Traveling is exciting. Whether you’re flying to a new country or visiting friends out of state, experiencing new cultures and places broadens your worldview.
Have you ever got off of a plane, only to find that the airline misplaced your luggage? Maybe you took an unofficial taxi to your hotel, and the cab driver ran off with your bags? Losing your belongings due to theft or mismanagement is no way to start your vacation.
Fortunately, taking out a travel insurance policy can protect you and your possessions. If something like this occurs, travel insurance provides you with a safety net that ensures you never find yourself stranded at your destination without any help.
What can it Cover?
- 1 The Best Travel Insurance Companies
- 2 The Types of Travel Insurance
- 3 Trip Interruption, Delays, and Cancellations
- 4 Personal Belongings and Baggage
- 5 Emergency Medical Assistance
- 6 24-Hour Personal Assistance
- 7 Rental Car Insurance
- 8 Insurance for Accidental Death and Dismemberment
- 9 The Costs of Travel Insurance
- 10 Where can You Buy a Travel Insurance Policy?
- 11 In Closing – Tips for Choosing Your Travel Insurance Provider
Many people are under the impression that travel insurance only protects you against theft or loss of your luggage on your trip. However, travel insurance covers a variety of problems that could occur when you’re traveling.
If you have to cancel your trip due to a family emergency, it’s a costly expense. If you apply for travel insurance when booking your trip, then you receive a refund for your travel expenses if you have to cancel due to an emergency.
If you miss your flight, travel insurance can offer you a refund or change your trip. What if you get sick while traveling? Travel insurance can help you get the medical assistance you need, without having to dip into your vacation fund to pay for the expense. Some policies even help you with legal aid if you need it while traveling.
In a worst-case scenario where the policyholder dies while traveling, their beneficiary receives a lump-sum payout as a life insurance benefit from the travel insurance company.
If you’re traveling this year, then we suggest you look into travel insurance before you book your tickets and accommodation. However, with so many service providers in the industry, how do you know which vendor has the best deal?
We put together this list of the best travel insurance companies to help you with your research. Each of these companies offers travel insurance policies designed for the individual. We’ll unpack all of the benefits of each of the offerings from these companies to help you make an informed decision when applying for your travel insurance.
The Best Travel Insurance Companies
We have spent countless hours scouring the internet for you and comparing plans from all the top providers to make up this list.
Use the information in this review to make an informed decision on the right travel insurance to suit your trip and your lifestyle.
This travel insurance company designed its offerings with the digital nomad in mind. Frequent travelers can benefit from the affordable price of SafetyWings extendable medical insurance. Safetywing decided to simplify its product offering, only offering travelers the choice of one policy.
The maximum claim limit for this policy is $250,000, with a deductible of $250. You don’t get any customization options to tailor your plan, but you do get the following coverage.
- Emergency medical and dental expenses.
- Emergency medical ambulance and airlift evacuation.
- Repatriation of deceased remains.
- Dismemberment and accidental death.
- Trip interruption and delays.
- Baggage loss or damage.
You can purchase your travel insurance policy with SafetyWing for a minimum trip length of 5-days, up to 364-days. You can pay the total costs of the plan upfront, or choose to pay monthly in a subscription format.
The costs of the policy are dependent on your age and whether you’ll be traveling to the United States. Our 40-year old man living in Ohio would pay $59.92 for a 4-week subscription to the travel insurance policy.
Similar to Travelex, SafetyWing includes your children under the age of 10-years old in the policy for free. You get one child for free per adult or two kids per family if both parents are traveling as well. The only problem we have with SafetyWing is that they don’t offer you trip cancellation insurance, which is a significant factor when selecting your insurer.
Are you an adventurer traveling the world? Many travel insurance providers won’t insure you for high-risk holidays where you’ll be hang-gliding or mountaineering. However, with the Explorer package from World Nomads, you get coverage for any adventure trip you take.
World Nomads are also the ideal travel insurance provider for single trips. The company also offers a diverse range of services and protection that suitable for anyone. When you sign up for the standard travel insurance policy, you get the following coverage.
- Transportation and airlifts, for medical emergencies.
- Emergency medical and dental expenses.
- Trip interruptions, cancellations, and delays.
