Travel insurance generally covers the traveler for mishaps sustained in travel. Insurance companies provide different travel plans that cover a broad range of events the traveler might encounter when traveling. Depending upon the policy, the insured can file a travel insurance claim for reimbursement on a covered loss, including: trip cancellation, medical expenses, or lost, delayed, or damaged luggage and bags.
All types of travelers can purchase travel insurance. Single travelers, families, couples on a honeymoon, business travelers, special interest, volunteer or senior travelers buy it. Every traveler has different needs. The reasons for the trip and the destination are likely to different on each trip. Smart travelers understand that travel insurance can mitigate unforeseen circumstances in a new city or country. Understanding the benefits and exclusions of the travel insurance policy is essential to making the best choice.
Here are some of the benefits most travelers enjoy with the purchase of travel insurance:
1. Trip Cancellation, reimbursement of prepaid, nonrefundable expenses are covered if the traveler cancels the trip for a covered reason (varies by policy), which can include:
• Illness/injury of the insured or illness/injury of travel partner or family member
• Natural disaster en route or at the destination
• Financial Default of the travel or carrier company
• Mandatory evacuation or acts of terrorism at the destination
• Hospitalization/death of destination host
• Military redeployment or other civic duty requirement
• Home/office burglarized, damaged, or vandalized
• Traffic accident prior to the trip
• Work requirement, termination, or transfer
• Felonious assault incident prior to the trip
• Academic year extensions
• Many others
2. Medical and dental protection, including emergency medical care and evaluation can be essential when the traveler is injured or suffers illness away from home. When the traveler is out of the country, an existing U.S. health insurance plan probably won’t cover these necessary expenses. Dental emergency, such as an abscess, can happen without warning and cause the traveler unbearable pain. Severe dental pain or injury requires immediate dental care.
Medical and dental protection benefits provide $10,000 to $250,000 for purposes of physician expenses, medical transportation, drugs, laboratory tests, and more. Emergency medical treatment needed for acute pain or injury to teeth is covered and limited to average $100-250 per tooth maximums.
3. Loss/delay protection, including missed connections due to carrier delays, delayed or lost baggage.
Airline coverage for lost, damaged, or stolen luggage is extremely limited. The traveler’s baggage risk does not end with the airline carrier. Baggage is frequently stolen in a taxi, crushed by a bus or truck, or lost at sea. Replacement value for items within the luggage as well as the replacement value of the baggage itself is covered. In addition, travelers insurance covers:
— Baggage delay. If the luggage does not arrive with the traveler, arrival at the destination can be difficult.
(a) Delay coverage provides $100-$500 (according to the plan) for the traveler to purchase necessary items such as clothing and toiletries.
— Missed connection insurance. Travelers on a schedule have no control over carrier departure times. A missed connection can cause hardship. Missed connections happen as the result of carrier overbooking, severe weather, or labor strikes.
(a) Missed connection benefits range from $250-$2500 (according to the plan). The benefit provides the funds necessary to get the trip back on schedule.
— Travel delay coverage. Delays can occur because of weather, union strikes, or flight operations. This benefit provides a certain amount of money each day for basic expenditures such as hotel or meals if a trip is delayed for a plan-covered reason.
(a) Coverage starts after the delay reaches six to 12 hours, depending on the plan.
— Car rental coverage. A rental vehicle can be stolen or damaged during a trip. Coverage for the incident might not cover all costs of the mishap. If personal insurance coverage was used, making a claim is likely to raise insurance premium rates.
(a) This benefit protects the traveler from repair costs and rental charges of the vehicle rental firm up the policy-defined amounts.
4. Body and life protection, including accidental death and dismemberment insurance (AD&D), term life insurance, and flight accident insurance.
5. Assistance services, including 24/7 hotline assistance, lost passport or visa, or identity theft.
6. Miscellaneous benefits and services, including pet care, adventure activities, and sports equipment access.