Travelling can be quite an ordeal for some people, especially those who fail to properly prepare before they leave. Planning, packing, and organizing transportation is enough to worry about; when it comes to possible medical costs, thefts, or lost valuables, at least travel insurance is available to ease the stress.
Before you look for travel insurance, ready yourself to look at more than just the price. Cheap insurance might seem like a great way to save money. If something terrible does happen while you are away, an inferior policy might create problems for years to come. Find the right coverage for you, and be prepared to pay appropriately.
Even if you are leaving for your next trip soon, there should be enough time to organize suitable coverage. It is hard to choose the right coverage, so here is what to look for when choosing travel insurance:
- Trip time limits. Some travel insurance policies limit the amount of days that you can be abroad. If you are away from home for any longer, the entire policy will be invalid.
- Excluded destinations. Be sure to find a policy that covers every destination you plan to visit. This varies and it can become confusing, but you must know where you can go, and where you cannot. If you decide to make a last-minute change in your travel route, you might void your insurance plan without realizing.
- Medical costs. This is a primary concern for most travellers. There is a range of plans that cover the costs of medical treatment you require while away.
- Missing transportation. Most people have experienced a missed departure, but not all travel insurance policies cover this sort of mishap.
- Dangerous or extreme vacations. Are you an adventurous type of person? Tourist destinations have some of the most exciting activities in the world. Before going horse riding, scuba diving, or bungee jumping, make sure that your travel insurance policy covers these types of risky activities. Some plans exclude activities they deem as “hazardous”, so check that you are covered.
- Luggage cover. This covers your possessions, in case they are stolen, lost, destroyed, or damaged.
- Treatment of belongings. Insurance companies expect that you will be reasonably careful with your own luggage, valuables, and other belongings. They might attempt to avoid payment if there is evidence that you were careless, or contributed to the loss or damage of your goods. As well as being careful, make sure you find a policy that suits your personal style of travel.
- Alcohol and drugs. Sure, many people want to travel and partake in some social drinking, or maybe go further. If something should happen while you are under the influence of non-prescription drugs, or alcohol, many insurers will not provide cover. If you plan to go to a resort, or party destination where there will be lots of drinking, look for appropriate travel insurance coverage.
- Personal liability. If you cause an accident that hurts others, some policies will provide coverage, making sure that you are not liable for damages and medical costs.
- Cancellation. Sometimes trips must be shortened, or even cancelled. Some policies will cover costs of accommodation, or other travel expenses, that were paid in advance and cannot be used.