How to Choose The Right Travel Insurance Policy [Updated]
There are many things that travelers need to take into account while planning their next trip. It takes time to pack, select the best connectivity provider, plan a route, choose travel destinations, as well as buy a good travel insurance policy.
Anything can happen during your visit to a foreign country. By means of a good travel insurance policy, travelers can recoup financial losses such as medical bills. Many travelers don’t buy travel insurance because of high costs. However, this is one of the biggest mistakes since oversees doctors and medical bills can be more expensive than the price you pay for travel insurance.
Travel Insurance is an investment to minimize financial loss in the event of an unfortunate event when you are abroad. Read through the following piece and it will help you select the proper insurance to allow you greater peace of mind on your next journey.
Travel Insurance Types
In order to get started, you need to determine what kind of policy you need. Depending on what country you are going to visit and how much coverage you need, there are different kinds of insurance policies divided into certain types.
- Travel medical insurance that covers the cost of medical care in foreign countries.
- Travel insurance that covers the cost of lost luggage, canceled flights, and basic medical care.
- Multi-trip policies cover several trips in a year, thus reducing the number of policies that you need to buy for every trip.
- Medical evacuation services in case if an emergency when evacuation is needed. This type of travel insurance will pay for the cost to get you back home in case of serious illness or injury.
How to Choose Travel Insurance After the Pandemic
You should be especially careful when buying travel insurance after the pandemic. 2020 has brought many changes to the way we live and travel. Now, travelers need to make sure that their insurance covers situations like COVID-19, as well as other injuries and types of illnesses.
Standard travel insurance coverage varies by policy. But the three most common reasons for cancelling a trip include:
- A significant injury or illness (or even death) that affected a traveler;
- Weather conditions that prevent the traveler from reaching the destination country;
- A terrorist attack;
- The global or local pandemic outbreak.
The two major types of travel insurance that you can buy after the pandemic include:
- "Cancel for any reason."The cost of this travel insurance varies between 10% and 12% of the price of your vacation. It will refund part of your travel costs if you decide to cancel your vacation. This is the most flexible type of travel insurance for the post-pandemic time. Its main benefit is that if you change your mind about the trip, it guarantees a minimum 75% refund of your money.
- "Named perils."This is a less expensive (7%-9% of your trip cost) and more common type of travel insurance. It only covers the perils named in the policy. And a pandemic is probably not included.
When looking for the best post-pandemic travel insurance, there are two key factors that travelers should keep an eye on are health and money. It’s essential to continue looking for the policies that offer coverage from unexpected illness, injuries, and accidents. Also, pay attention to the refund terms. As a rule, travel insurance comes with a “free look” period of about 10-14 days. It means that if you decide to cancel your trip, you can also cancel your policy and get a full refund.
Always read the fine print when you buy travel insurance. Carefully read through the part with exclusions and “force majeure” that might not be covered.
If you choose not to buy travel insurance, you are in the mercy of your travel operator’s policy. Most airline companies started offering vouchers instead of refunds in cases when there flights were canceled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Cruises and resorts scale refund policies depending on how close you are to the departure date.
Tips & Warnings
The best way to make the right decision on the best travel insurance for your upcoming vacation is to make a spreadsheet to compare different policies in a table. In one column, write the name of each company. In the next one - enter the cost, policy type, the kind of coverage provided, etc. Such a list will help you make the right decision on the insurance that is the best value for your money while still delivering all the services that you need.
- Calculate the cost of your future trip and the amount that you are ready to spend on your travel insurance. Depending on how much coverage you want, the price of your travel insurance should be no more than 4-10% of the total cost. However, there are some other types of overage (like emergency medical coverage) that will increase the price to 7-10% of the cost of your journey. Keeping this in mind, compare your insurance costs with the price of your journey to make sure that you do not pay too much.
- Use online services to draw a comparison between different travel insurance policies. There are plenty of websites offering such services for free. Simply enter “compare travel insurance” in the search field and you’ll be surprised to find out how many services are available on the web. Some of the most popular ones are PolicyBazaar are SquareMouth. At the same time, consulting a website that belongs to a particular travel insurance company may not be a good idea. Their data may be skewed to favor their own travel insurance policy.
- Check out the reviews of other travelers. You can see user reviews shared by travel websites, newspapers, and consumer companies. While searching for user reviews, consider things like how fast the company works on claims and processes complaints; what’s the payout maximum that travelers received for ant specific plan; was it easy to contact the travel company agent in emergency cases, etc. This can help you find out what issues you may encounter on your trip and thus prevent them from occurring at the vacation planning stage.