- 24-hour service hotline.
- Baggage insurance and protection.
World Nomads offers travelers the option of standard and Explorer plans when selecting their travel insurance. Both plans offer the same levels of coverage, but the Explorer policy provides you with a collision damage waiver as well.
The two plans also differ in the coverage they provide in each of the categories. Both of the policies include emergency medical treatment of up to $100,000, but the Explorer policy gives you extra coverage for trip insurance, emergency transportation, baggage, dismemberment, and accidental death.
If you’re a young person traveling the world and enjoying high-risk activities like rock-climbing, scuba diving, or surfing, then the World Nomads Explorer package is your best option in this review. World
Nomads specialize in covering high-risk activities and the types of cover on offer, depending on the country you’re visiting.
World Nomads covers U.S residents for the following activities while on vacation.
- Sea kayaking
- Jet skiing
- Bungee jumping
- Outdoor rock climbing
There are over 100-activities covered by World Nomads for U.S residents, and this list only scratches the surface of what you can do on vacation, and remain insured for any accidents.
The costs of the Explorer plan aren’t that much more than signing up for the standard policy. Our research shows that a 41-year-old man from Ohio, traveling to Phuket, Thailand for 3-weeks in November, would spend $115.91 on the Standard World Nomads Plan, or $169.26 for the World Nomads Explorer Plan.
When we consider that this pricing includes a comprehensive plan that includes $100,000 in emergency medical coverage, it’s tremendous value for money. It should come as no surprise that World Nomads wins our top pick for the best travel insurance package.
Travelex is the best option for families with children under 18-years old. The company offers two plans; the Travel Basic and the Travel Select.
The Travel Basic plan is an affordable option for singles traveling alone. However, with the Travelex Select policy, you get free coverage for your children under the age of 18. The savings on offer with this policy are fantastic, and it can save you a bundle on your vacation expenses if you have a few children.
Both the Select and Basic plans come with include trip cancellation, interruption, and delay protection. You also get coverage for baggage delays, missed connecting flights, and loss of your personal effects.
The Travel Select policy offers you considerably more coverage in dollar amounts than the Basic package. Therefore, you can expect to pay more for this policy, but it’s worth it if you have a family. The Select plan covers your children for free, saving you hundreds of dollars if you had to take a policy from another service provider.
When it comes to the medical coverage on offer with the policy, both the Basic and Select plans offer you emergency medical evacuation and repatriation, as well as coverage for accidental death and dismemberment. With the Travel Basic policy, you get coverage for $15,000 in emergency medical expenses and $50,000 in coverage for the Travel Select policy.
Using our example of a 41-year old man from Ohio traveling to Phuket, Thailand, we find that Travelex charges $201 for the Travel Select Plan and $145 for the Travel Basic Plan. While the basic plan is not good value for money, the Select package is excellent value, especially if you have children traveling with you.
Allianz Travel Insurance
Allianz is an excellent option for travel insurance. The company offers travelers single-trip policies and annual plans, as well as rental car plans, and many other options. The flexibility in the policies makes this a top choice for any international traveler.
The AllTrips Premier annual plan is the best value offering, and it’s suitable for business people and nomads that frequently travel throughout the year. When signing up for this policy, you can expect the following coverage.
- Cover for lost or damaged baggage.
- Cover for emergency medical expenses and dental work.
- Cover for emergency medical transportation services.
- Cover for damage or theft to your rental car.
With the Allianz AllTrip Premier policy, you get $2,000 in cover for trip cancellation or interruptions, as well as $50,000 for emergency medical coverage. It’s important to note that these amounts are per trip and not per year.
If you’re only intending on traveling once during the year, Allianz also offers single trip policies in the following categories.
- OneTrip Basic
- OneTrip Prime
- OneTrip Premier
All of these options cover you for the same accidents and medical emergencies as the AllTrip policy. However, the coverage amounts differ considerably between the three plans on offer in the OneTrip product range.
For example, a 41-year-old man traveling to Phuket, Thailand for a 3-week vacation would have $10,000 in emergency medical coverage with the OneTrip Basic Plan, for a cost of $132. The OneTrip Prime policy costs $162, and the OneTrip Premier has a price of $197.
