How Travel Insurance Works

Travel Insurance Options

If your trip to Berlin to see David Hasselhoff perform has been cut short, a travel insurance policy can reimburse you the ticket price.
If your trip to Berlin to see David Hasselhoff perform has been cut short, a travel insurance policy can reimburse you the ticket price.
Gaye Gerard/Getty Images

With loads of competition in the travel insurance market in recent years, companies are becoming more creative with the policy options they offer. An overall rise in travel and the increasing popularity of adventure tourism has led to more circumstances being covered. Your average Joe and Jane are branching out from the weekend in Florida and going to remote destinations to participate in exciting and sometimes hazardous activities.

Cancelling a trip at the last minute for no good reason hasn't typically been covered by travel insurance. In June 2007, AIG Travel Guard, one of the leading travel insurance providers, began offering such coverage. You're able to cancel at the last minute due to work obligations or even if you just don't feel like going. Their "no questions asked" policy will pay you 75 percent of your trip cost up to two days before departure. These policies may cost a bit more, but provide a great deal of flexibility. AIG also increased their cancellation coverage from a $30,000 maximum to $100,000 [source: New York Times].

Travelex, another leading company, now offers reimbursement for event tickets purchased with a credit card if you're unable to attend the event due to delay or cancellation. So if you bought $200 seats for that Yanni show at the Acropolis and bad weather kept your catamaran land bound, fear not. You'll get your money back and rock softly another day.

Several companies, including American Express, offer golf coverage. This pays for loss or damage to clubs as well as reimbursement for prepaid greens fees lost due to poor weather. Workaholics can purchase cheap insurance policies that will pay you back if you have to cancel a trip because of a business obligation. Access America's BizPack policy can be had for a mere $19 per person [source: New York Times].

Many policies now allow you to cancel your trip and get your money back if a terrorist activity takes place within 30 days of your arrival. Natural disaster coverage has become more comprehensive as well. Previously, you would only be covered if carriers stopped going to a region ravaged by hurricane, fire or tsunami. Now, many companies allow reimbursement if the destination has become uninhabitable as a result of a natural disaster. Some companies will also cover you in case of a hurricane warning -- even up to 24 hours before your departure.


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More Great Links


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