If you travel frequently, whether for business or for pleasure, it might make sense to purchase an annual travel insurance policy. Annual coverage provides financial protection for multiple trips within a given year.
Who Needs Annual Travel Insurance?
Anyone who travels abroad should have travel insurance, especially since most existing health insurance coverage does not pay for claims stemming from out-of-country services. No one who is traveling for business or pleasure plans to get sick or be involved in an accident, but these events can and do occur. Having travel coverage in place will provide peace of mind while away from home.
Even if your travels only take you to other states, annual travel insurance should still be considered. While you may not need travel medical insurance for domestic journeys, you could still benefit from airfare protection. Luggage mix-ups and delayed or canceled flights are just as likely on domestic flights as on overseas excursions.
If you travel infrequently, single trip coverage should suffice. However, if you find yourself traveling more than twice a year, an annual policy could save you time, money, and aggravation.
Companies Offering Annual Travel Insurance
The following companies offer annual travel insurance coverage:
- Access America
- Global Travel Insurance
- USA Insurance
- Travel Insurance Center
- Travel Guard International
- Guardian Unlimited
Travel raises a host of potential problems, but most can easily be covered under an insurance policy. Common travel-related problems include:
- Lost or stolen luggage
- Canceled or delayed flights
- Traffic accidents
- Serious illness or injury
- Lost, stolen, or misplaced medications
- Lost or stolen wallet
- Lost or stolen passport or identification
- Weather disaster
- Civil unrest, crime, or terrorism
All of these situations can cause significant frustration and financial loss. If you travel frequently, the potential for problems is multiplied. Specific coverage varies depending on the insurance company, the policy, and your needs. You will need to analyze your circumstances to determine your personal requirements.
Choosing a Provider
When comparing companies, look beyond price. While it is important to get a good rate for your insurance, it is more important to obtain adequate coverage. Your cheap insurance will start looking quite worthless if it leaves you in a lurch during a travel emergency. Ask the following questions of any company you are considering:
- What are your policies regarding canceled flights?
- What protection do you offer in cases of terrorism or civil unrest?
- If my flight is delayed, changed, or canceled, will you cover hotels or other accommodations?
- Will my children be covered on my policy?
- Does the coverage have an upper age limit?
- Which countries are covered under the policy?
- Are extended stays on foreign soil covered?
- How are emergency medical treatments and hospital stays handled?
- Is dental coverage included?
- Is emergency transportation covered?
- What is your procedure for filing claims?
Some companies offer comprehensive coverage, while others allow you to pick and choose only the needed components. Talk to prospective companies about their options to find out which method is the most cost-effective. In some cases, the comprehensive policy is less expensive than insurance a la carte.