Importance of Travel Insurance: What's Included in Your Policy

Travel Insurance 101: Everything You Need to Know Before You Go

Have you ever scheduled an exciting trip yet worried about anything going wrong? Travel insurance often slips our minds until it's too late. Something happens to you when you're traveling abroad, and suddenly, you're left with medical bills totaling thousands of dollars or rushing to recover non-refundable expenses. You can travel with confidence when you have travel insurance. Is it worth it? Let's uncover its coverage, cost, and requirements.

Key Highlights

  • Travel insurance shields against more than just medical emergencies - trip cancellations, delays, and interruptions included. 

  • For a worry-free journey, set aside around 6.87% of your total trip cost for travel insurance. 

  • The interest rate varies from a minimum of 4.15% to a maximum of 15.8%.

What Is Travel Insurance?

Travel insurance is a specific kind of insurance that shields travelers from unforeseen expenses and offers coverage for both business and pleasure trips. Travel Insurance is specially designed to protect travelers from unexpected situations. Travel insurance is your safety net from start to finish. You risk losing hundreds of dollars without it. 

While it's not required, buying travel insurance can help you save money and alleviate stress. In case you can 

  • Traveling internationally where healthcare is expensive.

  • Planning an expensive, prepaid trip.

  • Concerned about potential health issues or natural disasters interrupting your trip.

  • Traveling to a country that requires insurance for a visa application.

What is Covered in Travel Insurance?

Travel insurance is more comprehensive than expected. It covers trip cancellations, delays, and interruptions, not just medical emergencies. 


1- Baggage Delay or Loss

Have you ever had the airline lose your luggage? In the event that your luggage is delayed, misplaced, or destroyed, travel insurance will pay for it. For necessities like clothes and toiletries, you will receive reimbursement so you may enjoy your trip. 

2- Missed Connections and Trip Delays

Did you miss a flight or cruise connection thanks to a delay? Travel insurance has you covered. It will reimburse you for additional transportation, accommodations, and meals in the event of a lengthy delay or if you miss a connection. 

3- Emergency Medical Coverage

For injuries or medical emergencies, while traveling, travel insurance covers emergency medical care, medical transportation, and evacuation, and even remains for repatriation. The most critical part is medical coverage, which can cost hundreds of thousands.

4- Accidental Death and Dismemberment

Accidental death, dismemberment, and insurance coverage pays for loss of life, limb, or sight. It should be mentioned that because it excludes death from suicide, natural causes, and illness, this is not the same as a life insurance policy.

5- Reinstate Frequent Traveler Awards

This benefit covers the costs associated with re-depositing your rewards into your frequent traveler account if you used airline miles or hotel points to pay for a trip that was later canceled.

6- Trip Cancellation

If you must cancel your trip for a covered cause, trip cancellation insurance reimburses you for your non-refundable prepayments. Typical justifications discussed are:

  • Illness or a family member's passing.

  • Financial failure.

  • A natural calamity.

  • Airline collision.

  • Bad weather conditions.

  • Jury work.

  • Military service.

  • A passport or visa was stolen.

  • Employment loss.

7- Trip Delay

Trip delay insurance covers food, lodging, and transportation if your common carrier is delayed. Prepaid, nonrefundable fees are also covered. Depending on the policy, Trip delay coverage typically begins after five to twelve hours.

8- Trip Interruption

If you have to cancel your vacation and head back home for a covered reason—such as a family member's sickness or death, terrorism, harsh weather, or natural catastrophe—trip interruption insurance will pay you back for the unused, nonrefundable expenses.

Exclusions - Things Travel Insurance Doesn't Cover

Travel insurance typically won't cover specific exclusions, like: 

Extreme Sports and Dangerous Activities

If you plan to do anything adrenaline-inducing like skydiving, bungee jumping, or rock climbing on your trip, don't expect your travel insurance to have you covered in case of injury. Insurance companies view these as inherently risky activities. 

Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

Pre-trip health concerns are unlikely to be covered. Travel insurance covers unexpected events, not ailments you may require treatment for. Check if your health insurance covers overseas travel or check into pre-existing condition protections. 

Pandemics and Fear of Travel

Pandemics, epidemics, natural disasters, and terrorism that make you afraid to travel are usually excluded. Travel insurance covers unforeseen events after you start your trip, not cancellations due to fear. Some policies offer "cancel for any reason" trip cancellation coverage for an additional fee. 

Illegal Activities or Being Under the Influence

Any claims arising from breaking laws or participating in criminal plans or activities will not be covered. The same goes for drug or alcohol-related events. Your policy requires you to travel responsibly and follow local laws. 

Is it Important to Get Travel Insurance?

Travel insurance is recommended for most trips, especially overseas. Here are some factors to consider: 

Medical Coverage

Medical emergencies abroad may be expensive. Travel insurance covers hospital stays, prescription medications, medical evacuation, and remains repatriation. Without it, you might spend tens or hundreds of thousands on medical bills. 

Trip Interruption or Cancellation

Travel insurance covers prepaid, nonrefundable travel expenditures in the case of a pre-, during-, or post-trip illness, accident, or natural catastrophe. It can save you from losing money on airline, hotel, and excursion arrangements. 

