June 1, 2020

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Allianz Cruise Insurance

Experienced cruisers never leave shore unless they're protected by cruise travel insurance. Why? Because when something goes wrong on your vacation, cruise insurance can help make things right. If the ship sails without you because your flight to Miami was delayed, cruise insurance can help you catch up. If you break your leg and have to cancel your trip, the cruise line won't reimburse you — but travel insurance can. And if you suffer a medical crisis on board, cruise insurance can cover your evacuation and emergency medical care.

Cruise travel insurance from Allianz Global Assistance includes many other benefits, such as lost/delayed baggage coverage, trip delay coverage, trip interruption coverage and more. We offer affordable plans for every type of cruise. Just remember: As long as you're protected with an Allianz cruise insurance plan, you can leave your worries at the dock.

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Cruise Line Insurance Plan Comparison

Every cruise line offers some kind of protection plan to it passengers. Should you buy it?...

Cruise Travel Tips & Advice

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Whether it's your first voyage or your fiftieth, we want your upcoming cruise to live up to your highest expectations. That's why we've collected our best cruise tips and resources in this library. You'll find reviews of specific cruise lines, cruise packing lists, advice on choosing port excursions and guides to purchasing cruise travel insurance.

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Terms, conditions, and exclusions apply. Please see your plan for full details. Benefits/Coverage may vary by state, and sublimits may apply.

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Insurance benefits underwritten by BCS Insurance Company (OH, Administrative Office: 2 Mid America Plaza, Suite 200, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181), rated “A” (Excellent) by A.M. Best Co., under BCS Form No. 52.201 series or 52.401 series, or Jefferson Insurance Company (NY, Administrative Office: 9950 Mayland Drive, Richmond, VA 23233), rated “A+” (Superior) by A.M. Best Co., under Jefferson Form No. 101-C series or 101-P series, depending on your state of residence and plan chosen. A+ (Superior) and A (Excellent) are the 2nd and 3rd highest, respectively, of A.M. Best's 13 Financial Strength Ratings. Plans only available to U.S. residents and may not be available in all jurisdictions. Allianz Global Assistance and Allianz Travel Insurance are marks of AGA Service Company dba Allianz Global Assistance or its affiliates. Allianz Travel Insurance products are distributed by Allianz Global Assistance, the licensed producer and administrator of these plans and an affiliate of Jefferson Insurance Company. The insured shall not receive any special benefit or advantage due to the affiliation between AGA Service Company and Jefferson Insurance Company. Plans include insurance benefits and assistance services. Any Non-Insurance Assistance services purchased are provided through AGA Service Company. Except as expressly provided under your plan, you are responsible for charges you incur from third parties. Contact AGA Service Company at  800-284-8300 or 9950 Mayland Drive, Richmond, VA 23233 or [email protected] .

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  • Best Cruise Insurance
  • Cruise Travel Insurance Company Reviews
  • Cruise Travel Insurance FAQs
  • Why You Should Trust Us
  • Compare Cruise Travel Insurance

Best Cruise Insurance Plans of January 2024

Our experts answer readers' insurance questions and write unbiased product reviews ( here's how we assess insurance products ). In some cases, we receive a commission from our partners ; however, our opinions are our own.

Travel is full of the unexpected, which can be part of the fun. But your risks grow exponentially when you get on the high seas for a cruise vacation. Sea sickness can be the least of your worries should something go wrong. So you'll want to ensure you have the best travel insurance coverage that won't expose you in an emergency.

Best Cruise Insurance Plans

  • Nationwide Travel Insurance : Best Overall
  • AXA Assistance USA : Best for Affordable Premiums
  • Seven Corners Travel Insurance : Best for Seniors
  • Travel Guard : Best for Cruise-Only Coverage
  • HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance : Best for High Coverage Amounts
  • World Nomads Travel Insurance : Best for Adventure Seekers
  • Travelex Travel Insurance : Best for Long-Distance Cruises

Best Cruise Travel Insurance Company Reviews

Cruise insurance may offer options like missed port of call and medical evacuation coverage. You might not need the flight protections of a regular travel insurance plan if you're catching a cruise at a port near you, but medical and cancel for any reason coverage could be critical.

Nationwide Travel Insurance

Nationwide Travel Insurance  is a long-standing and reputable brand within the insurance marketplace that offers cruise insurance plans with solid coverage and reasonable rates.

It has three cruise insurance options: Universal, Choice, and Luxury. The Nationwide Choice plan, for example, offers $100,000 in emergency medical coverage and $500,000 in emergency medical evacuation coverage.

The right plan for you depends on your budget and coverage needs. But each plan offers cruise-specific coverages like ship-based mechanical breakdowns, coverage for missed prepaid excursions if your cruise itinerary changes, and covered service disruptions aboard the cruise ship.

Nationwide Travel Insurance Review

AXA Travel Insurance

AXA Assistance USA  offers three comprehensive coverage plans: Gold, Silver, and Platinum. Each of these plans offers coverage for issues like missed flights, medical emergencies, lost luggage, and more.

The highest-tier Platinum plan provides $250,000 in medical emergency coverage and $1 million in medical evacuation coverage. The baggage loss coverage is $3,000 per person, and their missed connection coverage is $1,500 per person for cruises and tours.

In addition, travelers can take advantage of AXA's concierge service, which provides an extensive network of international service providers. They'll be able to assist you with things like restaurant reservations and referrals, golf course information, and more. This service could come in handy if you're stopping at a variety of unfamiliar destinations during your cruise.

The coverage limits on AXA's policies are on the higher end compared to other providers. And you can buy coverage for a little as 4% of your trip cost depending on your age, travel destination, and state of residence.

AXA Travel Insurance Review

Seven Corners Travel Insurance

Seven Corners Travel Insurance lets cruisers enjoy traveling in their golden years with the knowledge they're covered in the event of an accident or emergency. While other providers do offer coverage to those 80+ years old, Seven Corners is known for its affordable premiums while offering above-average medical expenses and medical evacuation coverage limits — two areas of travel insurance coverage that are even more important as we get older.

Seven Corners also offers the option of a preexisting conditions waiver and CFAR insurance at an additional cost, plus "Trip Interruption for Any Reason" coverage, which you won't find on many policies.

You can choose between the RoundTrip Basic or RoundTrip Choice plans, with the higher-tier Choice plan costing more but providing more coverage.

Seven Corners Travel Insurance Review

AIG Travel Guard

Travel Guard  offers coverage specifically designed for cruising with three different plans: Deluxe, Preferred, and Essential. When you get a quote online, the first question you'll be asked is whether you're flying, cruising, or doing both or neither. Choose cruising, and you'll be covered (up to the allowed amount) for things like trip delay, interruption, and cancellation. Along with coverage for inclement weather and damaged, lost, or stolen baggage and travel documents.

As an example, the middle-tier AIG Preferred plan offers $50,000 in medical emergency coverage and $500,000 in emergency evacuation coverage. The Preferred and Deluxe plans also offer CFAR as an upgrade.

AIG Travel Guard Insurance Review

HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance

HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance  offers three levels of trip protection: TripProtector Economy, Classic, and Preferred. The higher the tier, the more coverage you'll get for things like baggage delays, trip delays & cancellations, and medical expenses. But their premiums remain reasonable even at the highest tier of coverage.

Not only does the HTH Worldwide Trip Protector Preferred plan offer higher-than-average medical emergency and evacuation coverage limits ($500,000 and $1 million, respectively), but you'll also get a baggage loss coverage limit of $2,000 per person and coverage for trip interruption of up to 200% of the trip cost. You also have the option to add CFAR coverage for an additional cost.

HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance Review

World Nomads Travel Insurance

World Nomads Travel Insurance  has been a top choice for comprehensive travel insurance for many years now. And it's a great option when it comes to cruise coverage, too.

Even the most basic Standard Plan comes with $100,000 in medical emergency coverage and $300,000 in emergency evacuation coverage. And you'll get higher coverage limits with their Premium Plan. Plus, unlike many other providers, World Nomads trip cancellation and emergency medical coverage includes COVID-19-related issues.

What sets World Nomads apart from many other insurance companies is that its policies cover 200+ adventure sports. This can be important for adventurous cruisers who plan to take part in activities like jet skiing, scuba diving, or parasailing during their cruise.

World Nomads Travel Insurance Review

Travelex Travel Insurance

Travelex Travel Insurance offers three different travel insurance plans: the Travel Basic plan, the Travel Select plan, and the Travel America plan (for trips within the US). What's a bit unique about the Travel Select plan is that it will cover trips of up to 364 days, making it a great option for long-distance cruising. Many providers only offer coverage for trips of 30 days or less.

