Knowing which of the roughly 15 companies offering travel insurance is right for you can be a time consuming process. Some travelers may be covered by individual health care, auto, home owners or employer policies. However, be sure to read the fine print or make the appropriate calls to verify coverage abroad.
For the rest of us, we will need travel insurance. Insurance companies cover a variety of categories such as lost/stolen luggage, trip delays, trip cancellations and more. Package plans typically include all the services offered by an individual company while others offer their services in an a la carte fashion.
Check with your airline when booking travel as many partner with specific carriers. These carriers sometimes offer discounts when insurance is purchased within a time period linked to your ticket purchase.
- Medical Emergencies and Evacuation
- Trip cancellation
- Personal belongings
- Personal liability
- Resumption of your journey
- Coverage in most countries of the world
What isn’t typically covered?
- Preexisting medical conditions. Some companies offer a 180 day or shorter window of coverage for preexisting conditions.
- Deliberate acts of life endangerment
- Alcohol or drug related accidents
- HIV/STD contraction
What does a reputable insurance company offer?
- Online insurance purchase
- Online claim service
- 24 / 7 emergency assistance
- Extend your policy online while traveling
- Helpful traveling tips and alerts based on your destination(s)
- Keep receipts and documentation for any possible claims that may be filed
- Have contact numbers handy as you’ll need to call for authorization on major medical needs
- Insurance companies, no matter how reputable, move at a certain speed. Do not expect a fast reimbursement.
- Keep thorough records including names, dates and times of contact persons at both your insurance company and medical offices.
- Document everything with pictures if possible
After extensive research of multiple insurance companies I recommend WorldNomads. Their website is fact filled, easily laid out for purchasing a policy online, fast response to inquiries and recommended by several top notch travel publications. A 4 week policy covering myself 34 yo and my travel partner 54 yo, cost us $191. The coverage limits were higher than any other company quoted with a lower policy cost. And, they’ll cover actual activities like elephant riding versus the competitors that expect you to stay in your seat pointing out the window.