Nothing can ruin a vacation faster than an unexpected mishap. In today’s uncertain landscape, it’s essential that planning the perfect vacation includes protecting yourself from travel emergencies. Travel insurance covers everything from medical expenses to trip cancellation. And that can be particularly comforting when events like wildfires, terrorist threats, and hurricanes seem to strike at any time.
You can’t put a price on peace of mind – especially when you’re vacationing. Whether it’s a sudden health problem, or the loss of your luggage, unforeseen incidents have a way of transforming dream trips into nightmares.
Many travel insurance plans are designed to alleviate your worry by providing 24-hour worldwide assistance. They typically offer emergency medical expense coverage for things like physician and ambulance services, and hospitalization costs. And – depending on the policy you choose – coverage could extend to such calamities as:
- air flight accidents,
- missed connections,
- rental car damage,
- traffic accidents on the way to departure, and even
- identity theft
One of the biggest mistakes travelers make is assuming that the cost of their trip will be covered when they charge it to a major credit card. The reality is that there are quite a few limitations to this type of protection. And it’s not uncommon for affected vacationers to discover after the fact that only a fraction of their trip price is covered.
Protect Your Travels from Natural Disasters
Taking advantage of a travel insurance plan not only protects you from the costs associated with accidents and injuries, it helps keep disruptions to a minimum. Recent world events have left many travelers wondering: what happens if my trip is affected by severe weather or local disasters?
The answer is that many insurance policies include protection from trip delays, interruptions, and outright cancellations.
Hurricanes, earthquakes, even terrorist attacks are often eligible for coverage IF you purchased your plan BEFORE such an event. Canadians who invest in trip cancellation and interruption insurance, for example, can often claim the cost of their trip if a government travel advisory for their destination is issued.
Some of the other ways trip delay benefits may prove advantageous include:
- Coverage if your tour operator, airline, travel supplier, or cruise line is forced to stop all services for a specified time due to severe weather or a natural disaster
- Coverage for expenses like meals and accommodation if adverse weather causes an airport to shut down, and you are inadvertently left stranded
- Coverage if you are displaced from your hotel or resort due to mandatory evacuations resulting from forecasted natural disasters
While some insurance providers won’t honour medical claims in countries where travel advisories have been issued by the government, the best way to confirm what’s covered and when is to ask the right questions before leaving home.
Verify any terms and limitations in your policy prior to signing on the dotted line. And never assume that the medical insurance coverage you enjoy where you live will also protect you while traveling abroad.
General note: the above article does in no way constitute specific travel insurance advice. Please seek your travel professional for a consultation to your specific trip.