I spent $10,000 on my family’s summer vacation and just found out my daughter is sick. What happens if we can’t go? Am I going to lose all that money?

Not if you have travel insurance.

In fact, injury or illness prior to traveling is one of the most common claims. As long as you purchased the policy prior to the injury or illness, and have documentation from a doctor that the person in question cannot travel, your travel insurance policy will compensate you for all the non-refundable costs of your trip. This is called trip cancellation protection.

What is Travel Insurance?

By and large travel insurance plans are made up of three key components, trip cancellation/interruption, emergency medical, and baggage.

Trip cancellation coverage will usually refund you the entire non-refundable purchase price of your trip if it gets canceled or interrupted for covered reasons that vary by provider. Medical coverage pays for emergency care if you get hurt or ill while travelling.  Baggage coverage will reimburse you for your belongings if your luggage is lost, stolen, or damaged; it also will sometimes pay for purchasing necessities if baggage is delayed. Comprehensive plans combine all three.

Most travel insurance plans will refund the entire pre paid cost of your trip. Your premium will largely depend on how much coverage you will need. A single traveller’s business trip abroad will require significantly less coverage than a family of five’s month long Mediterranean cruise. Medical and baggage coverage, however, is generally capped at a maximum amount. Most companies offer several plans. The main difference in plans will be the maximum amounts allowed for medical and baggage, as well as add-on services and features.


Top 10 Companies

Our Partner
10 / 10
  • Our #1 Choice for Travel Insurance - A+ BBB Accredited
  • Safe & secure checkout with instant coverage confirmation
  • Best Price Guarantee - Compare policies with confidence!
  • Get coverage in just minutes
  • Wide network of travel insurance providers
  • Member of The US Travel Insurance Association
Our Partner
9.3 / 10
  • Up to $100,000 in emergency medical expense benefits
  • Trip cancellation, trip delay, lost or delayed baggage, medical evacuation and travel assistance coverage available
  • Kids under 21 covered at no additional cost with the Travel Select plan
  • First payer coverage with no deductibles*
  • Provides coverage for international and domestic travel, cruises & more
Our Partner
9.2 / 10
  • Underwriter holds A+ ratings with BBB and A.M. Best
  • Kids under 18 are free.
  • Perfect for all types of travelers.
  • Casual travelers, adventure plans, and multi-trip plans. 
  • Verified safe and secure checkout process
  • Mobile app features travel alerts, translations, policy information, and more
  • 24/7 customer support both domestic and international
Our Partner
9.2 / 10
  • Perfect for single trips and adventure travelers
  • Covers digital gear
  • Purchase insurance even when overseas
  • Trip interruption/ cancellation
  • Interact with the locals, iPhone travel language apps
Our Partner
9.0 / 10
  • Important Fact: The average out of pocket cost of medical emergency transportation outside the US can be as high as $25,000
  • Covers Domestic, International, Cruises & more
  • Coverage for medical emergencies, trip cancellation, lost baggage, rental cars, even change fees! 
  • 24-hour services & kids under 18 covered free
  • Enter trip dates, ages of travelers, estimated cost and get a quote - no credit card required!
Our Partner
8.9 / 10
  • Emergency Air Transport due to Illness or Accident
  • Not Reliant on Insurance Company to Choose Facility
  • Transport from virtually anywhere to your home hospital (150 miles or more from your residence)
  • An excellent alternative to travel insurance!
Our Partner
8.8 / 10
  • Trip cancellation, delay comes standard
  • Coverage for pre-existing conditions
  • Special trips cover (adventure sports)
  • Build your own travel insurance (My Travel Guard)
  • Car rental collision coverage
  • Medical plans
Our Partner
8.7 / 10
  • Choose budget-friendly coverage options
  • Providers in 130 countries & territories
  • $2 million Maximum Coverage per injury or illness
  • Emergency Medical Evacuation
  • AD&D, Personal Liability, & Dental benefits
  • Extendable for longer trips
  • Buy in less than 10 minutes!
Our Partner
7.5 / 10
  • Solid medical coverage
  • Hazardous sports cover (optional)
  • Limited optional coverage items
  • Insures travelers up to age 85
  • Travel insurance for students available
Our Partner
7.4 / 10
  • No exclusions for Acts of War and Terrorism
  • Accidental Death and Disablement of up to $1 Million
  • Up to $500,000 per claim on Medical Expenses and Medical Evacuation
  • Get a free quote online
  • Optional Ransom Reimbursement
  • Lost and Delayed Baggage up to $1,000
  • 24/7 emergency assistance
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How We Compare Travel Insurance

Plans & Coverage


Travel Cancelation and Interruption

Ok, I get that I am covered if a traveler gets sick, but what about family members that aren’t traveling? Am I covered if something happens to my mom or my dad and we can’t go on our trip?


