101: Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance – What a waste!   Right?  Wrong!

“My honeymoon needs to be postponed; my mother is very ill…I need to cancel our cruise; my husband had a heart attack. The volcano eruption has cancelled my return flight from Venice.” You never know what will come up to thwart your travel plans and you spend too much money and energy to throw it all away.

Even ask Charlie Rose– he had a heart attack while reporting in Damascus and had to fly commercial to Paris!

There are several different kinds of insurance. Most people take insurance for cancellation or interruption protection. There are also medical evacuation options.

My rule of thumb is you need some kind of insurance if you are purchasing over $2,000 of non-refundable/non-changeable expenditures.

Things to know:

  • Most airline tickets are changeable for a fee; but if it an unusual carrier to an unusual destination, you may need coverage for the air too.
  • Most hotel reservations have a cancellation penalty; you need to know how many hours or days prior to arrival you are inside penalty.
  • Most tour packages and cruise lines are completely non- refundable.

All insurance policies and waivers need to be read carefully.  Some cover only until 24 hours prior to departure and other thru out the entire trip. You can purchase independent coverage or thru the tour/cruise operator. (But you’re generally out of luck if the operator goes bankrupt!)

You can often get all the insurance you need through one company – there are a variety of levels available. Cost can be determined by age and the amount of coverage – lots of questions to ask, but worthwhile.

There is also medical evacuation insurance:

  • If you are ill and in need of hospitalization or are hospitalized, a private jet will take you to your hospital of choice.
  • You must be over 150 miles from your primary residence.

Since I travel so much I have this insurance for the year. If Charlie Rose had this insurance he could have had a private medial jet take him to Paris or New York and he would have been a lot more comfortable.

Ask about more 101 insurance for your next holiday.

About alwaysharriet

With thirty years experience in corporate and leisure travel consulting, Harriet Ahouse has traveled extensively throughout the Caribbean and worldwide. An avid scuba diver, she understands the requirements of travelers both on land and in the water. On the European scene she has offered traditional and personalized travel itineraries throughout the continent--Italy, France, and England are some of her favorites. As a Virtuoso Agent, she also has extensive resources to enhance her expertise in designing individual destination travel itineraries--and honeymoons--worldwide!
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