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jgwagner4 Sep 28th, 2009 04:29 PM

Travel Insurance Question
I just purchased travel insurance for our upcoming family vacation to Germany. The main reason I got it was for trip cancellation. I also like the idea of lost baggage coverage, but I suspect it would be very difficult to collect on if it was ever needed. Also, it has some medical insurance that would kick in if our primary insurer refused to pay. I do not know how valuable this is, but since we will be travelling internationally and it was included, it did not seem like a bad thing.

My question is about a medical upgrade they offer. If I purchase this (for $25 per adult) it would make this policy my primary health insurance while on the trip. I would not need to argue with my insurance provider when I got back, but could make my claims directly to the travel insurance provider.

I am relatively young and in good health. My wife and children are all German citizens and probably do not need the medical coverage in the first place. If I opt to get this coverage for myself, I must also get it for my wife, so the total cost would be $50? Does this make sense for me? Are these medical insurance policies really any good?

The travel insurance company is Travel Insured International.

Thank you in advance.

doug_stallings Sep 29th, 2009 06:15 AM

Not worth the upgrade. If your primary insurer refuses to pay anything (very unlikely), then the secondary coverage kicks in. Health insurance is not like car insurance where your rates go up when you make a claim. So it's just an extra $25 per adult.

FYI: Trip cancellation is likely to be the most troublesome issue when making an insurance claim. There are usually pretty stiff restrictions on covered reasons for cancelling unless you have purchased a "cancel for any reason" plan. But if the reasons you expect to cancel are covered, then insurance is a good idea for an expensive international trip.

hetismij Sep 29th, 2009 11:24 AM

Just because your wife and children are German citizens does not mean they are automatically entitled to health care - they have to be contributing to the system in order to receive free healthcare. Since they are living with you in the US they do not qualify.

djkbooks Oct 6th, 2009 04:04 AM

There's no point in purchasing additional health insurance you probably won't need. If the travel insurance health coverage is secondary, it also covers deductibles and copays, if any, for your primary plan. You need to know, however, what your primary plan covers, and what documentation is required for each plan - easier to acquire at point of service than later.

You have to carefully study all coverage and requirements. Lost baggage, for example, is tricky. You usually have to go through the airline first. And, you are often required to be able to produce receipts for items lost? Who has receipts for their bag and belongings?

november_moon Oct 6th, 2009 06:32 PM

We've never bought insurance for trip cancellation - we don't have much in pre-paid, non-refundable expenses. We are considering going on a cruise next year, in which case we will look into trip cancellation insurance to see if we want to buy it.

For medical plans, our health insurance doesn't cover us out of the country, so we buy a travel policy for that.

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