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Travel Insurance for Luxury Travelers

Travel Insurance for Luxury Travelers

Old Jan 19, 18, 8:20 am
  #16  
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Originally Posted by RolfD View Post

absolutely a travel insurance is a must. I will never book anything without travel insurance
Thatís extreme! If price for s flight is 400 Ä and they claim 40 or 50 Ä for insurance, I will not book it.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:02 am
  #17  
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I look forward to reading more thoughts about this. I'd love to hear from Americans who have found affordable annual travel insurance policies. I understand that Europeans almost automatically get policies thru their bank that are not available to us living in the US. I've researched travel insurance several times and find it tied to individual trips and quite expensive. We travel frequently and I'd love to find an annual policy.

For several years we have paid for MedJet evacuation insurance. This is an annual policy that I tend to buy for three years at a time. It gives me some comfort to know that we can be brought back home should we need extended care. And I continue to rely on Chase Sapphire insurance that comes with charging the travel components to it. How well that will work with parts of trips paid with points interlaced with paid travel I have no idea. We have never had to absorb more than a few hundred dollars from trip disruption but I do feel as this is an area where I have a little gray cloud over my head.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:28 am
  #18  
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Points btw..... Mostly reservations on Points are cancelable at short notice. If not I guess no insurance will help you
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:31 am
  #19  
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any insurance refund nights if one arrives late ?

my risk tolerance includes risk of expensive insurance not paying out, especially when its a standardized offering with lengthy fine print and exclusions.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:36 am
  #20  
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I have never purchased travel insurance and I have had an unexpected health emergency that was not a pre-existing condition. That trip was mostly charged on my Amex plat and I didn't remember that coverage so approached all the suppliers directly. Most made an exception although some required a doctor's letter and the non-refundable portions totaled about $600 or so, mainly because one lodging supplier refused any refund (Landmark Trust, a British charity).

That was way cheaper than had I been buying travel insurance all along. I hear that the commission on many of those policies can routinely go as high as 35%, which tells me all I need to know.

I have however noticed that luxury and high-end city hotels have been hiking up their cancellation times to as much as 72 hours in the last year, which is frustrating.

So I'm a strong NO on this insurance, but then I am willing to make the effort required to ask these companies to waive their restrictions if something bad happens and have so far mostly succeeded with that.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:37 am
  #21  
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Very interesting and important topic. Here's my thinking:

The devil is in the details, so depend on what's actually written in the travel insurance company's policy, not on my understanding. I deal exclusively with Travelex because of our good experience with them over the years, so I'm only speaking of their policies.
Medical insurance - If you're on Medicare, your coverage is of no value once you leave the U.S., so coverage for medical expenses is a must. You can purchase an inexpensive policy from Travelex that includes medical coverage by purchasing at least $1 of cancellation protection (so put in $500, as it's the same premium as $1). This gets you medical protection, some dental coverage, and medical evacuation.

Pre-existing conditions. If you purchase a Travelex Select policy within 21 days of your first deposit, pre-existing conditions are covered. However, you must be medically able to travel at the time of purchase.

Car rental insurance. If you have a credit card that provides PRIMARY rental insurance, you don't need anything more. However, if your CC provides only secondary insurance, they'll pay only the deductible on your own auto insurance — meaning you'll have to make a claim and suffer a premium increase. So primary insurance is worth taking. Amex has a Premium Car Rental Protection program that provides primary insurance whenever you rent a car using your enrolled card — one price for the entire rental (maximum 42 days), and the pricing is extremely reasonable... costs less than Travelex's car rental add-on.

