Travel insurance protects you from the costs and risks associated with travel. It’s helpful for both locally and internationally travellers and is often offered by most companies selling travel packages.
The most common travel insurance policies are trip cancellation or interruption coverage, baggage and personal effects coverage. Travel insurance policies often include medical expense coverage and accidental death or flight accident coverage. Most travel insurance policies cover damages to the personal effects or rented equipment such as rental cars.
Travel Insurance Companies
These are corporate institutions responsible for the sale of travel insurance. They offer you a variety of packages with different coverage benefits, albeit with peculiar terms and conditions. The rise in general awareness of risk has become a goldmine, motivating a surge in insurance providers. Many travellers are left paralyzed at the sheer load of information to be absorbed and make regrettable choices. To help you avoid common pitfalls, we will examine the top companies selling travel insurance.
Boasting more than 130 years of experience, Manulife is one of the leading insurance companies in Canada. It provides packages adapted to your basic needs, including coverage for emergency medical care, luggage loss or damage, and trip cancellation. Plans also include protection for accidents and pandemics such as COVID-19.
To be more transparent, let’s have a look at the package options for a 20-year-old seeking travel insurance for a trip to the United States within 30 days. For this fellow, a Manulife travel plan may include:
- A COVID-19 pandemic travel plan: This has up to CAD 1 million to cover emergencies related to COVID-19 [up to CAD 5 million if you received an entire course of immunization for COVID-19]. Up to CAD 5 million to cover emergency medical costs unrelated to COVID-19. Trip interruption coverage due to quarantine and COVID-19.
- Trip cancellation or interruption plan has you covered in the event of flight cancellation or interruption.
- A single trip all-inclusive: This has up to CAD 10 million to cover emergency medical costs, trip cancellation and interruption, as well as other cardinal aspects of travel.
Unlike the companies discussed earlier, Desjardins offers insurance for travellers within Canada. To be eligible for Desjardins’ services, you must meet the following criteria:
- You must be a Canadian and be at least 15 days old
- Your travel must begin and end in your province of residence in Canada
- You must also apply for the insurance before the departure date
- Your insurance must be for the entire scheduled duration of your trip
- You must also be covered under the government health and hospitalization insurance plans of where you reside for the entire trip
Policies offered by Desjardins’ include the following:
- Emergency Health Care Coverage: This allows reimbursement of up to $5,000,000 per insured for emergency care received. It equally covers transportation or repatriation expenses incurred for medical reasons or in the event of death.
- Emergency Return Trip Coverage: This plan covers, in certain circumstances, transportation expenses from your vacation destination to your home province and back again. There is a 50% advantage only applicable to 30 days or more trips for customers aged 18 to 30.
- Accident Coverage: This pays a benefit for death or loss of use of a limb caused by an accident that occurs during your trip.
- Baggage Coverage: This covers stolen, delayed or damaged baggage. It also covers the cost of replacing a passport, visa, driver’s license or birth certificate.
- Trip Cancellation or Interruption Coverage: This plan reimburses expenses incurred if a trip needs to be cancelled for reasons recognized by the insurer. It also covers the unused portion of your trip if you need to cut it short and some additional expenses resulting from your unexpected return.
These coverages mentioned above are offered in multi-coverage packages and multi-trip annual insurance. You’ll find the multi-trip annual insurance handy if you regularly travel within a year. It provides coverage for unlimited trips and requires just one contract. For travellers aged between 61 and 80 years, the multi-trip annual package is also called the Quattra Advantage.
Other travel insurance providers include Allianz Canada, World Nomads, Safety Wings and Blue Cross. For some of these companies, such as Blue Cross, insurance services are limited to regions of Canada in which you reside.
Several companies are looking to win your attention with different forms of ad campaigns and offers. The market is large, and your options are countless. Choosing the best company becomes a complex puzzle, requiring in-depth knowledge of many financial jargons.
Your best bet is to get help from a trust insurance broker, who can provide you with quotes from different travel insurance companies plus precise and up to date advice; we’d always recommend Insurance Direct Canada.