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Getting ready to travel? If so, there are some medical considerations. Even though we’re enjoying a vaccine rollout, there are still potential health implications to plan for when you book upcoming trips—especially if you’re planning international travel.
When purchasing a travel insurance policy, it’s a good idea to look for a plan that will cover unexpected expenses if you need to quarantine abroad. Here’s important information about how travel insurance can cover a Covid-19 quarantine.
Understanding Quarantine Protocols
In some countries, visitors must self-isolate upon arrival. This type of mandatory quarantine is not covered by travel insurance. For example, Bolivia, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia and South Korea currently have mandatory quarantine rules.
The only way you can recoup quarantine expenses from a travel insurance policy is if you test positive for Covid and you have a travel insurance plan that covers Covid. When you have a plan that covers Covid you can make claims for the following:
Trip cancellation benefits if you’re ill with Covid and can’t go. The trip cancellation insurance benefit can reimburse you 100% of your prepaid, non-refundable travel expenses if you’re unable to travel due to your diagnosis and quarantine, says Megan Moncrief, a spokesperson with Squaremouth, a travel insurance comparison provider.
Travel delay benefits if you are unable to return home due to a diagnosis and quarantine. This may allow you to get reimbursed for the cost of additional meals and accommodations. “These policies typically provide between $100 and $2,000 in coverage per person, with a daily limit between $50 to $300,” says Moncrief. It’s important to stay within your daily dollar cap if you don’t want to rack up expenses that won’t be reimbursed, especially because a quarantine period can last 10 to 14 days.
A trip interruption benefit that “can reimburse missed portions of the trip if you are forced into quarantine due to a positive test,” says Moncrief. This benefit pays out between 100% and 200% of your prepaid and non-refundable trip costs.
In addition, the travel medical insurance portion of a policy can cover treatment if you become ill while traveling. Check to make sure your policy covers Covid medical expenses.
Finally, if you are quarantined at your destination and are unable to return as planned, most travel insurance policies will extend their benefits up to seven days following the scheduled return date.
These Issues Won’t be Covered
There are Covid-related quarantines that are not covered by travel insurance, notes Moncrief. For example:
A self-imposed quarantine out of caution due to exposure
Canceling a trip due to a quarantine requirement at a destination upon entry, or in the U.S. upon your return
Loss of enjoyment
In order to be eligible for reimbursement, you must have a financial loss of prepaid, non-refundable trip expenses. “For example, simply being quarantined to the hotel room you were staying in otherwise doesn’t mean that room can now be reimbursed,” explains Moncrief.
Travel Insurance During the Pandemic
To help with quarantine expenses during a trip, do your research before traveling:
Before you depart, make sure you’re familiar with the quarantine protocols of the country you are visiting. There may also be re-entry requirements when you travel home to the U.S.
Look into travel insurance plans that cover Covid.
If your trip is disrupted due to a Covid diagnosis, keep all your receipts so you can get reimbursement of extra expenses.
Don’t forget that your travel insurance plan will include access to a 24/7 travel assistance line. This can help you with locating doctors, hospitals and pharmacies. They can also help with language translation.
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