Fire Mountain highly recommends travel insurance. It can completely take the worry out of traveling due to unforeseen circumstances.
We strongly recommend that you take out a comprehensive travel insurance policy at the time of booking to protect you and all those accompanying you for the full time of your visit against illness, injury, death, loss of baggage and personal items, cancellation and other travel contingencies.
Most experienced travelers are purchasing travel insurance. About 20 percent of traveling Americans purchased travel insurance policies in 2003. That is up from 10 percent in 2000 and the figure is rising.
You may be in a foreign country and have a health emergency or a relative with you may have one. Having to charter a private jet, hire medical attendants to accompany the flight and arrange ambulance transfers could be a nightmare. By paying a few hundred dollars for travel medical insurance not only would the emergency flight have been covered, but you would also have recouped some money for a portion of your missed trip.
Add a surge in the popularity of active and adventure vacations and the fact that travel risks seem to mount with every news cycle, and it’s no wonder travel insurance is gaining converts in record numbers.
Typically, travel insurance plans run from 6 to 7 percent of a trip’s overall cost, or about $600 for a $10,000 vacation. These bundled packages can cover everything from the unthinkable to the tiresome, including accidental death, critical injury and medical evacuation, as well as stolen luggage, lost passports and travel delays. Some plans cover children at no extra cost.
Buy policies that will extend or bolster benefits you’re already entitled to. For instance, some medical costs incurred overseas are probably covered by your regular health insurance plan. Homeowner policies may reimburse you to some degree for lost, stolen or damaged property. Holders of American Express, MasterCard and Visa premium cards qualify for a range of medical and other services when they use the cards to pay for travel.
On-line resources now make it easier to check the fine print. Broker sites offer instant quotes from reliable insurers. The range of plans and prices depends on where you live (insurers are state regulated), the cost and duration of the trip, your age, your health and what you want to guard against.
The most useful policies are for trip cancellation and trip interruption. These reimburse you if an airline defaults, or if you cancel because of the illness or death of a family member. Insurers have beefed up coverage related to terrorism, which is usually bundled into trip cancellation and interruption policies.
Most insurers let you modify or cancel coverage before a trip but won’t allow changes or cancellation after it has begun. Claims are typically paid within a few weeks. To hopefully find the best plan for you, mix and match options at the following on-line brokerages:
Access American (www.accessamerica.com)
Campbell Irvine Limited (www.campbellirvine.com)
HTH Worldwide (www.hthworldwide.com)
Insure My Trip (www.insuremytrip.com)
Travel Guard International (www.travelguard.com)
Travel Insurance Services (www.travelinsure.com)
Trip Insurance Store (www.tripinsurancestore.com)
Fire Mountain recommends that you take out travel insurance against cancellation due to unforeseen circumstances. Fire Mountain does not recommend a particular broker.