As a full-time, or long-term, traveler your life is dependent on your ability to move yourself and your possessions around the world freely. Living this lifestyle however has its potential for all sorts of mishaps that can cause delays, loss of personal property, or worse.
To protect you in the rare case of these incidents there are several companies that offer travel insurance policies for full-time and long-term travelers.
While these policies won’t get your specific stuff back, they will help cover your losses in the unfortunate event you experience a covered event.
Here we will look at these policies, why you should have one, what they can cover and where you can get more information on them.
1. Types of Travel Insurance
Travel insurance policies are generally offered in two flavors. Single trip policies are priced on what they cover, your age, resident state, where you are going and the dates you will be gone.
These work great for the occasional traveler but can get expensive and cumbersome if you travel more frequently. Extended trips or annual policies cover you over longer periods of time. The cost of these plans is based more on your coverage, age, and resident state, and they are often provided on an annual basis.
What these plans cover varies by the plan and the provider. In general, you can look at these plans as a way to cover things like emergency medical transportation and service expenses, trip cancellation fees, expenses caused by trip interruptions, travel accidents, and baggage loss or theft. Many companies which offer these plans will have a tiered system that will allow you to buy the coverage that best suits your needs. They typically also include a 24/7 hotline and concierge service that will help you when issues arise.
2. Coverage When You Need It First
You may be thinking that you already have health insurance, car insurance, etc. which is great. However, these may or may not cover you in a foreign country. In most cases, health insurance will not work overseas, nor will government-based programs that are available in different regions. This may also be the case for rental car coverage.
Many plans will include rental car coverage, however, it is not available to residents of all states. When it comes to rental cars and insurance, make sure you know your state’s regulations and what your standard auto policy will cover. If in doubt, opt for the extra coverage if it is available to you or go with the policy offered by your rental car agency.
What is not covered by these plans is basically everything that isn’t specifically listed as covered. So, make sure you read and understand the policy you are buying. If you have a specific need, ask the insurance companies you looking at if that need is covered.
If it is not, ask if there is a way to get it covered. In many cases, there will be coverages included in more expensive plans that are not available in cheaper plans. Some companies may allow you to add those to the policy a la carte.
3. Find a Plan that Fits Your Travel Plans
Finding the right plan can also be challenging as there are many companies that offer them. Be careful that you are looking at full-time or long-term plans as the standard single-trip plans tend to get mixed in there as well.
If you want to skip the search engines, Allianz Travel Insurance, Expat Health Insurance, AIG Travel Guard, and Nationwide all offer annual plans geared toward full-time travelers.
Most of these plans are geared toward travelers who fly and use hotels or other fixed property rentals. There is a growing segment of travelers who travel full-time by RV. Those folks will still benefit from the above plans, but they will also want to look into additional RV-specific coverage.
International RV travel typically involves rental RVs, in which case you will want to look at the insurance coverage offered by the rental agency you are obtaining your RV from. Most major RV rental programs like Outdoorsy offer insurance for the rental RV. When traveling in a foreign country it is highly recommended you opt for this insurance.
If the rental agency you are dealing with doesn’t offer it then it is advisable that you find another company that does. Traveling without proper RV insurance in a foreign country may be illegal and could lead to substantial problems.
Full-time or long-term travel insurance is an important safeguard in your travels. It is easy to obtain, can be tailored to meet your needs, and will help protect you as you travel around the world.
Annual plans can be found for just about any budget so there is reason to not be covered on your next trip. Have peace of mind while you travel, whether by plane, train, or RV road trip. Knowing you are covered will allow you to relax and enjoy the journey.