I have many trips planned for 2018, so careful insurance planning has consumed me for the last several weeks. In February, I shall be travelling to Sri Lanka and southern India. This trip started out with the idea that I would be accompanying a friend to Sri Lanka. She will be attending a photographic workshop and wanted to do some travelling first. I said that I would love to go if she would be willing to go to the north, since I had already spent time touring the southern part of this incredibly beautiful and interesting island-country. She agreed and while we were in the initial planning stages, I mentioned the trip to another friend who said, “Would you mind if I joined you?” So that then launched another idea of the two of us going on to the Backwaters of Kerala, India after we dropped the first friend off at her workshop. As this was becoming a more complex and lengthy trip, I knew that I needed to address the ever-present insurance dilemma. What should I purchase to get the most coverage for the least money.
In addition to the Sri Lanka/India adventure, I have a trip planned with my husband in late March to Egypt. I already have the yearly medical and evacuation coverage to cover basics, but now I needed more. Sri Lanka, India, and Egypt are all places that are potential political hot spots. I feel safe travelling to these destinations, but they nevertheless could have problems. Egypt just announced that they will be having presidential elections the day before we arrive. According to research, it should not be controversial but these days you can never be sure. Southern India has also had demonstrations recently and northern Sri Lanka has seen unrest for quite some time. With all of this, I knew that I needed to have security evacuation insurance. I could go with Global Rescue or MedJet but found that TravelGuard has a business traveler’s policy for much less. And since I know that they are reputable, I decided to go with that yearly policy. It does not cover trip cancellation or some of the other typical insurance inclusions but in this situation, that is fine. As long as I am covered for a security emergency! I am not getting additional trip-specific coverage for Sri Lanka since that trip is not too expensive. You always need to figure out what you can afford to lose if something should happen. In this case, I could gamble on the loss. But when it came to the Egypt trip, it was too pricey to risk. My general yearly policy would cover some loss, but I decided to get a trip specific policy to cover the balance. I do not usually cover air fare because that can almost always be changed for a small fee. My thought is that if I cannot afford to lose that fee, then I should not be travelling on this type of vacation at all. That may be a justification, but that is the way I look at it.
So now I have medical coverage and security evacuation for the year. Any other coverage that I might need would be trip specific for cancellation or interruption. And for the trips later in the year, I will make that judgement as I see how I fare on the next couple of trips and how my health is holding up.