Travel Insurance 101

by | Jul 15, 2020 | Travel and COVID-19, Travel Blog, Travel Insurance | 0 comments

Do I really need Travel Insurance?

What happens if I don’t have travel insurance?

Is COVID-19, Coronavirus covered under travel insurance?

Good questions!  We have researched a cross-section of leading travel insurance providers such as World Nomads, Travel Ex, and Allianz to help answer these questions and more. First and foremost: If you are travelling this year, 2020, and you are thinking of cancelling your trip, and you did already purchase travel insurance, please read your travel protection documents carefully, and if you have any questions contact your travel insurance provider or tour operator or travel agent.

 Let’s start with one thing that is one everyone’s mind… what you need to know about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and travel.

In a nutshell:  Cancellations due to

“fear of travel” or “travel advisories”

are NOT covered under travel insurance.

Most all travel insurance providers will cover losses associated with pandemic or epidemic conditions (for example, if you, your traveling companion or family member were to become sick as a result of COVID-19 (after you purchase travel insurance), you could still receive benefits for losses covered by the plan.  Additionally, you and your travel partner may be eligible for Trip Cancellation coverage if a non-traveling Family Member is diagnosed with the coronavirus and is considered life-threatening or they require your immediate care.  Some travel insurance companies offer what’s called “Cancel For Any Reason” insurance, which, as it states, would cover you for cancelling for any reason (within certain time limitations) . If you were already traveling, and you contracted coronavirus while traveling, you would be eligible for Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage.

Travel Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

What is Travel Insurance?

Travel insurance is an insurance plan that protects you from certain financial risks and losses that can occur while traveling. These losses can be minor, like a lost suitcase, or significant, like a last-minute trip cancellation or a medical emergency overseas.

Do I Really Need Travel Insurance? 

Yes.  Your travels represent a big commitment in your time and financial resources.  Comprehensive Travel Insurance can offer you coverage for trip cancellation, trip interruption, travel delays, missed connections, lost baggage, medical matters and even emergency evacuation. They also cover you should a non-traveling family member at home become seriously ill and necessitate you cancelling your trip.

Are All Travel Insurances the Same?

No.  Even the same travel insurance companies will offer different plans offering different levels of coverage.  Always read any providers plans inclusions and exclusions.  Some providers and policies offer ‘Cancellation for Any Reason’, others don’t.  Some policies offer coverage for “Pre- Existing Medical Conditions”, others don’t.  Some policies cover activities and sports, others don’t.  Some policies offer free coverage for teenagers, others don’t.

Will My Regular Medical Coverage Cover Me While I travel?

Maybe, but.  Domestic health insurance may cover “customary and reasonable” costs overseas. However, they often won’t pay for emergency medical evacuation which can easily cost $50,000 to $100, 000.  Medicare does not provide any coverage for travel abroad.    

Does Paying for My Travels or Tour with a Credit Card Provide Me with Protection?

Your credit card may provide some coverage for travel insurance; However, this coverage might be very limited and you will need to check carefully with the credit card company about numerous conditions they may have in order for insurance to apply. In most all cases, credit card coverage will not cover medical emergencies or emergency medical evacuation.  

What if I Traveled to a Country with ‘Universal Health Care’?

Yes, you might receive some assistance with minor needs, but in cases of serious medical urgency, assistance would ultimately end, and in any case, you would still be responsible for any emergency evacuation.

What is Emergency Evacuation?

If you’re traveling remotely you may not always have access to the best health care. Your health and safety is a priority. Emergency medical evacuation would transport you to the nearest suitable hospital for treatment; this might be in an entirely different country.

What Happens If I have Lost Luggage, Damaged Items, or Stolen Items?

Travel insurance can refund you for items lost, damaged, delayed or stolen and reimburse you for necessary items you need to buy until your baggage is returned.

When Should I purchase Travel Insurance?

Typically, travel insurance is purchased within days of making your initial trip deposit. There are many benefits to purchasing the plan sooner, including maximizing the period of cancellation coverage, and sometimes being eligible for pre-existing condition coverage and hurricane coverage.

Other Things To Look For When Researching a Travel Insurance Provider?

Make sure they provide 24/7 assistance.

A Final Important Note?

Be mindful that you, as a traveler, have responsibilities.  For example, If you got injured while being drunk, the responsibility for medical treatment might fall on you.

Please See: for lengthy descriptions of various travel insurance coverages, the Top Reasons to Purchase Travel Insurance, and a very helpful table that gives different types of trip insurance policies and what they may, or may not cover.  

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Due to COVID-19, all 2020 tours were cancelled. We remain hopeful for a return to responsible adventure travel in 2021. Until then…

Be Healthy  

Be Kind

Dream Now 

Travel Later


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