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Why Purchase Travel Insurance
As a matter of fact, we'd have taken much less of your time if we called this article "Why Skip Travel Insurance," because there would have been fewer reasons to name and explain. But we'd rather start with the reasons why purchase, since a wide range of possible mishaps forcing to suddenly cancel your travel plans and often lose the nonrefundable part of your travel expenses should form your opinion whether or not you need to buy Travel Insurance.
Purchasing Travel Insurance, you obtain peace of mind, and in case some problems do occur, it will compensate your losses. Here are some common examples of what potentially might go wrong before or during your much-planned trip.
Problems with the airline or travel supplier of your choice
The airline, cruise line or tour operator with which you are planning to travel can cease operations, declare bankruptcy, or go on strike making you cancel your trip and lose your trip investment if you were not covered.
Missing your connection due to major travel delays is not a rare occasion. If you miss some of your trip or cruise, you may be forced to pay extra accommodation and meals expenses while you wait for the next flight, for example.
It is impossible to foresee, prevent and replace everything. When delays are "Acts of God," the airlines do not offer compensation. However there is a wide range of Travel Insurance types that serve the purpose of saving you worries and money you invested in your trip.
In case you have to suddenly cancel or change your travel plans, obtaining Trip Cancellation/Interruption coverage can reimburse your investments. Delay insurance offers an opportunity to reschedule your trip and receive a refund on the trip in case delays exceed two days. To protect you from problems with travel agencies, there is a Supplier Default insurance, which will cover you in case your agent or travel company turns out unable to provide the services you have purchased.
You or your travel companion may get sick right before or during your trip, which will inevitably ruin your travel plans. If an accident or a medical emergency unsettle you far away from home and you cannot find an adequate medical care at your destination, you are likely to return home early to get proper medical help. Medical Evacuation coverage will help you cover the expenses of getting to the medical facility where you will receive emergency medical care. If you are covered by Travel Insurance, you will be treated by a doctor, get compensation and all medical bills covered.
Family problems or illness or death in the family
Our life sometimes does not allow us to schedule much. Even if you are perfectly sure that your health will in no way be an obstacle for traveling, there may be other circumstances that will make you cancel your trip or urgently return home. Such emergencies as an unexpected illness or death in the family will lead not only to worries and all your plans cancellation, but also to considerable losses and extra expenses for return arrangements. If the illness, injury or death of family members is included in your Travel Insurance coverage under reasons to cancel your trip, those expenses will be reimbursed.
Extreme weather conditions
Weather can impact your travel plans in many ways. Bad weather conditions may delay or cancel your trip. Hurricanes, tidal waves, or other acts of God can force entire resorts to evacuate. Then, adverse weather conditions can make it impossible to get to a destination that has been seriously impacted by a hurricane, for instance. Non-flying weather may close down some airport for an extended period of time. Hotels and airports do not offer compensations for "acts of God." To get a refund for your ruined vacation, you must be protected by Travel Insurance.
Problems with luggage or documents
Having your important travel documents and/or luggage delayed, lost or stolen can turn your vacation into a disaster both emotionally and financially. You can also have bad luck to break your camera or some other expensive equipment you need while traveling. If you have no Travel Insurance, the headache will be doubled by considerable out-of-pocket expenses. If you have purchased Travel Insurance, you can be reimbursed for the purchase of lost/stolen personal articles from your suitcase, broken camera, etc. Emergency assistance services will be most helpful in reporting your lost documents and arranging for emergency cash transfer if needed. You can also be covered for loss due to the unauthorized use of your stolen card.
Traveling to area of unrest
In today's world we can no more say that this or that country will be perfectly safe to travel to. Many people worry about terrorist acts when they set out for a trip. It is a natural desire to seek protection if there is any danger. Some insurance companies offer coverage for terrorist acts as a reason to cancel your trip in case the act occurs in the city of destination and you are scheduled to arrive there within 30 days after the terrorist attack. However, acts of war or civil unrest are common travel policy exclusions.
You should definitely consider purchasing Travel Insurance if you are planning your trip long in advance, since a year, for example, leaves time not only for thorough preparation for the future trip but also for problems to appear and develop. Expensive trips, cruises and package deals when you have more at risk than you could afford to lose, also require being insured. In case your travel plan is rather complex, you need Travel Insurance to protect you if things go wrong. For instance, a flight delay may entail missing your next flight or cruise ship departure with all ensuing consequences.
You may want to get along without Travel Insurance when you set out on a short vacation or domestic trip, or make last-minute travel plans. The nonrefundable portion of such trips is small and the cancellation of your trip is unlikely or won't involve much loss in any case.
There is a variety of travel insurance forms offering you coverage in a wide range of situations.
Medical Emergencies coverage provides you with financial assistance in case you have a medical emergency on your trip. Cancellations or Delays coverage compensates you in case your trip is cancelled or delayed or your airline goes out of service.
If anything of your personal property is stolen, damaged or lost while you are on vacation, your Travel Insurance will financially cover the missing items, at least some percentage of it.
If you have lost your passport, Travel Insurance will help you get a temporary document.
No matter where you purchase your Travel Insurance, you should be well aware of what and who is covered under your policy and what is excluded. Some policies may cover only immediate family members, and it is important to find out if your travel companions qualify.
Travel Insurance policies vary from company to company and it is definitely worth shopping around.
Check your current Homeowners' coverage and Health Insurance policy. You may be already covered for a number of aspects and may not need coverage for lost or damaged luggage, for example. On the other hand, if your Health coverage does not extend outside your country of residence, you will get no reimbursement should anything happen to you during your travel.
Deciding on what type of Travel Insurance is right for you take into consideration your needs, circumstances and possibilities during the trip. For instance, if you travel often, it makes sense to purchase Annual Medical Health Travel Insurance to be covered during the entire year period wherever you go. You may want to have your pre-existing medical condition covered if you have one, or may need to find coverage including sports-related injuries if you are planning to go on a sports trip.
It would be a mistake to think that Travel Insurance is a cure-all. There are certain exceptions as to what Travel Insurance coverage can protect you from:
Sometimes work or business obligations won't let us go far. Unexpected business conflict or other critical emergency at work can entail not only stress and lost vacation, but also cause additional fees and expenses. Some insurance companies may offer "cancel for any reason" benefits, however more often than not such coverage is not available. Deployment of military personnel also belongs to this exclusion.
Pre-existing medical conditions is a common exclusion in Travel Insurance policies as well. Your treatment may not be covered if while traveling you suffer a health problem which has existed prior to travel or policy. Emotional or mental illness or self-inflicted injuries are normally excluded. It means that your insurance policy won't cover your trip if you canceled it due to a nervous breakdown.
Unless insurance policies specify certain conditions under which pregnancy complications and childbirth are covered, pregnancy and childbirth are usually excluded from Travel insurance coverage.
Divorce or legal separation may not be included in travel insurance policies as valid reasons for canceling a trip. If your spouse files for divorce before you leave for a trip, you may lose your travel investments if you cancel the trip.
Among other common exclusions are named tropical storms, sports injuries from adventure sports, death or illness of a pet, luggage delayed for less than 24 hours, etc. Thus it is very important to make sure the area you need is included in your policy and you are fully or partially covered. Carefully read the fine print and be attentive to wordings, limitations and restrictions.
Smart and experienced travelers never underestimate Travel Insurance. Protection against such serious things as travel investment loss, unexpected circumstances, and worries is why most vacationers choose to buy Travel Insurance. It pays when your problems and concerns are being addressed and solved if you are far from home.