Ahhh – vacation! You’re thinking about all the activities you’ll be doing and all the new places you’ll be seeing. You should also be thinking about any insurance consideration you might have before taking the trip so if the unexpected happens, you’ll be prepared with how to deal with it. Here are a few insurance tips to remember to help you have a pleasant time on your vacation:
– What if I get injured and I am out of the country? Most Health Insurance plans only cover medical emergencies that are life threatening. You may need to pay up front for medical assistance outside of the US then submit bills for reimbursement. If you catch the flu or get food poisoning for example- don’t expect to be covered by your health plan.
– Should I purchase “Travel Insurance?” This is something to consider if you are traveling to an area where you might have concerns about medical care. For example, these plans can pay to have you airlifted to a location where the type of medical assistance you need is available. When I traveled to China, I didn’t realize that only .3% (according to Wikipedia) of the population has the same blood type I do. If I had been in an accident, it might have been quite difficult to find any blood supply should I have needed it.
– What if I injure someone accidentally? A great example is when you are trying to retrieve that heavy suitcase you placed in the overhead bin on the airplane and it lands on someone because you couldn’t control it? If you have a homeowner policy, your personal liability coverage would cover any accidental injury to others.
– Do I need to purchase insurance coverage for a rental car? If you have an automobile policy, you are probably covered for any bodily injury or physical damage done to others. The physical damage you might cause to the rental car may or may not be automatically covered by your auto policy. You should ask your agent before renting the vehicle to know if you need to purchase the rental insurance. Be aware- you are also liable for the loss of income to the rental agency if the car you rent is in an accident and they are unable to rent it for 2 weeks for example while it is being repaired. Many auto contracts do not include this coverage.
– Does my auto insurance cover my “road trip” in other states/ countries? Most auto policies will cover you for the minimum required limits for the state you happen to visit even if your coverage is less than that state minimum. Coverage minimum requirements vary by state. Be aware that auto policies do have territory limitations. You will usually have coverage in the US, it’s possessions and Costa Rica as well as Canada but not anywhere else.
– Do I need to purchase insurance for a rented Motorhome or Boat? Yes – in most instances, you will need to purchase the insurance for liability and physical damage where you rent.
Now that you have everything “covered,” go and have a great trip. Oh – and don’t forget to pack!