Travel Insurance Can Protect against the Unexpected

Consumers Should Tailor Insurance Needs to Travel Plans

LOS ANGELES — Costly vacation plans stalled? Not to worry – if you have travel insurance. Whether sickness stopped your Stockholm trip or engine troubles stalled your cruise ship, the right policy can help stranded vacationers recover their losses.

Basic travel insurance protects against the cancellation of a trip due to medical emergencies, mechanical problems, bankruptcy of an airline, cruise line or tour operator, severe weather and jury duty or armed forces call-up. Change of mind, business obligations and pre-existing conditions are not covered under basic policies.

If an illness causes a traveler to miss a European tour, prepayments or deposits made would be covered under trip cancellation insurance. If luggage disappears from the tour bus in Jamaica, personal effects coverage would reimburse for lost items. And if a ski adventure goes downhill too fast, emergency medical assistance coverage would pay for a medical evacuation.

But travel insurance is not for everyone. Many consumers may already have coverage under their life, health or homeowners insurance policies or credit card benefits. Because basic travel insurance can average 5-to-8 percent of the cost of the trip, consumers should review the coverage they already have to be sure it is not duplicated.

The decision to purchase insurance also depends on the kind of travel planned. If it involves a large down payment, insurance can make sense for travelers. It may provide for reimbursement for nonrefundable, prepaid expenses like airfare, hotels, tour packages and cruises if either the consumer or travel supplier cancels.

As with all contracts, consumers are advised to read their travel insurance policy thoroughly. While most policies let the insured cancel because of an illness, injury or death in the family, policies’ definition of “family” may vary.

IINC is non-profit and non-lobbying trade association dedicated to helping the public understand insurance and manage risk. For more information, please visit the IINC Web site at www.iinc.org. You can also follow IINC on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/iinc and on Facebook at http://companies.to/iinc.

Copyright Business Wire 2010

via Travel Insurance Can Protect against the Unexpected | Business Wire | Find Articles at BNET.

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