Not every travel insurance plan is the same. Some companies are better for different types of trips. For example, the best travel insurance for extreme sports might not be the same as one for travelers going on a ritzy wine-tasting world tour. Your premium and coverage amount can differ significantly. Although your credit card trip protection benefits might offer sufficient coverage, a separate policy offers additional coverage for expensive trips. What Does Travel Insurance Cover?
In general, travel insurance covers any trip-related expenses that aren’t reimbursed by a travel provider when your travel plans change. This may include weather, personal health issues, car accidents, or getting injured while on a travel excursion.
The key requirement is that these happenings must be unforeseen. Travel insurance protects against the unexpected.
Your basic travel insurance policy will cover the most common unexpected events, but you will probably have to pay more for additional “unconventional” coverages including:-
- Cancel for Any Reason
- Extreme Sports
- Family Illness
- Pre-Existing Conditions
- Rental Car Collision and Theft Damage
To get these additional coverages, you usually must purchase them within 14 days of buying your original travel insurance policy.
However, in regards to rental car insurance, consider using the right credit card. For instance, Chase’s all-star cards, the Sapphire Preferred and Sapphire Reserve are probably the top choices for a car rental. Not only do they have a relevant category bonus (2x and 3x on travel), but they also beat the competition by offering primary coverage. Many other cards’ coverage is secondary.
The Best Travel Insurance Companies
Although your best option might be getting travel insurance through your personal insurance provider, you might find better coverage from a full-fledged travel insurance provider. Even though your insurance company offers travel insurance, they don’t underwrite the policy and submitting a claim can quickly become a headache.
Best Travel Insurance for Frequent Travelers: Bajaj Allianz
Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company Limited is a joint venture between Bajaj Finserv Limited (recently demerged from Bajaj Auto Limited) and Allianz SE. Both enjoy a reputation of expertise, stability and strength.
Bajaj Allianz received the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) certificate of Registration on 2nd May, 2001 to conduct various businesses (including Health Insurance business) in India. The Company has an authorized and paid up capital of Rs 110 crores. Bajaj Finserv Limited holds 74% and the remaining 26% is held by Allianz, SE. As on 31st March 2017, Bajaj Allianz continues to be one of the most financially robust insurers in the industry by maintaining its growth as well as profitability. The company has made a profit before tax of Rs. 1,078 crore and emerged as the most profitable insurer recording a profit after tax of Rs. 728 crore. The company reported a GWP of Rs. 7,687 crore, which has grown by 30.3% compared to the last fiscal year.
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Best Travel Insurance for Extreme Sports: SafeTrip
Extreme sports are a broad topic. Make sure your planned activities are covered under the extreme sports rider with any travel insurance company. SafeTrip is one of the better options for the following extreme sports activities:
- Bungee Jumping
- Scuba diving
Most travel insurance companies require a separate policy for hang gliding, skydiving, and para-surfing. You might be able to purchase this add-on through the insurance provider or you might need to go through a separate company for these activities. SafeTrip waives this add-on fee for certified scuba divers.
Every travel insurance company treats extreme sports differently and might exclude certain activities. It’s worth your time to get quotes from multiple travel insurance companies to find the best rate. After all, if the quote doesn’t mention your sport, it’s probably not covered by the travel insurance provider.
Regarding flight lessons, no travel insurance company covers this activity. It’s a bummer, but at least it’s possible to get insurance for nearly any other extreme sport.
Best Travel Insurance for Solo Travelers: John Hancock
Traveling solo can be an entirely different ballgame if this is your first time alone. In addition to checking neighborhood safety scores, you should also consider getting a policy from John Hancock Travel.
John Hancock is a leading name in the insurance business world. Their travel insurance plans are a good option for solo travelers. While you can’t add children, you can have generous coverage amounts at reasonable rates. You can choose between their Bronze, Silver, and Gold plans that start at $24 per trip.
Every plan includes the following benefits at no additional charge:
- Single Occupancy Supplement
- Terror Attack Coverage
- 24/7 Emergency Travel Assistance
If you get sick on your trip or have an emergency event, the Bronze plan comes with up to $50,000 in coverage. Note that this is the maximum coverage amount with several other travel insurance companies.
One downside for John Hancock is that you can’t get an extreme sports add-on for your policy.
Best Travel Insurance for Seniors: Tin Leg
Tin Leg often receives high marks for senior travel insurance. Tin Leg offers very competitive rates that can be more affordable than other companies mid-tier plans. You have a choice between three different plan options. With Tin Leg’s Luxury plan, you can enjoy $100,000 in emergency medical coverage and $250,000 for medical evacuation and repatriation too.
The best travel insurance company is different for each traveler. Your quote depends on your planned activities, travel frequency, and the number of travel companions you’ll have. However, it only takes a few minutes to get multiple quotes. You’ll be thankful you did, especially if you need to file a claim.