Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance 101

Top 5 Travel Insurance Companies


  • An aggregator for travel insurance websites
  • Compare plans from top travel insurance companies
  • Find specialized plans, including sports equipment protection, pregnancy coverage, and more
  • Best price guarantee
  • Member of the US Travel Insurance Association (UStiA)

  • Designed for younger, adventure travelers
  • Differentiates itself by allowing travelers to purchase additional coverage mid-travel
  • Offers 24/7 multilingual assistance
  • Provides coverage for extreme sports, including bungee jumping and skydiving
  • Lonely Planet’s trusted travel insurance provider


  • Family-friendly plans provide free coverage for children under 17 (when traveling with a parent or grandparent)
  • Accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating
  • A subsidiary of Allianz SE, the world’s largest diversified insurance company
  • Offers a broad range of plans, from bare-bones coverage to $1 million in emergency medical transportation.
  • Offers 24/7 hotline


  • Family-friendly plans provide free coverage for children under 17 (when traveling with a parent or grandparent)
  • Accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating
  • Owned by Zurich Insurance Group, a publicly held organization based in Switzerland
  • Offers four difference plans, with up to $500,000 in emergency medical evacuation coverage
  • Provides 24/7 travel assistance and concierge services before and during trips


  • Specializes in international medical insurance
  • Accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating
  • Offers flexible plans for students, seniors, missionaries, and business travelers, as well as those embarking in medical tourism
  • Plans offer access to Well Abroad, an online resource for travelers
  • Offers comprehensive medical insurance plans for new immigrants to the U.S

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What is Travel Insurance

Travel insurance should never be an afterthought… It offers peace of mind and protection against the unexpected, whether it’s a medical emergency, lost luggage, an unforeseen weather calamity, or worse.

Why You Need Travel Insurance

Studies should that only 21% of travelers buy travel insurance, mostly for overseas trips. Often, it’s because people don’t realize the benefits that travel insurance can provide.

While the key coverage components for most plans are trip cancellation or interruption, emergency medical coverage, and lost baggage, travel insurance can cover much more. Plans vary, so you can get as minimal or as in-depth coverage as you need.

What Does Travel Insurance Cover?

There are four main travel insurance packages:

Trip Cancellation: Trip cancellation coverage provides reimbursement for non-refundable purchases should your trip be cancelled or interrupted due to injury, illness, or a variety of other reasons (these reasons vary by provider).

Baggage Coverage: Baggage coverage provides reimbursement should your luggage get lost, stolen, or damaged. Some plans also cover replacement needs for items such as toiletries, clothing, and more should you bags be delayed.

Medical Coverage: Medical coverage provides payment for emergency medical care should you get hurt or sick while traveling. Plans vary, and different companies offer different maximum coverage amounts. In addition to emergency care, medical coverage typically provides emergency evacuation.

Travel insurance costs vary depending on length of trip and the amount of coverage you need, and some medical plans have deductibles, not unlike traditional medical insurance. Travel insurance companies offer multiple plans, so make sure you do your research before a trip to see which company’s plan best fits your travel needs.

Does Travel Insurance Cover Cancellation Due To Illness?

Yes. If you need to cancel a trip to due to unexpected injury or illness, the “Trip Cancellation” package will reimburse any financial losses.

However, any cancellations due to medical purposes need proper documentation. You cannot simply call your insurance company and ask them to reimburse you because you have the flu. You will need to visit a doctor and, similar to grade school, have a doctor’s note.

What Does Travel Insurance NOT Cover?

Travel insurance companies vary, as do their policies, so make sure to choose a company and policy that best fits your needs. Every travel insurance policy has a list of exclusions: situations in which coverage is not provided. Common exclusions include pre-existing conditions, losses due to drunken behavior, losses resulting from mental illness, injury due to high-risk sport, and more. When selecting a travel insurance provider and policy, make sure you carefully read over their list of exclusions.