Most Don’t Know This – Many Credit Cards Offer Travel Insurance

Planning a trip? If you are, it might be reassuring to know that your travel may be covered by a lesser-known credit card benefit – travel insurance. If something occurs during your trip, whether your baggage is lost or you’re injured, your credit card may reimburse you. Potentially saving you thousands of dollars, this can be a comfort to those who may have seemed content to roll the dice and forego purchasing travel insurance policy.

It helps to understand just what type of travel-related insurance is available on your credit card. In this article, we’ll take a look at what your credit card’s travel insurance is, how it compares to a travel insurance policy, and how Sift can make the process easier for you.

Types of Credit Card Travel Insurance

There are essentially several major categories of travel insurance offered by your credit card. These include:

  • Flight delay insurance
  • Car rental insurance
  • Baggage insurance
  • Travel accident insurance
  • Trip cancellation/interruption insurance

The protections these credit card benefits provide will vary depending on which card you carry. Not all credit cards offer every type of travel insurance and the amount of coverage between credit cards even by the same brand can be dramatic. Here is an overview of the benefits followed by a more in-depth analysis of each.

Travel Insurance Benefit Summary

Type of Insurance What’s Typically Covered
Flight Delay Insurance This benefit usually covers the following expenses, as long as they are reasonable and necessary for the Covered Traveler to incur during the delay:

  • Lodging
  • Ground Transportation
  • Meals
  • Personal or business necessities, such as toiletries, or items that the Covered Traveler(s) needs when delayed
Car Rental Insurance The amount covered can vary by card but often covers the cardholder as the primary driver and others authorized to operate the vehicle under the rental agreement.

Insurance usually covers a car:

  • Damaged by an accident
  • Damaged by a natural disaster or vandalized
  • Stolen
Baggage Insurance If your bag gets stolen or lost while the baggage is checked with or carried on board the airline you can be reimbursed up to $3,000 ($2,000 per bag for New York Residents) with a maximum coverage of $10,000 on some cards. If your baggage is delayed, reimbursements range from $300 to $500.
Travel Accident Insurance It’s possible to receive up to $1,000,000 in compensation, but this varies depending on your credit card and severity of the accident.

Some things that are often covered:

  • Death
  • Dismemberment
  • Loss of sight, hearing, or speech
Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance Trip Cancellation coverage typically begins on the date the Trip was purchased and ends on the Trip Departure Date. Trip Interruption coverage usually begins on Trip Departure Date and ends on the Trip Completion Date. Reimbursement amounts vary depending on cards.

Illness, personal issues such as a death in the family or jury duty, and severe weather are common things that are covered.

Flight Delay Insurance

Sitting at an airport and finding out that your flight has been delayed is always stressful. The good news is that if you paid for your flight through your credit card, you may have something called Flight Delay Insurance, which will reimburse you for any expenses incurred, like meals and accommodation while you are waiting.

How does it work?

Say that your flight gets delayed over the minimum delay period (in coverage below). During that time, any expenses that you incur on meals, lodging or taxis can be reimbursed for up to $500 for your delay.

What coverage is provided?

If your flight is delayed more than a certain number of hours then you can be reimbursed up to $500 per Covered Traveler, per Trip. Trip delay coverage begins on the trip departure date and ends on the trip completion date.

What’s covered?

This benefit usually covers the following expenses, as long as they are reasonable and necessary for the Covered Traveler to incur during the delay:

  • Lodging
  • Ground Transportation
  • Meals
  • Personal or business necessities, such as toiletries, or items that the Covered Traveler(s) needs when delayed.

What’s not covered?

The following conditions are typically excluded from coverage:

  • The Covered Traveler(s) accepted an offer or coupon in exchange for not boarding an overbooked flight.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) is delayed due to being involved in or under suspicion of any criminal act, illegal activities, or disruptive/abusive behavior.

Car Rental Insurance

It’s standard – when you go to rent a car, you’re always asked if you’d like to get insurance on it. Most of us want to be responsible as well as not liable should anything happen, so we add that 30 or 40 dollars to our bill. Fortunately, if you use this card to rent the car you may be covered if you experience an accident.

How does it work?

Just use your card and be sure to decline the rental company’s collision loss/damage insurance.

What coverage is provided?

The amount covered can vary by card but often covers the cardholder as the primary driver and others authorized to operate the vehicle under the rental agreement.

What’s covered?

To take advantage of this benefit, the following conditions typically apply:

  • The rental period is no more than 30 or 31 consecutive days.
  • The rental car is:
    • Damaged by an accident
    • Damaged by a natural disaster or vandalized
    • Stolen

What’s not covered?

Coverage sometimes does apply to claims under the following conditions:

  • The car is exotic, antique, or expensive

The rental car is used in a way that goes against your rental car agreement (such as driving recklessly or under the influence of drugs or alcohol) or against clear instructions or warnings posted in the car.

  • The rental car was used as a car for hire.
  • You or an authorized driver does not take responsible care of the rental car.

Baggage Insurance

If you’re traveling and something happens to your baggage—lost, stolen, or delayed at the airport—you may be able to recoup your lost luggage with your credit card’s baggage insurance.

Nothing ruins the start of a trip quite like lost luggage. What are you going to wear to the beach and out to dinner, and you really need that toothbrush! Luckily, this card offers a perk we may refund the purchase price of the missing items or the cost to repair or replace the damaged items!

How does it work? 

