We live in the present tense for most of our work lives. If we need to connect with someone, we have Zoom, email, IMs. If we need a file, we can get it immediately via shared drives. If we need to get a package delivered, it can arrive the next day, if not that very same day. Let’s see why you need travel insurance.
With so many guarantees in our work life, it can be difficult to accept that our travel life is not as assured. Traveling can be precarious and the further we travel from our home base, the greater the chances of an emergency that is not solved as easily as those that crop up at work. Medical crises are the most obvious, but what about lost luggage, stolen identities, misplaced currency, or more?
Travel insurance is the answer to all the above and more. Much like we expect at work, travel insurance is easy to access and is there to give you immediate answers and relief.
Here’s what you need to know about why it’s essential for both business and leisure travelers, no matter the destination.
Sickness or injury. This is the most common reason why travel insurance exists. Most healthcare plans do not cover international travel which means you could end up paying for that ambulance ride and overnight stay and treatment at a hospital in a foreign country. Medical evacuation coverage is designed specifically for transportation from wherever you’re vacationing to the nearest medical facility and provides limits on emergency medical expenses.
Sickness or injury at home. Remember, travel insurance just doesn’t cover if an emergency happens abroad. If sickness or injury forces you to cancel your trip, travel insurance gives you the peace of mind that you won’t lose the money that you already put down for that cruise, that flight, those hotels, that guided tour, and much more. Travel cancellation insurance also kicks in for other reasons that force you to forego your trips, such as the death of a loved one, a disaster, or work.
Natural disasters. Hurricanes, earthquakes, a tsunami, a virus outbreak — An unexpected catastrophe that puts an immediate end to your travel plans is something that can be covered by insurance. Depending on your policy, insurance could cover the cancellations of flights and hotels or delays in travel. This is when insurance is at its best – Making sure you are protected when the unexpected happens.
Stolen or misplaced luggage. Let’s say you get to your destination and are ready to relax only to discover that a priority bag was stolen out of your hands, the airport baggage carousel, or from the taxi or the airline cannot locate it no matter what. Insurance reimburses you for the items you need – clothes, toiletries, shoes, and other personal items – to make sure your travel isn’t delayed either. Even if you eventually recover your bag, you’ll get to keep the new items and bring them home with you. And yes, your original bag is also reimbursable too.
Lost or stolen passport. There’s no worse feeling than being in a foreign country and finding that you lost your passport. Without insurance, the measures to coordinate the correct paperwork can take longer than your trip. With travel insurance, however, the process of replacing the original passport is expedited and you’ll get the replacement immediately.
Personal liability. Just like at home, personal liability insurance is important in case you cause damage or injury when driving a vehicle. Which means it’s just as important to have similar coverage when traveling in a foreign country. The right policy will cover you in case you are involved in an accident and are the responsible party for damages to property or a person. For obvious reasons, there’s no greater peace of mind than that.
Your flight is canceled or delayed. Traveling to a foreign country can turn disastrous if one leg of your journey is canceled or delayed. When that happens, the logistics to sync up to the rest of your plans can be costly and troublesome. Travel coverage not only covers the costs of a potential overnight hotel stay, but it will also pay for change fees and other charges that might occur when rearranging plans to make a new connection. The same is true if your flight is canceled and the only option you have is to return home. Insurance picks up the costs and reimburses you for your trouble.
A touring operator goes out of business. Let’s say you booked a cruise around the Caribbean but days before your departure the cruise operator declares bankruptcy and cancels all further operators. Or what about if the workers for your airline or your hotel go on strike, effecting shutting down all service. Your rental car company may be shuttering locations due to financial default. In all of these cases, a good travel insurance policy helps you recoup your lost expenses; the most capable policy will help assist you in making new plans so your travel is not interrupted.
Peace of Mind
Traveling can be stressful for a myriad of reasons, but not getting reimbursed when things go wrong shouldn’t be one of them. A good provider not only helps you navigate through the policies to make sure you have one that fits your plans but also helps you navigate options when things go wrong. Travel insurance is best when unused of course; there’s nothing like going on your adventure with the peace of mind.
About the Author: Rob Lee is the co-founder of Swift Passport Services, which is the leader in Passport and Visa expediting.