Taking a Trip for Spring Break? Consider Vacation Insurance
Whether you are a college student about to embark on a fun spring break adventure, or a family traveling to Disney World for Easter, you might want to look into vacation insurance in order to protect the investment you have made in your spring vacation. Certain types of travel insurance can also help to reimburse you for unexpected expenses while you are away on your trip.
You might consider purchasing vacation or travel insurance for a variety of reasons. Ultimately, it is about protecting the investment that you have already made in your trip. If something happens and you have to cancel or postpone your trip, or if you must return earlier than planned, travel insurance will not only reimburse you for the costs, but it can also serve as a valuable resource to help you get through a potentially difficult situation in a strange place.
There are several different kinds of vacation insurance that will potentially reimburse you for certain travel-related expenses or losses.
- Trip cancellation coverage: You can purchase coverage to reimburse you for pre-paid non-refundable expenses if you need to cancel a trip. Most travel insurance companies provide a list of the covered reasons for cancelling a trip, including:
- Sickness, injury or death of you, a family member or a traveling companion
- A hurricane causes damage to your destination or cancels your flight
- You are laid off from work, or you are unable to get off of work to go on the trip as planned
- A terrorist incident occurs in the city you are traveling to
- Your travel supplier files for bankruptcy
- You are called for jury duty
- Trip interruption coverage: This coverage is similar to cancellation coverage, but it covers you while you are already on your trip, typically for the same reasons as listed above. If something happens and you are required to return home, trip interruption insurance will reimburse you for the lost portion of your trip, as well as any additional expenses for the last-minute flight home.
- Medical expense coverage: If you need emergency medical or dental care when you travel abroad, medical expense coverage can help. While most health insurance policies will cover you for medical emergencies while traveling within the United States, many will not provide coverage when you are out of the country. Medicare coverage is very limited when you are abroad. Some supplemental insurance, such as Medigap plans, provide coverage for foreign travel. Medigap plans C through G and M and N cover 80% of the cost of emergency care abroad during the first two months of a trip with a $250 deductible and up to $50,00 in a lifetime. Some Medicare private health plans also cover emergency care when you travel outside the United States. You should check with your plan to see what costs and rules apply. You can also purchase emergency evacuation coverage, which will pay for emergency evacuation expenses such as airlifts and medically equipped flights back home. Your regular health insurance provider likely will not pay to evacuate you or transport you back home to the U.S.
In addition to the above-mentioned types of vacation insurance, you might also want to consider the following types of coverage to protect your spring break investment:
- Baggage coverage reimburses you for your personal belongings if your luggage is lost, stolen or damaged
- Baggage delay coverage provides money to buy essential items until your delayed bags arrive
- Travel delay coverage provides reimbursement for additional expenses if your flight is delayed
Travel insurance companies also generally provide some types of 24/7, worldwide phone assistance, which can be extremely helpful if you have some type of medical emergency. These services can help you locate a hospital, find medical transportation, assist with language barriers, find transportation back home and even replace lost prescriptions. In addition, 24/7 phone assistance can help you find and replace lost or stolen luggage or passports, and find travel information such as visa and passport requirements.
It is very important to read the fine print before you buy any type of vacation or travel insurance. You will want to know what is and is not covered, how to file a claim, and how and when you will be reimbursed for claims you make. It is also a good idea to review your homeowners or renters policy to see if it provides any coverage for lost or stolen items. You should also know how your health plan covers emergency medical care when you are away from home.
We can help you learn more about vacation insurance and can help you decide if it is a wise investment for the trip that you are taking. It is not always necessary, but for certain trips it can provide a great deal of protection and peace of mind.
Have you ever had to cancel an expensive vacation, or cut a trip short? Did you have vacation insurance?
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