If your bag gets stolen, lost, or delayed while the baggage is checked with or carried on board the airline you can get reimbursed for the missing items or the cost to repair or replace the damaged items if delayed or stolen, or up to a certain amount of money for things you need (e.g. toiletries and clothes) when your baggage is delayed.

What coverage is provided? 

If your bag gets stolen or lost while the baggage is checked with or carried on board the airline you can be reimbursed up to $3,000 ($2,000 per bag for New York Residents) with a maximum coverage of $10,000 on some cards. If your baggage is delayed, reimbursements range from $300 to $500.

What’s covered? 

Covered Travelers, which means, you, your Family Member or any individual(s) for whom you have paid to travel on your or your Family Member’s Trip. A checked or carry-on item is covered unless it’s included in the “what’s not covered list” below. Citi will cover the item’s purchase price (including sales tax), or the cost of repairing it, whichever is less.

What’s not covered? 

The following items are typically excluded from coverage:

  • Antiques and collector’s items.
  • Traveler’s checks, tickets of any kind (e.g., for airlines, sporting events, concerts, or lottery), passport, visas, negotiable instruments, bullion, rare, or precious metals, stamps, and coins, currency or its equivalent.

Travel Accident Insurance

No one wants to think about themselves or a loved on getting injured while on a trip, but it does happen. Luckily, many credit cards offer something called Travel Accident Insurance. This typically only covers severe accidents that impact you and potentially, depending on the card, your family when you’ve used the credit card for your trip.

How does it work?

If you die in a Common Carrier accident while traveling or, in some cases, suffer the loss of sight, hearing, or limbs.

What coverage is provided?

It’s possible to receive up to $1,000,000 in compensation, but this varies depending on your credit card and severity of the accident.

What’s covered?

Some things that are often covered:

  • Death
  • Dismemberment
  • Loss of sight, hearing, or speech

What’s not covered? 

Coverage does not usually apply to any claim under the following conditions:

  • Losses as a result of a riot or act of war.
  • Traveling in a taxi, car service, rental car, and rideshare service.
  • Boarding or exiting a Common Carrier while engaging in extreme activities.

Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance

You’ve planned a great vacation or trip to see your mom, and suddenly something happens that necessitates you to cancel or delay your trip. If you’ve used your credit card to pay for the trip, you may be covered by something called Trip Cancellation/Trip Interruption Insurance.

How does it work?

If certain unforeseen events occur such as sickness, injury, or death of the Covered Traveler(s), or weather issues transpire, then you could be reimbursed.

What coverage is provided?

Trip Cancellation coverage typically begins on the date the Trip was purchased and ends on the Trip Departure Date. Trip Interruption coverage usually begins on Trip Departure Date and ends on the Trip Completion Date. Reimbursement amounts vary depending on cards.

What’s typically covered? 

Illness or Personal Matters:

  • If you become sick or injured and are advised by a licensed medical practitioner not to travel.
  • If your, not traveling on the Trip, has an injury or illness that is either life-threatening or requires care from the Covered Traveler(s) and is verified by a licensed medical practitioner.
  • The Covered Traveler’s Pet, has an injury or serious illness that is either life-threatening or requires care and is verified by a licensed veterinarian. Pet(s) means any domesticated or tamed animal that is kept as a companion and cared for affectionately.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) dies.
  • The Covered Traveler’s Family Member, not traveling on the trip, dies.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) is laid off or fired from their job.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) is called to jury duty or receives a subpoena from the court, neither of which can be postponed or waived.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) or the Covered Traveler’s Family Member(s) is called into active military service.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) or the Covered Traveler’s Family Member’s permanent residence is deemed unsafe or unfit to live in, or is burglarized.

Travel or Weather Issues:

  • Severe weather or natural disaster causes all travel to or from the Covered Traveler’s Trip destination to stop for at least 24 hours.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) can’t travel due to a quarantine or a hijacking.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) misses more than half of their Trip because of missed connections, delayed departures, denied boarding, traffic accidents on their way to a departure, or lost or stolen passports.
  • The Covered Traveler(s) misses a cruise or tour departure because all common carrier travel to or from their destination is canceled or delayed at least 3 hours due to severe weather or a problem with the common carrier.
  • Before the Trip Departure Date, a cruise or tour operator cancels or postpones a prepaid event or activity, such as a shore excursion, and it’s not rescheduled and the Covered Traveler(s) cannot participate during their Trip.
  • A travel supplier, such as an airline or lodge, goes out of business or goes into financial default after the purchase of the Trip, impairing the Covered Traveler’s ability to travel.
  • A mandatory evacuation is ordered by a government or public safety agency at the Covered Traveler’s Trip destination.
  • A terrorist incident certified by a government agency occurs in the Covered Traveler’s Trip destination.

What’s not covered?

Things not typically covered include:

  • Change in plans
  • Change in financial situation
  • Planned trip is changed or canceled by a travel agent, common carrier, etc.

Filing a Claim? Here’s How Sift Can Help

Just like Price Protection, Return Protection, Theft & Damage Protection, etc., Sift monitors and unlocks hundreds of dollars-worth of travel-related credit card rewards and let you know of insurance that your credit card carries. Not all coverage is the same – the fine print can vary from card to card based on the type of card, the issuer, and the card network it is affiliated with, so Sift tracks all of these benefits for each of your credit cards to keep you on top of what travel insurance benefits you can reap! Download the app to start saving during your summer travel planning and trips today: https://sift.app.link/iOSApptwr

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s