- Your travel insurance company will give you their helpline numbers inside and outside the country you are visiting. Make sure that you have them in multiple locations - with your travel documents on your phone, in your email, in the cloud, etc.
- Tell your insurance company about your health conditions (like diabetes or high blood pressure). Based on this information they will provide you with the right insurance policy that will work for you during your vacation. If you do not tell this information then you may be denied reimbursement
- Plan your journey well in advance. Don’t leave the purchase of travel insurance for the last moment. It may take some time for you to make the right choice. This may also require some days for the policy to process. This is especially true if you plan on getting the trip cancellation insurance.
- Do not rely completely on what your insurance agent says. Read the fine print carefully. Ask questions if you don’t understand something from the copy.
- Cheap doesn’t mean safe. Find out what you'll get for the money you pay. Evaluate all risks that you may possibly face.
- Tour operator can make an attempt to sell you insurance policies that they earn commissions on. However, those may not be the policies that are most suited to your specific needs.
What’s an Insured Event
There are different insured events for different types of travel insurance policies. Let’s enumerate the major ones.
- Medical insurance covers you when you receive and pay for medical assistance or any other kind of service while abroad. Some of the reasons for providing medical assistance may be a sudden illness or an accident that occurred as a consequence of events that are specified in the insurance contract.
- Baggage insurance covers you when your luggage is damaged or lost.
- Financial risk insurance covers you when you cannot leave for a planned journey because of illness or death, visa denial, missing a connected flight or the natural phenomenon.
Travel Insurance Costs in the USA
ValuePengiun ran a study comparing the average cost of travel insurance in the USA. After comparing more than 50 travel insurance policies, they came up with a price of $148 per 1 week for one travel insurance policy in the country. However, not all of the examined travel policies are the same. Some are more comprehensive than others. The range of costs is also influenced by the age of the Insured, the type of travel insurance, and other factors.
Factors That Impact Travel Insurance Rates
There is a range of factors that determine the cost of the travel insurance policy. For example, when setting the insurance rates some companies don’t take in consideration your travel destination, while others do. Here are some other major factors that determine the cost you will pay.
- Health conditions of travelers. In case you or a person who leaves for a vacation with you have pre-existing conditions, then be ready to pay higher rates that would cover the expenses for issues caused by those conditions.
- Travel destination. If you head for a country with expensive health care costs, then this can cause a higher cost of your travel insurance policy.
- Length of your trip. As a rule, longer trips come with higher travel insurance rates. There are more risks for issues to occur when staying in a foreign country for a longer period of time.
- Age of travelers. Travelers aged 50 and higher are more likely to file a claim.
- Types of coverage. In general, there are two main types of coverage - All Inclusive and Medical. While All Inclusive policies provide more coverage, medical only cover you when there is a need for emergency medical care. You can also tailor your coverage to match the specifications of your trip. For example, in addition to your medical policy, you can pack extra coverage like baggage loss or trip cancellation. As you may guess, the more extras you include, the more you will pay.
- Trip cost limits. Mind the cost of all expenses that come with your future trip, including flights and booked hotel rooms. The total trip cost is one of the most important factors that impact your travel insurance rates.
Average Travel Insurance Cost in the USA
According to ValuePengiun research, the average cost of travel insurance is $148. This is the price that a US citizen would pay going to the United Kingdom for 1 week. It also was determined that the places where someone departs from or travels to don’t have a big impact on the insurance rates. For example, while departing from different states in the US for the United Kingdom, the subtotal cost of the insurance will remain almost the same (there can be a slight difference of about $10).
Average Travel Insurance Rates by Age
Regardless of the type of policy you buy, the cost will automatically increase because of the age factor. The research showed that the claim remained the same for travelers aged 35 and younger. However, there is a drastic cost increase for travelers ages 60 and 80.
Image source: >ValuePenguin
The purchase of your travel insurance policy cannot be the last-minute decision before you leave for your vacation. It takes time to compare the rates and insurance policies from different companies. It’s also important to be aware of the average travel insurance rates since cheap policies will hardly provide you with the proper coverage.
If you are planning a vacation and look for a reliable travel insurance company, then check out what Globelink International offer.
This is a leading company for any kind of travel insurance, serving the insurance needs of the travel community for over 20 years.
Their range of products is available to UK, EU, and EEA residents. They cover travelers up to age 89. So whether you are going on holiday, working abroad, a gap year student, expat, taking a one-way trip, or have already traveled, they can get you covered.
>Globelink provide a range of travel insurance policies with variable sections of cover, excesses, and sums insured. These include single trip and annual multi-trip insurance policies.
The final decision is up to you! Make the right choice of the best travel insurance based on our recommendations.