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Did you purchase travel insurance

If you are traveling to Europe within the next year, did you purchased travel insurance?
Did you get some sort of insurance against covid emergency?
Any companies you liked or you recommend to avoid based on your experience?

Posted by
5648 posts

Nestor, no and no. But lots of people have posted their recommended companies on this forum, who do. We’ve booked flights to Italy, lodging, and rental car for next month and October, but refundable if we cancel by a certain date, close to departure time. We’re not anticipating getting stranded or needing evacuation. If we’re stuck longer in Italy, that’ll be an extra expense to pay out of pocket, and maybe worth it.

Posted by
99 posts
  1. Yes, we did purchase travel insurance for our May 2022 Portugal tour. 2. Yes, the policy includes an Epidemic Coverage Endorsement. However it is NOT Cancel For Any Reason. 3. We bought through our local AAA office an Alliance Global policy.
Posted by
5262 posts

This website is a good way to compare different policies. I don't usually buy insurance, or if I do it's for only part of the trip cost. My wife is more conservative, and Travelex did well by us when we had to cancel a trip some years back.

Posted by
74 posts

One of our primary concerns is needing an expensive medical evacuation, so we currently have an annual policy with Medjet. In July they added Covid evacuation coverage for Europe.

Posted by
7262 posts

No insurance that covered covid just the regular trip interruption and up to 50K coverage evacuation insurance

Posted by
1667 posts

I am buying annual policies: GeoBlue for medical, Medjet for evac and probably Nationwide for trip insurance 6 weeks before my Sept 2022 tour. This will also cover me for a May or June 2023 trip. Cost is about the same as single trip insurance. I’m betting that I won’t need insurance on my first trip so will have the same coverage on the second.

Last I checked GeoBlue won’t cover Covid evac but Medjet will. Email from GeoBlue confirmed they cover Pre-existing Conditions. All three have good forum reviews

There were multiples insurance threads from June when RS tours opened up for 2022. Use the search feature to find them. The only company I will never use again is Travel Guard.

Posted by
367 posts

I can't believe the number of people saying they don't purchase insurance? What happens if you get sick? Not even COVID, breaking a leg on a hike, being involved in a car accident, eating something that disagrees with you? I don't care about my bags going missing, but travel insurance is critical for medical costs. And medivac - ifyou end up in a cast you may well need 3 seats in first class to get home and a nurse to go with you

Posted by
1461 posts

I can't believe the number of people saying they don't purchase
insurance? What happens if you get sick?

I can’t speak for others, but my travel companions and I have global medical coverage with our employers.

We also all have limited coverage for trip cancellation/interruption/delay etc. via our credit cards (Chase sapphire preferred).

I debated purchasing a policy in the event we test positive prior to returning to the US, but am leaning towards self-insuring in that case.

Posted by
177 posts

Our medical insurance will reimburse us for travel-related medical expenses. As we are pretty healthy, we will take the chance.
Our airline tickets are not refundable, but we will get credit for a later flight.
Our credit cards also have some emergency pay-outs.
The hotel is refundable up to cancellation 24 hours prior to arrival.
We have never purchased travel insurance in 40 years of travel, but if purchasing travel insurance offers peace of mind, then consider it a small cost.

Posted by
1240 posts

I know of a couple who booked a long resort trip for somewhere down south, without taking out any insurance. A day or two before departure, the guy's brother died but the couple still went on their holiday. The poor dead brother was put on a slab of ice for three weeks, until their return. The rest of the family were not too happy about it.

Posted by
682 posts

Yes, yes, and yes. Our health insurance here (retired military) does not cover us overseas so we always purchase insurance for the medical aspect. We used to get the annual policies from DAN but then they did not cover Covid when I was purchasing for the first trip. We went through USAA for trip insurance instead. I do need to look at Medjet etc for annual policies as right now we have 3 international trips planned. One I think will get cancelled, but who knows. It is all a day by day thing.