With the Travelex Travel Select Plan, you'll be covered for up to $50,000 in medical emergency costs and for up to $500,000 for medical evacuation and repatriation costs. You'll also have the option to pay for increased medical emergency coverage of up to $100,000, increased medical evacuation coverage of up to $1 million, and CFAR insurance.

Travelex Travel Insurance Review

Cruise Travel Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

If you're booking a cruise, we recommend purchasing travel insurance when you make your first trip payment. That could be for the cruise itself or an expense like airfare to get you to your cruising destination. This way, if you have to cancel your trip, you'll have the most extended coverage period possible.

A standard travel insurance policy that covers cruises is sufficient when you're planning a cruise vacation. But you can also consider insurance plans tailored to cruises for specialized coverage like missed port of call or restriction to your stateroom type.

As a rule of thumb, you can expect to pay between 4% and 8% of your prepaid, nonrefundable trip expenses for cruise insurance coverage. The price will vary depending on factors like your age, your travel destination, and whether you require additional coverage.

Several great travel rewards credit cards offer trip protection, which can come in handy under certain circumstances. But if you're planning a cruise and have a lot of prepaid expenses associated with your trip, it's best to purchase a more comprehensive cruise insurance policy. You can read Insider's guide to the best credit cards with travel insurance to learn more about credit card insurance coverage.

How to Pick The Best Cruise Insurance for You

When buying travel insurance for a cruise, consider the additional risks that are specific to cruising. These include hurricanes and other weather-related concerns, strict cancellation terms, high pre-paid costs of a cruise, and the distance to emergency medical assistance.

See our picks for the best international travel insurance »

To find the policy that's right for you, it's best to compare several different cruise insurance policies based on the pricing and coverage they provide. Remember too that all reputable insurance providers will offer a "free-look period." This allows you to return the policy you've purchased for any reason, within a specific time period, for a full refund.

The most important coverages to look for in cruise insurance are:

  • Medical coverage — This coverage will pay for medical bills outside the US. But because treatment can be more expensive while onboard, make sure your policy offers sufficient coverage ($100,000+).
  • Medical evacuation coverage — This coverage will transport you to the nearest hospital or even back home if you become sick or injured during your journey. But an evacuation from sea will be more expensive than one from land. So you'll want to make sure your coverage has sufficiently high limits ($250,000+).
  • COVID-19 coverage — The coronavirus is now considered a "known" event, meaning standard travel insurance won't cover issues that arise from COVID-19. So, you'll want to consider any add-on coverage your provider offers to cover COVID-19 related illnesses.
  • Missed connection (missed port of call) coverage — This type of coverage will help you catch up to your itinerary if you miss your port of call for a covered reason, like a delayed flight on the way to the airport.
  • Coverage for hurricane warnings — With this type of coverage, you don't actually need to be affected by the hurricane. You can cancel and be reimbursed for your trip if the NOAA issues a hurricane warning. If you're cruising anywhere during (or on the tail ends) of hurricane season, this can come in handy. Just note: You can't buy travel insurance to cover a weather event once a storm or hurricane has been named.
  • Cancel for any reason (CFAR) — This is the most comprehensive coverage you can get, as it allows cancellations and reimbursement for pre-paid expenses for any reason. This can be a wise add-on for cruise coverage given the often higher prepaid expenses associated with cruising.
  • Preexisting conditions — This coverage ensures that no known health conditions are excluded from coverage.
  • Personal possessions insurance — Because of the events and fancy dinners cruise ships hold, you might take more valuable clothing or jewelry with you on a cruise. This type of coverage will insure your belongings against loss or theft while cruising.
  • Baggage loss and delay — This coverage will reimburse you up to a specified amount for essentials if your bags are delayed or if your bags get lost en route.

If you're buying travel insurance for the first time, you may want other travelers' perspectives. Personal Finance Insider conducted a 2023 winter travel insurance survey of 971 US adults in December through Momentive AI Audience .

Why You Should Trust Us: How We Chose the Best Cruise Travel Insurance

When comparing cruise travel insurance providers, we evaluated them based on the following criteria to come up with our list of top picks:

Customer Satisfaction

We look at ratings from JD Power and other industry giants to see where a company ranks in customer satisfaction.

Financial Stability

We check with sites like AM Best or S&P to check its financial stability. In short, is the company likely to be around 10 years from now?

Policy Types

We look at policy types from standard flight protection and baggage loss to cancel for any reason and sports or pet coverage.

Average Premiums

We compare average premiums per trip. Some companies also offer annual plans, and we compare policies accordingly.

Claims Paid

How frequently do companies pay claims easily and quickly? We check customer reviews and other resources to see which companies honor policies most effectively.

We look at the company's overall behavior. Is it operating ethically? Companies can earn additional points for such behaviors.

You can read more about our insurance ratings process here .

Best Cruise Travel Insurance Companies

Nationwide Nationwide Travel Insurance

  • Trip cancellation coverage of up to 100% of trip costs (for cruises) or up to $30,000 (for single-trip plans)
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Three cruise-specific plans to choose from
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Annual travel insurance plans available
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Strong trip cancellation coverage
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Cancel for any reason coverage available
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. CFAR insurance not available with every single plan
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Medical coverage is lower than what some competitors offer

Nationwide Travel Insurance offers many of the standard benefits you might see with a travel insurance policy. This can include things like trip cancellation coverage, so you can recover pre-paid costs or trip interruption in the event your vacation is interrupted by an unexpected event. There's also baggage delay coverage and medical coverage.

  • Cancel for any reason coverage available

AXA AXA Assistance USA

  • Trip cancellation coverage of up to 100% of the trip cost
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Generous medical evacuation coverage
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Up to $1,500 per person coverage for missed connections on cruises and tours
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Covers loss of ski, sports and golf equipment
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Generous baggage delay, loss and trip delay coverage ceilings per person
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Cancel for any reason (CFAR) coverage only available for most expensive Platinum plan
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. CFAR coverage ceiling only reaches $50,000 maximum despite going up to 75%

AXA Assistance USA keeps travel insurance simple with gold, silver, and platinum plans. Emergency medical and CFAR are a couple of the options you can expect. Read on to learn more about AXA.

  • Silver, Gold, and Platinum plans available
  • Trip interruption coverage of up to 150% of the trip cost
  • Emergency medical coverage of up to $250,000

Seven Corners Seven Corners Travel Insurance

  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Diverse coverage options such as CFAR, optional sports equipment coverage, etc.
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Available in all 50 states
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Prices are higher than many competitors
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Reviews around claims processing are mixed
  • Trip cancellation insurance of up to 100% of the trip cost
  • Trip interruption insurance of up to 150% of the trip cost
  • Cancel for any reason (CFAR) insurance available

AIG Travel Guard

Trip cancellation coverage for up to 100% of the trip cost and trip interruption coverage for up to 150% of the trip cost

  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Trip cancellation coverage of up to 100% of the cost, for all three plan levels
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. CFAR covers up to 75% of total trip costs (maximum of $112,500 on some plans) 
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Medical coverage of up to $500,000 and evacuation of up to $1,000,000 per person
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Includes COVID coverage 
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Above average baggage loss and delay benefits
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. High medical evacuation coverage
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Premiums may run slightly higher than competitors

Travel Guard is a well-established and highly rated name in the travel insurance industry. It offers three main coverage options to choose from, and in general its policies have above-average coverage for baggage loss and baggage delays, plus high medical evaluation coverage limits.

