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Old April 21st, 2014, 05:54 PM
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Default Medical Only Travel Insurance.

I just found out my Chase Freedom Visa covers all my travel insurance (cancellation, intrurruption, lost luggage, etc) except for medical. I can't see paying for regular cover which would be redundant for most parts.

I went out and found the best, most affordable single trip Medical Only coverage on SquareMouth. I can cover me, spouse, daughter and granddaughter all included for less than $100.00. Some plans as low as $73.00 (with deductable).

One trip to see the ship doctor for any of us will most like be a lot more than that.

If you need just Medical, you might want to check them out.
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Old April 21st, 2014, 07:32 PM
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Make sure you read the fine print on your Chase travel insurance. It most likely will say it's secondary coverage to your home policy or second to what the airline or cruise line will give you. Read the card agreement, which is about six to eight pages long; it will give you all the details.
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Old April 21st, 2014, 07:46 PM
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Just be VERY careful when doing this. Cheap price may not be the best deal and may end up costing you more in the long run.

We use to sell travel insurance from 5 different companies - a few of them were among the biggest names in the industry. We fired 3 of them because they were not providing good customer service to our clients when needed.

Best name does not necessarily mean best product. And some of those selling through websites like that one you mentioned are notorious for causing problems for people. The worth of a company is how they provide service, not how cheap they sell a policy.

Also, some of the travel insurance offered by credit card companies that do not include the medical coverage have relatively limited coverage. So make sure you check the amounts they actual coverage.

Not saying you can't find a good deal, but I cannot impress enough that you have to do your research before buying something that may not provide what you think it does.

I've been doing this for a long time and I've heard some horror stories about some of these so called 'travel insurance' policies. In fact, there was a story written in the Washington Post a while ago telling about a couple that bought what they thought was a 'travel insurance' policy only to find out it was a 'travel protection' policy. Huge difference in the two!

Best advice is work with your agent because they usually have companies they deal with they know and trust.

Just remember, it's better to spend a little bit more and get better coverage, than to buy cheap and find out it's going to cost you thousands out of your pocket later.

Pete
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Old April 21st, 2014, 08:48 PM
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Another option you want included in your travel coverage is med vac, in case you have to be taken off the ship and brought to the closest hospital. This can cost thousands that our regular insurance does not cover, doesn't sound like your only medical does either, just something to check and make sure you have, you just never know.
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Old April 21st, 2014, 09:10 PM
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Take it from someone who has walked this walk. My husband took ill while on a cruise...they stopped and restarted his heart onboard,and we were whisked off the ship to a hospital in St Thomas, probably while they were swiping our cc.

Make sure as Pete says, you do research,and makes sure your medical amount is high, and will cover the possible medivac, in the event of a serious crisis.

For us on this cruise we walked with angels. Including a Cruisemate who advised me about a flash sale on travel insurance...hard to believe but, because of this sale, we paid like $8.00 for a years coverage, yes that's right a year! They sent a nurse from Miami to St T, at a cost of $4,000, to fly with us back to Boston.

Check and recheck, ask questions, and be confident you have the best, not the cheapest.
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Old April 21st, 2014, 09:45 PM
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Trip's story reminds me of a friend of mine's client who actually had the worst case scenario happen. They were on a Panama canal cruise and her husband had a heart attack. After getting him stable, they evacuated him by helicopter to the closet hospital in a nearby foreign country. (Keep in mind that some insurance, especially health insurance does not cover some things in foreign countries.) Anyway, he lapsed into a coma and a week later passed away. The travel insurance company helped her find lodging, deal with the getting the body back to the U.S. and covered all the expenses totaling over $100,000. She ended up with no out-of-pocket expenses whatsoever.

But I can relate personally because the day we were leaving on a 2-week European trip, which included a 7-night river cruise, our son, who was living with us, had chest pains and we had to rush him to the hospital. Turned out, it was his gall bladder and it had to be removed. Luckily, we always purchase the travel insurance and they reimbursed us for 100% of our out-of-pocket expenses without any problems.

