When you book a flight in advance, you probably notice that trip insurance is offered as an offset to the risk of buying a flight. If you need to cancel for a reason that is covered by the trip insurance, you can be reimbursed all of your pre-paid expenses. However, trip cancellation doesn’t cover everything. Political unrest, for instance, is not covered by most trip insurance policies. But that’s why Cancel for Any Reason coverage is available. Considered a fail safe addendum to your travel insurance policy, it picks up where your trip insurance falls off. There are rules and limitations to the coverage, but if you are eligible for it, you’ll be happy for the extra cushion.
Rules and Guidelines for Purchasing a Policy
In order to buy Cancel for Any Reason insurance, you have to do so within a certain number of days of buying a regular travel policy. Depending on the insurance policy, you could have 24 hours to 21 days. The trip costs must all be covered by the Cancel for Any Reason insurance, not just one plane ride or one trip package. When you need to cancel your trip, it must be done at least 48 hours prior to the start of the trip. Cancel for Any Reason insurance will allow you to cancel because you simply changed your mind, you fear the weather where you plan to travel, you have family commitments, and more. You are a lot less restricted when you buy this add-on.
Depending on the insurance carrier, you could be reimbursed 50% of your travel costs and up to 100%. The Cancel for Any Reason policy will reimburse for any non-refundable travel and booking expenses. So, you could buy a plane ticket for $1,000, but the airline imposes a 50% fee for the cancellation. You are reimbursed $500 directly, but are still out the rest. With Cancel for Any Reason insurance, you will be reimbursed 50-100% of that $500, depending on the wording of the policy.
Why You Need this Policy
If the above hasn’t convinced you that Cancel for Any Reason insurance is a must have for plans made in advance, think about it in terms of the trips you are currently planning. Let’s say you’re making a big trip into an African country within the next year. But with all the political unrest, health concerns, and the actual length of the trip, you’re having a hard time hitting the purchase button on a plane ticket. With regular trip insurance, you can’t cancel this policy at any time. But if you get Cancel for Any Reason insurance, you can simply change your mind 48 hours before the trip. You don’t want to cancel, obviously, but just knowing that you could if you needed to could make it easier to start making concrete plans.
Some insurance companies will allow for cancelling at any time within their original travel insurance policy. However, most will want you to purchase it in addition to your normal insurance coverage. You should do some research into the different insurance carriers before making a final decision. After all, why buy a policy that will pay 50% when you could find one that pays 90% with a little more research? Luckily, there are people around who can help.