  • Trip cancellation coverage for up to 100% of the trip cost
  • Trip interruption coverage for up to 150% of the trip cost
  • Preexisting medical conditions exclusions waiver must be purchased within 15 days of initial trip payment
  • Annual travel insurance plan and Pack N' Go plan (for last-minute trips) available

HTH Worldwide HTH Worldwide Travel Insurance

  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Three plans to choose from
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Reasonable premiums
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. CFAR coverage available with some plans
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. High medical emergency and evacuation coverage
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Special coverages for pets, sports equipment, etc not available
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Limited reviews with complaints about claims not being paid
  • Trip cancellation of up to $5,000 with the Economy plan and up to $50,000 with the Preferred plan
  • Cancel for any reason insurance and missed connection insurance available with the Preferred plan
  • Baggage delay insurance starting after 24 or 12 hours depending on the plan

World Nomads World Nomads Travel Insurance

  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Coverage for 200+ activities like skiing, surfing, and rock climbing
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Only two plans to choose from, making it simple to find the right option
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. You can purchase coverage even after your trip has started
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. If your trip costs more than $10,000, you may want to choose other insurance because trip protection is capped at up to $10,000 (for the Explorer plan)
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Doesn't offer coverage for travelers older than 70
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. No Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) option
  • Coverage for 150+ activities and sports
  • 2 plans: Standard and Explorer
  • Trip protection for up to $10,000
  • Emergency medical insurance of up to $100,000
  • Emergency evacuation coverage for up to $500,000
  • Coverage to protect your items (up to $3,000)

Travelex Travelex Travel Insurance

  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Options to cover sports equipment
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Option to increase medical coverage
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Can cancel up to 48 hours before travel when CFAR option is purchased
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Affordable coverage for budget-conscious travelers
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Includes generous baggage delay, loss and trip delay coverage
  • Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction. Optional "adventure sports" bundle available for riskier activities
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Only two insurance plans to choose from
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Medical coverage maximum is low at up to $50,000 per person
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Pricier than some competitors with lower coverage ceilings
  • con icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'. Some competitors offer higher medical emergency coverage

Travelex travel insurance is one of the largest travel insurance providers in the US providing domestic and international coverage options. It offers a basic, select, and America option. Read on to learn more.

  • Optional CFAR insurance available with the Travel Select plan
  • Trip delay insurance starting at $500 with the Travel Basic plan
  • Emergency medical and dental coverage starting at $15,000

Get Cruise Travel Insurance Quotes

Compare quotes from the top travel insurance providers and find the cruise travel insurance that best fits your trip.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed in this article are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Read our editorial standards .

Please note: While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they're subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.

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Smooth Sailing Ahead: Your Guide to Cruise Travel Insurance [2023]

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Smooth Sailing Ahead: Your Guide to Cruise Travel Insurance [2023]

Best Cruise Travel Insurance for Seniors: Seven Corners

Best cruise travel insurance with covid-19 coverage: battleface, best cruise travel insurance for young travelers: aegis, best cruise travel insurance for adventure tours: img, best cruise travel insurance, cancel for any reason coverage: john hancock insurance agency, what is cruise insurance, is cruise insurance worth it, cruise insurance costs, types of cruise insurance, what to look for in a cruise travel insurance policy, how to get cruise insurance, final thoughts.

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Taking a cruise is one of the easiest ways to travel, but cruising isn’t immune to unexpected hiccups. Sudden illness, travel delays, or other unforeseen events could cancel or interrupt your cruising plans — you might even need medical coverage. 

With cruise insurance, you’re covered for unexpected issues that can interfere with your travel plans . Read on to learn what cruise insurance is, how to get it, and how to find the best cruise insurance policies, whether you’re buying directly from the cruise line or a third-party insurance company.

The 5 Best Cruise Travel Insurance Policies

The right cruise insurance policy offers the coverage you need at a good price, but policies aren’t one-size-fits-all. We’ve run quotes for various coverage scenarios — from seniors to adventure tours — to find the best cruise insurance policies . 

Consider these travel insurance policies for your next cruise:

Seniors cruising the world can get comprehensive coverage from Seven Corners Travel Insurance . We were quoted $89 for a 70-year-old cruising Mexico . The Seven Corners Trip Protection Basic policy offers trip cancellation and interruption, medical coverage, and medical evacuation, along with COVID-19 cancellation and medical coverage.

Comprehensive travel insurance, regardless of your age, is widely available and relatively affordable. Check out our complete guide to travel insurance for seniors .

If you’re concerned about COVID-19 derailing your cruise travel plans, getting cruise travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage is essential. The battleface Discovery Plan covers COVID-19 cancellation and medical expenses, along with regular trip cancellation, medical evacuation, and medical emergency coverage. We were quoted $36.54 for a 35-year-old cruising Italy on this plan.

Young travelers often have the lowest-priced travel insurance policies. We got a quote for just $30.27 from Aegis for a 22-year-old cruising the Bahamas . The Aegis Go Ready Choice policy covers COVID-19 medical and cancellation, trip cancellation and interruption, medical evacuation, and medical expenses.

Are you planning adventurous excursions on your cruise? IMG’s iTravelInsured Travel Lite , with options for winter, adventure, and extreme sports, can give you the coverage you need. We were quoted $58.87 for a 40-year-old traveler cruising to Costa Rica with plans to zipline . It covers trip cancellation and interruption, medical expenses, medical evacuation, and adventure sports with some exclusions, such as diving and adventure races.

Your travel insurance might not cover everything you want to do — particularly if you plan on adventure activities. Here’s our complete guide to adventure and extreme sports travel insurance .

If you’re especially concerned you may need to cancel your cruise, Cancel for Any Reason coverage allows you to cancel your trip and receive partial reimbursement for nonrefundable trip expenses, even if you cancel for reasons not normally covered by trip cancellation coverage. We were quoted $100.50 for a 55-year-old cruising Alaska for John Hancock Insurance Agency’s Silver plan , which reimburses up to 75% of your trip cost under Cancel for Any Reason coverage. It also offers coverage for COVID-19 medical and cancellation, trip cancellation and interruption, and medical expenses and evacuation with primary coverage.

Cruise insurance is travel insurance that covers cruises . It can help you manage all the what-ifs on your cruise. What if you need to cancel your booking? What if your flight is late? What if you get sick or hurt? Travel insurance for cruises can cover you for all of these things. 

Many travel insurance policies cover cruises, but cruise insurance may be tailored to the risks of cruises, covering transportation, accommodations, and activities. Getting travel insurance for cruises can offer peace of mind if you’re concerned about losing nonrefundable trip payments, travel delays, or covering emergency medical care.

Holland America Cruise ship in Alaska

Cruise bookings can be unforgiving, and cruise insurance can help you minimize your risk of losing the money you’ve paid for your trip. Travel insurance coverage is often a good idea if you’re concerned about losing nonrefundable prepaid travel expenses or covering emergency medical expenses . 

Because cruises are often less flexible than other types of travel, it’s generally a good idea to get cruise travel insurance. For example, you might be able to rebook a flight or hotel room, but if you cancel your cruise, you could lose your deposit or more. Often, cruise lines won’t offer any refunds if you cancel within a certain period before your cruise, such as 14 or 30 days .

Additionally, you shouldn’t expect your U.S.-based health insurance plan to cover you on your cruise, especially if you’re on an international cruise. And it’s exceptionally expensive if you need to be evacuated for a medical condition.

While everyone hopes for smooth sailing, the reality is a lot of unexpected issues could pop up on your cruise. Your flight to the cruise port could be delayed, you might get sick or injured on your cruise, or you might have to cancel the whole thing if illness or obligations prevent you from going on your cruise. A hurricane could interfere with cruising in storm hotspots such as the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico. 

Cruise insurance can offer financial support for many unexpected problems you might experience with a cruise. And with a 24-hour travel assistance hotline , you can get knowledgeable help whether you need to find a local pharmacy or coordinate the replacement of lost travel documents such as your passport.

That said, you might have travel insurance coverage available with a credit card . Some credit cards offer travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation and interruption, emergency medical treatment and evacuation, and travel delay coverage. Still, you should check the details of your credit card’s coverage to ensure it’s enough for your needs. 

Looking for a credit card with travel protections? Read our guide to the best credit cards for travel insurance coverage and protection.

Generally, expect cruise insurance to cost between 5% to 10% of the total cost of your cruise . For a $3,000 cruise, you’ll typically pay between $150 to $300 for comprehensive travel insurance coverage. But keep in mind several factors influence the cost of cruise insurance, including:

  • Add-ons, such as CFAR 
  • Coverage options 
  • Cruise cost 
  • Deductibles and limits 
  • Destination 
  • Group policies 
  • Traveler age 
  • Trip duration

Learn more about travel insurance costs in our guide to the average cost of travel insurance .

What Cruise Insurance Covers

Each travel insurance policy is unique, but travel insurance for cruise coverage typically includes:

  • 24/7 Assistance: You can get 24/7 support for itinerary changes, rebooking, medical emergencies, and more.
  • Baggage Protection: Your luggage is covered for loss, theft, or damage on your flight or during your cruise.
  • Cabin Confinement: You may get reimbursement if you have to stay in your cabin during your cruise, such as a required quarantine due to COVID-19.
  • Cancel for Any Reason: Usually available as an add-on, CFAR travel insurance allows you to cancel your cruise for any reason and receive a partial reimbursement of your nonrefundable travel expenses.
  • Itinerary Changes: You can get covered for changes in your cruise’s itinerary, missed port calls, or extended delays beyond your control.
  • Missed Connections: If you miss your cruise departure due to a flight delay or other covered reason, you can get reimbursed for your nonrefundable travel expenses.
  • Medical Emergencies: Cruise insurance can cover medical treatment on the cruise and may offer coverage for medical evacuation.
  • Trip Cancellation or Interruption: You can get reimbursed for your nonrefundable travel expenses if you cancel your cruise or end your trip early due to covered reasons such as illness or injury. You’re typically covered if the cruise line cancels due to mechanical issues, weather, or other unforeseen events.