According to management at Allianz, the OneTrip Prime policy is the most popular plan on offer. We think that the trip insurance on baggage is fantastic, but the plan is lacking in coverage for emergency medical expenses.
Atlas Travel Insurance
Tokio Marine HCC brings you Atlas Travel Insurance, the customizable option for travel insurance. We think that this company offers the best insurance deals for seniors.
With Atlas, you get the choice of two plans, Atlas Travel, and Atlas Premium. Both of the packages offer you the same types of coverage, but the Premium plan has higher coverage amounts for travelers.
Travelers under the age of 70-years old can select coverage amounts from $50,000 to $2-million, with deductibles ranging from $0 to $5,000. Seniors between the age of 70 to 79-years old can select coverage between $50,000 to $250,000. However, seniors over the age of 80-years old can only apply for coverage of up to $10,000.
Maximum coverage amounts are the same as what you get with the Premium package, but seniors over the age of 80-years old only get $20,000 in coverage. With Atlas Travel Insurance, you get coverage for the following.
- Medical and dental emergencies.
- Air-lift or ambulance trips to the hospital.
- Accidental death and dismemberment.
- Personal liability.
- Repatriation of deceased remains
- Travel delay, baggage loss, as well as trip interruption.
Atlas Travel Insurance offers seniors the flexibility they need in travel insurance. The policy provides you maximum coverage, with minimum deductibles. The only gripe with this insurance policy is that it doesn’t offer trip cancellation coverage in the standard or premium package, and you have to pay extra for this benefit.
AXA Travel Insurance
AXA Travel Insurance offers travelers a comprehensive package with four levels of coverage for a customized solution to your needs. Each one of the policies offers different levels of coverage, but they all cover the same travel calamities, including the following.
- Emergency air-lift or ambulance passage to the hospital.
- Trip protection.
- Accidental death and dismemberment.
- Identity theft protection.
- Property protection.
- 24-hour customer service lines.
- Concierge services.
- Accident and illness benefits.
AXA offers Silver, Gold, and Platinum policies with varying levels of coverage. The plans are best for regular travelers who only want property protection.
Similar to World Nomad travel insurance, AXA also offers you an adventure policy suited for those younger individuals that enjoy participating in high-risk activities while on vacation.
Some travel agents offer excellent travel insurance packages, as well. STA Travel is an example of such an agency, with one of the best travel insurance options available, and it’s convenient to book everything at the same time as well.
STA Travel targets students, digital nomads, and teachers working overseas. The company partners with none other than World Nomads, to bring affordable travel insurance options to this demographic.
However, STA travel has three stand-alone policies of their policies not linked to the World Nomad offerings as well.
- Basic Package – $25
- Premium Package – $99
- Explorer Package – $199
With the Basic Plan, you get coverage for up to $25,000 in medical emergencies and accidental medical treatments. You also get $250,000 in coverage for emergency medical evacuation, as well as $50,000 in repatriation cover as well.
The policy covers you for baggage and travel delays as well and offers $1,000 to $5,000 for any accidental death or disability claims.
With the Premium plan, you get extended coverage for all categories, as well as cover for ATM theft, baggage loss, non-medical emergency evacuation, as well as a trip interruption. If you’re intending on participating or competing in adventure sports like skydiving or mountaineering, then the Explorer package offers you all of the same benefits you get with the World Nomad offering.
However, you’ll need to check with STA before signing your insurance agreement. The company does not cover all of the extreme and adventure sports covered by World Nomad, so make sure your sport is under the accepted activities section.
Insure My Trip
Insure My Trip is an example of a company that does not offer its own travel insurance products. Instead, the company partners with an existing insurer to bring you the best insurance deals possible. Insure My Trip has a partner network of 26-companies that protect you on vacation.
Insure My Trip also offers you a price guarantee, meaning that you won’t get a discounted price if you go directly to the insurer for a policy. As a result, you get a website that allows you to compare your insurance options and choose the plan that suits your needs and budget.
If you do find yourself needing to file a claim, then you do so with the Insure My Trip service team, instead of with the insurance company. The consultants at Insure My Trip take care of everything for you with filing and handling your claim, ensuring that you get the fastest response times possible from the insurer.
