Friday, April 21, 2023

What Is Travel Insurance And Do You Need It?

With the height of summer travel just around the corner, many of you are planning trips near and far. You may have been offered a chance to purchase some type of travel protection (insurance) but not sure if you need it. Maybe you've just heard of it but you don't really know what it is and when you should purchase it. I've put together some information that can maybe help clear up some of that confusion. 

Travel insurance is a type of protection
that covers the costs and losses associated with traveling. This can include medical expenses, trip cancellation or interruption, lost or stolen luggage, and other unforeseen circumstances that may arise while traveling.

When would it be worth the investment? When would it not?
Whether or not travel insurance is worth the investment depends on several factors, including the type of trip you're taking, your budget, and your risk tolerance. It may be worth investing in travel insurance if:

  • You're taking an expensive trip that you can't afford to lose. Travel insurance can help protect your investment in case you need to cancel your trip or if something were to happen during the trip that requires you to cut it short.
  • You're traveling internationally. Medical expenses can be very costly in other countries plus you may have to pay upfront for medical care, including hospitalization and surgery. Travel insurance can help cover those expenses.
  • You're participating in adventure sports or other high-risk activities. Travel insurance can provide coverage for injuries sustained during these activities.

On the other hand, travel insurance may not be necessary if:

  • You're taking a short domestic trip and have a low financial risk tolerance. This may mean you are driving, if flying you have booked refundable flights and/or booked hotel stays that have lenient cancelation policies with little to no cancellation fee.
  • You will be traveling domestically and your regular health insurance will cover you.
  • You have comprehensive medical coverage that includes international travel. Most US-based health insurance plans do not cover international travel, so make sure your policy does.
  • You're traveling with minimal luggage and can afford to replace anything, or everything, that is lost or stolen.

How can you choose the right travel insurance provider? What should you look for?
When selecting a travel insurance provider, it's important to consider the specific needs of your trip and your budget. Here are some things to look for:

  • Coverage for the specific risks you're concerned about, such as medical coverage, trip cancellation, or lost luggage. Do you have a preexisting health condition you want to make sure is covered? Is there a chance you might have to cancel the trip due to work or something else? Are you worried about arriving at your destination but your luggage did not and having to purchase new items while in a foreign place?
  • An affordable premium that fits within your budget. Premiums can be based on the cost of the trip, the destination, and the age of travelers.
  • A provider with a reputation for excellent customer service that can provide assistance quickly and efficiently if needed.
  • A provider with a strong financial rating and a history of paying out claims to policyholders.
  • A provider that provides primary health coverage while on your trip. This means you will file a claim with the travel insurance provider first and in certain situations can get it taken care of while you are still traveling. If the provider is a secondary provider, a claim would have to be filed with your primary and then filed with the secondary policy. This can result in delays in claims being paid and possibly even more expenses while you wait for the primary policy to settle or respond.

What are some risks of traveling — particularly without insurance?
Traveling without insurance can leave you vulnerable to a variety of risks, including:

  • Medical emergencies can be costly, especially in foreign countries where medical expenses can be much higher or you have to pay upfront before you will be treated.
  • Trip cancellations or interruptions due to unforeseen circumstances, such as a flight cancellation, a family emergency, or a natural disaster.
  • Lost or stolen luggage, can be frustrating and costly to replace. When you have a policy that covers delayed or lost baggage, you can avoid added stress or even a ruined trip.
  • Accidents or injuries that may occur during an excursion, tour, adventure sports, or even at the resort or walking down the street while on your trip. Accidents happen, even when we are on vacation. Better to have some medical coverage, and avoid an unhappy and stressful rest of your vacation.

These are just a few of the risks associated with traveling without insurance. By investing in travel insurance, you can protect yourself against these risks and travel with greater peace of mind. Outta Here Travels works with some of the most well-respected Travel Protection Providers in the industry. If you'd like a quote or to learn you can visit our website or give us a call. 

Michelle Osborn is the Owner & Travel Consultant at Outta Here Travels located in Pampa, Texas. She has over ten years of experience within the travel industry and serves clients from all over the United States.

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