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Would You Leave Home Without Travel Insurance?

April 7, 2016

A recent RBC Insurance survey finds that 55 per cent of Canadian travellers would leave home without travel insurance.

Travel can be exciting, relaxing and rewarding, but if something goes wrong while you are away from home, it can quickly become a financial nightmare; and according to a recent survey, 55 per cent of Canadians are willing to risk it.

Why you need travel insurance

It’s common for Canadian travellers to think they’re covered by their provincial health care plan no matter where they go. However, this is simply not true.

“Your Canadian insurance is almost certainly not valid outside Canada. Your provincial or territorial health plan may cover nothing or only a very small portion of the costs if you get sick or are injured while abroad,” says the Government of Canada on the Travel.gc.ca website. “Hospitals and clinics in some countries have been known to refuse to treat patients who become ill or who have had an accident and who do not have adequate travel health insurance or the money to pay their bills. You could face years of debt paying off the costs of treatment for an illness or accident you suffered abroad. The Government of Canada will not pay your medical bills.”

Real-life reasons why you need trip insurance

Even if you’ve planned your trip down to the last detail, travel insurance can help you when the unexpected happens. Out-of-country medical expenses can be expensive…really expensive. The following real-life situations have been compiled from travel insurers as well as the Government of Canada to illustrate how travel insurance can be worth every dime.

The flu in Nevada

Amelia bought travel insurance before her trip to Nevada. Just two days into the trip, Amelia developed fever, muscle pain and fatigue resulting from a case of the flu, which required her to stay at a local hospital for two days. Travel insurance saved Amelia more than $4,000 in medical fees.

A fractured hip in Florida

Linda was visiting her grandson in Florida for a month when she fell in a parking lot and fractured her hip. Linda required immediate surgery and several days of acute rehab before being discharged. In the end, Linda’s travel insurance coverage saved her more than $104,000.

A paragliding accident in Mexico

Jason was on vacation in Mexico and was injured in a paragliding accident. He was airlifted to the nearest hospital for emergency surgery. After surgery, he needed special flight arrangements home. Thanks to his travel insurance, Jason saved more than $69,800.

  • If you plan to take part in extreme sports while on holiday, like paragliding, skydiving, or bungee jumping for example, make sure your read over the policy details and confirm with your travel insurance provider that you’re covered should something go wrong. Some policies specifically exclude these types of activities from coverage.

A stroke in South America

Jim was enjoying a cruise vacation off the coast of South America, when he suffered a massive stroke. He required emergency transportation to a hospital to receive care from an internationally-qualified physician, minimizing the long-term effects of his stroke. In the end, Jim’s insurance coverage saved him more than $40,000 in medical bills.

How much does travel insurance cost?

The last thing anyone wants to think about when planning a holiday is getting sick or injured. But travelling anywhere, even in the safest of environments, entails risk. Without emergency medical travel insurance, an illness or injury could not only ruin your vacation but would likely have financial consequences for years to come. So if you’re planning on travelling but skipping out on purchasing travel insurance, remember that travel insurance is cheap in comparison to the medical bills for emergency out-of-country healthcare.

Insurancehotline.com compared quotes for travellers with no pre-existing health conditions heading to the U.S. for a 10-day trip, and the following were the best travel insurance rates provided for a policy that offered $2 million in coverage.

Traveller(s) Lowest travel insurance rate quotes
20-year-old traveller $15.00
A 35-year-old couple $28.60
A family of four $29.20

(Quotes are for illustrative purposes only, and are subject to change. Your quotes may vary depending on your personal details.)

Pack trip insurance

Let’s be honest, chances are you won’t need to rely on your travel insurance coverage. But for less than the cost of a lunch at the airport, why would you risk travelling without it? The premium you pay for travel insurance will save you much more money in comparison should you fall ill or are injured and need to rely on it. Travel insurance is not where you want to cut corners.

Before you head out on holiday, get the travel insurance coverage you need at the best available price. Compare travel insurance quotes and policies and InsuranceHotline.com.