Travel Insurance – Buyer’s Guide

So, you’re planning a trip (how exciting!) and now you’re wondering about travel insurance, right?

Well, you’ve come to the right place!

Here’s a no-nonsense, easy-to-understand guide that’ll walk you through the mysterious world of travel insurance. Ready? Let’s dive in!

So, Why Should You Bother With Travel Insurance Anyway?

Picture this: You’re all set to jet off on your dream vacation, but boom! You get a fever the night before your flight.

Or maybe you reach your exotic destination only to find your suitcase took a detour to Timbuktu.

Perhaps, you slip on a banana peel in a foreign market and need medical help. In all these scenarios, you’re facing not just disappointment, but a hole in your pocket. That’s where travel insurance waltzes in!

It’s your knight in shining armor, saving you from these unexpected costs.

Recommended Plans

⭐⭐⭐⭐ Atlas America 100% Coverage, Comprehensive plan
⭐⭐⭐ Safe Travels USA 100% Coverage, Comprehensive plan
⭐⭐ Patriot America Plus 100% Coverage, Comprehensive plan

Alright, What Does Travel Insurance Actually Cover?

Great question! Travel insurance typically has your back in the following situations:

  1. Oh no, my trip’s cancelled/delayed!
    This coverage refunds you for pre-paid plans if you have to cancel or cut your trip short for specific reasons. It also covers additional costs due to travel delays.
  2. I need a doctor!
    It covers medical bills for illnesses or accidents during your trip, and even emergency evacuation in some cases.
  3. Where’s my luggage?
    You’ll get reimbursed if your baggage decides to go on its own adventure, gets damaged, or is delayed.
  4. Worst-case scenario:
    It provides a lump-sum payment in case of severe injury or even death.

Remember, every policy is unique, so always give the fine print a thorough read.

So, One Size Fits All?

Absolutely not! Just like your perfect vacation, your perfect travel insurance policy is very much a personal choice. There are various types to suit different travel plans:

  1. Single Trip Plans: For those one-off, unique trips.
  2. Multi-Trip Plans: For those bitten by the travel bug, covering multiple trips within a year.
  3. Long-Term Plans: For the globetrotters traveling for several months or a year.
  4. Group Plans: For the squad travelling together, offering the same benefits to all members.
  5. Specialized Plans: For specific needs like medical-only coverage, evacuation plans, etc.

What Should I Consider When Buying Travel Insurance?

Choosing travel insurance doesn’t need to be as confusing as deciphering a foreign language menu. Here’s what to consider:

  1. Destination: Some places are higher risk, requiring a robust plan.
  2. Travel Frequency: Travelling a lot in a year? Consider an annual multi-trip plan.
  3. Age and Health: Older folks and those with existing health conditions may need a beefier plan.
  4. Adventurous Activities: Plan to do something risky? Make sure it’s covered.
  5. Cost of Your Trip: High-cost bookings warrant higher coverage.
  6. Baggage: Carrying pricey items? Ensure they’re covered too.

Buying Travel Insurance: How Does It Work?

Purchasing travel insurance is as easy as ordering takeout. Many companies offer online platforms where you can compare plans, get quotes, and buy your policy.

When buying, remember to:

  1. Know Your Needs: Identify what you need and pick a plan that suits those.
  2. Compare Plans: Don’t just pick the first one. Compare coverage, exclusions, and prices.
  3. Read the Fine Print: Always, always, always read the fine print to understand what’s covered and what’s not.

So there you go! Now you’re ready to navigate the world of travel insurance with confidence. Safe travels!


Here are some frequently asked questions about buying travel insurance:

What is the best time to buy travel insurance?

Ideally, you should buy travel insurance as soon as you’ve booked your trip. Most policies cover trip cancellation, so the earlier you buy, the better.

Can I buy travel insurance after starting my trip?

This varies by provider. Some allow you to buy insurance after departure, while others don’t. It’s best to check with your chosen provider.

Does travel insurance cover trip cancellation for any reason?

Standard travel insurance usually covers trip cancellation for specific reasons like illness or a death in the family. Some companies offer ‘cancel for any reason’ coverage, but this is typically more expensive.

Are pre-existing conditions covered in travel insurance?

Coverage for pre-existing conditions varies by plan and provider. Some providers offer coverage if the condition has been stable for a certain period before buying the insurance.

Will travel insurance cover me for COVID-19 related issues?

Many travel insurance providers now offer coverage for certain COVID-19 related issues. Check with your chosen provider for specifics.

Does travel insurance cover adventure activities?

Not always. Some activities may be considered ‘high-risk’ and not covered under standard policies. If you plan to partake in adventure activities, check with your provider or consider a special policy.

Can I get a refund on my travel insurance if I don’t use it?

Typically, travel insurance is non-refundable after a certain period (usually 10-15 days after purchase), even if you don’t end up using it.

How much does travel insurance cost?

The cost of travel insurance varies based on the duration of your trip, your destination, the coverage you choose, and your age. Typically, it ranges from 4% to 10% of your trip cost.

Does travel insurance cover travel disruptions due to weather?

Yes, many travel insurance policies cover travel disruptions due to severe weather conditions that prevent you from travelling.

Can I buy travel insurance if I’m already abroad?

Yes, some providers do offer travel insurance to individuals who are already abroad. However, conditions apply, so it’s best to check with the provider.

Recommended Plan For Your Travel

Safe Travels

Best for Visitors
Economical Plan
COVID19 included
Covers Medical
Pre-Existing Conditions
First Health Network


Atlas America

Rated “A – Excellent”
COVID19 included
Covers Medical
Covers Dental
Trip Cancellation
Full Refund on Cancel

Mani Karthik

About the Author

Mani Karthik

Ex “NRI” and Founder of the “Back to India” movement. I share my experience about immigrating to USA here.

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