Baggage Coverage

Have you ever had an airline lose your luggage or have items stolen during a trip? Travel insurance provides coverage for loss, damage, or theft of baggage and personal items. It will reimburse you for the depreciated value of whatever went missing so you can replace necessities on your trip.

24/7 Assistance

Many travel insurance companies offer 24-hour assistance services. They can assist in medical emergencies, natural disasters, and other crises. Emergency medical evacuations, doctor and hospital referrals, cash transfers, and passport and travel document replacements are available. 

Peace of Mind

Finally, travel insurance provides peace of mind. Having financial security against unanticipated disasters lets you enjoy your trip. Insurance is worth the little upfront investment to prevent significant losses, especially on expensive or adventurous excursions. Travel insurance gives you peace of mind.

How Much Does Travel Insurance Cost and Where to Buy It

Travelers should budget 6.87% of their trip cost on average for travel insurance. Although it may go as high as 15.8%, the smallest amount you could anticipate paying is 4.15%. The pricing depends on elements like: 

A- The Length and Destination of Your Trip

Coverage for multi-week international trips will generally cost more than short domestic getaways. Trips to remote or higher-risk areas may also increase the premium. 

B- The Level of Coverage You Select

Primary coverage includes trip cancellation, interruption, and medical emergency benefits. Broader coverage may include extras like baggage loss, flight delays, and adventure sports riders. The more you opt to cover, the higher the cost. 

C- Your Age and Health

Premiums are more significant for older travelers and those with pre-existing ailments. Insurance companies charge extra to cover possible claims because they are riskier. 

D- Any Optional Add-ons

Your premium will also be affected by "cancel for any reason" riders and rental car damage waivers. Several companies sell travel insurance: 

E-Travel Insurance Companies

Specialists like Allianz, AIG, and Travel Guard sell policies directly. Compare plans and prices on their websites. 

F- Travel Booking Sites

Expedia, Travelocity, and Kayak allow you to add a travel insurance policy during booking. They offer coverage from multiple companies to compare. 

G- Airlines and Cruise Lines

Some airlines like United and Delta and most major cruise lines also sell their own branded travel insurance or partner with an insurance provider to offer policies to their customers. 

H- Insurance Aggregators

Sites like InsureMyTrip, Squaremouth, and allow you to compare plans and purchase coverage from several companies in one place. They provide objective comparisons to find the right plan for your needs and budget. 

I- Credit Card Companies

Travel insurance may be free if you use Chase Sapphire or Citi Prestige credit cards. Ask your card issuer about your coverage and whether you need to register to use any benefits. The coverage may be basic, so you can consider purchasing additional insurance.

Which Countries Require Travel Insurance? 

Multiple countries require visitors to have travel insurance for their trip. This ensures tourists have coverage in case of medical emergencies or events like trip cancellations. Some of the most popular destinations with mandatory travel insurance include: 

Schengen countries 

Visitors to the 26 Schengen Area countries—including France, Spain, Germany, and Italy—must obtain travel insurance for stays over 90 days. The coverage must cover €30,000 for emergency medical care. 


Visitors to Australia must have A$50,000 emergency medical insurance. This applies to all guests, regardless of length. 


All foreign travelers to Russia must have travel insurance with €30,000 emergency medical coverage. Some travel insurance providers offer policies specifically for travel to Russia. 


Foreign visitors to Brazil must have travel insurance with at least R$2,000 emergency medical coverage per day. 

New Zealand 

Like Australia, New Zealand mandates that all visitors obtain travel insurance with a minimum of NZ$100,000 in emergency medical coverage. No matter how far you travel, this holds true. 


Visitors to Cuba must have insurance that provides at least €30,000 in emergency medical coverage. Some travel insurance companies offer special policies just for trips to Cuba. 


Egypt requires emergency medical coverage of at least $30,000 for travel insurance. This applies to all visitors entering Egypt. 

The Bottom Line

So that's travel insurance explained. The cost of a policy depends on your age, health, destination, and trip length, but most people find the peace of mind worth it. Even on vacation, life can throw you a curveball. Your wallet and your adventure will thank you. At the end of the day, you can rest easy knowing you've prepared for the worst but still hope for the best. Now get out there and enjoy your journey - safely insured and carefree!


What does travel insurance typically cover?

Accidental death and dismemberment, Emergency medical coverage, Delays, cancellations due to illness or death, misplaced luggage, and some emergency medical expenses are often covered by the complete package.

What does travel insurance do?

Travel insurance offers financial security if you encounter specific difficulties when you travel or take a vacation. It covers various scenarios, from misplaced luggage to the price of medical attention in the event of an accident or illness.

How many days is covered by travel insurance?

Annual travel insurance, often known as multi-trip insurance, covers a complete calendar year from the policy's start date. You are covered for as many trips as you choose throughout those 12 months, but the typical trip lasts up to 31 days.

How much does travel insurance coverage cost?

Depending on many variables, travel insurance costs typically between 4.15% and 15.8% of each trip. The provider, coverage, number of passengers, and location determine the cost of your insurance.

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04 Dec, 2023


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