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The Seven HIDDEN SECRETS You Didn’t Know About Travel Protection

We’ve all heard it before: “I don’t need travel protection. Nothing is stopping me! I’m going on this trip NO. MATTER. WHAT!” Chances are if you haven’t heard that one, you might’ve heard, “It’s fine, I never book travel protection.” Unfortunately, you’ve probably gotten a call from a client wondering if they had insurance or if it was too late to purchase insurance, and ultimately what their risk was for traveling without insurance.

ALWAYS recommend travel protection!!

It’s a fact that the world is getting smaller, and people are taking advantage of all kinds of new opportunities to travel, but they’re also finding themselves in new situations that can be dangerous, adventurous, and expensive. Travel protection is easy for your clients to cover their risks and protect themselves against unexpected losses/ expenses.


Here are SEVEN hidden reasons you didn’t know about travel protection and why you should always make it a habit to recommend travel protection to your clients:


Medical Expense / Emergency Evacuation

Many US-based medical insurance companies will not cover your client while they are traveling out of their state or in another country. Travel Protection may be used as a comprehensive rider in addition to your client’s personal coverage, or in place of it if their insurer will not cover them.* If your client has a medical emergency while traveling, they could be stuck with thousands of dollars worth of bills. These costs can range from hospitalizations to doctors visits, and even additional hotel or transportation costs if it’s serious! A good travel protection policy will cover most, if not all, of these costs, so your client doesn’t have to worry about paying them out of pocket. Just make sure the travel protection plan has an advanced payment guarantee, being primary isn’t always enough. Did you know that some countries will not admit or release patients unless they have paid their medical bills upfront? Make sure to contact your preferred travel protection supplier to find out the process for your clients in case of these emergencies!



Baggage Loss / Delay

I’m sure you’ve told your clients to pack a few articles of clothing in their carry-on or traveling companions bag just in case something happens. You know, your client just flew to Paris, but for some reason their bags are stuck in Colorado! Don’t fret. Most travel protection policies include baggage loss / delay coverage to ensure your client can get through a few days while waiting for their bag to finish its vacation.

When luggage gets lost or delayed at an airport, the airline is liable for up to a certain amount per traveler for lost items or damaged baggage. Make sure your client fills out all the forms and requests compensation from the airline even if, at times, that cost is very minimal and the rest is up to the traveler! Not to mention, the client typically needs to report the loss within 24 hours or they may forfeit any right to compensation. Some airlines may even choose to not reimburse your clients for any portion of the losses!




Trip Cancellation/Interruption

That’s right, your client told you that they’re going on their trip — no matter what. Well, some things are just, unfortunately, out of everyone’s control. Trip cancellation can provide coverage to your clients for any pre-paid, non-refundable expenses after having to cancel their trip for a covered reason. This is typically related to some sort of pre-travel emergency or unexpected event that may occur. While Trip Cancellation covers a client prior to starting their trip, Trip Interruption benefits kick in after the trip has started. These benefits can reimburse your client for additional expenses incurred due to delays for things such as flight delays (after a certain length of delay), illness, injury, weather (depending on the situation), etc. The benefit can typically be used to cover costs such as extra hotel stays, meals, or even the costs incurred for rushing back home due to a covered event back home.


Cancel For Any Reason

Is your client’s hair a mess, and they just don’t feel like getting on the plane? They don’t have to! Many industry partners offer a “Cancel For Any Reason” (CFAR) insurance option to give your clients piece of mind. This travel protection allows your client to cancel their vacation and still qualify for a refund of their vacation (minus the insurance cost, of course).* Please consult your preferred travel protection partner because the CFAR refund amount may differ, and the deadline to cancel may be several days or several hours prior to departure, depending on the policy.


