Best Travel Insurance Companies
Updated on: February 2023
Written by: Lisa Davis
Best for Trip Cancellations
HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance
- “Cancel for Any Reason” upgrade
- Trip interruption coverage of 200% of the trip costs
- Travel delay coverage of around $2,000/person after a six-hour delay
Best for Medical Expenses and Evacuations
USI Affinity Travel Insurance
- Medical expenses and evacuations
- Medical emergencies outside your home country
- Trip cancellation and interruption coverage
Best for All-around Travel Coverage
- Medical and non-medical evacuation coverage
- Robust hurricane and weather coverage
- Travel delay coverage & “Cancel for Any Reason” upgrade
Why It’s a Good Idea to Purchase Travel Insurance
Travel insurance policies can cover a range of risks including medical emergencies and evacuations; trip cancellations and interruptions; weather delays; and lost, damaged or stolen luggage. The peace of mind that comes from purchasing travel insurance is one of the biggest pros of doing so. If there is any potential you might end up not going on a trip, especially a vacation that costs thousands of dollars for airfare, car rental and pre-paid excursions, having travel insurance that reimburses you not only saves you money but also stress and worry. Learn more about the pros and cons of purchasing travel insurance.
Selecting the best travel insurance company for your needs is important. If you or anyone on your trip has health issues, purchasing a travel insurance plan with robust medical coverage is smart, especially if there is potential for an illness or health emergency while traveling. If you are traveling to a location that could be under threat of a hurricane, purchasing a plan with excellent weather interruption or cancellation coverage is a smart idea.
Be mindful that travel insurance plans might have different coverage options related to COVID. For example, not all policies will reimburse you for cancelling a trip because of a positive COVID test. You should also check if the policy reimburses for expenses related to having to quarantine. Say you are traveling overseas and test positive and need to extend your trip to quarantine: will the policy pay for any additional hotel costs? Check the policy’s details if COVID is a concern.
Best Travel Insurance Companies for 2023
- HTH Worldwide
- USI Affinity Travel Insurance Services
- Seven Corners
- John Hancock Insurance Agency
- Trawick International
|Brand||Rating||Average Price Per Trip||Baggage and Personal Belongings Loss Coverage||Trip Cancellation, Interruption or Delay Highlights|
||$500-$550||$2,000/person||$2,000/person after a six-hour delay; interruption coverage includes 200% of the trip’s costs|
|USI Affinity Travel Insurance Services||
||$540-$580||$2,500/person||Travel delay coverage $1,500/person|
||$430-$600||$2,500/person||Travel delay coverage $2,000/person|
|John Hancock Insurance Agency||
||$615-$655||$2,500/person||Travel delay benefits kick in only after a three-hour delay|
||$335-$450||$2,000/person||Travel delay coverage requires a 12-hour delay|
How to Pick the Best Travel Insurance Plan for Your Trip
If your vacation is short and within the U.S, your travel insurance needs may be minimal and inexpensive. On the other hand, even a pricier travel insurance plan could be worth it for the peace of mind of knowing you are covered in the event of a weather or health emergency, especially if the trip includes many prepaid elements, multiple flights, and other complexities.
The type of travel insurance coverage you purchase can also depend on what you bought before your trip began, such as airfare, cruise tickets, and pre-paid excursions. Most travel insurance plans only cover trip costs paid prior to departure. Some plans might have cancellation penalties, so be sure to check the policy’s fine print.
Before you purchase travel insurance, add up all of the trip’s costs, including any pre-paid expenses and any non-refundable costs. This will help you determine how much travel insurance to purchase. Also be mindful of what can influence the cost of travel insurance coverage. For example, the longer and more expensive a trip is the higher the policy cost. Adding optional supplements to your plan such as “Cancel for Any Reason” coverage can increase plan prices. Cost of local health care at your destination can also drive up the price of trip insurance, as can your age and medical conditions you already have and want covered. Learn more about how much travel insurance costs.
Other things to keep in mind when purchasing the best travel insurance for your trip:
Examine what coverage you already have.
Does your credit card offer travel insurance? Do you have renters or homeowners insurance to cover belongings? What is the deductible? Will your health plan cover you in all the locations where you travel?
Get trip insurance price quotes online.
Choose a package of travel benefits you need and compare prices for similar coverage among carriers. Comparing travel insurance policies from different providers is one of your best bets for finding a policy customized to your trip’s needs and at the price you can afford. Browse a list of plans on a comparison site such as SquareMouth.com. Comparison sites often include not only details about plans from various travel insurance companies but also verified customer reviews and ratings. These websites give you the ability to view the entire travel insurance marketplace and compare policies all in one place. They are also often free to use. If you prefer not to use a comparison website, you can always visit a specific travel insurance carrier’s website for a quote or call the company’s toll-free customer service number for information.
Read the policy’s fine print.
