If you’re traveling during the pandemic, you know that you might have to ride out a mandatory quarantine. Travel insurance can reimburse you for problems like trip delays and medical expenses abroad, but can it help with the added expense of a quarantine?
Staying in a hotel for up to 14 days while in quarantine can get costly, especially if you’re not prepared. There are also other costs to consider like meals.
Here’s how you can prepare for an unexpected Covid-19 quarantine during a trip.
Know When Travel Insurance Benefits Kick In for a Quarantine
There are travel insurance policies that can cover unexpected expenses if you have to quarantine in another country. But in order for any benefits to apply, you must test positive for Covid-19 and your travel insurance plan must cover Covid-related expenses.
For example, if you visit a state or a country that has a mandatory quarantine in place upon your arrival, there are no travel insurance benefits to cover any extra costs for quarantining, unless you then test positive for Covid-19 and the plan covers Covid.
If you get sick abroad from the virus, a plan’s travel medical benefits can also kick in if it’s travel insurance that covers Covid-19.
“Travel insurance policies that provide benefits if a traveler contracts Covid-19 can also extend their coverage past the original return date, typically up to seven days,” says Steven Benna, a spokesperson for Squaremouth, a travel insurance comparison site.
This is helpful due to the most recent CDC regulation that requires all travelers, including U.S. citizens, to provide a negative test prior to entering the U.S. If you test positive when you’re getting ready to come home and are unable to leave that country, the applicable benefits of these policies can extend, says Benna.
Quarantine-Related Travel Insurance Coverage
The following travel insurance benefits can offer coverage for the costs of quarantining, assuming the plan covers Covid-19 expenses.
Travel delay coverage. This benefit can cover the cost of your accommodations and meals during quarantine if you have contracted the virus. If you are forced to stay beyond your return date due to a positive test, this coverage can be extended for up to seven days.
“Policies with this benefit provide a range of total coverage between $100 and $2,000 per person, with a daily limit that ranges from $50 to $300,” Benna says.
Trip Interruption coverage. This coverage will reimburse you for missed portions of your trip if you’re forced into quarantine due to a positive Covid test. It can cover 100% to 200% of your prepaid and non-refundable trip costs, says Benna.
For example, Trawick International’s Safe Travels Voyager Plan covers expenses if you’re forced to quarantine domestically or abroad due to a positive Covid test. “These plans may also provide reimbursement for medical expenses and emergency medical evacuation expenses incurred if you are injured or sick while traveling on your trip,” says Bailey Foster, a spokesperson for Trawick International.
See Forbes Advisor’s ratings of the best pandemic travel insurance plans.
How to Get Quarantine Reimbursement
If you need to make a travel insurance claim related to quarantine, and your plan covers Covid-19, be prepared to have these documents:
- You must have been quarantined because of a positive Covid test or due to direct exposure to the virus. “In either case, they must be able to provide proof of their test or exposure, such as a note from a doctor, in addition to all receipts verifying their expenses,” says Benna.
- You will have to show documentation that you tested positive for Covid while traveling and that you are required to quarantine for 14 days, says Foster In addition, proof of medical bills and lodging expenses must be submitted to receive reimbursement, so save your receipts.
“Anyone traveling outside the U.S. should consider travel insurance for this benefit,” says Benna.
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