How to get travel insurance for severe weather – Forbes Advisor


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When severe weather strikes, even the best vacation plans can fall apart. A storm may disrupt your cruise or a storm may close your destination airport.

If you buy a comprehensive travel insurance plan before your trip, you’ll be better prepared to take severe weather in stride. The right travel insurance plan can cover you for weather-related travel issues, but it’s important to know what your policy covers and what it doesn’t.

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Does travel insurance cover severe weather?

The best travel insurance plan packs a wide variety of coverage that can protect you financially in the event of severe weather travel delays, interruptions, or cancellations.

The important thing is that the travel insurance plan you buy includes the types of coverage you need and lists severe or inclement weather as a reason for making a claim.

What’s eligible for severe weather is defined by your guide, but often includes:

  • Storms
  • Storms
  • Storms
  • fog
  • Rain storms
  • Snow storms
  • Snow storms
  • Snow storms

Be sure to purchase a travel insurance policy that covers your severe weather concerns. These companies’ plans offer good hurricane and severe weather coverage.

Types of insurance coverage you should look for in a severe weather travel insurance plan include:

  • Trip cancellation
  • Travel delay
  • Travel interruption

Also, look for additional coverage options, such as:

  • Lost connection. If severe weather causes you to miss a connecting flight, WorldTrips offers additional benefits.
  • Travel comfort. AIG’s Travel Guard Deluxe plan has coverage for certain travel inconveniences, such as getting to the mountains to ski and the resort being closed due to inclement weather.

Travel cancellation insurance and severe weather

If you need to cancel a trip to the Bahamas because the hurricane caused the Nassau airport to close, you can turn to your trip cancellation insurance.

In the event of a problem listed in the policy – such as severe weather – this cover will cover 100% of your travel costs.

There is something different. In order to make a successful trip cancellation claim, you need to purchase your travel insurance plan before the severe weather becomes a “known event.” So, if a hurricane near your vacation spot has already been named, it’s too late to buy travel insurance for hurricane coverage.

Also check specific time limits for trip cancellations due to hurricanes at your destination. For example, in order to file an insurance claim, your destination must be under a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration hurricane watch within three days of your scheduled departure date, and you may need to cancel your policy 14 days after its effective date. .

It should be noted that your destination must be generally inaccessible or uninhabitable due to severe weather to qualify for trip cancellation benefits.

Sometimes severe weather also occurs indoors. If your primary residence becomes uninhabitable after a named hurricane, you may be eligible to file a trip cancellation claim as long as you purchased the policy before the hurricane was declared.

You can submit a trip cancellation claim if your home is uninhabitable due to a natural disaster listed in your policy. This way you can stay at home to take care of the damage but still claim your travel expenses through insurance.

“Cancel for any reason” travel insurance amendment

If you want maximum flexibility to cancel your trip, add “cancel for any reason” (CFR) travel insurance when you buy it. This typically increases the cost of your policy by 50% but allows you to cancel regardless of the reason.

There are some CFAR caveats to keep in mind:

  • You must purchase CFAR coverage within 14 days of making your initial travel deposit.
  • To make a successful CFAR claim, you must cancel your trip at least 48 hours before your scheduled trip (so not at the last minute).
  • CFAR generally pays 50% or 75% of your insured income, depending on your policy.

Travel delay insurance and severe weather

Say you are waiting at the airport and your flight is delayed due to a storm at your destination. This is where travel delay insurance can come in handy.

If you experience a delay beyond the waiting period listed in your policy, travel delay coverage can reimburse you for any pre-paid, non-refundable travel expenses. For example, the specific waiting time can be six hours or 12 hours.

So if that storm causes you to miss a day of skiing you paid for in advance, you can file a claim for that loss unless severe weather is listed as an acceptable reason in your policy.

Travel delay insurance can help pay for hotel rooms and meals purchased while on vacation due to inclement weather. There is typically a maximum daily and total maximum limit per person for travel delay benefits.

Trip interruption travel insurance and weather conditions

Travel insurance usually doesn’t cover minor weather upsets like rain that can put a damper on your beach vacation. But if unexpected severe weather causes you to end your trip early, trip interruption insurance can help.

For example, if a hurricane hits your destination that prevents access to the area or makes the region uninhabitable, you can file a travel interruption request. If a storm hits and makes your home uninhabitable while you’re on your way back home, you’re also eligible for trip interruption benefits.

Most travel insurance companies have additional 24/7 helplines for policy holders. If you need to return early due to inclement weather, representatives can help you book a new flight home.

Trip interruption insurance covers the extra cost of that last-minute ticket and pays you for the prepaid and non-refundable costs of leaving early. But again, only if you’re flying home early because of a problem listed in your policy.

“Interruption for any reason” travel insurance upgrade

For more freedom to end your trip early for any reason, some travel insurance companies offer “interruption for any reason” travel insurance. This premium upgrade will reimburse you up to 75% of the cost of your trip if you fully confirm your trip. It starts after a certain waiting period, generally 48 hours or 72 hours from your departure. According to CFAR, you need to buy “interruption for any reason” cover within 14 days of booking your trip.

When is severe weather not covered by travel insurance?

Travel insurance generally does not include “known occurrences” cover. Once a natural disaster is a recognized risk (and “unforeseen”), it may not be covered if you purchase a new travel insurance plan.

For example, if you’re scheduled to go on a cruise in a week and a new hurricane is named, you may not be able to quickly purchase travel insurance to cover hurricane-related delays or interruptions.

That’s the best argument for buying travel insurance early, according to Jeff Rollander, director of claims at Faye Travel Insurance. “It’s a good idea to buy travel insurance as soon as possible after booking your trip (such as your flight or accommodation). This way, you are protected from unexpected events that cause delays or cancellations.

Many travel insurance companies offer a “free look” period after purchasing a policy. Take this time to read the fine print of the travel insurance plan and decide if the policy meets your needs. If not, cancel it for a refund.

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