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Female traveler with a suitcase at the airport (photo courtesy FTiare/iStock / Getty Images Plus)
You've saved up and finally booked your dream vacation. Now what?
The best thing that travelers can do after booking their hard-earned vacation is to protect that investment with travel insurance.
Entering the murky world of travel insurance purchasing can seem daunting-and expensive-but there are many things travelers don't know about travel insurance, including how valuable and affordable it is.
If you are forking over a significant amount of money to take you and a significant other or your entire family on a trip of a lifetime, not protecting that trip, especially in today's topsy-turvy travel environment, could be costly.
What many people don't know is that travel insurance is generally 5 percent of the total trip cost and comes with many added benefits apart from just reimbursement.
For example, travel insurance policies often come with assistance services for emergency translations or help with lost luggage. In case the unthinkable happens, many policies also include emergency evacuation benefits.
Another thing to note: Domestic healthcare plans typically don't offer coverage outside the travelers' home country.
This means that if you are injured or sick and need medical assistance, these fees will come out of your pocket. With the right travel insurance policy, these costs can be mitigated, and insurance companies often provide a list of trusted medical providers that policyholders can seek out to obtain the best care.
Many people, travelers especially, hold credit cards that provide some protections for travelers, however, these benefits are often limited and could only apply if the cardholder booked the trip with that specific card. It's important to read the fine print and learn what is and isn't covered and how quickly the credit card company will provide you with a reimbursement.
Many travel insurance policies help with delayed luggage, flight delays and lost luggage by providing real-time assistance and cash reimbursements.
International Medical Group (IMG) makes travel insurance easy for travelers to select based on their personal needs and outlines the benefits included with each policy clearly. There is a wide range of policies for budget-conscious travelers and for those embarking on a global adventure and everything in between.
IMG's most popular plan, iTravelInsured Travel SE, features trip cancellation maximum benefit up to 100% of trip cost, a trip interruption maximum benefit up to 150% of trip cost and a $2,000 maximum benefit for trip delay. The iTravelInsured Travel LX is even more robust with higher maximum benefits and also offers coveted Optional Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR)/Interruption for Any Reason (IFAR) coverage as an add-on benefit.
IMG's iTravelInsured Essential is a cost-effective option as is the iTravelInsured Travel Lite. Both policies offer all the basics that make travel insurance so valuable to consumers. Adventure travelers can take advantage of the company's iTravelInsured Travel Sport to protect their outdoor pursuits, with included protections such as search and rescue, natural disaster evacuation, and sports equipment rental reimbursement.
For more guidance on how to choose the best policy for your next vacation and protect your travel investment, find more information at IMG.
Janeen Christoff caught the travel bug while living in London, England. After two years on the road, she settled in Los Angeles...
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