Travel Insurance

If you’ve ever had to cancel a trip for any reason, you know how difficult it can be to get your money back. In fact, it’s usually impossible. Most airline tickets are non-refundable, although there is sometimes some leeway if you buy them directly from the airline. Even then, it’s dicey. It becomes even more complicated when you buy travel from a travel reservation website like Expedia. And what about travel mishaps that happen while you’re on your trip? What if you lose your luggage, or have an emergency at home that requires you to cut your trip short? Travel insurance can be the answer, but is it really worth the money?

Whenever you rent a car, you’re asked if you want to add insurance coverage. This is a form of travel insurance. In many cases, your own vehicle insurance will cover you while you drive a rental car, but you should check to make sure that’s the case before you turn down the insurance the rental agency offers you. If you get into an accident in a rental car, you could end up being responsible for the cost of the car if it’s totaled, or if the accident was your fault.

And you’ve probably heard horror stories of people losing their luggage or worse, having it stolen. This is especially inconvenient on a trip outside the country where maybe you don’t speak the language. Trying to get your bags back can be a nightmare, not to mention you have to buy new clothes to get you buy until you do get them back-if you do.

In both of these cases, and in many other instances, travel insurance can come in handy. It can absolve you of having to pay for a wrecked car, and can cover the cost of new clothes and toiletries if your bags are stolen. If there’s an emergency at home while you’re on a trip, travel insurance can even buy plane tickets to get you there as quickly as possible.

The downside is, like any sort of insurance, it’s something you must pay for up front, whether you end up needing it or not, and there are no refunds.