For those that say you are young and healthy, that is us, but I can tell you from personal experience that anything can happen. About 10 years ago we were at Versaille and I managed to slip on the stairs and went flying. I was in a lot of pain and thank goodness the pharmacies have good stuff, but I could not walk normal at all the rest of the trip. I ended up with knee surgery from that fall when I got home. We had a good ortho at home, so I sucked it up, but it was nice to know that if I couldn't that I would be taken care of there and I would be covered.

Posted by
3713 posts

From the time I first learned that travel insurance existed, I've purchased it. One of the early mistakes I made was choosing a company that would not cover me if I didn’t leave from my house. Picky, picky, picky.

Since I frequently was in Seattle instead of Tucson before I left, flew from Seattle and returned to Seattle, I wouldn't have been covered if I needed to be.

This may be TMI, but below are some details from the Travel Guard Plus policy I got for my trip to Ireland and Wales next summer.

Not all of these are particularly important to me, but they were part of the package:
Trip Cancellation -- 100% of Trip Cost up to a maximum of $100,000.
Trip Interruption -- 150% of Trip Cost up to a maximum of $150,000.
Trip Interruption -- Return Transportation Only -- $1,000.
Single Occupancy -- up to 100% of Trip Cost up to a maximum of $100,000.
Trip Delay -- up to $200 per day, to a maximum of $1,000.
Missed Connection -- $1,000.
Baggage Coverage -- $2,500. Per-item restrictions apply, see benefit wording for details.
Baggage Delay -- $400.

These are also part of the package, and are very important to me:
Travel Medical Expense -- $100,000.
Physical Therapy -- $2,000.
Dental -- $500.
Emergency Evacuation & Repatriation of Remains -- $1,000,000.
Non-flight Accidental Death & Dismemberment -- $50,000.

At my age of 75, the price for 5 weeks of coverage in the Republic of Ireland and the UK (Northern Ireland, Wales and England) was not cheap, but most of it was covered by vouchers I had from my Covid canceled 2020 trip.

I've gone over this policy with a critical eye and could find nothing that specifically mentions Covid in any way. I did find this phrase under the benefits of both Trip Cancellation and Trip Interruption coverage:

The Company will pay a benefit to reimburse the Insured for covered expenses up to the Maximum Limit shown in the Schedule or Declarations Page, if an Insured [cancels or is unable to continue on, respectively] his/her Trip due to any of the following Unforeseen events:

(a) Sickness, Injury, or death of an Insured, Family Member, Traveling Companion, ... . Sickness or Injury must be certified by a Physician;
...
(b) the Insured or Traveling Companion is ... quarantined, ...;

I signed up within 21 days of the first money I spent on the 2022 trip (the deposit on the Rick Steves Best of Ireland in 14 Days tour) so that I could get the pre-existing medical conditions waiver. "Pre-Existing Medical Conditions Exclusion Waiver Provides coverage otherwise excluded due to pre-existing medical conditions."

This is their definition of a pre-existing medical condition: Pre-Existing Medical Condition means an Injury, Sickness or other condition of the Insured, Traveling Companion, Family Member, ... to which any of the following applied within the 180 day period immediately preceding and including the purchase date of this plan:
(a) first manifested itself, worsened, became acute or had symptoms which would have prompted a reasonable person to seek diagnosis, care or treatment, or;
(b) care, testing or treatment was given or
recommended by a Physician, or;
(c) required a change in prescribed medication.
...
Death resulting from a pre-existing medical condition will not be excluded. The death must occur prior to the termination date of the benefit under which the claim is being made.

Travel insurance is like any insurance. If needed, it can be a form of asset protection. But, it's complicated, a challenge to understand and I hope I never have to use it.

Posted by
6795 posts

I've been getting insurance for trips abroad in the last several years, when cancellation due to family issues was a potential. Now I am only really interested in the medical coverage, COVID or not.