Cruise-specific travel insurance may also offer reimbursement if your cruise ship is disabled. And if you want to cover shore excursions, be sure to include the cost of excursions in your total travel cost when you get quotes for cruise insurance.

While these coverage types are common among cruise insurance policies, checking the terms and conditions to confirm all coverage areas is a good idea.

There are many options for travel insurance, and you can generally choose as little or as much coverage as you’d like. You can opt for a comprehensive travel insurance policy, which may offer Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) coverage, or you might prefer to limit your costs and choose just the coverage you need. For example, you might choose standalone trip cancellation insurance or a travel medical insurance policy but decide you don’t need coverage for missed connections or baggage.

Consider these factors as you compare the best cruise travel insurance policies:

  • Cancellation Window: Understand how many days before your cruise departure you must cancel to qualify for reimbursement.
  • Coverage Availability: Travel insurance policies typically offer cruise coverage, but it’s best to confirm that a policy specifically covers cruises before you purchase it. Also, consider availability for coverages that may be important to you, such as CFAR or adventure sports. 
  • Customer Reviews and Reputation: You can get insight into the insurance provider and how claims and customer service work by reading customer reviews and ratings.
  • Eligibility Criteria: Cruise insurance policies may have eligibility criteria such as limits on age or trip duration and preexisting conditions. For example, some travel insurance policies max out at 90 days.
  • Exclusions and Limitations: Read the policy to understand what’s excluded or limited specifically to cruise-related coverage, such as reimbursements for port closures, itinerary changes, or medical incidents on the cruise.
  • Policy Cost: Get multiple quotes and compare each cost and coverage value to ensure you get a good value for your cruise insurance policy.
  • Purchase Timeline: You’ll usually need to purchase your cruise insurance within a certain period of booking your trip, so be sure you’re buying your policy within that timeframe.
  • Reimbursement Structure: Review the cruise insurance policy to confirm how much you can be reimbursed for under qualifying circumstances, such as if you need to cancel or interrupt your trip.

Woman booking cruise travel with laptop 1

You can buy cruise insurance from the cruise line when you book, or a travel agent may offer cruise insurance plans. You also have the option to purchase cruise trip insurance independently. It’s a good idea to get multiple quotes to compare your costs and coverage and get the best deal on cruise insurance.

You should buy cruise insurance when you make your first deposit so you’re immediately covered for trip cancellation. Here are some of the options and coverages if you purchase cruise insurance directly from the cruise line:

Before you purchase cruise insurance from a cruise line, compare your third-party options. You can get quotes from multiple travel insurance companies at once using a travel insurance aggregator such as Squaremouth .

Even a meticulously planned cruise can run into unforeseen disruptions — and cruise insurance can come in handy for the unexpected.

Cruise insurance covers you for sudden illnesses, travel delays, and more, offering financial protection so you’re safeguarded against uncertainties. Whether you get cruise insurance from the cruise line or third–party insurance providers, understand your coverage and how it protects your investment in cruise travel.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does my health insurance cover me on a cruise.

Some health insurance policies offer limited coverage on cruises, but coverage often depends on where you’re cruising and your planned activities. Check with your insurance provider about coverage before you depart on your cruise. Find out if supplemental cruise insurance is available if you want to use your existing health insurance coverage.

Are cruises covered under travel insurance?

Cruises are typically covered under travel insurance , so you don’t necessarily have to buy specialized cruise insurance, such as coverage from the cruise line. Travel insurance can cover trip cancellations and interruptions, medical emergencies, lost luggage, and more on your cruise trip.

Can you buy cruise insurance after booking?

You can buy cruise insurance after booking. It’s generally best to purchase cruise insurance as soon as possible after making your initial trip deposit — when you have money on the line. The sooner you purchase cruise insurance, the sooner you’re covered for trip cancellations.

Can you buy medical insurance for a cruise?

You can buy medical travel insurance to cover your medical expenses on a cruise, offering coverage such as medical emergencies, illnesses, and injuries.

How do I add travel insurance to my cruise?

You can add travel insurance to your cruise when you book with the cruise line or a travel agent. Alternatively, you can purchase travel insurance directly from travel insurance agencies.

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About Jessica Merritt

A long-time points and miles student, Jessica is the former Personal Finance Managing Editor at U.S. News and World Report and is passionate about helping consumers fund their travels for as little cash as possible.

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Is Cruise Travel Insurance Worth the Cost?

Lee Huffman

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money .

Table of Contents

What is cruise travel insurance?

What does cruise travel insurance cover typically, how much is travel insurance for a cruise, do i need it if i have other travel protections, is cruise travel insurance worth it.

Cruise travel insurance covers the cruise itself, not related travel.

It's usually purchased through the cruise operator, typically before booking.

Check to make sure your credit card doesn't offer similar insurance before buying cruise insurance.

Cruising is one of America's favorite travel experiences. According to a 2021 report from Cruise Lines International Association, an industry trade association, 82% of cruisers will cruise again. As well, 62% of non-cruisers are open to the idea.

And why not? Cruises often give travelers the chance to experience multiple destinations plus enjoy onboard entertainment, activities and dining for a set, all-inclusive price . Cruises simplify budgeting in a year when travel prices have been hard hit by inflation .

But what happens if something goes wrong with your ship, or you can’t make it onboard because of health concerns? Cruise travel insurance might be the answer. It protects your payment and covers you against illness or injury.

Before you pay for a cruise travel insurance policy, here's a look at what it is, how it works and if it's worth it.

Cruise travel insurance is add-on insurance coverage that — just like travel insurance — will reimburse you for delays, interruptions, medical situations or other problems during the cruise.

Depending on which cruise line you're traveling with, you might be able to buy a travel insurance policy when booking your trip (through the cruise line directly) or at a later date (either through the cruise line or separately from a third party).

Protecting travel costs can be a smart money move. A September 2022 survey of 737 past cruisers by InsureMyTrip found that the average trip cost for an insured cruise vacation so far this year is $6,367, an increase of nearly 15% from before the pandemic.

Can you buy travel insurance after booking a cruise? It depends. Some cruise lines require the purchase of a travel insurance policy before the final payment date when charges become nonrefundable. Others require the purchase of coverage a certain number of days before departure. Read the fine print to find out the deadline to purchase and the specifics of its coverage.

Circumstances covered by cruise travel insurance vary by policy and by issuer. Many cruise lines partner with an insurance company to underwrite its policy benefits.

Some common benefits available as part of travel insurance from a cruise line include:

Trip cancellation and interruption . If you cancel your trip or unexpectedly cut it short for an eligible reason, such as severe weather or illness, you'll get back some or all of the upfront costs, depending on the policy.

Cancel For Any Reason . This coverage tends to be more flexible, forgiving and expensive at time of purchase. Policyholders can cancel for any reason not listed in the policy and still receive a portion of their trip cost back, either as cash or as a future cruise credit (assuming they meet other eligibility requirements).

Trip delay . Cruise delay insurance protection protects expenses if your trip is delayed beyond a set number of hours.

Baggage protection . This insures your luggage if it is lost, stolen, damaged or delayed, and gives money to buy necessary items until bags are recovered.

Medical coverage . If you get sick or injured during the trip, the policy covers treatment and related expenses up to a limit.

Emergency evacuation . When emergency evacuation is necessary, the policy covers the transport cost up to a limit.

COVID coverage . If your trip is canceled or interrupted due to COVID, the policy covers the unused prepaid expenses, medical treatment and emergency evacuation, up to policy limits.

When comparing policies, choose a policy that includes all of the benefits, protections and coverage limits that are important to you. While you may be tempted to choose the lowest-priced option, that policy may not have the coverage you need.

We examined cruise insurance prices for a seven-day trip in February 2023 from the U.S. to Mexico. The example traveler was 35 years old, from Georgia, and planned to spend $2,500 on the trip, including airfare.

The average price of each company’s most basic coverage plan was $124. These policies didn't include optional add-ons, such as Cancel for Any Reason coverage or coverage for pre-existing medical conditions .