Really understand what’s covered, what’s excluded, and any limits on coverage. You may find that the lowest-priced policy is too restrictive and that paying a little more gets you the coverage you need.
Booking travel always carries some degree of uncertainty since you can’t predict the future and what might happen while traveling. A good rule of thumb is to think about travel insurance as a safety net designed to cover big financial risks especially when you have prepaid for pricey excursions, airfare or cruise tickets.
HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance
- Cancel for Any Reason upgrade available.
- Trip interruption coverage of 200% of the trip’s costs.
- Travel delay coverage of around $2,000 per person after a six-hour delay.
HTH Worldwide’s robust trip interruption coverage of 200% of the trip’s costs, as well as its travel delay coverage of $2,000 per person after a six-hour delay, provides optimal coverage for travelers. The company also has plans with good medical coverage, including its TripProtector Classic plan that offers $250,000 for medical sickness and injury coverage and $1 million in medical transportation coverage.
USI Affinity Travel Insurance Services
- Excellent coverage for medical expenses and evacuations.
- Offers coverage for medical emergencies outside your home country.
- Trip cancellation and trip interruption coverage are both included.
While costs for USI Affinity Travel Insurance Services’ plans can be pricey, their policies do offer excellent coverage for medical expenses and evacuations as well as travel delay coverage. Their InterMedical Insurance plan covers international travels and offers coverage for medical emergencies outside the U.S., including coverage for COVID-related medical expenses. For most of USI Affinity’s travel insurance plans, customers can download a claim PDF from the company’s website and either fax or email the form. Some plans might require you to call before filling out a claim. All claims, no matter which plan they are for or for what reimbursement, should include an itemization of the medical expenses incurred as well as the name of the company that arranged the trip (i.e., tour operator or cruise line), trip dates, and the insured trip cost amount. It does not seem that the company offers 24/7 assistance. Its customer service number is available 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday – Friday. When signing up for a plan, be sure to ask if there is a way to contact the company outside of these hours should an emergency arise on your trip.
In terms of customer service, some customers said the processing of their claims was slow. Others said there were a lot of hurdles to jump through before a claim could be filed making the experience daunting. When a claim was denied, some customers said the appeals process was confusing and that it took several calls to the company to get status updates on their appeals.
- Medical and non-medical evacuation coverage, such as if there is a travel advisory or warning issued.
- Robust hurricane and weather coverage.
- Excellent travel delay coverage, including a “Cancel for Any Reason” upgrade.
In addition to offering coverage for medical expenses and evacuations, Seven Corners also offers optional travel benefits, including “Cancel for Any Reason” coverage, which allows you to cancel the trip for a reason not listed in the base policy and be reimbursed up to 75%, and optional rental car damage up to $35,000. Depending on the plan, medical coverage can include expenses related to COVID. Seven Corners’ robust online self-service resource center makes it easy to view your plan’s details, as well as file claims and check the statuses of submitted claims. You can also edit your name, phone number or email address associated with your plan. Most of the company’s customer service departments are available 24/7, including assistance with medical evacuations. The company also offers you the option to text them should you need help during your trip.
It should be noted that some customers said it took a long time to have their claims processed, and that when calling the company for updates about their claims, not much information was given. That led to frustration. Others said having a policy with Seven Corners gave them peace of mind because they could tailor the coverage for their specific travel needs.
John Hancock Insurance Agency
- Travel delay benefits activate after only a three-hour delay.
- Generous baggage loss coverage of $2,500 per person, including coverage for sports equipment loss.
- Robust medical evacuation benefits.
Travel plans from the John Hancock Insurance Agency include robust medical coverage such as its Silver Plan that covers $100,000 for emergency medical expenses and $500,000 for emergency medical evacuation and repatriation. The company also offers coverage for missed connections and for trip delays starting at three hours. Most travel insurance companies start their trip delay coverage at six hours. Submitting a claim can be done by downloading a PDF from the company’s website and emailing it. Receipts, reports and any other paperwork related to your claim must also be submitted. For claim status updates, depending on your plan, you will either need to call the company’s customer service number or use the company’s online claims portal. The company offers 24-hour phone travel assistance should an issue arise while you are on your trip.
Some customers found the claims process to be straightforward and praised the company for its quick refunds. Customers also said the company’s customer service department was accommodating. It should be noted that for some customers the claims process was not as easy. Those customers said they had to keep contacting the company for updates and had the frustration of being required to resubmit their documentation. In some cases, it took more than a month to receive a check for a claim.
- Best average price for seniors among most major travel insurance plans.
- Excellent medical evacuation coverage at $1 million.
- Excellent baggage coverage at $2,000 per person.
Trawick International offers competitive pricing for a good range of travel insurance benefits, including coverage for a medical evacuation at $1 million, as well as coverage for non-refundable payments for vacation rentals, hotels, airline tickets and other pre-paid, non-refundable deposits made for your trip. You can get reimbursed for your payments and deposits if, for example, severe weather occurs and causes you to cancel your vacation. Claims forms are available on the company’s website and can uploaded online for faster claims processing. Note that the company’s Live Chat feature can’t be used to obtain claim status updates or filing assistance. You will need to contact the company’s 24/7 customer service department for claims assistance.
