Why You Need Travel Insurance
Wow, what an exciting blog post! Who doesn’t love to talk about travel insurance?! I know I sure do. Okay, but seriously. I skipped over the travel insurance blog posts all the time when skimming my favorite travel blogs. And that option to purchase insurance after renting a car or booking a flight? Nahhh.
So I know this isn’t the most adrenaline-inducing topic, but it’s important. Because you should really, truly purchase travel insurance for your next trip abroad. I’ve now purchased travel insurance for my last two trips (Thailand and Belize), and it gives me peace of mind to know that I’ve got insurance on the road. Plus, my travel insurance reimbursed me $200 for my waterlogged iPhone in Belize.
Why did I change my mind? A few reasons. First, when I returned from Nicaragua I found out that I had actually been uninsured for a few weeks because of a change in my mom’s job. So there I was, flying down the backroads of Nica in the bed of a pickup truck without a care in the world. With no insurance.
Second, I decided to call my insurance company to see what my domestic health plan would cover if something tragic were to happen to me abroad. “Well, you’d have to be near-death or dead for insurance to kick in,” said the insurance provider. Oh. So, that was a short phone call. Question answered.
Third, I knew that I would be scuba diving in Thailand, and there are inherent risks involved in diving. And bungee jumping. And skydiving. And even just hiking. So, being the realistic person that I am, I looked into travel insurance to see if it was something I should purchase.
And then I discovered so much more about travel insurance! Like, it’s not only for if you get sick and injured on the road. Good travel insurance also covers:
- lost, damaged or stolen possessions such as electronics and baggage
- flight and hotel cancellations due to an emergency (like a death in the family)
- emergencies that cause you to head home early (like a natural disaster)
- injury and sudden illness
- and twenty-four hour emergency services
Suddenly, I realized that for just a few bucks a day, travel insurance could truly help me out in a lot of different situations. If something happened to a family member, I could get home ASAP. Or if I got rabies, I could receive immediate medical treatment.
Or if my brand new iPhone got water damaged. Which is exactly what happened in Belize.
I paid $132 for World Nomads travel insurance while I was in Belize for 20 days. I paid $6/day to get coverage for everything listed above, plus more. (The price per day gets lower the longer your trip is... For 180 days of insurance for my Australia trip, it's $2.68/day).
My travel insurance cost was a little bit higher. World Nomad offers two different kinds of travel insurance: Standard and Explorer. Explorer is more expensive because it covers a broader range of activities such as skydiving and scuba diving. Had I gone with Standard for $89 total, I wouldn’t have been covered for those activities. I think Standard works for most people, though.
Anyways, back to the iPhone, which I had purchased only two months before the trip. I paid $320 for the phone because I had an upgrade. I ruined it on day two of my Belize trip because ocean water seeped in through the LifeProof case.
When I got home, I started the process of trying to figure out if my travel insurance would cover the cost of a new iPhone. I wasn’t sure how the whole reimbursement process worked, but it was so easy! World Nomads provided step-by-step instructions, and the reimbursement process was all online.
Once I submitted my claim with the details (how the phone was damaged, a copy of the receipt for the iPhone), World Nomads asked me to check to see if my phone was already insured through Verizon. I doubted it, because I never buy insurance, but to my surprise I found out that the phone was actually insured through Verizon. Therefore, if I paid $200 to Verizon, they would send me a new phone. Well, that’s great, but I still didn’t want to pay the $200 if I didn’t have to.
And I didn’t. Because World Nomads sent me a check for $200 to reimburse me for the price I had to pay to Verizon to get a refurbished iPhone. From submitting the claim to receiving the check, the process was about three weeks. I also emailed World Nomads twice with questions and got responses back within a day.
So for the $132 that I paid initially for the travel insurance, I saved $68 right off the bat if I had been forced to pay the $200 deductible to Verizon without reimbursement. Not to mention the peace of mind knowing that I would be covered if something happened to me while scuba diving or if an earthquake struck.
So, lesson learned. You never know what could happen while on the road. Which is why you really need travel insurance!
PS: I purchased World Nomads travel insurance because it was the most recommended and it was the easiest to navigate. I’m sure there are other companies out there, but I didn’t venture that far. If you'd like a resource to compare travel insurance, check this site out: https://www.reviews.com/travel-insurance/. Happy Traveling!