It’s always been important to take out the proper insurance while you’re traveling but the recent pandemic has been a serious reminder of exactly how crucial it really is! Millions of travelers had their flights canceled or found themselves stranded overseas. For other people, unexpected medical costs and quarantine expenses left them out of pocket without the necessary insurance.
The American State Department always advises travelers to take out insurance for their trips abroad. Your insurance policy should always cover medical costs, emergency transport and trip cancellation costs, particularly in the post-pandemic world.
Benefits Of Taking Out Suitable Travel Insurance.
There are several benefits to travel insurance:
If you have to cancel your trip to Italy, or flights are grounded, then your travel insurance can cover any pre-paid expenses that you are set to lose. For example, the insurance can cover the costs of your hotel booking, car hires, tour operators and other tickets that you can’t redeem. This is especially important to consider since the pandemic of 2020 when flights all over the world were grounded for months on end without warning.
Emergency Medical Treatment And Repatriation.
In the case that you have an accident or fall seriously ill while you are overseas it’s vital to have a good insurance policy that can cover the costs of the treatment you may need. If you’re a tourist stranded in Italy the chances are that you’ll have to use the private health service in which case the bills can be quite steep.
Your insurance policy should cover this for you as well as advising you on suitable hospitals that you can use. When you take out your insurance there should also be a 24 hour helpline that you can call while you’re overseas. In some cases, you may need to be evacuated back home for treatment, in which case the insurance policy should cover this too.
I once had an infection when I was in Milan. I did not have health insurance. I went to a local pharmacy and explained the issue. The pharmacist was able to diagnose the problem and gave me over the counter medication (My Primary Care Physician (PCP) in Philadelphia is an experienced nurse who works for a major hospital in the city. She was nice enough to answer my phone, talk to a doctor at the hospital and confirm that the medication that I was given was the right one).
Replacing Personal Items, Documents And Electronics.
One of the most frequent mishaps to occur while you’re abroad is the loss or theft of personal possessions, such as your luggage or cameras. In some cases your baggage may be delayed or your electronics may get broken in transit. While this is annoying at the time, knowing that you have the items covered by your insurance policy will help to smooth over the incident!
Traveling from the United States to Italy and back is a relatively safe endeavor. You are either flying directly or transiting through an airport in Europe. But if you are traveling from other parts of the world to Italy, things might be different. I have had cameras, liquor and other electronic items stolen from my checked in bags at certain airports.
Another major problem for travelers is losing their passport or other travel documents. These can be expensive to replace if you need it done quickly but these costs can be recovered with your insurance policy.
Sports And Activity Cover.
If you enjoy adrenaline fueled activities such as jet skiing or bungee jumping you should make sure that you are covered in case you have an accident or get injured. This also applies to all sporting activities including skiing and mountain biking where accidents, although minor, are fairly common.
Legal Advice And Support.
If you need personal legal advice while you’re on your trip abroad your insurance policy will cover the costs and often, supply with you the details of local legal experts that can help you. Without expert support making a legal claim while overseas is extremely difficult and is unlikely to be successful.
You are unlikely to understand the legal system and will struggle to find a trustworthy legal advice or lawyer. This is where the insurance company can help because they will have contacts with local lawyers and legal professionals that they can refer you to. Therefore, you should always ensure that you have protection to cover you in the case that you need legal advice and support while you’re overseas.
Best Travel Insurance For Travel To Italy.
There are several insurance companies to chose from:
Cat 70 Travel Insurance.
Cat 70 provides superb insurance coverage for travelers, both domestically and internationally. There is a good range of policies to choose from with all the extra coverage options that you might need during your trip to Italy. Cat 70 provides a 24 hour emergency helpline which you can call for advice and support. Coverage includes trip cancellations and emergency medical coverage of up to $500,000. Cat 70 is considered by Forbes as the best pandemic travel issuance plan.
HTH Travel Insurance.
HTH offers a fantastic range of insurance coverage options that will protect you in case of your trip being canceled or suffering an accident. The HTH insurance policy coverage includes hospital treatment, surgery costs, prescription medicines and emergency medical evacuation. You can cancel your insurance plan at any time up to 10 days before your trip and receive a reimbursement if you have to change your travel dates.
