part of travel insurance is to offer medical benefits while you travel. Oftentimes, our own health insurance policy does not provide coverage overseas. If they do, it will not be in network coverage. Medicare also does not provide coverage outside of USA. We really do not know whether we will get sick while traveling abroad. Maybe it can be a minor case of food poisoning, but sometimes, there are accidents like a fall, or a sudden heart attack and will require medical transport to bring one home or back to a US hospital for further care. Insurance always prepare you for the unexpected challenges and is worth the price to have a peace of mind.
The insurance premium are usually more reasonable than you think. I also provide policies that have children under 18yrs covered by the parents’ policy. Some credit card companies also provide trip cancellation coverage and very limited medical benefits. But they do not cover any pre-existing medical condition. Do your part to research the details if that is what you choose to use. Or maybe you are using mileage award tickets and no trip costs involved. You can still purchase a policy for the medical benefits while traveling. I hope this helps you make an informed decision.