Travel Insurance: What it Does, Why You Need It, and What It Covers

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What is travel insurance?

Just like there’s a need for different types of insurance in your everyday life, there’s also a need for insurance whenever you’re traveling. Travel insurance covers any unforeseen accidents and/or losses while you’re away from home. These losses can be either financial or material. Like other types of insurance, if you’ve incurred a loss you’ll have to file a claim in order to be reimbursed.

Why is travel insurance necessary?

Travel insurance keeps you from having to pay for medical expenses, lost or stolen items, etc. while you’re on vacation. It’s important to know exactly how to choose travel insurance to make sure you’re going to be covered for every possible loss or accident that could happen while you’re in a foreign country. It’s also important to understand what your travel insurance will and will not cover.

What It Covers

Trip Cancellations

Life happens, and things may come up where you may have to cancel your trip. If something happens, like a medical emergency, before you get a chance to take your vacation and you’ve already paid for it, your travel insurance may be able to reimburse you.

In the same way, if your trip is somehow interrupted and you have to fly back to your home country, your travel insurance will make up for the amount of the trip that you didn’t get to complete. An interrupted trip is usually due to a natural disaster or terrorism.

Medical and Life Insurance

Unfortunately, accidents do happen, whether you’re at home or on vacation and it can be hard to receive medical treatment if you’re overseas. Most types of travel insurance have some sort of health insurance coverage for times like these. However, many health insurance companies will still cover you even if you are traveling overseas, so make sure to check with your provider.

In the same way, your travel insurance can come with a life insurance policy. This will cover accidental death, air flight accident (which only covers your flight), and common carrier (covers death/dismemberment when using the public transportation system).

Baggage Loss

If you have any lost or stolen personal items during your trip, this portion of your travel insurance covers this loss. This will usually cover your entire trip, not just the flight, and it even covers damaged items.


Evacuation coverage covers the cost it would take to move you to a place to receive necessary medical treatment. This type of treatment isn’t usually covered by health insurance companies. Evacuation coverage also covers an evacuation plan to move you out of a country for safety reasons, such as civil/political unrest.

Some travel insurance companies have expanded their policies to cover COVID-19. This includes medical care costs, trip interruptions/delay, and trip cancellations.

What It Doesn’t Cover

Car Insurance

While you’re on your trip you may be renting a car to get to and from your destinations. Your travel insurance will not work as car insurance, so make sure that you’re insured by a reputable car insurance company. Like mentioned before, accidents do happen even when you’re on vacation so it’s good to be covered. And also, when checking to see if your health insurance will cover you overseas, check to see if your car insurance will do the same.

Renters Insurance

If you’re going to be renting a temporary home while you’re away, it’s not likely that your travel insurance will cover any losses or damages to the home you’re staying in. Travelers usually book lodging accommodations through sites such as Airbnb, which have their own policies when it comes to property.

Being covered in the case of an accident or loss will save you time and money while you’re traveling. It will also give you peace of mind so you’ll be free to fully enjoy your vacation.

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