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Why is travel insurance so important?


Worthy reasons for purchasing travel insurance abound, and everyone’s situation is different. Start by considering your circumstances and what coverage makes most sense for you, your immediate family and even your extended family.

A good place to start is to weigh the possible risks associated with travel and the situations that could arise if you or your family were to experience an emergency before or during your trip.

Generally, travellers are motivated to purchase travel insurance to protect themselves against one or more of the following risks:

In case you become sick or injured while travelling

The most touted reason for travel insurance is related to health. Medical emergencies can happen to anyone, regardless of your age, destination, or length of trip. When it comes to one’s health, money is no object – but the reality is, obtaining emergency medical care away from home can be very costly.

Many Canadians are still surprised to learn that their provincial health insurance plan does not extend to out-of-country medical care. In reality, your provincial or territorial health plan covers only a very small portion of the costs (if any) for medical care you receive while abroad. It’s for this reason that the Government of Canada recommends securing travel insurance with medical benefits before you leave on a trip.

In the midst of a medical emergency, you certainly shouldn’t be thinking about the costs, the bills, or saving money. With adequate travel medical insurance, you can instead focus on recovering and getting back home as quickly and safely as possible.

Ask yourself:

  • Do you know what the costs of medical care abroad might be?
  • Would you be able to pay for medical care in the US, Europe or Asia on your own?
  • What if your medical emergency is so serious that you require an air ambulance to bring you back to Canada?
  • Could a family member afford to travel overseas to stay by your hospital bedside?

Whether an outpatient visit or finding yourself admitted to a hospital, financial losses related to medical emergencies abroad can be significant and drain your and your family’s resources. Travel insurance plans with medical benefits can help protect you against these risks.

While the coverage for unexpected medical costs might be the first advantage that comes to mind, many travellers overlook the invaluable assistance benefits that Medical Plans can provide including but not limited to: 

  • Referrals to medical providers
  • Monitoring the quality of your care
  • Communicating with your treating physician at your destination as well as your primary physician at home
  • Arranging for medical escorts or an air ambulance to bring home, and more. 

Ask yourself: 

  • Would you know where to go to seek medical assistance when you’re travelling?
  • Would you be able to navigate your way through a foreign healthcare system without knowing the language?
  • How would you know if the medical care you or a loved one was receiving was adequate?
  • What if your medical condition were such that you needed treatment from specialists other than a primary care physician?

As a parent, spouse, partner or adult child, you’d never want to be placed in a difficult situation, having to consider so many things at once. Unfortunately, this is often the reality in a medical emergency.

Travel insurance with medical benefits can help take the guess work out of these scenarios by providing you with 24/7 emergency assistance and the benefits to manage and contain the costs that result from treatment. It also provides you the comfort of knowing you have a solid “Plan B” in the event that things take a sudden and unexpected turn.

Travel insurance plans offered by Allianz Global Assistance which provide Canadian residents with emergency medical benefits include: 

Emergency medical coverage is also the core benefit in the Visitors to Canada Plans offered by Allianz Global Assistance.

Once you’ve determined the plan for your trip, be sure to review the details of your coverage and policy wording to ensure you understand what is and isn’t covered. As always, Allianz Global Assistance is here to answer your questions, explain your coverage options and assist you with the purchase of your plan. Simply call us at 1-844-310-1578. We’re here to help 24/7!

In case you need to cancel your trip before you leave, or interrupt or delay it once you are travelling

Before you leave

It takes plenty of time and thought to plan your dream vacation. It also requires a significant financial investment to make it all happen, including payments for flights, accommodations and excursions.

Unfortunately, unexpected events such as an unforeseen illness or being called to jury duty can force you to cancel your trip before it even begins.

In these instances, Trip Cancellation benefits can help you recover non-refundable travel expenses which you’ve paid for in advance of your trip if you need to cancel for a covered reason.

Ask yourself: 

  • If I need to cancel my trip, can I afford to lose out on the money I’ve paid in advance for non-refundable flights, hotels and other accommodations, and any activities and excursions I’ve pre-booked? 

Once you’re on your trip

Plans offered by Allianz Global Assistance which include Trip Cancellation benefits, also provide protection if you need to interrupt or delay your trip after you’ve left, under a benefit called Trip Interruption.

If you need to cut your trip short due to a covered reason such as a medical emergency, Trip Interruption benefits may reimburse you for any unused and non-refundable trip expenses you’ve paid for in advance. Trip Interruption benefits may also cover the cost to change your original return flight to an earlier date, or the cost of a new one-way return flight home in economy class.

Alternatively, if your flight is delayed unexpectedly due to a covered reason, benefits for Trip Interruption may also provide reimbursement for meals, accommodations and taxi fares you incur during your extended stay.

Ask yourself:

  • If I need to interrupt my trip to come home early, can I afford the cost to change my flight home or purchase a new one?
  • Have I budgeted extra money for food and hotels if my trip gets delayed?

Travel insurance plans offered by Allianz Global Assistance which provide Canadian residents with benefits for Trip Cancellation, Interruption and Delay include: 

Once you’ve determined the plan for your trip, be sure to review the details of your coverage and policy wording to ensure you understand what is and isn’t covered. As always, Allianz Global Assistance is here to answer your questions, explain your coverage options and assist you with the purchase of your plan. Simply call us at 1-844-310-1578. We’re here to help 24/7!

In case my baggage gets lost, stolen or delayed

With millions of pieces of luggage handled daily across international airports, it’s not unheard of for your baggage to be lost, stolen or delayed.

Whether at the airport or on the road at your international destination, Lost or Stolen Baggage benefits may reimburse you for the value of your personal items in your baggage if it is lost or stolen during your trip.

For added protection, Baggage Delay benefits may help cover the cost of purchasing necessary items such as toiletries and clothing to get you by if your baggage is delayed for 8 hours or more by your airline.

Travel insurance plans offered by Allianz Global Assistance which provide Canadian residents with benefits for Lost, Stolen or Delayed Baggage include: 

Once you’ve determined the plan for your trip, be sure to review the details of your coverage and policy wording to ensure you understand what is and isn’t covered. As always, Allianz Global Assistance is here to answer your questions, explain your coverage options and assist you with the purchase of your plan. Simply call us at 1-844-310-1578. We’re here to help 24/7!

If you are required to have travel insurance to enter a country

For international visitors to Canada, the super visa program is an ideal option for frequent visitors or those planning extended stays, for example, parents and grandparents who are visiting children here in Canada.

In order to apply for a super visa, visitors must have valid travel insurance in place during their stay. For these individuals, purchasing a Visitors to Canada Plan offered by Allianz Global Assistance will help address this key requirement.

For Canadian residents, nations with popular destinations are increasingly starting to require tourists to provide proof of travel insurance coverage along with valid passports and visas. If you happen to land at customs and border security without proof of coverage, you are likely to be invited to purchase it before crossing the country’s “welcome” mat.

Before leaving on your trip, be sure to confirm whether travel insurance is required to enter your destination country, and prepare accordingly.

© Allianz Partners

Travel insurance does not cover everything. Please refer to the policy wording for full terms and conditions, including limitations and exclusions. Travel insurance is underwritten by CUMIS General Insurance Company, a member of The Co-operators Group of Companies and administered by Allianz Global Assistance. Allianz Global Assistance is a registered business name of AZGA Service Canada Inc. and AZGA Insurance Agency Canada Ltd. Please note that remuneration may be payable to the distributor of this insurance.