Pre-Existing Conditions

Many travel protection policies can be purchased up until 24 hours prior to departure; however, for the maximum benefit, they typically need to be purchased within 14 days after your client’s initial trip deposit. One such benefit is in regard to pre-existing conditions. Depending on the supplier partner, your client’s trip could be completely covered even if they had a pre-existing condition that caused a trip cancellation or medical issue down the road. Consult your travel protection partner to find out about coverage options and deadlines. Some suppliers mandate that it must be purchased by a certain time (usually final payment) to provide any amount of coverage at all.



Force Majeure

We know it’s a hard word to pronounce, but it is a clause in EVERY insurance policy, and your clients want to know about it. Force majeure discusses coverage benefits in case of economic turmoil, local political climates, acts of God, acts of war, acts of terrorism, epidemics, pandemics, theft, and natural disasters (earthquakes, hurricanes, etc.). These are all things that are out of anyone’s control and could have a substantial impact on your client’s vacation. Some policies exclude these events, but there are others that do not, and therefore cover them.


It’s Affordable

Looking at the big picture, many clients think that travel protection is either incredibly expensive or completely unnecessary. In reality, it’s usually a fraction of the overall trip cost, and it provides coverage for so much more than most people think. Your clients probably pay for car insurance, homeowners insurance, renters insurance, dental insurance, health insurance, and life insurance – why wouldn’t you help them secure their vacation investment the same way?


Still not convinced? Let me explain a few more things—


Travel App

Yep, there’s an App For That! Some leading travel protection suppliers now offer a mobile app for your clients to download on their smartphone that will provide 24-hour customer service, even overseas. They have links to most local hospitals, a medical and first aid dictionary, country information, and an easy way to file claims!


Work-Related Cancellation

Did your client’s boss just schedule an emergency meeting and your client can’t miss it? Now they don’t have to! Some travel protection companies also offer cancellation benefits that provide a full refund for work-related reasons, as well as legal separation/divorce and many other covered reasons.




Lost or Stolen Travel Documents

Whether your clients are traveling to a new city, state, or country, it’s essential to take precautions against things that could go wrong. Even if they don’t think there’s anything to worry about—like getting lost or having a passport stolen—there are many things that can happen while they’re on the road (or air or sea) that they might not have anticipated. Travel insurance may offer protection against some of these unexpected events as well. For example, if their passport gets lost or stolen while they’re traveling, travel insurance may cover replacement costs and other expenses associated with replacing it.


We know some clients claim that their credit card, personal, or homeowner’s insurance policy will help provide coverage for some of these instances, but the reality is that there are several hoops to jump through and circumstances that need to be met for the coverage to take effect — and there’s usually a maximum amount. If your client suggests that they would rather use another insurance option or travel without insurance, be sure to instruct them to contact the provider company ASAP to chat about coverage and MAKE SURE to get a signed travel protection waiver!! You never want to be accused of not offering them travel protection if they need it later. I highly recommend making it a standard practice in your travel business to OFFER and QUOTE travel protection to every single client, even if they decline it. It’s so easy to quote it online now, and some suppliers even offer co-branded/white-labeled links to add to your website or send directly to your clients.

The reality is, no one WANTS to pay for insurance, and many clients never even need it — until they do!

Travel insurance is vital to a healthy financial future, whether your client is heading across the state or to the other side of the world. Make sure your clients are well aware of this vital issue by encouraging them to read up on it and educate themselves about how to protect their assets (yes, their vacation investment is an asset!). At the same time, do more than just talk about it — help by providing your clients with relevant resources about travel protection.

Looking for the perfect preferred travel protection partner? Check out our Supplier Directory for a list of some great travel protection partners!

Keep in mind that you are a Travel Advisor, NOT an Insurance Agent. So, while you can OFFER travel protection and send a list of policy details, you should never go into specifics regarding claims, covered cancellation reasons, etc.; however, you can certainly point your client to someone who works at the insurance company, typically a claims specialist, who can answer those questions. The information contained above should not be solely relied upon when offering travel protection, please consult your preferred travel protection partner for full details of their terms and policies.


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Steven Gould

Steven Gould

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