Who do you trust for travel insurance?

I’ve never had travel insurance, and luckily I’ve never needed it. However, we see many travel writers strongly recommending travel insurance. Perhaps if we knew which insurance company to trust…

Here’s a story about a couple who couldn’t travel because their passports arrived to slowly. Their travel insurance didn’t cover anything – quite a shock to the couple who spent money on insurance, couldn’t travel, and couldn’t collect from insurance.

I can probably afford to lose some money on a flight or something, but what really scares me is emergency medical evacuation because that can cost a fortune.

We do have a little British advice – I wish I knew of an American company that offered an annual travel insurance policy that covered me every time I travel.

While everyone in England recommends it, in America we don’t see that so much. Speaking of England, I read that “47 per cent of UK holidaymakers still did not bother to take out any travel cover before their trip” which leaves 53% of the people buying travel insurance. I wish I had a statistic for America, but I’m willing to bet it’s much much lower than 53%.

According to this article Consumer Reports isn’t a big fan of travel insurance.

That same article reinforces what I said before about medical evacuation though:

Dr. Leon Reinstein of Baltimore says he has been buying travel insurance for overseas trips ever since one of his patients needed to be evacuated 10 years ago from the Bahamas after breaking her hip. That 90-mile ambulance evacuation to Miami cost $25,000.

They did also mention one family that had a good experience with Travel Guard insurance when a hurricane hit their vacation spot.

So basically they say buy travel insurance when:

1. You’re spending a lot of money on your trip and losing sleep about something happening

2. You’re traveling when there’s a risk of bad weather

3. If you’re afraid of spending tens of thousands of dollars on medical evacuation

I guess #3 would be especially important to people who are going rafting or something similar – something where there’s a better than average chance of getting injured. Also with #3, you don’t necessarily need travel insurance to get medical evacuation coverage.

Filed Under: Travel insurance

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  1. Linda Bator says:

    I sell luxury travel for a living, and I can tell you, no one leaves without proper coverage. If you want medical evacuation coverage only, then I suggest MEDJET, which actually flies you back to the hospital of your choice, and it is available for an annual coverage, as well as a separate trip coverage. If you want insurance to cover cancellation for medical reasons (you and/or immediate family become ill before travel), trip interruption, baggage loss or delay and medical coverage, you can go with either TravelEx or Travel Guard. We use both, and they are a definate help. We had 2 clients who travelled to Morocco, were coming back to the hotel after dinner in a taxi, and it was struck by a drunk driver. One of those clients was killed instantly, and the other very badly hurt. The insurance company took care of all the arrangements for the return of the body to the States, and flew the 2nd passenger, after stabilized, with a doctor and 2 nurses, back to the hospital just by his home here. Believe me, when you need peace of mind, insurance is mandatory.

  2. C. Marz says:

    I purchase insurance just in case of a needed cancelation prior to departing . I have never had to use it, but I have always wondered whether these companies are trustworthy . I think this is a good blog question . I am interested in some other opinions . Are there any companies that aren’t traveler friendly ? I have never heard of these companies selling the insurance . So how are travelers really to know whom to trust?

  3. stlouismermaid says:

    My husband and I always purchase the extra $70 per person insurance that Apple Vacations offers with their packages. We like to go to places that hurricanes frequent but we have been very lucky, and have not had weather problems on any of our vacations. I made a claim on this insurance last year when I was bitten by a poisonous ant (similar to a brown recluse spider bite) while on vacation in the DR. The insurance ultimately covered everything but it was a slow and cumbersome process. Also, when you purchase this insurance, it will reimburse you the difference if the cost of the trip comes down in price. We have been credited to our Mastercard over $300 for a trip to the DR we booked in May but doesn’t take place for another two weeks that has dropped in price – so we have already recouped the cost of the insurance and a lot more. If you plan on scuba diving on your vacation, you can also purchase insurance that covers all medical needs (dive related or not) through Divers Alert Network. You pay an annual fee and it is not expensive – plans start at under $100 for a year of travel.

  4. Susan says:

    A wonderful web site, insuremytrip.com, was recommended to me at a travel show by several providers and travel agents. The site gives good comparative benefit info for a grid of about twenty companies and, best of all, rates each of the companies. You can connect to the insurer of choice directly and complete your transaction in just a couple of minutes.

  5. Sanford Morris says:

    All should also be aware of the pre-existing health problems waiver in a lot of insurance. Unfortunately a real example travel to relative with cancer and they pass. Change travel plans with insurers okay and try to collect non-refundable expenses. Sorry waiver includes you, family, friends and relatives traveling with you and those at your destination. I would suspect that this might include friends as well traveling with you or at your destination. I am sure if you need to get home for relatives medical problem the waiver will also apply.

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