As I sit typing this, the entire left side of my jaw throbs in pain. Long story short, 48 hours ago I felt nothing, last night I woke up at 2 AM in a world of hurt. The diagnosis is in: I need a root canal. As a frequent family traveler, my third thought after “Crap” and “Should have flossed more” was “I’m so glad this didn’t happen on the road”. Things like this can, at best, put a damper on your vacation. At worst, they can end it altogether. Enter family travel insurance.
I tend to stress out about things like this, and obviously they cannot be prevented (aside from flossing). Still, you can put your mind at ease with travel insurance. Even in the worst case scenario where your trip ends altogether, you won’t end up in the hole financially. For a family like ours, we travel enough where something like Allianz’s annual plan might make sense. By paying one annual fee, we can cover a lot of situations no matter how many times we travel.
The question is: what situations will leave you the most wanting for travel insurance? Let me present four scenarios to you, from trivial to nightmare.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Allianz Global Assistance (AGA Service Company) and I have received financial compensation.
Lost baggage? Travel insurance covers that
We’ve all been there. You stand waiting at the baggage claim, ready to grab your bags and get to your destination. Your first bag arrives! Then you wait. And wait. And wait. Finally, your final fellow passenger leaves and you stand there with two screaming kids, a frustrated wife, and no bag.
If you’re back home, this definitely presents a hassle but not the hugest deal. If you just arrived at your destination, you could be in a bit of trouble. Clothes. Toiletries. Diapers! (Traveling Dad Tip: Split up everyone’s belongings amongst your various luggage, including pieces you plan to carry on).
When traveling, at this point you likely need to buy some new clothes no matter what. But if you travel with travel insurance, you receive coverage in the event of lost or delayed baggage. You can have the piece of mind that you won’t add a large financial burden to your inconvenience.
Weather delay? Travel insurance covers that
I recently received a $75 voucher from Jetblue after a six hour delay due to weather. Did you know that airlines don’t actually owe you any compensation after a weather delay (though I wrote about my experience getting compensation after weather delays)? $75 barely covers the taxi I had to take home, needing to eat dinner at the airport, and getting to work late the next day due to getting into bed at 430 AM.
Luckily, travel insurance covers most travel delays due to weather. This comes in especially handy when you miss connecting flights due to delays. You don’t need to worry about buying new tickets on your own dime or the nonrefundable hotel rooms you booked. Don’t leave yourself at the mercy of the airlines – if you need to book a hotel and rental car for one night or more, $75 just won’t cut it.
Toothache? Travel insurance covers that
My current tooth situation reminds me of a trip my family took over 15 years ago. My family and I visited some national parks in Canada, either Banff or Jasper or both. My mother, who I have seen barely wince through a slipped disc, traction, and a slew of other child raising based injuries, began grimacing a few days into the trip. At some point, she was in so much pain that she left my dad to take care of us for a day while she went to go find a dentist. Turns out she had some wisdom teeth rupturing or something (I can’t quite remember). She ended up avoiding dental surgery in Canada, but still had to do enough dental work to relieve the pain.
To be honest, that happened so long ago I have no idea how my parents paid for it. But what I do know is if something similar happened to me or my children while we are traveling, it would give me peace of mind to know emergency medical and dental work can be covered by travel insurance.
Worst case scenario? Travel insurance covers that
Unfortunately, there are nightmare scenarios where you or one of your loved ones might be in extreme need of medical assistance. I woke up one morning when due to leave Hong Kong with a fever of 103 degrees. Were it not for my uncle who was a doctor, I may very well have visited the ER. Or, if you enjoy hiking like my wife and I, if something happens you might even need to be medivaced somewhere.
Luckily, travel insurance not only covers a lot of these surprise expenses, but they’ll also cover you if you have to cut your entire trip short. Getting to worry less about medical bills, hotel bookings, flights home, etc. really pays off when you have travel insurance.
Traveling can be stressful, but carrying travel insurance can give you the peace of mind necessary to help you make split second decisions in tough situations. If you’re like me, it can get tedious to remember to get travel insurance for every individual trip, so you might be better off getting an annual plan from Allianz. You can also find helpful info here.
Want to learn more? Join Traveling Mom, Traveling Dad, and Allianz for a special Twitter party on 6/12. Follow @travelingmoms on Twitter for the chance to win one of 2 $50 gift cards or the grand prize, a $500 gift card.
Have you ever used travel insurance or wish you had? Let us know in the comments!