USI Affinity Travel Insurance.
With good customizable policies USI Affinity protects travelers all over the world. Insurance plans include trip cancellations, international student health and accident coverage, canceled tours and lost luggage. You can purchase an insurance plan individually or as a group making it ideal for families and tour groups.
Every policy includes access to a 24 hour helpline with both English and Spanish phone operators.
John Hancock Travel Insurance.
With superb multilingual toll free helplines open 24 hours a day you can be sure that John Hancock travel insurance will have your back while you’re overseas. There’s a top quality selection of insurance policies that cover cancellations, baggage loss or delay as well as interruptions to your trip, medical costs and prepaid costs reimbursements.
AXA Travel Insurance.
As one of the world’s leading insurance companies AXA provides 24 hour support and coverage for baggage loss, trip cancellations for any reason and emergency medical benefits. You are fully covered for emergency evacuations and interruptions to your trip. AXA also offers their policyholders a concierge service which can assist you with making reservations and even give you advice on where to stay and what to do while you’re planning your trip abroad.
Does Your Travel Insurance Cover You In Quarantine?
Every travel insurance policy is different but the best policies cover your unexpected costs if you have to quarantine after a positive Covid test, provided that the policy covers Covid. This is extremely important because the costs of quarantining in many countries can easily reach into the thousands of dollars.
To be able to apply for benefits covering the cost of quarantine, you will need to provide medical proof of a positive test. However, in situations where there is a mandatory quarantining regulation then you will not be able to claim for this expense because it is not unexpected.
If you catch Covid while you’re in Italy, then your travel insurance will cover your costs. They will cover even after your planned return date if you have to stay in the country for longer than you had expected. You should ask the policyholder for the specific details. But in most cases you will have coverage for between 7 to 14 extra days.
How Do You Get Your Reimbursement For The Costs Of Quarantining.
If you need to make a claim relating to the costs of your quarantining while you are abroad then you will need to be able to provide the following documents to be successful in your claim.
- You will need to provide medical proof that you tested positive for Covid-19. Alternatively, if you have to quarantine because you were in direct contact with someone else who was infectious, as part of a track and trace scheme, then you will need to provide evidence of this. To prove that you’ve been in contact with someone who has Covid you will need a note from a doctor.
- You will need to provide the insurance company with documents that prove that you were instructed to quarantine, usually for 14 days.
- You will need to provide proof of the costs of your accommodation and medical treatment for the period of your quarantine.
- You can claim for your meals during the period of your quarantining. To make a claim for the costs of your food you will need to keep the receipts for all your meals.
Trip Interruption Costs Can Be Reimbursed.
If your travel plans are interrupted because you have to quarantine then you can claim back your pre-paid non-refundable costs. You can take out a policy which either reimburses you 100% of your costs or, in some cases, up to 200% of your pre-paid costs. For instance, if you miss a pre-paid tour, plane flight or other event then you can claim back the cost of your tickets using your insurance policy.
This can be extremely helpful if unexpected cases of Covid mean that you can’t continue your trip or have to stay in quarantine for any period of time. Unfortunately, this type of concern is part of modern life and so it’s prudent to be prepared with an appropriate insurance policy that you can fall back on if needed.
Extra Benefits Of Travel Insurance.
All basic travel insurance policies should cover you for trip cancellations and medical costs. However, there are other important things that you should consider when purchasing a policy.
- Cancellations as a result of bad weather conditions, hurricanes, personal injury and even terrorism.
- Accidentally missed travel connections.
- Baggage theft and loss.
- Coverage for the loss or theft of personal items such as laptops, cameras and jewelry.
It’s Essential To Be Properly Insured For Your Trip To Italy.
Italy is an extremely safe and well managed country however accidents can happen and ruin your trip. It’s always highly advisable to have a good travel insurance policy in place before you depart for Italy.
The recent introduction of Covid quarantining regulations and other travel restrictions can result in your missing connecting flights or other pre-paid commitments but with a good insurance policy you can have all these costs reimbursed.
Insurance policies are very reasonably priced and, if the worst should happen, they can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars! However, it’s not just the huge medical bills that can be reimbursed because it’s usually a smaller mishap such as losing your luggage which they can also cover for you.