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You’ve likely heard of travel insurance, but what does it cover and how much does it cost? We’re answering all of your questions about travel insurance. Plus, keep reading to find out our readers’ recommendations for the best travel insurance!
Best Travel Insurance
Travel Fashion Girl help! A reader asks:
Ladies, I need to purchase travel insurance and have never had to do it myself. What are your recommendations as to who and how?
Insurance isn’t the most exciting or simplest of topics, but it’s an important one. Some travelers never travel without travel insurance to help them feel more confident, knowing that certain travel losses or emergencies will be covered, financially. Here, our readers share their recommendations for and experiences with travel insurance.
What is Travel Insurance?
First, it’s important to understand what travel insurance is. A travel insurance plan is designed to offer financial protection should you experience an emergency or problem abroad.
Some travelers purchase a travel insurance plan before big trips to protect them from financial risks and losses that can occur during travel, from delayed or lost luggage to last-minute flight cancellations due to emergencies.
What Does Travel Insurance Cover?
Travel insurance plans vary, so you’ll need to review the specifics of any plan to determine what is covered. However, generally speaking, there are two main types of travel insurance:
- Plans that cover cover trip cancellations and interruptions (such as lost or delayed luggage)
- Plans that solely cover travel medical insurance (including emergency medical expenses, emergency medical evacuation, and accidental death and dismemberment coverage)
There are also plans that cover both. As you can imagine, plans that cover more are typically more expensive. The more coverage you want, the higher the price tag, and vice versa.
Do I Need Travel Insurance?
Ultimately, the decision is up to you. Many travelers make this decision based on where they’re traveling or with whom. One reader says, “I’m bringing 3 kids and my mom on a trip, so travel insurance is critical for me.”
Travel insurance can be very helpful (or at least reassuring) when you’re traveling to rural or third-world countries that may lack the same level of medical care to which you’re accustomed. Or, if you’re traveling for an extended period and have multiple flights, travel insurance can help offer financial coverage if your luggage is lost, delayed, or stolen. Additionally, if you get nervous when traveling, travel insurance can help you feel a little less stressed because you have one less thing to worry about!
One reader says, “Accidents can happen to anyone. That is mainly why I buy it. I just took a tumble on a glacier this last month and had some facial cuts and a huge hematoma on my hand. It could have been a lot worse so I was lucky.”
Another says, “I broke my foot two weeks before an epic 3-week trip to Europe and had to cancel. I bought insurance the day I broke my foot. It’s a dicey situation. Always have trip insurance, unless eating thousands of dollars isn’t a big deal.”
The Best Travel Insurance
Here’s what our readers say are the best travel insurance plans.
Overwhelmingly, our readers swear by Allianz for great travel insurance packages and rave about their excellent customer service. One says, “It’s very affordable and they base the charge on your vacation expenses.” Another shares, “they offer a fast response and are reputable!” and a third adds, “They are super friendly and have helpful phone customer service, too.”
Allianz offers several packages depending on your coverage needs, with plans starting at $17. Several readers have had to file claims with Allianz and had great experiences. One says, “just had to file a claim while in Hong Kong and it was a very smooth process with Allianz. I received my refund very quickly.”
One reader shares, “they paid quickly when I had to pay $4,000 out of pocket for airfare out of Rome to the U.S. when a Lufthansa strike cancelled all flights. Allianz also covered all of my extra expenses when a terrorist incident detoured my original travel plans in Belgium.”
Another adds, “My aunt was hospitalized on our last vacation. Allianz was amazing. The case manager called me daily for updates and gave me tons of advice (I looked forward to his call every day), refunded me for extra hotel nights, train rides, etc. He even upgraded our flights to business class flying home. They also arranged a luxury car to pick us up from the hospital and take us to the airport 2 hours away. Highly recommend them.”
And a fourth says, “I got Allianz for my mother when she went on a cruise and visited six European countries. She got sick while on the cruise, paid about 250 Euros for treatment by the doctor on board. As soon as she came back home to the US, she filed a claim and Allianz reimbursed her 100%. The process was fast and easy; she just had to show proof of treatment (receipts and such) and she got reimbursed quickly. So now I’m using Allianz for my own upcoming trip to Europe next month.”
Get Allianz travel insurance here!
AIG Travel Guard
AIG is a reputable financial services firm, so it’s not surprising that their travel insurance brand, Travel Guard, offers great plans. They offer three levels of insurance—Platinum, Gold, and Silver—depending on the level of service you want. The Silver plan is great for budget travelers while the Platinum offers 24/7 travel assistance services.
One reader says, “I have used AIG Travel Guard for years. I highly recommend them. I have only rarely had to file a claim and they paid the claim within a couple of weeks. The insurance travel concierge was extremely helpful when we ran into a major travel kerfuffle in Greece. We get the gold policy. The coverage for preexisting medical conditions will only be in effect if you purchase the insurance within 15 days of your initial trip deposit. They also have riders for cancel for any reason for an additional price.”
Get AIG Travel Guard here!
For simple and flexible travel insurance, try World Nomads. Along with 24/7 emergency assistance and coverage for 150+ adventure activities, you can buy more coverage to keep you on the road if you want to extend your trip.
One reader says, “World Nomads is highly reputable insurance company. I personally have not had to file a claim with them but they have really great reviews, so I would think the claim process is customer friendly.”
Another adds, “although I am going on a Rick Steves Tour, the World Nomads insurance was more reasonably priced than the company he offered.”
Get World Nomads travel insurance here!
Although a smaller company, one reader recommends GeoBlue, saying, “they’re great for short trips, as they offer the basics for a great price.”
GeoBlue provides travel medical and international health insurance, including 24/7 customer support, quick access to doctors and hospitals, cashless appointment scheduling, and more. As they don’t provide coverage for lost luggage or other situations, this is better for travelers concerned with potential health emergencies.
Get GeoBlue travel insurance here!
Designed to cover the unexpected risks related to travel, one reader uses Chubb Travel Insurance, sharing “it’s a huge and respectable company, plus it has an annual travel policy so you don’t have to buy a new policy for every trip! It’s a couple of hundred dollars and includes all kinds of luggage loss, delay, evacuation, and more. Just enjoy your travels all year without having to worry about emergencies.”
Chubb offers two package options—Essential and Enhanced. These two plans offer many of the same benefits, but at different coverage levels. Some of the benefits include medical evacuation for illness and injury, medical expense coverage, political evacuation, accidental death and dismemberment insurance, and trip cancellation coverage.
Get Chubb Travel Insurance here!
Although specifically for divers, a couple of our readers had nothing but positive things to say about PADI’s specialty travel insurance. One reader says, “I recommend PADI. Great experience with this company and very reasonable prices,” while another adds “If I will be diving, PADI is my go-to.”
PADI provides emergency evacuation coverage for diving and non-diving medical emergencies and easy access to customer support and other resources when you need it.
Get PADI’s travel insurance here!
What do you think is the best travel insurance? Share in the comment section below!
For packing tips, please read:
- 10-Step Guide to Packing One Suitcase for any Trip
- This Video Will Change the Way You Pack
- Best Travel Tips According from Our Readers
- Best Money Belts and Anti-theft Travel Accessories
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