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What does travel insurance cover?


Car crashes: What does travel insurance cover?

Whether you stay in the U.S. for spring break or head overseas, the biggest threat to your well being may be a car crash. A 2015 study found that traffic fatalities jumped by 9.1 percent in 14 U.S. spring break hot spots between the last week of February and the first week of April.1

The same danger exists when you travel abroad. “Motor vehicle crashes — not crime or terrorism — are the number 1 killer of healthy US citizens living, working, or traveling overseas,” according to the Centers for Disease Control.2 And taking group transportation doesn’t mean you’re safe; in the past decade, more than a dozen accidents involving cruise-ship excursion buses have occurred in Caribbean ports of call.3

If you sustain covered injuries in a car crash while you’re on spring break, travel insurance with emergency medical and emergency medical transportation benefits can help. These benefits can pay for an ambulance or medevac ride, if medically necessary, as well as hospital bills and the cost to safely transport you home.

One exception is drunk driving: If you caused the crash because you were consuming alcohol, losses would not be covered.


Spring break illnesses: What does travel insurance cover?

Food poisoning. Norovirus. Flu. Mysterious rashes. You never know what nasty bug is out there waiting to ambush you and ruin all your spring break fun. Again, travel insurance with emergency medical benefits can help you out — but only for covered medical emergencies.

What does that even mean? A covered medical emergency means a sudden, unexpected illness or injury during your trip that’s either life-threatening or could cause serious and irreparable harm if it isn’t treated. (For emergency dental benefits, a covered emergency refers to an injury or infection, a lost filling or a broken tooth during your trip that requires immediate treatment by a dentist.) If you’re not sure if your illness qualifies, don’t wait: Call the travel assistance hotline.  While we can’t diagnose you over the phone, we can connect you with the nearest qualified doctor or other medical facility.


Illnesses or injuries resulting from alcohol use: What does travel insurance cover?

Getting drunk during spring break may feel like harmless fun, especially in a seemingly safe environment like a cruise ship or a resort — but injuries can, and do, happen. Heavy alcohol use is associated with increased risk of assault, near-drownings, falls, and pedestrian injuries. In the United States, more than a third of hospitalized assaults and 21 percent of all injuries can be attributed to alcohol use by the injured person.4

Long story short: Don’t get wasted on spring break. When you buy travel insurance from Allianz Global Assistance, your policy clearly states that you are not covered for any loss that results directly or indirectly from the use or abuse of alcohol or drugs, or any related physical complications.


Sports- and adventure-related injuries: What does travel insurance cover?

Lying on the beach is nice for a day or two… then you’re ready to get up and stretch your muscles. But before you head out for an adventure, be aware that losses resulting from certain activities are excluded from travel insurance coverage.

Travel insurance does not cover losses that result from participating in or training for any professional or amateur sporting competition. If you plan to compete in a triathlon over spring break, for example, and you fracture your tibia during the race, that would not be covered. Losses resulting from flying or learning to fly an aircraft as a pilot or crew member aren’t covered, either.

Also excluded are losses that result from participating in extreme, high-risk sports like:

  • skydiving, hang gliding or parachuting (including parasailing)
  • bungee jumping
  • caving — even if you’re part of an organized tour
  • extreme skiing, heli-skiing or skiing outside marked trails
  • body contact sports (meaning any sport where the objective is to physically render an opponent unable to continue with the competition, such as boxing and full-contact karate)
  • mountain climbing or any other high-altitude activities
  • scuba diving below 120 feet (40 meters), or without a dive master.


Spring break crimes and assaults: What does travel insurance cover?

Partying spring breakers are often easy targets for criminals, so be careful! Check the travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State to find out if your destination has been having problems with crime. The State Department has recommended tourists exercise caution in the Bahamas, Mexico, Jamaica and other popular spring break destinations.

If you’re the victim of a crime while traveling, we can help connect you with local law enforcement, and the American embassy, and arrange interpretation services if needed. We can also assist you with getting emergency cash sent from home. And if your travel insurance plan includes lost/stolen baggage coverage, you may be able to file a claim for your stolen items.

What if you’re the one who commits a crime? Even behavior you think is harmless can land you in big trouble overseas (in 2018, 10 tourists were arrested in Cambodia for inappropriate dancing at a party near the Angkor Wat temple site). Travel insurance will not cover you for any losses resulting from unlawful acts you commit. If you call our travel assistance hotline, however, we will do our best to connect you with the help you need: legal resources, friends and family, and the U.S. embassy.


Bad weather: What does travel insurance cover?

For spring break, you and five friends rented a condo in Daytona Beach. Woo hoo! But a few days before you’re supposed to leave, you check the forecast. Five days of rain and clouds — not so woo. Can you cancel your trip?

You can, but your travel insurance won’t cover the trip cancellation. Trip cancellation and interruption benefits can only reimburse you for nonrefundable, pre-paid costs if you cancel or cut short the trip for a covered reason. Covered reasons are listed in your policy, and may include things like a serious covered illness or injury, the death of a family member, or a natural disaster rendering your destination uninhabitable. If none of these reasons apply, you should go ahead with your vacation plans, and have a great spring break despite the rain.

Long story short: Have fun, but don’t be reckless. And don’t forget to insure your spring break trip! Compare quotes now.


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