Separately, we looked at five different cruise insurance add-ons for a similar trip. With this option, the average cost of basic coverage was cheaper than a standalone policy at $111.20. Keep in mind that cruise insurance policies offered by cruise lines typically cover the cruise portion of the trip only, but do include some Cancel For Any Reason coverage.

If you already have a standalone travel insurance policy or a credit card with travel protections, you may wonder if you need to purchase a cruise travel insurance policy.

Credit card travel insurance

Many travel credit cards include travel protections such as trip cancellation, interruption, delayed or lost luggage reimbursement, and emergency evacuation benefits. Before buying a cruise travel policy, compare the coverage benefits and limits to determine if you already have coverage with a credit card.

One benefit that cruise travel insurance policies offer that credit cards don't is the ability to cancel for any reason. Although you may not get back 100% of the cruise price, these policies allow you to cancel for any reason and get a portion of the price back as a credit toward a future trip. If the policy is priced low enough, it may be worth buying the insurance offered through your cruise line for that benefit alone.

Travel insurance policy

Standalone travel insurance policies can be purchased to cover one person or a family for a specific trip or multiple trips within a period of time. These policies are available at a variety of price points to meet a traveler's budget. When comparing policy options, you can balance price versus coverage options.

If you're traveling multiple times within a short period of time, it may be more economical to buy a more comprehensive travel insurance policy instead of separate policies for each trip.

Cruise travel insurance can be worth it to address your concerns about traveling and protect your investments. These policies offer numerous protections that will cover your expenses in case your trip is canceled, interrupted or delayed, or if you get sick during the trip.

Before buying this coverage, compare your options against your credit card benefits. You might also shop for general travel insurance policies to see if you can get a better deal than what’s offered through your cruise line.

If you’re not covered by your credit card, cruise travel insurance can be worth the added cost. It will give you peace of mind before setting sail, when signing up for that adventurous land excursion and when clicking "Book" for an expensive vacation in the COVID travel landscape.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2024 , including those best for:

Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express

Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

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1x-10x Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases

60,000 Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

1x-5x Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.

60,000 Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

1x-2x Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases. Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare. Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services, and select streaming. Earn 1X points on all other purchases.

50,000 Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

travel insurance with cruise

travel insurance with cruise

Cruise travel insurance: What it covers and why you need it

Gene Sloan

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here .

It's not always smooth seas when it comes to cruising. Even the best-laid plans for a cruise vacation can sometimes be thrown off course by an unexpected event.

You might need to cancel a cruise in advance due to the sudden onset of an illness, such as COVID-19 or the flu. Or, maybe you fall ill during the cruise and need emergency medical attention. Maybe your flight to your ship gets canceled and you miss the vessel's departure. Or your ship is late arriving in port at the end of a voyage and you miss your flight home.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter .

In all of these situations, you might benefit from having cruise travel insurance.

Note the word might . Cruise insurance policies vary widely, and not every policy covers every type of event. That's why it always pays to read the fine print in a travel insurance policy before you purchase it to know what you're getting in advance.

It's also why you should read this introduction to everything you need to know about cruise insurance. It's a lot of details, I know, but you'll be glad to be educated and covered by a comprehensive travel insurance policy the next time something unexpected happens on your cruise vacation.

What does travel insurance cover when you cruise?

The typical cruise insurance policy covers a wide range of things that can go wrong in conjunction with a vacation at sea — both before and during the sailing.

For starters, policies often will reimburse you for the cost of canceling a cruise due to a last-minute crisis. They also often will cover costs related to an interruption of a cruise (maybe your ship breaks down, requiring you to fly home mid-voyage ). These two elements are known as trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance, and they are bundled into a typical travel insurance policy.

Some policies also will cover out-of-pocket costs related to a flight delay or cancellation that results in you missing your cruise departure (for instance, the cost of catching up to the ship at its next port). Expenses related to baggage delays and loss also often are covered.

But perhaps most importantly, many travel insurance policies will cover medical expenses you incur while on a cruise. Some even will cover the cost of evacuating you from a foreign destination if you are in the midst of a medical crisis.

Travel insurance giant Allianz Global Assistance reports that 53% of all cruise-related "billing reasons" for claims are because of illness for the insured person, while 14% are for an injury. Another 8% are for the illness of a family member, 4% for the death of a family member and 4% for the illness of a traveling companion, among other reasons.

travel insurance with cruise

Those percentages include illness and accidents that happen to cruisers just before a trip that make it impossible to travel. But, in many cases, such claims are the result of illness and injuries that happen during voyages.

" People often take risks during vacation that they might not take back home, whether riding a jet ski, zipping around on a motorized scooter in a city they don't know well or hiking unfamiliar terrain," James Page, senior vice president and chief administration officer of AIG Travel , told The Points Guy .

Some policies also cover the financial default of a travel provider. In such cases, if your cruise line goes out of business before you sail, you could get all or at least some of your money back.

Cruise travel insurance policies don't cover everything. For instance, standard travel insurers generally will not reimburse you for the cost of a cruise you cancel due to worries about an outbreak of an illness such as COVID-19. That's true even if a U.S. government agency such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issues a recommendation that you don't cruise, as it did during the coronavirus pandemic .

If you want the ultimate flexibility to cancel for such a reason or any other, you'll want to look into a more expensive cancel for any reason travel insurance upgrade.

Related: Avoiding outbreaks isn't covered by most travel insurance policies

Where to find a cruise travel insurance policy

You can buy a travel insurance policy directly from your cruise line when booking your trip, or through your travel agent (if you're using one, which often is a good idea when booking a cruise). You also can go directly to a third-party travel insurance provider or a travel-insurance aggregator site, such as InsureMyTrip.com or TravelInsurance.com. Your credit card might even give you some travel protections.

Here's what you need to know about each type of cruise travel insurance.

Third-party insurance companies

Third-party insurance companies that specialize in writing travel insurance include AIG Travel, Allianz Travel Insurance, Travelex Insurance and American Express Travel Insurance.

One reason to use a travel agent or a travel aggregator: They can help you find a policy that offers added coverage specific to cruising.

Related: The Points Guy's guide to the best travel insurance companies

"Many plans now offer benefits that will specifically appeal to cruise travelers, such as missed connection, missed port-of-call and cruise disablement coverage," Stan Sandberg, cofounder of TravelInsurance.com, told TPG.

Missed connection coverage reimburses cruisers for a set dollar amount if they need to rebook travel to catch up with their cruise at the next port. Missed port-of-call coverage pays a benefit if the cruise ship misses a scheduled port of call due to weather, a natural disaster or mechanical breakdown.

Cruise disablement coverage pays a benefit if the traveler is confined on a ship for more than five hours without power, food, water or restrooms.

As noted, policies vary widely. It's a good idea to compare plans and make sure the one you buy has the elements that are most important to you. One size doesn't fit all.

Credit cards with travel benefits

Some premium credit cards offer valuable travel protections that are comparable to what you might get from a standard travel insurance plan. For example, the travel insurance provided when you pay for travel with select cards can reimburse you for expenses if your baggage is damaged, you're stranded overnight due to a flight delay or cancellation or you have to return home to handle a family medical emergency.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve, for example, offers trip delay reimbursement, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, emergency medical coverage and even medical evacuation coverage , among other benefits. And yes, cruise lines are considered common carriers just like airlines.

travel insurance with cruise

If you're planning to rely on a card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve or The Platinum Card® from American Express (among others) for travel insurance, just be sure to carefully recheck your card's benefits and limits against regular travel insurance. You must pay for at least part — and sometimes all — of the trip with that credit card to take advantage of its protections.

Related: The best credit cards for booking cruises

Find out if your credit card protection includes travel accident insurance or covers pre-existing medical conditions, as well as when it will pay you back. Other questions to ask: What are the coverage limits? Will you have to pay for a foreign hospital bill upfront and then seek reimbursement later?

Cruise lines

Cruise lines often ask consumers booking a cruise to buy the line's own protection at the time of purchase. But if specifics about the coverage are lacking, always ask the line for details in advance, review coverage perks and limits and then compare those to one or two independent travel insurance policies or your credit card's insurance benefits.

Related: A beginners guide to picking a cruise line

Cruise line travel insurance policies sometimes have quirks. Many cruise companies will only offer a travel voucher or credit for future use in the event of a covered cancellation, not an outright refund.

Also, financial default may not be a covered event in a cruise line-sold policy, but it's typically covered with plans from third-party travel insurance companies.

Cruise line policies also can be more restrictive.

