When you travel as much as I do, you may start to think you know it all. You know not to overstuff your suitcase so that it bursts open and you know just how important it is to get to the gate early so you’re not left stranded at the airport, but how much can we really control what happens when we fly. A fellow traveller asked me recently whether travel insurance was really worth the paper it’s written on anymore and it got me thinking, just how important is it to be covered when flying?
All those in favour say aye…
There are quite a few arguments in favour of having full and comprehensive travel insurance when you fly. The biggest ones include:
· Unexpected cancellations – could you really afford a brand new ticket if the airline suddenly decides to throw your boarding pass in the trash?
· Heavy delays – what if your flight is delayed for a long time and you have to fork out for food, drinks, even hotel costs?
· Excuse me, where’s my bag? – This is one of the most common reasons for claiming on travel insurance policies. Think whether or not you could afford to replace everything in your bag next time you travel, personally, I couldn’t.
· Acts of God – this is perhaps the most frustrating aspect of flying; weather. Whilst not all travel insurance companies will reimburse you for weather-related delays or cancellations, many of them will help you at least partially to reorganise your reservations.
All those oppose say nay…
There are of course some who say that travel insurance is pointless nowadays, since the vast majority of us pay on credit card and that, as a result, means we are covered when booking flights. This can sometimes be true, but more often than not this will not include things like theft, delays or baggage insurance claims. There are also those who say that, with the comparatively low cost of flying nowadays, it is often cheaper to simply buy a new flight than to take out an expensive travel or baggage insurance policy. I shall reserve my judgement on that particular statement!
I know I shouldn’t go on and on at you listing the reasons why you should take out travel insurance, and since I know how much you all prefer to look at colourful pictures and shiny modern graphics; take a look at this infographic that brilliantly demonstrates some of the more shocking statistics around travel insurance. In answer to the age-old question, anyway, I would say go for it. With most single-flight travel insurance policies costing less than the change in your pocket when going through the airport scanner, what have you got to lose?