The Importance Of Having Travel Insurance

While planning their vacations, a lot of people think “oh I don’t need travel insurance, it cost too much and I’m not going to cancel my trip for any reason“. Unfortunately this thinking has left a lot of people including myself, out of a lot of money. Last year while at the airport in Barcelona, the wheels off my very expensive DVF luggage were broken when a Royal Caribbean transporter threw my bag out of the transport bus. I had to literally drag my 45 pound bag through 2 airports with 2 broken wheels. When I contacted Royal Caribbean they said that they could not do anything for me and that I should file a claim with my travel insurance company. That would have been a great option..if I actually had travel insurance! Needless to say I was beyond irate. Even though I had seen the transporter break my bag, there was nothing I could do because I opted not to purchase insurance.


Travel Insurance is the single most important thing you should get but hope to never use. It will cover your medical bills if you get sick and are hospitalized, if your flight is cancelled, if a family member dies and you have to come home, if you get robbed, etc. It the ultimate protection and usually only cost between $50-$200. Here are the most common things that are covered by a travel insurance plan:

  • Medical emergencies’ and evacuation (accident or sickness)
  • Trip cancellation
  • Trip interruption
  • Visitor health insurance
  • Accidental death, injury or disablement benefit
  • Overseas funeral expenses
  • Lost, stolen or damaged baggage, personal effects or travel documents
  • Delayed baggage (and emergency replacement of essential items)
  • Flight connection was missed due to airline schedule
  • Travel delays due to weather
  • Hijacking

Each travel company and policy is different so I recommend that you research each one thoroughly before purchasing. In addition to the above mentioned list, you can often purchase a separate insurance for the following:

  • Sports with an element of risk (e.g. skiing, scuba diving)
  • Travel to high risk countries (e.g. due to war, natural disasters or acts of terrorism)
  • Pre-existing medical conditions
  • War or terrorism – but some plans may cover this risk, and some do cover for acts of terrorism
  • Injury or illness caused by alcohol or drug use

Travel insurance can also provide helpful services, often 24 hours a day, 7 days a week that can include concierge services and emergency travel assistance. So they next time you are booking a trip and your travel agent ask you if you want insurance on your package, I strongly suggest that you take it. As the saying goes “it’s better to be safe (and protected) than sorry”.