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I’ll Take One From Column A, One From Column B…

Travel package policies are popular because they are easy.

We don’t have to analyze much, or fret.  A good package plan provides the medical coverage of a Travel Medical plan; the evacuation coverage of a MedEvac plan; the flight coverage of Flight Accident insurance; the AD&D coverage of an Accidental Death and Dismemberment plan; and often, the rental car coverage of a Rental Car policy.  Pretty slick, right?  But also pricey.

There is the Goldilocks approach, of course: a basic plan, a standard plan, a premium plan.  Typically, a basic package takes care of the essentials, with  low-level emergency medical coverage, say $10,000, as opposed to a more expensive plan’s $25,000, and so on.  And many premium plans automatically thrown in financial default coverage, terrorism coverage and will even cover pre-existing medical conditions.

Keep in mind that you get what you pay for.  The cheapest option is not necessarily the best option.  Take the time to consider carefully where you are going, what you plan to see and do, what challenges you might encounter along the way and decide accordingly.

Here is quick rundown of package plan coverage options:

  • Trip Cancellation: Covers you if you cancel your trip due to a covered reason such as sickness or injury, weather or even job loss.
  • Trip Interruption: Covers you if you interrupt your trip due to a covered reason, as above.
  • Trip Delay: Reimburses expenses for meals, lodging, cab fares and essential phone calls, if your trip is delayed due to covered reasons.
  • Missed Connection: If bad weather or an airline causes delay or cancellation of a flight, this reimburses you for additional travel expenses to ‘catch up’ with your trip as well as any unused portions of your trip.
  • Baggage and Personal Effects: Can reimburse you is your baggage is stolen, lost or damaged while you are on you trip.
  • Baggage Delay: If your baggage is delayed (for a length of time stated in your policy), you can be reimbursed for the purchase of necessary personal items while you wait for your stuff to show up.
  • Medical/Dental Expense: Pays for emergency medical expenses incurred while on a trip.
  • Emergency Evacuation and Repatriation of Remains: Covers evacuation and transportation as directed by a physician to the nearest adequate medical facility, (home in the event of death or if medically required).
  • Accidental Death & Dismemberment: Pays for loss of life or limb that occurs during your trip.
  • 24/7 Worldwide Assistance: Provides 24/7 call center support to assist in medical situations, lost baggage situations, flight re-booking and so forth.
  • Cancel for Any Reason: Provides coverage for all or most of your trip costs if you cancel for any reason not listed in the standard coverage.   This option typically has provisions such as purchasing with 15 days of the initial trip deposit, it is purchased for the full trip cost, and the  insured cancels no less than 48 hours prior to the trip departure (typically an optional coverage).
  • Rental Car Collision: Covers the cost of repairs for damage due to covered reasons to a rental car (typically an optional coverage).
  • Pre-existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver: Coverage if pre-existing medical conditions force you to cancel or interrupt a trip (typically an optional coverage).
  • Trip Cancellation/Interruption due to Financial Default: Coverage due to cruise line, airline, or tour operator default. (Financial default is not covered for all suppliers).
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