"Do I really need that?" is a common refrain in conversations that turn towards travel insurance. Many people—be they unseasoned travlers, recklessly-minded people, etc.—either don't know why they would need it or simply don't want to believe that they do.
But the case for travel insurance is an easy one to make. Pretty much anyone can benefit from having its protections. Let us explain.
This is where a lot of people's heads jump to first when they think about travel insurance, and for good reason. Depending on where you visit, getting timely and effective medical treatment can range from cheap to reasonable to outrageously expensive. If it's the latter that's the case, you could end up spending thousands (!!!) of dollars on a service that could have been covered for somewhere around a hundred.
One situation where this doesn't totally apply is with out-of-province travel. Thanks to the Canada Health Act, travelers visiting another province can bill their home province for most medical costs that might arise during a trip.
But for any international traveling, Canadians won't be so lucky. Travel insurance is the only way to guarantee that they won't be paying some sort of ungodly fee for whatever medical work needs to be done.
The thing about medical coverage is that it doesn't necessarily end with what takes place at a hospital or walk-in clinic. If you are involved in any sort of serious incident while abroad (or even in a different province)—something on the level of broken bones, severe sickness, or consciousness-threatening conditions—a lot of different needs could suddenly come into play.
You could need an ambulance to get you to a hospital, prescription drugs that are given outside of the hospital, home-care (or, in this, case, hotel/Airbnb-care) services, diagnostic and lab services outside of the hospital, assistive devices like prosthetics, etc. In Canada, none of these things are guaranteed to be covered—or even partially covered—by out-of-province protection. Things are bound to be even worse internationally, which is why travel insurance is such a huge help in the extended medical coverage department.
Cancelling a trip seems so unlikely right up until the moment it actually happens. But there's a million reasons someone could have to cancel a trip: work complications, family illness, personal worries—the list goes on and on.
Having travel insurance eliminates the worry of needing to be on edge about these things. Plus, in the event that you are called back and the trip is cut short, having to pay full price for new flights and accommodations is a terrible (and expensive) feeling. Sure, the price of travel insurance is one that you wouldn't have had to pay if everything went to plan, but there's no way to be sure that it will.
It's not fun to travel without the items you planned to have alongside you. Regardless of whether those things were stolen from you or simply delayed by in transit, it stinks.
Luckily, travel insurance comes in handy in both of those situations. With baggage loss, travel insurance will provide you with funds to cover all of your essentials (and usually some extras!) until you have your luggage returned to you. Theft compensation amounts differ by insurer—it could be impossible to be reimbursed in full—but as long as you follow the proper procedures, you should be able to recoup a lot of value.