Travel Insurance: Is it Worth It? - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

ConsumerWatch

Travel Insurance: Is it Worth It?

By Zaneta Lowe  - bio | email | Twitter

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -From the swine flu in Mexico to the oil spill along the Gulf Coast.

Some would be vacationers have put the brakes on their plans, but still had to pay.

Could travel insurance save you the worry and the cash?

"When you are planning your trip and making your deposit and your payment, that's when you want to consider your travel insurance."

Travel agents like Donna Comer consider it peace of mind.  A bit of assurance when vacationers buy travel insurance.

But is it worth the money?

Travel insurance varies widely, so experts say you'll want to do your research and buy the right coverage.

"Travel insurance depends on the age of the person, the length of the stay, the amount of money they've spent and what type they want, says Comer of Travels by Donna.

Experts estimate basic policies can range from 5 to 7 % of your costs.

Some cover you if your provider goes bankrupt or if you have to cancel due to illness or death.

"There are light, basic full plans, cancellation plans, you can continue to upgrade," explains Comer.

Of course the more you add on, the more it adds to your bill.

Consumer experts say pricey "cancel for any reason" policies can cost up to 40% more than standard ones, but with those, you get all your money back.

"Some won't do that, some will give you vouchers back, future credits on trips back," adds Comer.

Another tip, check your insurance policy.

See what your health, auto and life insurance will cover while you're traveling.

Scan policies online.  It's is a good way to compare cost and coverage if you're buying it on your own.

Travel agents sell it too.  Of course read the fine print.

"You want to make sure with the company that you have the rules," adds Comer.

Also, check to see if the company you're using if with the US Travel Insurance Association.

Finally, pay with a credit card. Experts say it gives you extra protection.

Plus, don't forget to take a copy of the policy with you on your trip.

©2010 WTVM. All rights reserved.

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