Cancellation insurance. The difference is whether you want to "self insure" or share the risk with a larger pool (insurance). On average, over time, self-insuring will pay off as insurance companies do make a profit on their policies. But if you've got a big, non-refundable deposit, are traveling with kids or have aged parents, and are concerned that a head cold preventing your child from flying could cost you thousands, cancellation insurance can help you relax about it. Travelex Select policies cover kids under 18 for free — so, for instance, if a mom and dad are traveling with two young children, you're essentially paying only half price for the insurance.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:47 am
  #22  
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David, many of the standardized medigap insurance plans (including F, the most common type) automatically include coverage when outside the USA. So most people with Medicare may already have what they need.

And you don't need the credit card auto collision coverage to be primary outside the USA as virtually no US auto policy covers outside the country. You also don't need it if you don't have collision coverage, which is often done with older non-collectible cars.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 9:53 am
  #23  
 
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Originally Posted by offerendum View Post
P.S. Checked my Platinum Card. Yes, there is a insurance if I have to cancel but only up to 6.000,00 Ä per Person. Enough for flights buttight for a whole trip.
My Citi card provides $5000/traveler, but now that I book premium airfare, that no longer covers my whole trip, so I'm sort of in the same situation.

The only time I booked trip insurance was back in 2014 when I had a trip planned around the time of my cancer diagnosis. I was able to qualify for a pre-existing waiver and my travel was after my expected recovery, but of course if things didn't go according to plan I didn't want to miss out. (3.5 years cancer free now, went on the trip, had a great time).
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:06 am
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No travel insurance for sure

Insurance companies make big money selling "travel insurances" which will need a lawyer to get some money considering all the exclusions.

I think a comprehensive worldwide health /accident insurance is the only thing you need if:
  • you book only flights which are changeable / refundable,
  • choose hotels / resorts according to their cancellation policies and are willing to bear that risk,
  • have a credit card covering you for car hire damage excess fees and
  • are a reasonably experienced traveler who is multilingual and able to sort out things yourself.
Hence for sure no travel insurance for me, but wise risk management. I not like the idea that everything can be "insured".
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:13 am
  #25  
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Evacuation - we have a DAN (yes, scuba diving) family membership

Cancellation
Big Expensive Trips - we buy a travelex policy
Little Trips - we have adequate coverage with our UA Mileage Plus credit card

Note, many of our trips use airline miles which can be redeposited without penalty.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:19 am
  #26  
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Originally Posted by behuman View Post
and are willing to bear that risk,
So as an example, we bought a travelex policy for our 9-night luxury African Safari. Sickness is a common theme when you have a little boy in the house!
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:22 am
  #27  
 
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Originally Posted by offerendum View Post

Thatís extreme! If price for s flight is 400 Ä and they claim 40 or 50 Ä for insurance, I will not book it.
That is your opinion, but again I donít do coach or one star hotels
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:23 am
  #28  
 
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Originally Posted by RichardInSF View Post
David, many of the standardized medigap insurance plans (including F, the most common type) automatically include coverage when outside the USA. So most people with Medicare may already have what they need.
To be clear, so that anyone on Medicare that may read this has the facts from Medicare.gov:

If you have Medigap Plan C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, M or N, your plan:
  • Covers foreign travel emergency care if it begins during the first 60 days of your trip, and if Medicare doesn't otherwise cover the care.
  • Pays 80% of the billed charges for certain medically necessary emergency care outside the U.S. after you meet a $250 deductible for the year.
Foreign travel emergency coverage with Medigap policies has a lifetime limit of $50,000.
To reiterate my earlier point, having coverage is only part of the equation. You also have to have the ability to pay upfront first (and float that balance until you receive your benefits). Furthermore, a $50,000 lifetime maximum isn't much coverage and paying 80% isn't great either.

It's a good idea to look at all of the coverage that you have available to compare with any potential travel-specific plans of interest, and weigh that against your risk tolerance.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:31 am
  #29  
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Originally Posted by KatW View Post
Travel insurance: Yay or Nay?

We travel luxe most of the time and historically I have not availed myself of travel insurance and only once have suffered therefore. But I recently booked a VERY expensive trip and chose to insure it for a hefty premium.

