Protecting Your Vacation

A number of incidents on vacations might make travelers start considering travel insurance if they never had before. But make sure you don't get taken.

First there was the cruise ship that sank just off the Italian shore. Now a ship from the very same company is stranded in the Indian Ocean after there was a fire onboard. And in Mexico, cruise ship passengers were robbed at gunpoint.

Vacations, it seems, are getting a little less relaxing. And in the face of uncertainty, travelers may be looking at travel insurance to see what it will cover and if it is worth it. But there are no real standards for travel insurance plans. You’ll find a wide variety of coverage and prices among all of the travel insurance companies out there.

Travel insurance is a good idea, but if you don’t do your homework, you can find yourself paying a lot of money and getting little or nothing in return.

Here are five travel insurance facts by QuoteWright.com:

1. Buy early

You can qualify for extra benefits since travel insurance plans offer time sensitive benefits. These are usually only available within the month after the first payment toward your trip payment. So a few days after you first pay, you’ll see a lot of options available to you if you look around a little.

2. Pre-existing medical conditions

One of those time sensitive benefits is a free-of-charge, pre-existing medical conditions waiver. However you have to meet the required conditions in order for it to be valid: buy within a specific period of time, insure to the full, pre-paid, value of the trip, and be the traveler must be physically able to travel when buying the insurance.

3. Policy coverage

Trip cancellation, trip interruption, trip delay and missed connection coverage are specifically named perils. You can’t assume that any and all reasons for cancelling, interrupting or delaying a trip are valid, as that’s a matter of opinion as far as the insurance company is considered. Check the policy to see what exactly is listed.

4. Safety net

There is coverage for cancelling for any reason that can be added as a safety net. Most travelers don’t need this coverage, but it can be added or you can find it as a time sensitive benefit within the required time period.

5. Secondary vs. primary

Secondary coverage applies to most travel, trip or cruise insurance. If you have insurance that covers the same loss, then that coverage is primary and the travel insurance is secondary. If there is no coverage already in place, then the travel insurance company becomes your primary insurance.