If the family member suffers a condition that is life threatening or requires hospitalization, trip cancellation coverage will reimburse you for and non-refundable deposits you have already made before the trip was cancelled. This can include flights, cruises, hotels, pre paid excursions, etc. Often hotels will work with you and refund you a portion of your payment if you have to cancel. Travel insurance will take care of the rest. In fact, travel insurance will cover everything less any published refunds you are entitled to receive. 

I’ve booked a vacation to visit several of the Lesser Antilles islands in the Caribbean. We’re supposed to leave tomorrow but there is a hurricane headed straight for our destination and the flight has been cancelled. Am I covered?


Trip cancellation coverage will refund your money in this situation as well, PROVIDED you purchased the policy BEFORE the storm was named. Most travel insurance plans offer coverage for extreme weather, but all have different stipulations. As always, it is of paramount importance you read your policy thoroughly and go over any questions you have with the representative before you buy.

Typical Trip Cancelation Reasons

Below is a list of the most common reasons for making a trip cancelation claim. It is important to note that not all companies offer all of these coverages. What’s more, the technicalities of each coverage will differ by company. For example, while two companies both might both cover acts of terrorism, one may allow cancellation if your trip is scheduled up to 30 days after the incident, while the other only allows two weeks.

-Injury/Illness/Death of traveller or non traveling family member
-Injury/Illness/Death of host
-Natural Disaster at Destination
-Tour Operator/airline/cruise line ceases operation
-Terrorism/evacuation at destination
-Home or Business damaged
-Jury Duty/Court Appearance
-Military Deployment
-Work related (transfer, termination, required to work)
-Victim of crime prior to trip
-Car accident prior to trip
-Theft of passport prior to trip
-School Related



How much compensation are you entitled to for each covered item in your travel insurance policy? Most plans offer 100 percent coverage for trip cancelation. Medical benefits vary from company to company, but some require primary medical insurance so be sure to check this out with the company. There is also a minimum period for both trip interruption and baggage delay coverage. Benefit details include per day maximum limits for baggage and trip delays. Below are the covered items and benefits we looked into.

Trip cancelation

Trip interruption

Trip delay

Missed connection

Baggage delay

Lost baggage

Accident and medical expenses

Medical evacuation

Policies & Limitations

  • Pre-existing medical conditions
  • Minimum period required for enrollment
  • Travel and baggage delay periods
  • "Free look" period

Customer Service


Having 24/7 support services is a must, especially for travelers. Standard services include concierge and business assistance. A dedicated support line is available for round the clock assistance. In case you'd like to cancel your policy, understand how their free look period works and their refund policy.

Concierge services

24/7 medical assistance

Business traveler assistance

Roadside assistance

Customer Questions & Answers

What is Travel Insurance?

Travel Insurance will help you pay for unexpected expenses if your trip is canceled or interrupted due to a covered reason. The best travel insurance plans can also include medical evacuation coverage in the event that you become ill or injured and require medical attention while away from home. It will also reimburse you for lost, damaged or stolen personal belongings and luggage. Additionally, many travel insurance providers offer 24/7-travel assistance to help you coordinate travel plans, re-book flights or hotels, or act as personal travel assistant. Some travel insurance providers may even offer coverage for identity theft and political evacuation.

When Should I Get Travel Insurance?

The sooner you purchase travel insurance, the better, especially if you have significant pre-paid, non-refundable portions of your trip (such as hotel rooms, plane tickets, or tours) booked. Travel insurance will be there to help you cover those costs. That being said, most providers will allow you to purchase travel insurance up to 7-21 days before your trip, and some will even let you purchase coverage up to 24 hours in advance. As with all insurance, hopefully you’ll never need it, but if you do you’ll have the peace of mind knowing your travel insurance provider has you covered.