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Travel/Trip insurance

Hi All,
Heading to Portugal in the spring with a group tour, then solo days on my own before and after. I'm wondering if anyone has had a company that has been relatively easy to deal with in case of an emergency. I've never purchased travel insurance in the past. Given world and medical events, I'm thinking it's time to do it. Thank you. Comments are appreciated.

Added Nov. 28: THANKS to all who have responded. Very helpful for asking questions and selecting a coverage. This is why I love the Rick Steves travel community. Truly appreciated.

Posted by
11898 posts

To me the first thing to do is figure out exactly what you want covered. In your mind, what kind of emergency are you thinking?

  • Catching Covid and being hospitalized?
  • Catching Covid and having to leave the group tour? Will your tour company refund the remaining portion of your tour payment if you have to be left off the tour? (Rick's does but others do not)
  • ARe you thinking you want to cover extra hotel expenses and perhaps an extra expense if you have to rearrange your flight home?
  • Are you wanting some kind of concierge service from a company to help you find lodging, transport, flight home if you get ill?
  • General medical coverage?
  • Medevac back home?
  • Coverage for your tour costs if you get ill before you leave home to join your tour?

There are a jillion parameters. What's important to me might not be important to you.

Early on during the return to travel and also more recently I decided that I did not need insurance for a possible isolation or quarantine stay. I've got plenty of "room" on my credit cards for an extra 2 weeks of hotels and whatever charges there might be for a new flight home. I fly on Delta so I carefully read their rules for changing flights and was satisfied I could change my flight without a problem although I might have to pay more.

When I traveled to France in October 2021 I decided I wanted med-evac coverage that would pay if I needed to be flown home on a ventilator so I got a 1 million $ coverage. Last Spring and this Fall I went with my standard $500K coverage for that. My Medicare supplement covers Internationally but again, I have high limits on my CCs and could probably charge medical bills if push came to shove.

What do you think you would want to cover that you could not pay out of pocket?

Posted by
3959 posts

“Given world and medical events, I’m thinking it’s time to do it.” I agree with Pam’s list of reasons to consider Insurance. Fortunately we’ve never had to file a claim, but we still purchase the necessary policies for our needs. We became true believers many years ago. A colleagues son was studying abroad and had a life threatening accident that kept him in the hospital in Europe for months. He did not have medevac coverage. It cost his parents hundreds of thousands of dollars to bring him home. There are a lot of postings on this forum with additional info on Insurance Companies.
Edited to add:

Posted by
2643 posts

Go to You can check off the coverages you want after entering your birthdate(s), state of residence, dates of travel and countries visited, then a list of policies will pop up. If you can’t decide or figure it out their customer service is very good (wait times recently are longer).

Posted by
168 posts

We purchased travel insurance with Seven Corners for our trip this year and they denied our claim when my wife tested positive for Covid on the first full day of our cruise. She was quarantined for the entire cruise. We bought travel insurance for the first time because of Covid but they denied our claim because she was not kicked off the cruise and just held in the room with no access to go ashore or use any of the ships amenities. When I bought the insurance, I talked to an agent and they said we would be covered if we got Covid. They lied.

Posted by
2918 posts

Unfortunately for the person above, trip insurance is designed to cover only financial loss, not disappointment. One must read the policy and the terms carefully, and not expect more than what is spelled out in the policy.

Posted by
2643 posts

@scot.Dailey, you have posted your experience on many threads and can’t seem to accept the obvious. Insurance is meant to cover a financial loss. You had none, zero. Your wife was ill, it spoiled your fun, she had to stay in her cabin. What if it had been norovirus or any other malady? As long as she choose to stay, did not incur transportation, housing or medical expenses there is no insurance claim. The agent did not lie, you simply do not understand how travel insurance works.

Posted by
2426 posts

Hi KatyO:
I'm in Canada so can't recommend any companies in the US; but I will say that you really should buy travel medical insurance these days.
Most, if not all, Canadians don't think twice about buying it before leaving the country, or finding out exactly what their provincial healthcare or credit card will cover, then adding to it.

I added a Covid policy to mine this year: and as I came down with Covid in Italy, I was very grateful for all the help the insurance company offered and provided so that I would not be out of pocket.
Just carefully read the policies that are offered before you buy.