"Cruise line insurance seems to have become better and has more widespread coverage than in the past, but it typically won't cover air or pre- and post-travel [arrangements] unless those elements are purchased through [the line]," said Debra Kerper, a Cruise Planners travel adviser from Carrollton, Texas, who books travel and sells private insurance. "This is when private insurance coverage becomes so very important."

How much does cruise insurance cost?

Expect to pay anywhere from 4% to 8% of your total prepaid, nonrefundable trip expenses for a travel insurance policy. That's a wide range, we know, but it reflects the wide range of products that are out there.

You'll find some basic plans that cost even less than 4% of your trip expenses. Some super-premium plans that cover just about any conceivable issue can cost as much as 12% of your trip expenses.

Related: What's included in your cruise fare?

All reputable insurance companies will offer a "free-look period" during which you can receive a 100% refund on your premium. This allows you to review the policy you've selected and return it for any reason within the period allotted — usually for a small administration fee under $10.

travel insurance with cruise

Under normal circumstances, you don't need to purchase a so-called cancel for any reason add-on to your cruise travel insurance policy unless you really need the flexibility. The upgrades are significantly more expensive.

You can receive a quote and purchase a policy online in minutes with any credit card. Note that, although you may think travel insurance should code as "travel" when paid on a credit card and thus be eligible for bonus points on certain cards, that isn't always the case. Your points earnings will depend on the individual underwriter's merchant code. When in doubt, expect that the purchase will fall under the insurance category for earnings.

Should I buy travel insurance for a cruise?

Whether you buy travel insurance is a personal decision that will depend on a lot of factors. Would you be willing to absorb the loss of having to cancel a cruise on short notice due to an illness or accident? Could you afford an evacuation flight from a far-off port if you suddenly became seriously ill? Only you can answer those sort of questions.

Here are some things to consider as you make that decision.

You might not be covered by regular medical insurance while cruising

If you're an American and traveling internationally (which will be the case for most cruises), you may find that most private medical insurance plans in the U.S. won't cover you.

In addition, Original Medicare only covers people traveling outside U.S. borders in limited circumstances.

While certain Medicare Supplement Plans do have some foreign emergency medical benefits, not all do. Be sure to talk to your Medical Supplemental Plan provider to see if you're covered, what's covered, what the limits are and how the bill is paid.

Also note that, in some countries, particularly in Central and South America, travelers may not be discharged from a hospital until their bill is paid in full.

Related: Trip wrecked: 7 ways to prepare for any kind of travel disaster

Plus, if you have a medical incident overseas, you could find yourself stuck in a shared hospital room without air conditioning or a private bathroom. The level of care may not be what you expect.

"For people traveling internationally, it's crucial to know beforehand where to go for any treatment … and how they're going to pay for that treatment," AIG Travel's Page said.

Getting evacuated for a medical condition is expensive

Most airlines won't accept seriously ill passengers, those carrying bulky medical equipment or those requiring a full medical team.

Even a low-cost weekend getaway on a cruise to the Bahamas out of Miami can turn costly if you suffer a serious accident or illness requiring medical treatment or an emergency medical evacuation.

Related: Do cruise ships have doctors, nurses, medical centers or hospitals?

Being flown back to the U.S. from a far-flung overseas location in a private, medically-equipped aircraft , with a professional medical team on board, can run between $70,000 and $180,000, according to Mike Hallman, president and CEO of Medjet , a medical transport membership company.

"Domestic transports, which we cover as well, can cost upwards of $30,000," he said.

Without proof of medical evacuation coverage, foreign providers will also want that money upfront. Hallman says that, while regular travel insurance typically will get you to an acceptable overseas hospital and even to a higher-level care facility if "medically necessary," medical evacuation coverage means you can fly home to your own hospital, doctors and family — without claim forms, cost caps on transports or surprise bills.

The tandem approach — buying both travel insurance and a separate medevac transport membership — is a good option, Hallman said.

"We always recommend travel insurance, as it covers trip interruption, which is important, as well as medical coverage for the hospital and treatment costs," he said. "We pick up where they leave off."

You can't predict the weather

Cruising is a great way to explore multiple destinations in one trip. But it's good to keep in mind that unexpected delays, interruptions or cancellations due to weather can happen during cruises, particularly during hurricane seasons in places such as the Caribbean and Asia (where hurricanes are called typhoons).

travel insurance with cruise

During the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season (June 1 to Nov. 30) Allianz paid 6,238 claims from customers whose travel plans in the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico and southeastern U.S. were impacted by the storms, according to Daniel Durazo, director of communications and marketing for Allianz Global Assistance USA.

If you're hoping to insure against a storm-related disaster, it's good to buy travel insurance as early as possible. Once a storm or hurricane is named, it's too late to buy travel insurance to cover it.

Of course, cruise lines will move ships away from a weather threat. When the port lineup is adjusted, or the cruise shortened, the company will offer the guest an onboard credit, onboard gift or future cruise credit, rather than any refund. It depends on the circumstances for that specific voyage. You won't be able to make a claim on your cruise travel insurance policy just for a minor itinerary change .

Related: Everything you need to know about cruising during hurricane season

Costs can mount quickly when things go wrong

Even if the cruise line does provide a full or partial refund or cruise credit for an itinerary change or some other interruption, travelers could have to swallow the cost of other travel elements not purchased through the line. That could include nonrefundable flights , prepaid resort or hotel nights, nonrefundable tour fees and more.

Travel insurance can cover those, plus help with flight delays or cancellations, baggage loss or theft.

If a winter storm causes you to miss your flight to where the ship is boarding , "travel insurance could help you get to the next port to join the cruise, so you don't miss your entire trip," Page said.

In fact, 13% of "billing reasons" for claims to Allianz are for common carrier delays (such as a flight delay), while weather and natural disaster related claims account for about 3%.

The government probably won't bail you out

While cruise ships have medical facilities, they're usually not equipped to treat serious illness. If you experience a serious medical problem on a vessel, you may have to get off the ship in a foreign port to seek treatment at a hospital. In such a case, if you don't have medical evacuation insurance, you may then find yourself stranded in that port awaiting a medical evacuation.

Don't expect Uncle Sam to step in and help foot the bill.

The U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs is clear about the importance of buying travel insurance.

"The U.S. government does not provide medical insurance for U.S. citizens overseas," the bureau says on the website. "We do not pay medical bills. You should purchase insurance before you travel."

travel insurance with cruise

You may need more assistance than you think

If you're injured or becomes severely ill during a cruise, especially in a foreign country, it may be difficult to access help without the assistance of trained professionals that comes with many insurance plans.

Many travel insurance companies provide around-the-clock assistance with locating overseas clinics and pharmacies; getting to a doctor or hospital; refilling lost or depleted prescriptions; assisting with up-front payments to hospitals; and arranging flight changes so you can get home.

Travel insurance companies also can arrange for an air ambulance, a nurse escort, oxygen and a lie-flat seat on a flight home if your medical condition warrants it.

You want to be careful if you have pre-existing conditions

When you cruise, it's important to be fully covered, which means having comprehensive medical coverage that includes any pre-existing conditions. Otherwise, if you head into a doctor's office overseas, have any tests completed, or visit an urgent care center or emergency room, you might find you're not covered.

Here, timing is extremely important. Cruisers seeking coverage of preexisting conditions, as well as cancel for any reason insurance, generally must book within seven to 21 days of the first payment they make for a trip. The timing varies by insurer.

Bottom line

Cruise insurance isn't for every traveler — or even for every sailing. It's not inexpensive. But it can bring a lot of peace of mind if you're about to head out to sea. Do your homework, compare plans and always assess the risks.

Planning a cruise? Start with these stories:

  • The 5 most desirable cabin locations on any cruise ship
  • The 8 worst cabin locations on any cruise ship
  • A quick guide to the most popular cruise lines
  • 21 tips and tricks that will make your cruise go smoothly
  • 15 ways cruisers waste money
  • 12 best cruises for people who never want to grow up
  • The ultimate guide to what to pack for a cruise

Additional reporting by Susan J. Young.

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Best cruise travel insurance.

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Take a mental snapshot of an American on vacation, and you may imagine them on a cruise. The cruise industry is, in fact, booming. Companies such as Royal Caribbean and Carnival are posting record earnings. Travelers are enjoying more destinations, greater amenities, and more choices than ever before.

If your upcoming travel plans include a cruise, you owe it to yourself to consider travel insurance. These are costly trips, and they’re often complex, with multiple legs of travel and international destinations. Insurance can provide peace of mind that, should your travel experience include some hiccups, your wallet won’t take too much of a hit.

