Determining Whether You Need Travel Insurance

Life is a fun journey, although, unfortunately, we need to prepare for the unexpected, especially when it comes to paying for it. We know we need health insurance, car insurance, home insurance, and life insurance. The list never seems to end!

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But what about when it comes to traveling? You never know what circumstances may cause you to have to delay or cancel a trip. And there may be instances where you get injured while you are on the go. 

Do I need insurance when I travel?

Whether you get trip insurance is up to you. Having insurance for traveling abroad or general trip insurance is a good idea. Some trips require international travel insurance, so it is best to be informed before you purchase. 

What is trip insurance?

International or domestic travel? It doesn’t matter. Simply put, insurance for travel is assurance. Some companies offer short-term travel medical insurance, trip insurance, and other types of policies. A non-refundable fee is paid before your trip as a guarantee. If something happens during your trip the insurance provider will reimburse you for lost expenses. These can include things like flights and hotels, and medical bills. 

If you have to use the insurance, be sure to save paperwork and bills for medical travel insurance and other claims. You will need to show proof.

Do I Need Travel Insurance | Travel Like a Prince Medical Travel Insurance Reviews
Journeys are meant to be enjoyed with peace of mind. Photo by Artem Beliaikin.

Do I need medical insurance for travel abroad?

Many professionals do recommend insurance for traveling abroad, especially to countries without top-quality infrastructure or healthcare facilities or those facing political instability. Medical travel insurance covers health crises you could face overseas. This could include instances such as a broken bone or another type of severe illness requiring medical attention.

Even if you have regular health insurance, it may not include full coverage in other countries. International medical insurance acts as an additional guarantee

Like any insurance policy, the best travel medical insurance will cover medical emergencies that happen while traveling. Having trip insurance in place will help determine where to go to get medical assistance while also not being out of pocket for long, if at all. Finding the best travel medical insurance is important to have peace of mind. 

Is international travel insurance required?

No, law does not typically require trip insurance, especially for individual travelers. Some countries are exceptions, such as Poland, the Czech Republic, and Cuba.

However, some tour operators may compel their clients to carry it, especially when visiting countries with no public health service (like the USA). Other travel suppliers may highly suggest insurance, especially when engaging in strenuous or potentially dangerous activities on your trip. Take their recommendations seriously. 

International travel insurance may be required. Photo by Quang Nguyen Vinh

How do I find travel insurance companies?

Compare travel insurance plans and read travel insurance reviews before you buy them. Policies are often available as add-ons to trip packages or flights booked through airlines or OTAs. They can be purchased separately as well.

Do your research, read reviews, compare prices and benefits. Be sure you’re choosing the best option for each specific trip. Also, check your existing credit cards to see if any of them already have trip insurance included. Many airline and travel branded credit cards do. 

Medical insurance for travel abroad may be advisable for your future travel plans, especially if they include visiting other countries. Although it is not always fun to think about things like travel insurance, international trips are one situation where many experts suggest at least considering your options.

Plans are typically relatively inexpensive, especially compared to the total cost of a trip. It might be worth it simply for the peace of mind and knowing that if something does happen, you will be protected.

Personally, I recommend RoamRight, which has their quick and easy coverage calculator for determining the cost of which plan is right for you.

Speaking from personal experience…

I was traveling in Nicaragua during a time of unrest. We flew into Managua, but as we were on our way to the airport to leave, the roads were blocked by protestors. There was no way around, so we had to make the quick decision to head to Costa Rica and fly out.

Changing flights from a different airport in a different country was a bit scary. Trip insurance – which I didn’t want to get but was so glad I did – relieved our minds so much! Speaking from personal experience, I would say that for a small cost, it really is worth it for peace of mind. Better to have it and not use it rather than need it and not have it.

Header photo by Quang Nguyen Vinh.

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10 responses to “Determining Whether You Need Travel Insurance”

  1. Anahita Irani Avatar
    Anahita Irani

    This topic is very debatable for sure! I often wonder should I opt for it when I travel. Your post has given me insights and made things much clear for me. 

  2. Shreya Saha Avatar
    Shreya Saha

    Wow, travel insurance is actually very important, I can understand from your experience. I try to ease out on this matter, usually. However, I am going to reconsider and actually get myself insured.

  3. Bhushavali N Avatar
    Bhushavali N

    Oh my! Travel insurance is indeed a necessity. I learnt that the hard way. Our backpack got stolen and we lost all our passports and the reissue was a huge expenditure. I really wished I had travel insurance. Immediately after that, we bought one. Your story is definitely scary too. Flying our of another country? I can’t imagine the stress you must have been in. At least glad you had insurance and it wasn’t a big expenditure. 

    1. travellikeaprince Avatar

      Yes! It was a requirement for that trip and I thought – how silly, we don’t need that. But when we had issues, I was soooooo glad. So sorry about your backpack! Losing passports would be a big pain for sure.

  4. daniel Avatar

    Great post!! Travel insurance should be a crucial part of trip planning for literally anywhere in the world. Most people wouldn’t give it a second thought if they don’t require it from the visiting country. 

  5. Blairvillanueva Avatar

    Travel insurance is a security that many travelers nowadays don’t give importance, but they don’t realize this is a must. It’s an additional cost but a huge safety net for every travel. It helps me feel secure whenever I travel for sure!

  6. Yukti Agrawal Avatar
    Yukti Agrawal

    Many people ignore travel insurance and think it as an unnecessary expense but it really gives peace of mind. Though it is only used in a time of crisis which seldom comes at that time it becomes a real life saver. Oh it was sad that you have to change your destination due to protesters but it is good that you had an insurance which made your transit easier.  

  7. Cecilia Avatar

    I probably use travel insurance only half of the time. When we go to a safe/stable country to stay in an all-inclusive resort for only 3 days, we never feel the need to get insurance. For the bigger trips like going to Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro, we definitely got coverage.

    1. travellikeaprince Avatar

      This actually makes a lot of sense! 🙂

  8. Hailey Avatar

    Until I started traveling frequently I never bothered with travel insurance. Now I won’t travel without it. I have heard way too many horror stories from people who had their vacations ruined not to think twice about getting it. That is the thing though, it only takes one time, so no matter how much you travel it is something to seriously consider.