You must read the medical evacuation coverage language very carefully to understand what it actually covers. Most of the basic policies I looked at said something like "transfer to the nearest capable facility". In other words, covers the ambulance to a local hospital wherever you are. What is really needed is "transfer to the facility of your choice" which means all the way home when you can travel for definitive care or recovery.

Posted by
5515 posts

I use the travel insurance coverage that comes with my premium credit card, make refundable reservations, and have an annual Medjet (medical evacuation) policy. My regular health insurance covers me for urgent or emergency care.

Posted by
1129 posts

I use my credit card insurance, book refundable/cancel-able lodging, and my health insurance includes out of country coverage, but I purchased a policy from World Nomads this time. It was very affordable, included car rental insurance (CDW etc) and specific Covid insurance.

Posted by
5648 posts

For those who get insurance, I wonder what does the policy cost? How often are claims made, or do the companies mostly collect the premium, and never need to pay the customer? It’s good to not need to file a claim, even if you’re covered, but when a situation does arise, how frequently does that happen?

Posted by
3330 posts

Some of the responses here demonstrate common examples of falacious thinking about insurance. The principle of insurance is to protect against rare but potentially ruinous events, e,g. a house fire. No one anticipates their home burning down, but almost all owners carry fire insurance. The risk of losing hundreds of thousands of dollars far out weighs the relatively low cost of the premiums. Similarly, no one anticipates being an accident victim in a foreign country; but the cost of medical evacuation, which can run into 10’s of thousands of dollars, is enormous compared to the, perhaps, couple hundred dollar premium. Legitimate insurance companies make a profit by collecting premiums from many customers and needing to pay out to very few. There is nothing disreputable about that. That’s how the business works.
Here’s one example. A friend, not old and in good health, tripped on a curb in Paris, suffering a double compound fracture of her ankle. After surgical repair, she needed to be able to fly home to California with her leg elevated, i.e. in business or 1st class. Her insurance paid for the cost of the tickets, not only for her, but for her husband and daughter., as well. Look at the price of a one-way business class ticket, booked with little advance, and you can see that a minor outlay saved her many dollars. Accidents can cause much more serious injuries, with much more expensive needs ensuing.
The smug, after-the-fact postings, along the lines of, “I didn’t buy it, and I didn’t need it,” are not helpful to people trying to figure out what they need to do.
Of course, as always with insurance purchase, it is crucial to read the fine print.

Posted by
1889 posts

As a Canadian, I wouldn't dream of putting one foot outside Canada with no travel insurance, and I can't understand anyone who does.
In pre CV19 days, even going over the border to the US for a day out, we always have insurance.
Could not afford huge US medical fees otherwise!!
Our Credit Card travel insurance group paid up every last penny in 2018 when my husband had a medical event and we had to cancel a trip to Italy at short notice.
I even made $10 on it as the Euro rate had changed!
Don't leave home without it.

Posted by
5515 posts

I remember what my husband said to me when we signed up for long term care insurance several years ago. "I hope we waste every premium." We had the coverage if needed, but we both hoped it would not be needed.

I think travel insurance is much like that. You choose to purchase it to mitigate risk, but you always hope that you will never have to use it.

The most important issue here is to discover what coverage you actually have. It might be from a credit card, it might be from your health insurance, and it might be from ??? Find out what you do have for yourself and then determine what gaps in that coverage you would not be willing to self-insure for. Those are the items that you will need to look at travel insurance to cover.

I've read several times, "Medicare doesn't cover you overseas", but when I looked into what my Medicare Advantage plan will cover next year, urgent and emergency care is covered. While original Medicare doesn't, I think quite a few people either have Medicare Advantage or some sort of supplemental policies. It really pays to check out specifically what your plan does cover or doesn't cover.

Posted by
518 posts

Thanks to everyone that replied
My health insurance covers some costs but not all (evacuation).
I will look deeper into it.
Thanks again.

Posted by
5697 posts

As Carol noted, certain Medigap (supplement) policies cover emergency medical/dental care up to a specified amount. (F and G do, I know.) But you pay there, submit bills for reimbursement. And none cover routine visits.