You grab your luggage, your plane tickets and your sunscreen. You’re all ready to set off on the trip of a lifetime.
But you forgot one thing: Travel insurance.
Travel insurance is something that most of us don’t think about when we travel. But when something goes wrong, it’ll be the first thing we regret. Travel insurance protects against cancelled flights, lost luggage, stolen goods, medical care and more.
Instead of starting your journey unprepared, here’s a helpful guide for purchasing travel insurance.
How much travel insurance do I need?
Some of us enjoy lying on the beach while others like to cliff dive. Your insurance coverage will heavily depend on the type of trip you plan to take.
Generally, you should opt for a policy with at least $100,000 in coverage, including medical expenses. There are cheaper policies that provide coverage as low as $20,000. However, these policies aren’t likely to cover the full cost of a medical emergency.
When searching policies, find out if it covers evacuation charges. These are costs from having to transport you or a family member to a hospital in case of an emergency. Transport can be one of the most expensive medical costs, so it’s worth it to choose a policy with this type of coverage.
What else should my travel insurance cover?
Medical emergencies will usually bear the highest costs, but there are other types of coverage to consider, such as:
- Stolen property
- Flight cancellations
- Trip interruptions
Where do I find travel insurance?
Once you figure out coverage you need, you can begin comparing plans. Each company specializes in different types of travelers and offers plans that vary in benefits and costs. Let’s take a look at some of the best.
World Nomads has long been a favorite for those who love to travel. The company gets rave reviews for its customer service, levels of coverage and cost. It’s simple to purchase a policy from World Nomads, as they allow you to buy and renew your policy online in a few easy steps.
World Nomads offers two travel insurance plans: Standard and Explorer. Both provide $100,000 for emergency medical treatment and tons of coverage including:
- Emergency medical transport and evacuation
- Medical and dental expenses
- Trip cancellation and delay
- Baggage protection
Standard plans cost around $100-$150, while the Explorer plan runs you about $150-$200. The Explorer plan adds collision coverage and higher amounts of coverage for trip cancellation and accidental death and dismemberment. Some might need the extra coverage, but the Standard plan provides enough for most.
Traveling families love Travelex for their generous offers for children. All children under 18 are covered for free under their Travel Select plan. There’s also the less expensive Travel Basic plan, but this doesn’t include the free offer for children. So your choice depends on how many children you’re traveling with.
Both plans include coverage for trip cancellation and delay, loss of luggage and personal items. Under the Basic plan, you get $15,000 for medical coverage, which might not be enough in the case of an emergency. Much better is the $50,000 in medical coverage you get from the Select plan. Select also includes medical evacuation coverage, another feature missing from the Basic plan.
With the Select costing around $200, it’s an overall better value than the $150 Basic plan if you consider all the extras.
Insure My Trip
Insure My Trip’s ease of use and variety of choices makes it a popular site for seniors. The site lets you search among 26 different insurers to find the policy that’s right for you.
Seniors particularly like Insure My Trip because they often have unique travel needs. Insure My Trip allows you to narrow down your search with multiple filters so you can plan the exact trip you’re looking for.
IM Global Insurance (IMG) has developed a reputation among expats for its variety of coverage options and low costs. But you don’t have to permanently relocate to take advantage of their travel insurance options.
IMG features three plans:
- iTravel Insured Travel Lite Insurance
- iTravel Insured Travel SE Insurance
- iTravel Insured Travel LX Insurance
Each plan goes up in price and includes additional levels of coverage. But the basic Lite plan is impressive for a first-tier policy. The Lite plan covers up to $25,000 for cancellation and 125% of your trip’s costs for interruptions. It also provides $100,000 in accident and sickness coverage. The plan average less than $100 for a week-long trip, but costs rise if you opt for higher-tiered plans.
The last thing you want to do on a trip is worry. Travel insurance helps put your mind at ease for a relatively low cost. So explore your options and never travel unprepared again.