Author Topic: Travel insurance during covid?  (Read 738 times)

samanil

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Travel insurance during covid?
« on: January 22, 2022, 11:54:15 PM »
Hey Mustachians, I am taking a much needed vacation soon, and am wondering if I should get travel insurance. I know MMM advises self-insuring when possible, since insurance companies on average make money off of people. I already had covid, and I have been vaccinated and boosted. Also, I'm 33 and in good health. So I am leaning towards self insuring. I guess the only really bad scenario would be if I needed serious medical treatment abroad. But it seems so unlikely that it's not worth worrying about. Or is it...? In the more likely event that I got a mild case, I would need to pay for a few weeks accommodation, which wouldn't break the bank.

What are your thoughts?

Gremlin

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2022, 01:37:47 AM »
I would never leave my home country without travel insurance irrespective of covid but each to their own.  I think the small cost of insurance protects me against a catastrophic cost of the unlikely scenario eventuates.

Where are you going? What are you planning on doing?

Specifically re covid, what are the requirements in the country(ies) you are visiting? There are some countries that require foreign tourists to stay in specific medihotels if they test positive which can be eye-wateringly expensive. There are some accommodations that will not house you if you test covid positive. Some airlines won’t fly you if you have tested positive to covid (and will require a negative test to allow you to board an international flight), etc.

SailingOnASmallSailboat

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2022, 06:42:31 AM »
Also check the requirements in the country you're visiting. I know of more than one in the Caribbean that require you to have medical insurance that covers you for Covid while you're there, which is different than travel insurance AFAIK.

I thought travel insurance was in case you needed to cancel your trip.

Rdy2Fire

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2022, 07:55:00 AM »
In my life of travel I had NEVER purchased travel insurance but last September I purchased a 12 months policy.

My reason was simple, mainly due to COVID, even if you weren't to get sick (hopefully you would not) which is covered (obviously dependent on policy) and don't need it for that, with all the entry rules changing, airline changes, cancellations, etc it was worth it. Just a flight cancellation getting you stuck somewhere for a day could easily pay for it.

After the year is up in September I'll reassess based on how the world is open, where COVID is at (variants, shutdowns etc) and figure out if I'll renew.

Dee18

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2022, 08:14:10 AM »
Another plus of travel medical insurance, particularly if traveling where you do not speak the language, is that the insurer may provide assistance in finding and obtaining medical care.  We had this when spending a semester in China and it was a big help.

Adventine

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2022, 10:30:41 AM »

I agree with all the others that travel insurance is a smart choice, especially with the pandemic still raging.

Even if you are young and healthy, there is so much out of your control:

- countries suddenly closing their borders with little notice, forcing you to either leave earlier than planned or stay in the country longer than planned. The most extreme scenario I know of was Australia. Although they've loosened up considerably, thousands of Australian citizens were stranded abroad during the pandemic: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-56924188

- testing positive for COVID and needing to quarantine in government-mandated hotels. If the country you visit has a sudden surge, there could be challenges finding a room.

- and the usual airline cancellations because of border closures or bad weather.

When I went on holiday in Dec 2021 in Costa Rica, it was a little stressful because all these worries were in the back of my mind. I'm 32 and healthy, and we could easily afford any additional expenses, but we needed to be back in the States by a certain date. Any of the scenarios above would have been a problem. We bought travel insurance to mitigate some of that risk.

samanil

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2022, 12:35:02 PM »
Thanks for the insights everyone--it seems pretty clear that getting insurance is a good idea in this case. That being said, anyone have any policies they recommend?

For those interested, I am going to St Lucia. All I need is proof of vaccination and a less-than-5-day-old negative covid test. I will die happy if this is the last time I have a swab shoved into my brain.

In my life of travel I had NEVER purchased travel insurance but last September I purchased a 12 months policy.

My reason was simple, mainly due to COVID, even if you weren't to get sick (hopefully you would not) which is covered (obviously dependent on policy) and don't need it for that, with all the entry rules changing, airline changes, cancellations, etc it was worth it. Just a flight cancellation getting you stuck somewhere for a day could easily pay for it.

