Yet Another Travel Insurance Question

May 30th, 2010, 01:47 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 26
Yet Another Travel Insurance Question

Hi, fellow travelers,

My traveling buddies and I are considering purchasing travel insurance for our upcoming trip to Italy in September 2010. I've searched these forums and come up with some good leads on where to look for insurance. But, what I can't tell from those websites, is how was the user's experience with those companies. Were they easy to work with? Are they reputable? Did they pay on time? Etc. I'm hoping that maybe one of you can point me to a reputable company. AAA referred me to Access America...have any of you had experience with that company? Yay or Nay?

In addition to the normal stuff like lost luggage, medical emergencies, etc., I want to be able to insure our trip against an illness of an immediate family member, job loss of one of our group, etc. There is also a slim chance that one of our parties' employers could cancel her vacation and if she don't go, we all don't go.

Thanks so much; I can't tell you how much I appreciate this forum!

Scarlettdz9 is offline  
May 30th, 2010, 02:26 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,110
Start on the basis that Insurance companies will do everything they can to avoid paying out.
Things you may think are covered -one of your party's employer cancelling a vacation may well not be covered and be treated as a disinclination to travel.There is no policy which will cover cancellation for any reason , it must be as a result of an insurable event.
We have just cut short our holiday last Wednesday and made our way home as a result of my mother in law having emergency surgery.I understand the emergency was life- threatening.
We organised our own return which involved a 6 hour ferry and then a flight from Athens. We had to take a one-way car hire in the night to drive to where our car was as we couldn't get a flight there until the next day.It took 20 hours and that was all within Europe.
We will not be covered by insurance because the surgery arose out of a chronic condition.We accept this but as we have 4 parents over 80 we either take the risk or never go away.
We learn from it - and from every time you have protracted correspondence with an insurance company which may or may not bear fruit.
Frances is offline  
May 30th, 2010, 08:04 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,238
I may be wrong but it is my understanding that if a policy is purchased within so many days of the first payment(deposit, ticket purchase, reservation) that pre-existing conditions due to health are covered.
Each company has its own qulifier and time limit if they cover this kind of occurence.
Sher is offline  
May 30th, 2010, 10:26 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,421

Better to just make sure any policy you are considering offers "covered reasons" you need.

If your situation is covered and you follow the procedures and provide required documentation, the claim will be paid.


This is not true. In fact, there are "cancel for any reason" policies available, but you do have to carefully review the coverage and limitations.


Pre-existing conditions are also covered under many policies. Typically, they must be purchased within a designated period following your initial trip payment(s).

The only claims I've ever had to submit was with Access America (for a rental car when our flight was cancelled). The claim was paid (in full) promptly.

No matter the policy, you do need to understand the definitions, restrictions, exclusions, limits, etc. and make no assumptions or presumptions.
djkbooks is offline  
May 31st, 2010, 07:33 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,238
The only claim I have had to submit was for surgery that my husband had to undergo about two weeks before a trip.
The doctor strongly suggested we not make the trip.
My claim was promptly paid in full when I submitted the correct forms. I believe it was with Travel Guard.
Policies today do cover change of plans made by an employer. Friends did receive a refund for this. But they specifically had coverage for it.
As djkbooks says you must be sure of your coverage.
This last time I used Squaremouth to book my insurance. I called them and said "this is the kind of coverage I want and need". They will find a policy for you if one exists.
Good Luck.
Sher is offline  
May 31st, 2010, 09:33 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 26
Thanks....I'll give Squaremouth a call...

Scarlettdz9 is offline  
Jun 1st, 2010, 01:27 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 12,492
you can also google "cancel for any reason insurance"
lincasanova is offline  
Jun 1st, 2010, 06:27 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4
My husband and I always purchase through Travel Guard. This company was great to work with in the unfortunate situation where my husband became ill with food poisoning while we were traveling in Austria. Travel Guard coordinatead payment of all our medical expenses and was very expidient when it came ot the claim. I remember reading in our policy that they cover lost luggage and the assistance to find it too. We've never purchased the Cancel for Any Reason coverage, but I did see it as an option on their website. You could check it out there!
Anne_Traveler is offline  
Jun 1st, 2010, 01:26 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,180
Your first question should be if you really need insurance at all. Unless you have significant non-refundable expenses that must be paid in advance, travel insurance is not worth it. Hotels can usually be cancelled with little or no fee on short notice. Flights can usually be rebooked for later with a ticket change fee. It's only when you have expenses like renting an apartment/house, or flying an airline that you wouldn't otherwise fly but for this trip (and might not be able to reschedule if cancelled) that travel insurance makes sense.

Having said that, if you find travel insurance worthwhile, I had a very good experience with Travel Guard when forced to cancel a trip to Scotland due to my travel partner's injury 28 days out. They were very easy to work with and paid everything promptly. No hassles whatsoever. I'm booking a trip to France next year with a one week house rental and an Air France ticket so I will probably use them again.
twk is offline  
Jun 1st, 2010, 01:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 425
Last time I considered trip insurance I found Steve at to be incredibly helpful-- he sell trip insurance from several different companies and will suggest which company or what type (such as cancel any reason). He spent a lot of time on the phone with me talking about my specific situation. In the end I decided not to buy any because the "cancel any reason" was just too expensive (and seemed necessary for us, given some specific health issues) but with all the ash in the air I have sure had second, third, fourth thoughts about that decision....
Doh is offline  
Jun 1st, 2010, 02:16 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 4,129
I have used Travelex trip insurance and have been very happy with their prompt responses the 2 times I had to file (one for medical expenses related to my mom's fall during a trip, another due to weather related cancellation).

Traveling with 3 elderly people, I like having the peace of mind should anything happen.
mcnyc is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2010, 09:31 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,110
I eat my words.
I posted above about my view of insurance companies but as a result of what I read here we decided to see if they would pay out.
We made a claim for our out of pocket expenses in returning early from our trip to Greece and this week thay have settled in full! I must admit I would not have bothered even though I had insurance.
I think that what this post did was make me look in detail at the pre-existing condition exclusion and it was that which won the day.
Our insurance is a continuously running policy which is part of our bank contract
Frances is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2010, 09:55 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 33,383
I have read positives comments on Fodors on all the major names you find on such websites, Travelex, CSA, etc. I've never had to make a claim myself, so have no personal experience. I have a good friend who did make a claim on the one AAA recommended, Access, and they paid in full with no hassle, within a short time frame. She thinks they are outstanding. I can't remember what her claim was for, but I think some expenses due to unexpected travel delays or else an airline losing her luggage for some time. It had nothing to do with any preexisting conditions or illness.

YOu can't make any blanket statements about any kind of travel insurance as to what it will cover or won't, as policy terms vary and even within the same company, there are more deluxe policies that cover some things the cheapest do not. You can never say that all policies cover preexisting conditions if you by in a certain time, for example, or anything like that. Because they don't.
Christina is offline  

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