Insure My Trip is another fantastic option for seniors, as well. Seniors often face restrictions and limitations on coverage. With Insure My Trip, seniors enter their age, and receive a list of the best options, allowing them to make an informed decision on the best travel insurance policy to meet their needs.
Seven Corners Travel Insurance
This company offers you travel insurance packages underwritten by Liaison Travel. The company partners with Liaison Travel to bring you one of the best product offerings in the travel insurance market. Liaison Travel has three product offerings to choose, with each of them offering the same cover, but with different coverage amounts.
The Liaison packages only cover you for medical expenses while traveling, and no package offers trip cancellation, delay, and other general travel insurance options like baggage cover. If you want that kind of protection, you’ll have to look into one of the other offerings from the company.
The three medical insurance policies on offer include;
- Liaison Economy
- Liaison Choice
- Liaison Elite
You get the option of choosing a monthly subscription if you’re a frequent traveler, with trip durations at a minimum of 5-days, to a maximum of 364-days, similar to the Allianz model. You also get the option to renew your Liaison Elite package for up to 3-years.
With all three plans, you get the option of customizing your coverage, selecting your medical thresholds, and deductibles. You also get the option of including or excluding the United States in your cover, something that’s beneficial to anyone who already has local private medical insurance in the U.S.
For those travelers up to the age of 69-years old, you can select your preference for maximum medical thresholds for global cover, up to $5-million. Seniors aged 70 to 79-years old get $50,000 in protection, and if you’re older than 80, you get $20,000 as a Liaison Elite member and $15,000 with the Liaison Economy and Liaison Choice policies.
All three of the plans offer you dental and medical treatment, as well as emergency services and medical assistance. You also get cover for baggage loss, accidental death and dismemberment, and any trip delays or interruptions.
The company also offers coverage for those travelers competing or participating in extreme adventure sports, as well. However, if you want this cover, it’s going to cost you an additional fee.
A 40-year-old man traveling to Phuket, Thailand, for 3-weeks in November will pay the following for $100,000 of medical cover.
- $47.62 – Liaison Travel Economy Plan.
- $53.12 – Liaison Travel Choice Plan.
- $70.45 – Liaison Travel Elite Plan.
- These prices would include a $0 deductible.
Seven Corners also provides trip insurance, as well. You get the choice of three options when choosing the right plan to suit your travel needs. These plans offer you excellent coverage, but they don’t have the same customizable options as the Liaison packages.
- Roundtrip Economy
- Roundtrip Choice
- Roundtrip Elite
All three of these policies cover you for trip cancellation, interruption, and delays, as well as missed cruise or tour connections, and change fees. When it comes to the medical cover, Seven Corners offers emergency medical accident and sickness medical expense cover, emergency dental cover, and emergency medical evacuation, as well as repatriation.
You also get coverage for baggage loss and accidental death or dismemberment, as well. The trip plans are more expensive than the medical plans, and you need to ensure that you are receiving the right amount of medical coverage you need before you sign the contract.
The last company on our list is VisitorsCoverage. This company connects travelers with travel insurance deals that meet their individual needs. This company also sells other insurance plans from providers in the industry.
The company has a focus on providing travel insurance solutions to those people visiting the United States. However, the company does also offers policies for U.S residents traveling internationally as well.
You enter your information on the website, and the site gets back to you with the best travel insurance options available in its partner network. After selecting the right plan to meet your needs, you can purchase the policy through the VistorsCoverage website.
The Types of Travel Insurance
There is no one-size-fits-all travel insurance solution. Today’s policies come custom-tailored to meet your travel needs. However, one thing is similar across all travel insurance policies, and that’s that the policy covers you for financial risks while traveling.
In most cases, you don’t need travel insurance if you’re traveling within your state. You can also get away with no travel insurance if you’re traveling within the United States, although this type of travel can have some risk attached to it that would benefit from taking out a travel insurance policy.
However, in most cases, you’ll only need travel insurance if you intend to leave the country for your trip. Whether you’re going on business or for pleasure, travel insurance is a vital necessity for overseas trips.