And I feel like a chump. But I have good reasons to seek protection with so many big bucks at risk: my husband is in mid-stage dementia and I have lupus, albeit generally well behaved. So, I swallowed the bait this time. Would you?

There are a couple of general factors you leave out that matter.

1. What do you mean by 'travel insurance'? Generally speaking, what people refer to as travel insurance falls into 2 categories. Medical insurance and trip insurance. Some people are talking about both when they use the term 'travel insurance' but many are talking about only one or the other. Medical insurance should be a must for anyone who understands that even you can get hit by a bus and that can result in huge medical bills. Trip insurance can be ignored IF you are willing to risk the potential costs you won't have covered. A hotel cancellation, a flight cancellation, a lost bag, etc.

2. Attitudes to insurance differ by nationality in many cases. In a country where you are used to having to pay for things out of your own pocket, you find more people willing to go without insurance. In a country where medical coverage is universally provided, few people would be happy with the idea of having to pay out of their own pocket if something happened to them.

3. Self-insuring (whether you think of it that way or not) and your ability to do so is the only other option. If you don't buy insurance then that is what you are doing, again, whether you think of it that way or not. Generally speaking, you should be able to come up with a number as a percentage of your income that you are willing to lose. Anything that will cost you more than that, you should be insuring for. So for example if you had to lose the cost of all flights and hotels and that came to 1% of your annual income, you might feel comfortable enough self-insuring. If it totaled 10% of your annual income however, you might not. Then you should insure.

This point of calculating what you are happy with self-insuring, never applies to medical coverage however as you cannot calculate how much that might be. Hotel, flights, a lost camera, etc. are all costs you can know beforehand. Medical is not. You can also find plenty of horror stories online of people who even bought some kind of travel insurance and thought they were covered for something, only to find out they were not. So reading and understanding your whole policy is a must.

One simple example of what may or may not be covered is when a woman travels while pregnant. If she has a premature birth, she may find for example that her hospital costs for the birth are covered but the costs of any care given to the baby are not! The baby is not insured and what's more you can't buy insurance for the baby before it is born. Lesson, don't travel when pregnant.
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Old Jan 19, 18, 10:39 am
  #30  
 
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Originally Posted by RichardInSF View Post
I have never purchased travel insurance and I have had an unexpected health emergency that was not a pre-existing condition. That trip was mostly charged on my Amex plat and I didn't remember that coverage so approached all the suppliers directly. Most made an exception although some required a doctor's letter and the non-refundable portions totaled about $600 or so, mainly because one lodging supplier refused any refund (Landmark Trust, a British charity).

That was way cheaper than had I been buying travel insurance all along. I hear that the commission on many of those policies can routinely go as high as 35%, which tells me all I need to know.

I have however noticed that luxury and high-end city hotels have been hiking up their cancellation times to as much as 72 hours in the last year, which is frustrating.

So I'm a strong NO on this insurance, but then I am willing to make the effort required to ask these companies to waive their restrictions if something bad happens and have so far mostly succeeded with that.
Originally Posted by Kagehitokiri View Post
any insurance refund nights if one arrives late ?

my risk tolerance includes risk of expensive insurance not paying out, especially when its a standardized offering with lengthy fine print and exclusions.
I totally agree. The possibility of insurance not paying out and the simple hassle of filing a claim factors into my risk tolerance.

I used to buy insurance similar to Travelex sold through Japanese travel agencies. Then I realized that I had cumulatively paid far more for those policies than a covered travel disruption or medical expense likely would have cost. Therefore, I am now less likely to purchase that type of insurance unless I were going to a remote area where a medivac would be costly if anything serious happened.

I would insure a non refundable, substantial five figure resort reservation. But, as it is I tend to book closer in - sometimes basically last minute - and therefore my risk exposure is not particularly high. Most of my travel is within my risk tolerance, also considering the coverage I have through Amex and other credit cards.

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