Miscellaneous types of travel insurance

Upon buying your travel insurance, usually you will check out for the most common covers, such as medical cover, cancellation cover, injury and accidents, etcetera. However you might want to check out other less-obvious extras offered by your travel insurance package as well, such as but not limited to:

Evacuation insurance, covers the cost of getting you to a place where you can receive appropriate medical treatment in the event of an emergency. (In the worst-case scenario, this can mean a medically equipped — and incredibly expensive — private jet.) This is usually not covered by regular medical insurance. Sometimes this coverage can get you home after an accident, but more often, it’ll just get you as far as the nearest major hospital. “Medical repatriation” — that is, getting you all the way home — is likely to be covered only if it’s considered medically necessary. Ask your insurer exactly what’s covered before and after you get to the hospital.

Keep in mind that medical and evacuation insurance may not cover you if you’re participating in an activity your insurer considers to be dangerous (such as skydiving, bungee jumping, scuba diving, or even skiing). Some companies sell supplementary adventure sports coverage.

Baggage insurance is included in most comprehensive policies, but it’s rare to buy it separately. Baggage insurance puts a strict cap on reimbursement for such items as jewelry, eyewear, electronics, and photographic equipment — read the fine print. If you check your baggage for a flight, it’s already covered by the airline (check with your airline for its luggage liability limit; if you have particularly valuable luggage, you can buy supplemental “excess valuation” insurance directly from the airline). Check if your homeowners’ or renters’ insurance covers baggage (with a “floater” supplement, if necessary, for international travel) — it may be cheaper, and you’ll have coverage even after your trip. Travelers’ baggage insurance will cover the deductibles and items excluded from your homeowners’ policy. Double-check the particulars with your agent. If your policy doesn’t cover railpasses, ­consider buying the $14–18 insurance deal sold with the pass.

Flight insurance (crash coverage) is a statistical rip-off that heirs love. It’s basically a life insurance policy that covers you when you’re on the airplane. Since plane crashes are so rare, there’s little sense in spending money on this insurance.

Collision coverage for rental cars — may be included in some comprehensive travel insurance plans or available as an upgrade on others.

So check out whether your travel insurance policy offers any extra for you, and whether you need them for your upcoming trip!

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