Insurers offer a range of plans to suit your needs, and most travel insurance policies cover you for a variety of mishaps when traveling. However, most insurers let you customize comprehensive travel insurance packages to suit your needs. For example, if you’re single, then you’ll have different insurance needs for someone that’s traveling with a family.
Here are the most popular types of travel insurance policies that cover you for risk when traveling.
Trip Interruption, Delays, and Cancellations
You book your trip to leave Florida for Mexico on your dream vacation to Cancun. In the days leading up to your departure, a hurricane begins to form off of the Gulf coast, growing into a category-4 storm as it enters the gulf.
Needless to say, airlines are not taking the risk of sending planes through the storm, so they cancel your flight. Now what? Airlines have policies that state they are not liable to issue you a refund in this situation. This situation leaves you with paying the costs of your trip, and you never left the airport.
Fortunately, taking a travel insurance policy that includes coverage for trip interruptions, delays, and cancellations. Therefore, you get your money back, and all you have to deal with is the heartache of missing your trip. With your reimbursement, you can book new travel arrangements and enjoy your trip at another time of the year.
Cancellations are also a concern for many travelers. If you book your tickets and accommodation, and then have a family emergency to take care of that makes you miss your flight, your travel insurance takes care of the costs involved with re-booking your flights and accommodation.
Your trip interruption policy covers you for the nonrefundable expenses of any unused portions of your trip. Most travel insurance policies will cover you for all three occurrences – interruption, cancelation, and delay.
It’s important to note that waivers are not the same financial product as a travel insurance policy. There is much more room for providers to wiggle out of paying you out for any issues with your trip.
While interruption, delay, and cancelation travel insurance policies are on offer from numerous service providers and travel agents, you’ll still need to read through the terms and conditions before you take the policy. Look at the exclusions section of the contract to see what the insurer will not cover.
Exclusions differ from insurer to insurer. For instance, some standard exclusions found in policies include the right for the insurer to deny your claim if there is a terrorist attack at your destination. However, some insurers don’t count this as exclusion and will pay you out if this situation occurs.
Some insurers will add additional coverage for an extra cost on your policy. “Cancel for any reason” covers you for reimbursement of up to 95% of your total trip costs if you decide to back out of the trip for any reason whatsoever.
Always check the limits on reimbursement through cancellation before you sign the policy. Some insurers may only cover 50% of your costs or less.
Personal Belongings and Baggage
If you travel frequently, then the chances are that you will have your bags go missing at some stage. Arriving at your destination, only to find that your bags didn’t arrive with you, is a frustrating experience.
These policies often include limitations on the maximum reimbursement per traveler, as well as per item. Most policies provide you with coverage for up to a $1,000 loss. If you own home insurance, check with your insurer before your departure to see if they cover the loss of your belongings while traveling.
It’s also important to note that your deductible applies to your claim. The deductible refers to the amount you have to pay out before the insurance policy kicks in.
Emergency Medical Assistance
When we imagine traveling, it’s all smiles, laughs, and good times. However, we’re human, and there’s a chance you’ll get sick when traveling, especially if you’re traveling to a region of the world that does not have the same sanitation standards as America.
Coming down with an illness on vacation can ruin your trip. The costs of treatment and rescue are substantial and can end up breaking your bank account, especially if you need emergency services like airlifts to the hospital.
This section of your travel insurance policy covers you for any medical emergencies, including airlifts to local hospitals. Some policies also cover you for medical repatriation, should you need to fly home for treatment.
When taking your travel insurance policy, make sure you review the exclusions for medical treatment and assistance. Some policies exclude coverage if you experience an injury participating in action sports like rock climbing or skydiving. You might need to take an additional policy to cover you for this risk.
Most policies will limit medical expenses to a maximum of $50,000. Also, check the deductible. Some policies may only kick in after you pay $2,000 worth of medical costs, while others give you coverage without any deductible.
If you have private health insurance, then check to see if your provider covers you for travel. Many private healthcare companies offer overseas medical protection, making this feature of your travel insurance policy redundant.
24-Hour Personal Assistance
Most comprehensive travel insurance policies come with access to the companies 24-hour assistance hotline. Call the number, and service consultants can help you with anything from re-booking your flights, to finding a doctor in your local area.