After the year is up in September I'll reassess based on how the world is open, where COVID is at (variants, shutdowns etc) and figure out if I'll renew.

That may be a good idea for me too. I plan to go abroad again at the end of this year. What plan did you purchase? Price?

DaTrill

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2022, 01:10:40 PM »
Make sure it has repatriation coverage.  Policies in every country are different, in every state/region/city can be enforced differently and one can find themselves getting quarantined for $1000+/day and not have a choice in the matter.  A friend of a friend tested positive during a trip in Belize and would have had a $100k medical transport bill had they not had insurance.   

samanil

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2022, 01:57:59 PM »
Make sure it has repatriation coverage.  Policies in every country are different, in every state/region/city can be enforced differently and one can find themselves getting quarantined for $1000+/day and not have a choice in the matter.  A friend of a friend tested positive during a trip in Belize and would have had a $100k medical transport bill had they not had insurance.   

Holy shit. Will do, thanks for the tip!

Kwill

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2022, 02:06:41 PM »
You should check on what the insurance excludes. I flew back to the US from the UK twice in 2021. I opted not to get regular travel insurance because all the policies excluded anything that was remotely likely to happen (border closures, Covid, anything related to pandemic or public health measures, etc.).

However, I purchased travel health insurance that specifically included Covid. You may not need that, depending on what your regular health insurance covers when you're away, but since I rely on the National Health Service in the UK, I need separate insurance for the US. Check the small print on your existing health insurance and also on the credit card you used to purchase the ticket, if you used one. Often credit cards will have some travel insurance benefits built in, but there are probably a lot of conditions and exclusions.

samanil

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2022, 02:44:40 PM »
You should check on what the insurance excludes. I flew back to the US from the UK twice in 2021. I opted not to get regular travel insurance because all the policies excluded anything that was remotely likely to happen (border closures, Covid, anything related to pandemic or public health measures, etc.).

However, I purchased travel health insurance that specifically included Covid. You may not need that, depending on what your regular health insurance covers when you're away, but since I rely on the National Health Service in the UK, I need separate insurance for the US. Check the small print on your existing health insurance and also on the credit card you used to purchase the ticket, if you used one. Often credit cards will have some travel insurance benefits built in, but there are probably a lot of conditions and exclusions.

Thanks for the tips. I'm at a new job and have yet to receive my insurance card (but I am covered), so I don't know what the details are. I'm leaving in a week so don't have much time to figure out details (should have posted this a few weeks ago).

I'm looking at the Tin Leg gold plan, which includes:

  • Emergency Medical - $500,000 per person, Primary coverage
  • Medical Evacuation & Repatriation - $500,000 per person

It's $50, which seems reasonable.

Rdy2Fire

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Re: Travel insurance during covid?
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2022, 11:28:12 AM »
Thanks for the insights everyone--it seems pretty clear that getting insurance is a good idea in this case. That being said, anyone have any policies they recommend?

For those interested, I am going to St Lucia. All I need is proof of vaccination and a less-than-5-day-old negative covid test. I will die happy if this is the last time I have a swab shoved into my brain.

In my life of travel I had NEVER purchased travel insurance but last September I purchased a 12 months policy.

My reason was simple, mainly due to COVID, even if you weren't to get sick (hopefully you would not) which is covered (obviously dependent on policy) and don't need it for that, with all the entry rules changing, airline changes, cancellations, etc it was worth it. Just a flight cancellation getting you stuck somewhere for a day could easily pay for it.

After the year is up in September I'll reassess based on how the world is open, where COVID is at (variants, shutdowns etc) and figure out if I'll renew.

That may be a good idea for me too. I plan to go abroad again at the end of this year. What plan did you purchase? Price?

I purchased an allianz annual plan, if I recall correctly there were 3 levels, I took the $249 plan as it covered my needs. I had purchased a 1 time plan for $50 for a 11 day trip I was taking and then saw I could get a refund and take the annual. Like yourself I planned more then 1 trip and have since done 3 so seemed worth it.

There were other companies that had more extensive insurance as well as evac etc but this fit my needs.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2022, 11:29:45 AM by Rdy2Fire »