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Is Travel Insurance Necessary?

Many people who spend over a third of their time traveling on the road don’t buy travel insurance. Insurance is something most people view as an extra expense when unused, and a life-saver when it is needed. When our air ambulances are called to help a traveler it helps the family involved in bringing their relative home if they have traveler’s insurance. But if you are a frugal traveler you may be wondering if travel insurance is worth the investment or is the risk the more appropriate money-management technique for you?

In some cases your regular health insurance will cover you abroad. Before you purchase any additional insurance, see what you already have covered. Generally, Medicare patients are covered when they travel but you should always check the specifics of your package. Most coverages, like the Blue Card from Blue Cross cover you as long as you are in their coverage areas. In situations like this it’s important to speak with an agent or look at affiliated hospitals and websites in the countries or areas that you plan to visit. Make sure to ask questions if you have any doubt, no matter how small it may seem.

Travelers who buy travel insurance typically know if they will be more at risk than the average policy holder to make a claim. While avoiding travel insurance is always a risk, it’s more risky for someone traveling if they have a medical condition, or are older, than say a healthy person in their 20s taking a trip to visit friends studying abroad. With that said, even the most frugal traveler can afford insurance of some kind. Travel insurance can be as low as $80 for a standard plan with a reputable company. That’s a pretty good investment considering the consequences should something go wrong with your health.

If you are concerned about air ambulances you may need to check which policy you purchase when you travel. Travel insurance rates vary to you will have to read the fine print and ask your travel agent or healthcare provider if air ambulances are covered or not. Travel insurance is sold in packages with different categories and all of the options that are available can be a bit overwhelming for seasoned travelers and novice travelers alike.

Typically travelers may need air ambulances for emergency evacuations and without coverage you may be on the hook for tens of thousands of dollars depending on where you are traveling. So if you travel to an especially isolated region ensuring air ambulance coverage is vital. Some examples of situations where you may need air ambulances could be if you visit an island during tropical storm season, if you enjoy hiking or mountain climbing in remote parts of the world, or if you need to visit less stable nations as part of your job or to visit family. In any case it is always important to have reassurances before you head out on any trip.

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