Travel insurance is essential now more than ever in the wake of the current government shutdown in the United States, reportedly the longest in American history.
Videos and photographs portray massive security lines as Transportation Security Administration (TSA) workers have either quit or called out of work as they remain unpaid. Airports at major hubs such as Atlanta and Dallas are reporting hours’ long waits.
For travelers, the morass could mean missed flights and connections and increased worries about how it will affect their vacations.
Most people think of travel insurance as a necessity during hurricane season when the weather can be unpredictable. But smart travel insurance, as Kay Walten, co-founder of Loco Gringo, has often noted is so much more.
“Smart travel insurance should cover you for trip incidents and medical incidents,” Kay said. “What it also covers is PEACE OF MIND. If you are concerned about cancellations due to bad weather from your departure point, trip insurance will give you peace of mind that not all is lost if it does happen.”
Travel insurance helps if a flight arrives late, or you miss a connection, which can then change hotel arrival dates, and land transportation, etc. It’s also useful when you have a complicated trip with lots of moving parts.
Some travel insurance companies provide coverage for unexpected situations such as a death, medical emergency or job loss.
“You’ve worked hard for your vacation time,” Kay recently said, “don’t lose it because life got in the way.”
Travel insurance can also help in case of accidents or pre-existing medical conditions. However, Canadian Health Insurance, or US Medicare may not cover all medical expenses when you are abroad. Have a back-up for medical issues just in case.
Some credit cards cover some of your travel insurance needs. Check your contract and see precisely what your credit card covers and whether all family members are included. Remember, your credit card insurance will only apply if you have booked your flight and hotel with that specific card. Before you leave, double and triple check to ensure all of your travel needs are met under your credit card.