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The family is going on a cruise out of Denmark in August. I still have until May to add trip insurance. With Covid-19 breaking out in Europe, would it be prudent to go ahead and buy the insurance or wait another two months to see what happens?

PSU
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I'm in the same boat, sort of. Booked flights and Hotel early January for end of April trip. Didn't take out Insurance. Is it too late to do so?
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If you want insurance for you not wanting to go on the trip, you need cancel for any reason insurance and it's pretty pricey. Check the credit card you used for purchase of the cruise and plane tickets to see what it will cover. Keep an eye on airline and cruise company to see what they are saying.

I have a trip at the end of April but other than the trip insurance through Chase Sapphire Reserve, I'll handle whatever loss. My plane tickets are on miles and can be canceled with a minimum fee the day before I fly and I would be fine with the cruise company allowing a trip on a different date. Self-insuring so to speak on this one.
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I'd buy it now. If this thing doesn't get under control in a month they won't be selling trip insurance at all.
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If this thing doesn't get under control in a month they won't be selling trip insurance at all.

If it is not under control in a month they might be cancelling cruises, etc., anyway.

I never have bought trip cancellation insurance before. Only time it was a "hassle" we had booked an overseas trip before 9/11 for early November. We decided to forgo the trip. Non-American companies didn't give us any grief nor charge us anything. American Airlines charged us $50 cancellation fee.

I'm sure things have changed since.

JLC
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I don't follow the prices but I have to guess that cancellation insurance policies are either going up in price or they are limiting the reasons to cancel. Apparently epidemics/pandemics were already excluded from the standard policies.

Insurance companies aren't known to like taking losses on policies.



Rich
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Apparently epidemics/pandemics were already excluded from the standard policies.

Quarantines were not excluded when I looked deeply a day or so ago.
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I'm going on a trip in a few months.

My insurance says these are two of the covered reasons for canceling:

1. A Sickness, injury or death of You, a person booked to travel with You or a family member (regardless of whether or not the family member is traveling with You), which occurs before You depart on Your Trip. The Sickness or Injury must require examination and treatment by a physician at the time of cancellation and the treating physician must certify that the Sickness or Injury will prevent You from taking Your Trip;

2. You (or a person booked with You on the Trip) are quarantined, selected for jury duty, or receive a court order to appear as a witness in a third party legal action;


I'd look for similar wording.

Mike
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if you can find one that covers situations of *we no longer feel like the risk is worth it*, and it isn't a lot of money, then yes, but it - but also yes to wait a couple months and see where the world is.

But I suspect that coverage might be pricey.

I guess, the question is - if things are looking awful, but there has been no cancellation by the tour company, are you willing to eat the entire cost of the trip, or would the $x00 be worth having that option.

Obligatory anecdote:
the elf & I were booked on a trip to Japan for about 8 weeks after the tsunami hit.
The (japanese) company had a strict no cancel/ no refund policy.
We did not have trip insurance.

They refunded everything (and we went the next year.)
i was shocked, but pleased. YMMV



peace & just in case
t
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You (or a person booked with You on the Trip) are quarantined...

That's what my (Amex card) policy says, too. I read that not to include "if the place to which you intended to travel is quarantined". I tried to reach someone at the phone # for clarification but gave up after holding for 30 minutes.

We've got a trip to northern Italy in late May. As of today, I'm guessing that this CV stuff will be history by then, but that's just a guess.
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Another thought - if you haven't fully paid for it, you may want to check out the terms and conditions. Depending on those and your deposit/payment, you may be better off losing the deposit than insuring the trip if you decide not to go.
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When the destination is quarantined, the trip is cancelled or itinerary changed. Travel insurance would only be involved in case of carrier insolvency or cancel for any cause insurance which normally only covers 50% of the cost.
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When the destination is quarantined, the trip is cancelled or itinerary changed.

I think you're referring to cruises. I'm referring to a planned flight to northern Italy and rental of apartments there, paid for with my Amex. (I'll try to reach someone at the toll-free # again today.)

I'm confident that Delta will allow me to reschedule the flight w/out charge, credit me the cost, or possibly even refund w/out charge should a travel advisory continue to be in effect for northern Italy in late May. I'm unclear about the VRBO/HomeAway part.
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There's a chapter on travel insurance in my book "Take the High Road - A Primer for the Independent Traveler" (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00V7C2L9S)

Currently, many airlines and cruise lines are allowing free changes over the next few months (but don't assume - check before you buy). That said, read the small print on your travel insurance policies as pandemics like the coronavirus are not covered by MedjetAssist and may not be by the usual travel insurance contracts.

