Make sure your travel insurance covers cruises!
Travel insurance companies often consider cruises to be different than your standard vacation. Cruises often pass through different countries and international waters, and have a different set of needs when compared to a tropical getaway or ski trip to the Alps. Medical evacuation while at sea can be more costly than medical evacuation while ashore, and some insurers treat cruises as a separate sort of vacation when selling travel insurance.
Whether you are going on a short Mediterranear vacation or a half year trip around the world, you want the peace of mind that comes with specialized travel insurance.
The risk of falling seriously ill or becoming injured thousands of miles from shore is the greatest reason for purchasing cruise travel insurance as you must be covered in such an eventuality.
While some insurers have cruise travel insurance, others will include cruises in their standard policies. Be careful – some insurers actually exclude cruises from standard coverage, meaning that you must speak with your individual insurer to get specific details.
With the UK and Ireland combined setting targets for 2 million cruise vacationeers in 2017, this growing sector has a specialized insurance industry catering to it. With higher trip cancellation limits, longer time periods for trip cancellations and coverage catering to a mature demographic, cruise insurance could be right for you.
Does cruise insurance cover pre-existing conditions?
Most cruise insurance will cover pre-existing conditions. If you have a pre-existing condition that causes your vacation to be cancelled, you can be reimbursed for the cost of your vacation if you have eligible insurance. In general, there is a requirement that you have no symptoms of your conditions for at least 60 to 90 days prior to payment of your first non-refundable deposit for the cruise. As well, you must purchase travel insurance shortly after the deposit is made. This stops people from having no symptoms prior to the deposit, realizing they have symptoms after the deposit which may cause them to miss the cruise, and deciding to quickly purchase insurance in order to be reimbursed.
Primary versus secondary cruise insurance
If you decide to purchase cruise travel insurance, you may wish to focus on primary insurance policies. These policies come into effect as soon as there is any financial amount required. Compare this to secondary travel insurance policies, which may rely on your homeowner or medical insurance to pay out before you will see a cent from the travel insurance. Often, cruise lines themselves offer insurance policies, but these policies are usually secondary policies.
What questions should you ask with regards to cruise insurance?
While this list is not extensive, here are a few questions that may be important when deciding which travel insurance policy to buy.
- Does the insurance reimburse if you are confined to cabin due to illness?
- Does the insurance reimburse if you are confined to cabin due to a pre-existing condition?
- How long do you need to be symptom free for a pre-existing condition to be covered?
- Are all of the countries that you will be visiting covered in your policy?
- Does your coverage include trip cancelation due to bad weather?
- Does your basic travel insurance cover the cost of a medical evacuation while at sea?
These questions can help you determine whether you need specialized cruise travel insurance.