Comparison of the best cruise travel insurance companies

Our recommendations, best for spontaneous travelers: aig travel guard.

AIG

AIG Travel Guard

Why we like it : AIG offers multiple travel insurance options suitable for cruises. Its Essential plan provides a competitive 100% reimbursement of travel costs for trip cancellation or interruption, along with $15,000 of medical expense coverage. And if you decide at the last minute to book a cruise, AIG Travel Guard might be the policy for you. Its “Pack N’ Go” plan helps you save by eliminating trip cancellation coverage. You do enjoy the security of 100% reimbursement for trip interruption, $15,000 of medical coverage, and up to $500 for missed connections.

  • The Pack N’ Go plan is ideal for those making last-minute cruise plans.
  • Policies are underwritten by AIG, a multinational insurer with an AM Best A rating .
  • $15,000 medical expense coverage with the Essential plan is lower than some competitors.

Best for annual plans: Allianz Travel

Allianz

Allianz Travel Insurance

Why we like it : If you’re planning multiple trips (including one or more cruises) in the coming year, you might want to look into an annual travel insurance plan. Allianz Travel could be a good choice for that. The company offers a wide range of travel insurance options, including three levels of an annual plan. Its Basic annual plan includes $20,000 of emergency medical, $100,000 of medical transport, and $600 of travel delay coverage.

  • Multiple annual plan options, in addition to single-trip travel insurance plans.
  • 24-hour hotline and concierge service included with plans.
  • Annual Basic plan does not include trip cancellation coverage.
  • Does not cover trips longer than 45 days.

Best for pre-existing medical conditions: Berkshire Hathaway

Berkshire Hathaway

Berkshire Hathaway Travel Insurance

Why we like it : Berkshire Hathaway offers generous coverage levels for trip cancellation and medical expenses. It’s also the only insurer in our review to automatically waive the pre-existing medical condition exclusion. So, provided you meet certain criteria in the contract, you can embark on a cruise with a medical condition such as a chronic disease. Other insurers may offer this waiver, but only as an option.

  • Offers cruise-specific travel insurance plans.
  • Only insurer in our review to cover those with pre-existing medical conditions.
  • Value plan (its most basic plan) offers only $15,000 of medical expense coverage.

Best for concierge services: Generali

Generali Global Assistance

Generali Travel Insurance

Why we like it : Generali has three travel insurance plans. Its standard plan provides a generous $50,000 of medical expense coverage on top of 100% reimbursement for trip cancellation and 125% reimbursement for trip interruption. What sets the company apart, however, is its concierge service. Customers can contact Generali for assistance with their travel plans, including sightseeing, air travel, and hotel reservations.

  • Extensive list of concierge services included with all insurance plans.
  • Generous $50,000 medical coverage, plus telemedical services included with all plans.
  • Does not offer cruise-specific coverage packages.
  • Most expensive company in our review.

Best for cruise-specific plans: Nationwide

Nationwide

Nationwide Travel Insurance

Why we like it : Choosing a cruise-specific insurance plan means you get a set of coverages that you know provide the protection you need while on your vacation. Nationwide offers not just one, but multiple levels of cruise travel plans. Its Universal level (which is the entry-level plan) provides 100% reimbursement for trip cancellation, $75,000 medical expense coverage, $500 for missed connections, and $1,500 for lost or stolen luggage.

  • Multiple cruise-specific plans.
  • Covers up to $75,000 for medical expenses.
  • Cancel-for-any-reason coverage only available with the highest-level Luxury plan.

Best for medical expense coverage: Seven Corners

Seven Corners

Seven Corners

Why we like it : Having adequate medical coverage is crucial when you’re on a cruise. While your personal health insurance may cover you for many domestic travel situations, it may exclude incidents that happen on board a ship or at an international port of call. Those looking to maximize their medical coverage should check Seven Corners . Its Basic plan includes up to $100,000 worth of medical expense coverage, along with up to $250,000 for medical evacuation.

  • Highest medical coverage limits of any of the companies we reviewed.
  • Covers up to $250 per day for a missed cruise connection.
  • Basic coverage plan does not include pre-existing medical conditions.

Best for basic plans: Travelex

Travelex

Travelex Travel Insurance

Why we like it : Travelex does not have cruise-specific insurance plans in its line up. But it does offer multiple packages plus options allowing you to customize coverage. And it might be a good choice for someone looking for an affordable travel insurance plan for a cruise. The company has been in business for more than 25 years, and in 2016 became a subsidiary of the Zurich Insurance Group, one of the world’s largest multinational insurers.

  • Basic plan includes reimbursement of up to 100% of costs for trip cancellation and interruption.
  • Upgrades include cancel for any reason, sports equipment, and other coverages.
  • Does not cover pre-existing medical conditions.

Methodology

We reviewed travel insurance plans from several leading providers. While most of these providers offer multiple plans, our study focused on each company’s most economical offering . We noted coverage levels, and options that would make each company appealing for a traveler preparing for a cruise. Our policy cost information is based on actual quotes for a family of four (two adults, two children) on a seven-day trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands, at a total trip cost of $10,000.

How to choose a travel insurance company for a cruise

The good news is that when it comes to travel insurance , you have many choices. The bad news is that, well, you have many choices—and it can be difficult to sort through all of them. So, when looking for coverage for an upcoming trip, start by considering the following:

You may already have some coverage

If you use a credit card to pay for your trip, check to see if it includes some travel insurance. The Chase Sapphire Preferred and Reserve cards , for example, provide trip cancellation, trip interruption, and other coverages.

Some companies offer cruise-specific coverage

While a cruise-specific plan is not really necessary, it may make getting the coverage you need much easier. Berkshire Hathaway’s cruise insurance plan includes specific coverages such as cruise disablement and diversion that anticipate some of the potential problems that are unique to a vacation at sea.

Your medical insurance may exclude cruise travel

Your private medical insurance plan may be very limited when it comes to being on a cruise. It’s rare, for instance, for medical insurance to include incidents that happen outside of the United States. You’ll want to understand what your plan does and doesn’t cover, and consider this when choosing your travel insurance medical coverage.

Look for optional coverages that fit your needs

Our review has focused on companies’ most economical travel insurance plans. But be aware that many companies offer optional coverages that allow you to customize your cruise travel insurance policy to your specific needs. These options may include adventure sports coverage, rental car coverage, or cancel-for-any-reason coverage.

Shop around

As our review shows, the cost of a policy varies among insurance companies. Be sure to shop around to get the best combination of coverage and price. All of the cruise travel insurance companies in our review offer fast online quotes.

You can also use services such as Travelinsurance.com or Squaremouth . They make comparison shopping easy by allowing you to get quotes from multiple travel insurance companies.

Which factors determine the cost of travel insurance for a cruise?

Several factors affect the amount you pay for travel insurance for a cruise. These include the following:

  • Traveler age: According to insurer Berkshire Hathaway , older travelers are more likely to cancel their trip and file a claim.
  • Number of travelers: While a single policy can cover multiple travelers, those additional travelers will drive the cost of the policy.
  • Trip cost: Expensive cruises cost more to insure than cheaper cruises.
  • Trip length: A longer cruise costs more to insure than a shorter cruise.
  • Plan and coverage options: A basic plan with minimal coverage levels and no optional coverages will cost less than a “deluxe” plan with higher amounts of coverage and options such as “cancel for any reason.”

TIME Stamp: Protect your cruise investment with travel insurance

A cruise can be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It can also be a costly and complex trip that can set you back financially if something goes wrong. You can protect your vacation investment with cruise travel insurance. Many companies offer travel insurance that is reasonably priced and that provides peace of mind so you can enjoy your vacation.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What insurance is best for a cruise.

The best travel insurance for a cruise will depend on your needs and budget. Our review covers travel insurance from several providers. Each offers multiple plans and coverage options at different price points, with some offering cruise-specific insurance plans.

Do I need extra travel insurance for a cruise?

Cruises are often complex trips requiring a significant financial outlay. A snag in your travel plans could result in losing any nonrefundable payments. Your credit card might provide some travel insurance. But if that’s not enough to cover those nonrefundable payments, you should consider buying extra travel insurance.

When should I buy trip insurance for a cruise?

There are advantages to buying travel insurance long before you leave on a cruise, and advantages to buying it shortly before you leave. Buying well before means you have time to investigate plans thoroughly. Buying shortly before you leave means you may know more details about your trip, such as the weather.

Does travel insurance cover cancellation of a cruise?

