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Travel Tip - Trip Insurance vs. Travel Insurance

There is sometimes some confusion about the type of insurance a traveler might need or want.  Essentially, there are two forms of insurance available to travelers and they are completely different from one another.  Both can be very valuable and are usually reasonably priced.

The questions is, "Which one do I need, if I need any at all?"

In this article, we will try to answer this and other questions about these important travel tools.

What is travel insurance?  You can think of this as  a temporary insurance policy that helps you in case of a medical emergency or illness while you are traveling (during the period covered by your policy.  Coverage varies from one company to another, but generally you can buy coverage that applies to:

   * Medical reimbursement

    * Emergency medical evacuation

    * Permanent total disability

    * Personal property

    * Accidental death and dismemberment

    * Return of remains in case of death

    * Medical assistance services

    * Travel assistance services

The pricing begins at about $3.00 per day, per person and varies from one company to another.  

Jody Kennedy International has had great experiences with Gallagher Charitable International Insurance Services.

We cover all our mission teams with travel insurance for the duration of the mission trip.  We recommend that you never leave the country without comprehensive travel insurance.

What is trip insurance?  Trip insurance, also called trip cancellation insurance, is not a medical policy or a policy that covers your property while you are traveling.  Instead, trip insurance is all about protecting you financially if your trip is canceled or interrupted due to a covered cause.

For example, you have booked a flight for your family to a great vacation spot. Suddenly, your child becomes very ill and there is no way your family can travel for vacation while your child is sick.  If you had purchased trip insurance, you would be covered for the cost of your trip or the cost of rescheduling (airline fees, hotel cancellation fees, etc.).  

Some of these companies also offer travel assistance if your trip is interrupted. Say your are making your way across Europe and there is a major storm or maybe a labor strike.  Your policy might cover the additional expenses involved in delayed travel, re-booking flights, lodging and even meals.

Although we have less experience with trip insurance, our travel insurance provider, Gallagher Charitable International Insurance Services, also offers trip insurance policies.  Trip insurance may or may not be of value to you.  You must evaluate the cost of your trip, your destinations and other factors, but you may want to buy trip insurance simply for peace of mind.

Always read the fine print.  Just like anything else, insurance policies vary greatly from one provider to another.  Be sure to read the entire insurance offering, including exclusions and limitations, to be sure you are getting the coverage that suits your needs.

Look for reputable insurance providers.  Sometimes the company that covers your house and cars may offer these policies.  If they do, they are a great resource for getting your questions answered.

We recommend that you always buy travel insurance whenever you leave the country.  Trip insurance is optional but it might be a good addition to your travel plans.