As I always tell people, you hope purchasing travel insurance is a waste of your money because if you need it, it's usually not for a good reason. But if you need it, you're damn glad you got it!!

As with any insurance, whether it be health, car, life, or travel, you get what you pay for and the limits and coverages on some are definitely much better than they are for others.

This is why I never suggest purchasing the travel insurance offered by the cruise line. On some of those, it does not cover your independent air reservations! And on others, the limits are relatively low. Had this lady I mentioned above had the cruise line's insurance, she would have been out of pocket a very large amount.

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Old April 22nd, 2014, 02:14 PM
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Thanks for all the information. My credit card covers all the usual things, trip cancellation, inturruption, lost luggage, etc. Couldn't see any difference with it and the coverage with the trip insurance I usually purchase.

After researching several insurance plans, the Single trip Medical Only Insurance plans cover all the standard medical options including doctor visits, hospitalization and any subsequent care, as well as medical evacuation if necessary. The only differences are the amount of coverage (some have deductables, some don't) that you feel comfortable with.

The intent of this my post was for information purposes only and not meant to pursuade anyone on the merits of one particular type of insurance or another.

Again, thanks for the responses.
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Old April 22nd, 2014, 10:28 PM
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Good to know your credi card covers a lot. I was just letting you know that some cards say they cover you and when something happens the card company says will pay after your other insurance or something like that. Other cards say they will pay trip canx if you use the card to buy the cruise or airfare with it. That's all. Hope you have a great trip.
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Old April 24th, 2014, 10:54 AM
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Everyone should review what they "REALLY" need for travel insurance.

For me it is medical. If for some reason I didn't get to go on the cruise then I would just be out of what I had already paid. Not a good thing but nothing that is going to give me a financial hardship.

On the other side of the coin. A medical emergency outside the U.S. can wreak havoc on the retirement account. Bills of $50,000 to $250,000 can accrue and this is what will make things difficult for most people. NEVER, EVER, EVER leave the country without medical insurance and MAKE SURE the insurance coverage you have covers you in the countries and cruises you will visiting and taking.

I have been amazed, too many times, when people say that their Medicare covers them outside the country. I usually ask: You mean your Medicare Supplement plan covers you outside the country. Too often I get the response of: No. Medicare covers you anywhere in the world. It definitely does not and people who believe this need to quit doing their research on Ask.com and read their Medicare booklet.

Also, very few private insurance policies cover you outside the country. However, more and more health insurance policies are now doing so. Read your policy before venturing out of the country without insurance.

My wife and I spent the additional $20/month for a supplement that would cover us outside the country and also included repatriation.

Many credit cards do give you travel insurance but there are many exclusions in this type of insurance. On almost all of them their is NO waiver of pre-existing conditions and they are all secondary insurances. Amex Platinum, Amex Centurion and Chase Sapphire Preferred are cards I know that have a decent travel insurance plan but the pre-existing waiver is non-existent. Also, these cards come with a $100 - $1500 annual fee. Separate medical insurance is required unless you've been healthy as an ox for most of your life and especially the last year.

The best advice is:
1. Review you current insurance(s) and see if you are covered outside the U.S. and to what extent.

2. If in doubt: Buy the insurance. You'll probably never use it, but if, and when, you do you will be very glad you had it.

Take care,
Mike
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Old July 22nd, 2014, 01:53 PM
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Looks like you have done all the right things. Checking the fine print, asking the right questions and making sure you are getting the protection you need. About the trip cancellation, checking to see if the covered reasons are adequate is a good idea. Like some other members suggested most plans do not protect you if you cancel your trip because of a pre-existing condition. Some plans will not cover cancellations due to sickness of a family member who is not travelling.

The medical plan, its best to check if pre-existing illnesses are covered and also if medical evacuation is included. For this, you could check your options at Visitor Guard: Visitors Insurance for USA Travel, Compare Quotes. Some plans evacuate you to the nearest hospital and some can bring you back home. Happy cruising!
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