So you've booked your flights and accommodation? Now to think about travel insurance. In times of rising prices it can be tempting to forgo an additional fee when
paying for your travel costs. As you compare travel insurance deals, you may ask yourself, is travel insurance really worth its price? Here we hope to go a little way to answering
What does your insurance cover?
Different travel insurance provides cover for different things. Most provide cover should you have to change or cancel your flights or accommodation due to injury,
illness or a death in the family. However, not all insurers will cover what are deemed to be high-risk activities - such as skiing or other adventure sports. Some don't cover
eventualities following an attack of terrorism.
In addition, some companies won't cover anything you pay for after your flight leaves home. If you book everything in one fell swoop before your departure you
have nothing to worry about. If, however, you're planning a longer trip and would prefer to make plans as you go, you need to be sure your insurer is willing to provide cover
for additional bookings to make it worth the price you pay.
What do you have to do to make a claim?
There are plenty of scare stories about claiming through your travel insurance. You need to find a reputable insurer to be confident of getting a pay out without
a wrangle. To make the most of your insurance premium, keep as much documentation as you can. Sometimes you need to prove that bookings were cancelled without being refunded.
You may also need to provide a discharge letter or a receipt from a hospital to prove that you received care there.
The time you spend making a claim should be factored into the value of travel insurance. How much is your time worth? When you're paying big bucks for a holiday you're probably prepared to put in a few hours getting that money back from your insurer if plans should go awry. However, for short, cheap trips away from home, ask yourself whether it's worth the hassle and the initial expense.
Are there any alternatives?
Before you pay for travel insurance, you should also double check that you don't have a policy elsewhere. If you're a frequent traveller, you can take out travel
insurance for a year at a time, so be sure that you don't have another policy hanging around at the back of the filing cabinet.
Some credit cards provide travel insurance as part of their deal. These cards usually require you to pay a fee but offer a range of perks and benefits. Dealing
with your credit card company may be easier than dealing with one or many different travel insurers. Just be sure that their policy covers everything you need it to.
What are the benefits of travel insurance?
When you find the right policy with the right insurer, travel insurance can be a much needed lifeline in times of trouble. Especially on expensive trips where
you really can't afford to lose and rebook flights and accommodation, a travel insurance pay out can make your bank balance look that bit healthier upon your return home.
If the worst does happen and you do experience an accident abroad, you can rest safe in the knowledge that your medical costs and a flight home will be paid for
as well as lost travel expenses recouped.
So is travel insurance worth its price? Unfortunately, there's no definite answer. Do some thorough research into your insurer and their policies, and weigh the cost of insurance against what you stand to lose before deciding which option is right for you.