Insuring Your Outdoor Adventure: The Basics of Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is, to put it simply, a catch all protection for all types of travelers. Business people, vacationers, and even outdoor adventurers buy policies to protect themselves from the financial pitfalls that can result from traveling. But before contacting an insurance agent for your next trip, it’s a wise idea to get a basic understanding of what travel insurance is and how it works.

 

Know How Travel Insurance Protects You

In general, the insurance covers a wide range of risks associated with travel. Most policies include financial recoupment for trip cancellation, medical expenses, a medical evacuation, and accidental death. Trip cancellation policies tend to be relatively lenient, in that they will reimburse you for anything from a scheduling conflict to weather problems. The medical coverage option is usually purchased for the length of time that your outdoor travel will last. You might be thankful that you got travel insurance if you run into one of these guys! Depending on what your personal adventure entails, costs will vary. If, for instance, you want to try hang gliding or mountain biking, you can expect coverage rates to be significantly higher. The same can be said for both accidental death and emergency medical evacuation coverage. As the risk of activities you plan to pursue during your travel in the outdoors increases, so will the rates associated with coverage.

Know Which Type of Policy Fits You Best

Typically, travel insurance is purchased on a per-trip basis. That is, you buy a new policy every time you go. If you are a frequent outdoor traveler, however, most companies offer the option of getting either multi-trip or yearly coverage as well. The latter two types have a higher upfront cost, but can end up saving you money if you travel a certain amount over a given period of time. The easiest way to decide which of the three is best is usually just to talk to an insurance agent. They can work with you to decide which travel insurance policy will be the most economical – while still offering the basic protections you need.

Keeping it Simple

If there’s one piece of advice to adhere to concerning travel insurance, it’s to use your best discretion and plan ahead. Analyze carefully what you trip (or trips) will involve, deciding what you think you need. Give yourself enough time before the trip to shop around, because rates and policies will differ among companies. Finally, take the time to carefully discuss the terms with your agent and read the contract’s fine print. The tangible reward for all of this hard work will be good protection at a reasonable cost. The intangible (and more valuable) reward, meanwhile, will be peace of mind.