Every vacation is important but some travel experiences need extra protection. In some situations, travel insurance becomes absolutely important to protect both your investment and peace of mind. Travel insurance costs vary due to many factors like age, your destination, amount of risk, time of booking etc. Generally is costs less than 10% of the total cost of your trip.
Clients always asks "Do I REALLY need Travel Insurance?" Depending upon how well I know them I may ask "What does your crystal ball say?...if you can see into the future and everything looks rosey then you probabaly don't need insurance." If they are new clients I may ask, "If you can afford to lose eeverything you've paid for this vacation and any and all medical costs due to any sickness or injury then you probably don't need insurance". Sarcasm aside, this is the reality of travel protection insurance. Most people "think" they don't need it but when they do there is always a HUGE sigh of relief when they know they are covered.
If you're planning a cross country road trip to Grandma's house with a few motel stops and a bit of sightseeing along the way you don't need travel insurance. Your car insurance will cover you for accidents and injury. Most roadside hotels will let you cancel or change reservations up until a few hours prior to arrival.
Here are 10 Vacation scenarios where travel insurance is an absolute must:
Travel with kids - Your family of 5 is SO excited about your All Inclusive vacation to Jamaica. You've been planning it for months! The morning before your trip your 4 year old wakes up with a fever. You whisk him off to your pediatrician who says your child has a raging ear infection, bulging eardrums and cannot fly. With insurance you can postpone your vacation or be refunded.
Multi-generational Family Vacations - More and more families are sharing vacations together. Sometimes its to celebration vacation for an anniversary or milestone birthday. Other times, its just for the fun of being together. let's say Grandparents rent an Italian villa so that the entire family can be together to celebrate Grandma's heritage and 75 birthday. Grandpa is involved in a car accident. Grandma won't leave his side and the rest of the family would much rather be in San Diego to help them than to be an ocean away in Tuscany. Travel insurance would reimburse monies spent on the Italian trip allow the family to gather in California for the big day or re-book once Grandpa is feeling better.
Foreign vacations - Most U.S. health care plans will NOT cover you if you travel overseas. Often people worry about protecting the price they paid for their vacation but out of pocket medical costs could be far more costly!
Trips with Major Financial Investments - You've always dreamed of traveling like a rock star. You've squirreled away enough frequent flyer miles for first class airline seats. The wife knows you're going to Tahiti but she's going to freak out when she sees the over the water bungalow you booked. She had no idea you've been doing some freelance work on the side instead of playing video games on your laptop. Suddenly a huge job opportunity comes in at work and your boss insists you're there to make the pitch. With the right travel insurance you could schedule a re-do and frequent flying mile re-deposit coverage would reimburse you for airline fees too.
Emotionally Important Trips - In some situations the reason for the trip is priceless and may out weigh the price tag of what was spent on the travel components. If you MUST be somewhere like a child's college graduation or the bedside of a dear friend battling cancer, you want the freedom to know you will be there, no matter the cost. If a trip like this is worth taking then it is certainly worth insuring.
Honeymoons - Not only is an Honeymoon one of those emotionally important trip, it can also be a major financial investment for a young couple. Because a honeymoon is so important, it needs to be as worry free as possible. In addition to typical proction coverage offered by travel insurance, many plans come with additional world-wide assistance. If anything should happen while you're traveling like sickness, delays or any other sort of problems, local help is just a phone call away. This sort of peace of mind can be invaluable for some young or inexperienced travelers. It's peace of mind and confidence that all they need to worry about is romance and fun.
Destination Weddings and Group Travel- Weddings in paradise are such a popular trend. Couples get to say "I do" on an exotic beach, an Irish castle on in a French Vineyard. Friends and family gather making their vacation time even more special to share in such an event. It's a happy time for all.
"Stuff can happen" and if it does, it not only affects the bride and groom but it happens to everyone they know and love. A hurricane blows away your exotic beach resort, French airline workers go on strike so no one can get to the Vineyard or the bride gallops away with the stable boy from the Irish castle. With any sort of group travel gathering it is important that every guest know their well being is covered.
Trips with Non-Refundable Services - The word "non-refundable" is often found in the fine print of travel purchases, especially airline tickets. Air travel is often the largest expenditure in travel budgets. Non-refundable doesn't mean if you beg, cry, plead or demand to speak to the top superviser that you'll get you way. It means you're not getting any of your money back if you need to change or cancel your plans. Unless of course, you protected your investment with travel insurance.
Travel to Remote Destinations - Let's say you're hiking up a rocky trail deep in the wilderness. You slip and break your leg. It would take hours for an ambulance to reach you but medical care is just a helicopter ride away so your guide radios for help. Do you have the credit limit on your card to pay for that emergency helicopter ride?
Adventure Travel Experiences - If you're an adrenaline junkie who's idea of the perfect vacation includes motor bikes, zip lines and bungee jumping you understand risk taking. You want to have fun but you also need to protect yourself. Some activities require additional or specialize coverage so you'll want to ask, read fine print and be prepared.
Often, clients think we travel agents are just trying to pad our commissions by making the vacations we sell more expensive while suggestions travel insurance. Adittedly we are being a bit self surving but extra commission is not the reason. We're just trying to protect ourselves from having to make disappointing phone calls and listening to curse words when we deliver the bad news to the client that insisted "nothing is going to stop us from taking this vacation".