Trawick International gets mixed reviews on customer service. Some clients report difficulty getting in touch with the company’s customer service department, while others said dealing with customer service was easy. Some customers said the company was delayed processing their claims, but the claims were honored and they received the requested refunds. In several instances, customers reported that it took more than a month to receive a refund.
Types of Travel Insurance Coverage
Common types of travel insurance coverage include:
Emergency medical assistance, evacuation and repatriation
This coverage pays medical expenses if you get sick or injured while traveling. Medical evacuation coverage pays for transporting you to the nearest hospital, and medical repatriation pays for flying you to your home country. Although in some ways these policies work like traditional health plans, generally you can’t use travel health insurance for routine medical events such as a medical check-up, dental treatment and non-emergency surgeries. In addition, these policies can include limitations on coverage and exclusions for pre-existing conditions. Some travel insurance companies may let you pay extra to cover pre-existing conditions if you cancel for medical reasons. Although most travel insurance plans cover many recreational activities, such as skiing and horseback riding, they often exclude adventure sports such as skydiving or competition in an organized sporting event.
Accidental death and dismemberment insurance
This coverage pays a lump sum to your beneficiary, such as a family member, if you die in an accident while on your trip. Accidental death and dismemberment insurance policies also pay a portion of the sum to you if you lose a hand, foot, limb, eyesight, speech or hearing. Some plan payouts might only apply to accidental death in a plane so be sure to check the policy.
Trip delay coverage
Should you experience a delay in your travel itinerary, your travel insurance policy can provide financial relief. Travel delay coverage provides reimbursement if you are delayed for one of the policy’s covered reasons such as severe weather or airline maintenance. Typically you are reimbursed for expenses such as food, lodging and local transportation that are incurred during the delay. Note that there is often a waiting period before benefits kick in. Some policies might be lenient and provide benefits for any length delay. Other policies specify list the length requirement, which ranges from three to 12 hours depending on the plan. Travel delay policies usually come with a daily limit, as well as a policy limit ranging from a couple hundred to a couple thousand dollars.
Trip cancellation coverage
This coverage reimburses you for prepaid, nonrefundable expenses if, for example a tour operator goes out of business or you have to cancel the trip for one of the covered reasons outlined in the policy, such as an illness or death of a family member who’s not traveling with you.
Trip interruption coverage
This coverage covers the nonrefundable cost of the unused portion of the trip if it is interrupted due to a reason outlined in the policy. Often this type of coverage reimburses you for expenses such as lodging and meals if you are delayed during a trip because, for example, your flight gets canceled because of weather. Some travel insurance companies offer additional layers of coverage such as “Cancel for Any Reason” coverage, which reimburses a large portion of the trip’s costs, no matter why you backed out.
This coverage reimburses you for baggage and personal belongings that are lost, stolen or damaged during the trip. Some plans also reimburse you for extra expenses if you experience a baggage delay for more than a certain period, such as 12 hours. Your renters or homeowners insurance may cover personal belongings while you are traveling so it is smart to check those policies to determine the level of coverage provided so you do not end up paying for a benefit you already have.
Rental car coverage
Rental car insurance pays for repairing your rental car if it is damaged in a wreck, by vandals or in a natural disaster. The coverage does not include liability insurance, which pays for damage to other vehicles or for the medical treatment of others if you cause an accident and are held responsible.
Ask your car insurance company whether your policy will cover you when renting cars on your vacation. U.S. car insurance policies generally do not cover you when driving in other countries, except Canada.
Car insurance requirements are complex because they vary among countries. To make thing easy, you can usually purchase liability insurance directly from the rental car company at the time of renting.
This service is often included with many travel insurance plans, so be sure to check if your does. The insurer provides a 24-hour hotline that you can call when you need help, such as booking a flight after a missed connection, finding lost luggage, or locating a doctor or lawyer.
Does Your Credit Card Include Travel Insurance?
When you are considering travel insurance for an upcoming trip, some components of your trip may already be covered. For example, when you book a trip with your credit card, depending on the card you use, you may already receive trip cancellation and interruption coverage. When deciding on what level of travel insurance coverage you need, check to see what you already get with your credit card. Then, decide what additional coverage you would like. Often travel medical protection is not included with your credit card. Additionally, most credit cards offer secondary car rental insurance, which pays for the costs not covered by your regular car insurance plan.
Purchasing travel insurance can make your trip more enjoyable and stress-free because it gives you a financial safety net should your plans change, a major weather event occur, or you become ill while traveling. Using an online comparison website gives you confidence that you are purchasing the right travel insurance plan for your budget and for your trip’s needs. It also gives you feedback from other travelers on how they like the insurance company and the plans they purchased.