These services will also provide you with any other information relevant to your vacation, such as mandatory vaccinations and travel advice. Always read through your policy before singing to see what service offerings the insurer provides.
Rental Car Insurance
When you arrive in a new country or state, you’re going to need a rental car. Most travel insurance policies cover you for any damage or loss of the vehicle while you’re on vacation. However, these policies will have exclusions that limit the damage they payout for when processing your claim.
Most policies also won’t cover you for liability insurance if you hit another car or damage private property in an accident. Typically, you can pick up the driver’s liability insurance from the car rental agent.
Before you leave on your trip, contact your car insurance company and ask them if they cover you for driving rental cars overseas or in another state. Most cover you if you rent in the U.S, but the majority don’t cover overseas driving accidents.
Insurance for Accidental Death and Dismemberment
If the worst should happen and you die on your trip, your travel insurance policy will make a lump-sum payment to your beneficiaries. If you should experience a severe accident that dismembers one or more of your limbs, then your travel insurance covers your medical costs and treatment.
Most policies differ on the amounts they pay out, and what qualifies as a dismemberment. Some insurers will pay you out if you lose your eyesight, hearing, or speech, as well. If you already have life insurance, then your policy might already cover you for these accidents.
Most travel insurance policies won’t payout if you experience a stroke or heart attack while on vacation. Some plans may refuse to pay out if you die participating or competing in dangerous sports, such as skydiving or scuba diving.
The Costs of Travel Insurance
According to information from the U.S. Travel Insurance Association, most comprehensive travel insurance policies will cost you anywhere between 4 to 8% of the total trip cost. The price of your policy varies depending on the following factors.
- Your travel destination – If you’re traveling to a region of the world with high health costs, it could affect the pricing of your policy.
- Trip duration – The longer your trip, the higher the costs of your travel insurance.
- Risk – The more risk the insurer takes, the more expensive your policy.
- Age – Your age also plays a significant role in the cost of your travel insurance policy. Young people might take unnecessary risks when traveling, and seniors are at risk of health issues.
- Medical coverage – If you have a pre-existing medical condition, your insurer might increase the price of your travel insurance policy.
Where can You Buy a Travel Insurance Policy?
Your credit card provider should be your first place of inquiry when trying to source your travel insurance. Many credit card providers offer benefits to cardholders, such as travel medical insurance, car hire deals, and insurance, all for no charge.
Most credit card providers offer you secondary insurance for car rentals, covering the costs not covered by your regular insurance policy. However, credit card companies don’t offer any flexibility with their coverage. Still, it’s affordable, and in some cases, the credit card provider will offer it to you at no additional charge.
You can also take out your travel insurance policy with your travel agent when booking your trip. Many of these policies are inflexible, and they don’t allow for any customization of the coverage to suit individual needs.
After booking your trip, check online with a travel insurance company, and look at the policy offerings.
These platforms allow you to customize your travel insurance to fit your needs. Check online and comparison shop for travel insurance policies. Remember, the cheapest option does not always offer you the best coverage. Therefore, you need to find a balance between costs and coverage that suits your needs.
In Closing – Tips for Choosing Your Travel Insurance Provider
Before you logon to the airline’s website and book your trip, consider your needs for travel insurance before you book. Are you traveling to a destination that requires travel insurance?
We recommend that you only take a policy that covers you for loss or damage to your baggage when traveling within the United States. However, if you’re traveling overseas, then you’ll benefit from taking a fully-comprehensive travel insurance policy.
Before you decide on a policy that’s right for you, take a look at the other options available from your current service providers. Look at your credit card provider’s webpage for information on the services they offer for travelers.
Checks with your health insurance to see if they cover you for international travel, and review your homeowner’s insurance policy for additional travel coverage. When signing your travel insurance policy, always ensure that you understand the deductibles involved with the policy.
Review the offerings from online travel insurers, and compare the pricing and terms of the policies before you settle on your final choice. Make sure you check the limits and exclusions of the policy and ensure that you understand the terms and conditions of the coverage.
Travel insurance is a vital part of planning an overseas trip. It’s always better to have the coverage, and not need to file a claim than to have no insurance and find that you wish you opened a policy before you left home.