I figure, with the caveat that I am neither an insurance specialist or a financial advisor, I'd let you know how I generally handle travel insurance.

First of all, my belief is that insurance which covers every possible event tends to be too expensive and its purpose is to cover catastrophic events which would cause unacceptable losses.

An example is that my "Medigap" policy is a high deductible "Type F". The difference in premiums between this policy and the identical one without a deductible is $200 less than the maximum deductible - so I'm only betting two hundred bucks that I don't max out the deductible. It incidentally pays 85% of all foreign medical costs.

Before deciding on which travel insurance makes the most sense, it is helpful to evaluate the insurance you already carry. Many of us have auto, health, homeowner, etc. policies which cover aspects of our exposure outside of the country. Many transportation carriers, such as airlines, cover baggage as well.

Many (but not all, so read the small print and choose accordingly) credit cards provide trip interruption/cancelation insurance (to a finite limit) for charges made on the card.

It is important to realize that, should the reason a trip is interrupted be that a cruise line has gone belly up, it's insurance business may have as well, so it may be safer to utilize another insurance company.

It is also important to realize that the "big bucks" of an insurance policy is the trip interruption/cancelation portion (which generally costs about 10% of the trip's price).

Since travel agents get commission on insurance policies, they will recommend one which covers the entire cost of the trip. If the trip is a mixture of air, hotels, cruise, rental cars, etc., the maximum which should be covered is only the non-refundable portion (you'd be surprised how much money people spend insuring refundable expenses).

So here's what I tend to do:

I buy a travel policy from an insurer like Allianz, rather than a cruise line or tour company.
I usually put a minimum amount (depending on my mood and playing with the quote tool $0-500) as the trip's value (what will be covered as trip cancellation/interruption), but I get all the other types of insurance - most importantly medical, for a nominal price (I recently insured a two month trip for $42).

I pay for expensive trips/cruises with a number of credit cards - each up to the limit of their trip interruption/cancelation insurance, so each card covers its slice of the cost. If possible, I use freshly acquired credit cards, so I also accrue the points bonuses associated with each (this can amount to 10-15% rebate) as well as trying to use credit cards which pay back 3% for travel (like some of the Chase Visa cards).

For car rentals, I use (read the small print to make sure your card covers this) credit cards to cover the Collision Damage Waiver and a rider on my homeowner policy covers the liability portion.

What we do buy is a an air ambulance contract from MedjetAssist which will fly us back to any hospital we choose, rather than leaving us at the "nearest adequate medical facility" which most insurance companies stipulate.

So how has it turned out? We've been traveling (mostly out of the US) 6-10 months a year for the past nine years. If we bought insurance the way it is usually presented, imagine what 10% of the cost would have been, but it's probably cost less than $100 a year for each of us. We have made a number of medical claims, to the tune of a few hundred dollars total - which were reimbursed promptly, so both the insurance company and we have more or less broken even. Could we get a big hit some day? Susre, but much of the damage will be covered by the credit card strategy and we have decided that we can afford the balance should it take place.


Jeff
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So how has it turned out? We've been traveling (mostly out of the US) 6-10 months a year for the past nine years. If we bought insurance the way it is usually presented, imagine what 10% of the cost would have been, but it's probably cost less than $100 a year for each of us. We have made a number of medical claims, to the tune of a few hundred dollars total - which were reimbursed promptly, so both the insurance company and we have more or less broken even. Could we get a big hit some day? Susre, but much of the damage will be covered by the credit card strategy and we have decided that we can afford the balance should it take place.

We have come close to having out of country medical expenses. My husband has a history of kidney stones. I had one fall that could have been bad. We carry Medjet for both international and domestic.

The problem with both Medicare and Travel insurance is that they have limited out of country coverage. Medicare Plan F is a lifetime limit. They will cover a moderate problem but not a serious problem.

Someone on our last cruise didn't have a good cruise. At the last port of call, the first announcement was for the stretcher team to report to the medical center.
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but it's probably cost less than $100 a year for each of us.

Clearly that doesn't include Medjet which itself can cost several hundred dollars per year.

Also even that isn't going to help right now, from their web site:

Due to restrictions resulting from the Coronavirus,
MedjetAssist and MedjetHorizon services are currently suspended in the following countries:?

China
Hong Kong
Taiwan
Macau


Under normal circumstances those items can help but when things get bad, you are basically on your own for travel emergencies and need to have a nice sized emergency fund to pay your way home.

Even when the government evacuates you, often they will charge $1,000s and up. There was a lot of complaining about this recently. Not sure how/if it got resolved.

Rich
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