If a cruise line cancels a cruise, it typically offers passengers a refund, according to USA Today . It may also reimburse for any related travel expenses, such as airfare.

Travel insurance primarily covers situations in which you decide to cancel—for example, if you get sick prior to departure or have a death in the family. It provides reimbursement for expenses that are not refundable. Some plans do, however, offer limited coverage for delays or cancellations that are the fault of the cruise operator.

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

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What does cruise travel insurance cover?

Cruise insurance coverage can be customized, but some add-ons can dramatically increase the cost..

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Going on a cruise can cost you a pretty penny, so it makes sense to consider cruise insurance to protect your finances if something goes wrong. When you're shopping for a cruise or travel insurance plan , it's important to understand what types of coverage are available and what is covered by different plans. This can help you find the perfect balance between getting the coverage you need and keeping the price of cruise insurance as low as possible.

Here's what you need to know about what cruise insurance covers, how it works and when your travel credit card insurance applies to going on a cruise.

Cruise insurance guide

What is cruise insurance, what does cruise insurance cover, should you buy insurance for a cruise, does credit card travel insurance cover cruising, bottom line.

Cruise insurance is a specific type of travel insurance you can buy to help cover the costs of expenses caused by covered events, such as trip cancellations, delays or medical emergencies. Many general travel insurance policies also cover cruises.

The cost of a cruise insurance plan depends on the types of coverage and coverage limits that are included. For example, some plans offer cancel-for-any-reason coverage (CFAR) , which is an additional cost but allows you to cancel your trip for any reason and be reimbursed a percentage of the cost. If you prefer to have the flexibility of CFAR coverage, AIG's  Travel Guard Preferred plan is CNBC Select's best cruise insurance plan for CFAR coverage. This option provides coverage up to 48 hours before your originally scheduled departure.

Travel Guard® Travel Insurance

The best way to estimate your costs is to request a quote

Policy highlights

Travel Guard offers a variety of plans to suit travel ranging from road trips to long cruises. For air travelers, Travel Guard can help assist with tracking baggage or covering lost or delayed baggage.

24/7 assistance available

You can usually purchase cruise insurance directly from the cruise line when you book your trip. Alternatively, you can purchase it separately from a third party. In any case, it's always important to shop around to compare not only prices but also what's covered.

Cruise insurance plans offer a range of coverage options, including:

  • Trip interruptions or cancellations
  • Trip delays
  • Delayed or lost baggage
  • Travel to and from the cruise
  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Medical evacuation
  • Emergency medical care
  • Missed connections
  • Job loss cancellation

There are stipulations, coverage limits and deductibles that can apply. For example, if a pre-existing conditions waiver is offered, you'll typically need to purchase it shortly after booking your cruise and paying for the initial deposit(usually within 2-3 weeks).

Insurance plans have exceptions where the coverage won't apply. If you're injured while intoxicated, don't expect your travel insurance to cover your medical expenses or missed travel. Certain high-risk activities may also be specifically excluded from a cruise insurance plan, such as scuba diving or jet skiing. If you plan on participating in an excursion that isn't normally covered, you'll want to take a look at the World Nomads Explorer Plan , which has a list of hundreds of sports and adventure activities that are covered by the plan.

World Nomads Travel Insurance

World Nomads offers travel insurance for all sorts of travelers, from families to solo adventure travelers. Policies are underwritten by Nationwide and offer strong coverage of emergency accident and illness situations, as well as emergency evacuation scenarios.

Cruise insurance normally costs 3% to 8% of the cost of the cruise, but can be higher if you opt for expensive add-ons, such as CFAR coverage. It's important to shop around to ensure you're getting the coverage you need, the right coverage limits for your trip and the best price. Before you purchase a separate cruise insurance plan, make sure your trip isn't already covered by your credit card or any other travel insurance you may have.

Credit card travel insurance usually covers cruise trips and the travel you book to and from your port of call. For your credit card coverage to apply, you'll need to pay for the trip with an eligible card.

Before you whip out your card and use it to book your trip, double-check that it includes travel insurance and be aware that the level of coverage you get with a credit card won't be as robust as what you can get with a dedicated travel or cruise insurance plan.

That said, one of the best cards for cruise bookings is the Chase Sapphire Reserve® . It offers insurance for trip delays, trip cancellation/interruptions, baggage delays, lost baggage, rental cars, emergency medical and dental, emergency evacuation and travel accidents. It also earns Chase Ultimate Rewards points, which are a valuable type of travel reward you can use to book cruises, flights and rental cars.

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Earn 5X total points on flights and 10X total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3X points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases plus, 10X points on Lyft rides through March 2025

Welcome bonus

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

Regular APR

22.49% - 29.49% variable

Balance transfer fee

5%, minimum $5

Foreign transaction fee

Credit needed.

Terms apply.

Read our Chase Sapphire Reserve® review.

Money matters — so make the most of it. Get expert tips, strategies, news and everything else you need to maximize your money, right to your inbox.  Sign up here .

Cruise insurance can be a relatively inexpensive investment to protect a costly vacation. Depending on the plan, it covers delays, cancellations, emergency medical and more while you're on a cruise or traveling to and from your cruise. Some cruise insurance plans even offer cancel-for-any-reason coverage, which provides the ultimate flexibility when your plans change. With so many options available, it's important to understand what is and isn't covered by each specific cruise insurance policy.

Why trust CNBC Select?

At CNBC Select, our mission is to provide our readers with high-quality service journalism and comprehensive consumer advice so they can make informed decisions with their money. Every insurance review is based on rigorous reporting by our team of expert writers and editors . While CNBC Select earns a commission from affiliate partners on many offers and links, we create all our content without input from our commercial team or any outside third parties, and we pride ourselves on our journalistic standards and ethics.

Catch up on CNBC Select's in-depth coverage of  credit cards ,  banking  and  money , and follow us on  TikTok ,  Facebook ,  Instagram  and  Twitter  to stay up to date.

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The journalists on the editorial team at Forbes Advisor Australia base their research and opinions on objective, independent information-gathering.

When covering investment and personal finance stories, we aim to inform our readers rather than recommend specific financial product or asset classes. While we may highlight certain positives of a financial product or asset class, there is no guarantee that readers will benefit from the product or investment approach and may, in fact, make a loss if they acquire the product or adopt the approach.

To the extent any recommendations or statements of opinion or fact made in a story may constitute financial advice, they constitute general information and not personal financial advice in any form. As such, any recommendations or statements do not take into account the financial circumstances, investment objectives, tax implications, or any specific requirements of readers.

Readers of our stories should not act on any recommendation without first taking appropriate steps to verify the information in the stories consulting their independent financial adviser in order to ascertain whether the recommendation (if any) is appropriate, having regard to their investment objectives, financial situation and particular needs. Providing access to our stories should not be construed as investment advice or a solicitation to buy or sell any security or product, or to engage in or refrain from engaging in any transaction by Forbes Advisor Australia. In comparing various financial products and services, we are unable to compare every provider in the market so our rankings do not constitute a comprehensive review of a particular sector. While we do go to great lengths to ensure our ranking criteria matches the concerns of consumers, we cannot guarantee that every relevant feature of a financial product will be reviewed. We make every effort to provide accurate and up-to-date information. However, Forbes Advisor Australia cannot guarantee the accuracy, completeness or timeliness of this website. Forbes Advisor Australia accepts no responsibility to update any person regarding any inaccuracy, omission or change in information in our stories or any other information made available to a person, nor any obligation to furnish the person with any further information.

Our Pick Of The Best Cruise Travel Insurance

Published: Oct 24, 2023, 2:57pm

Cruising was put on pause during Covid, but like most post-pandemic travel, it has since become a popular option for thousands of Australian holiday-makers.

According to Statista, revenue in the Australian cruising market is expected to grow by 9.48% per year, resulting in an expected market value of $US1.25 billion by 2027.

Of course, when cruising in domestic or international waters, travel insurance is vital. What many travellers may not realise, however, is the need for a specific type of insurance to cover the risk factors and events specific to cruising—whether it’s missed ports cover, emergency evacuation or even formal wear cover for missed black-tie events.

That’s why for Australians looking to set sail, we have taken a look at the wider cruise insurance market and picked out our favourite providers of cruise travel insurance.

Note: The below list represents a selection of our top category picks, as chosen by Forbes Advisor Australia’s editors and journalists. The information provided is purely factual and is not intended to imply any recommendation, opinion, or advice about a financial product. Not every product or provider in the marketplace has been reviewed, and the list below is not intended to be exhaustive nor replace your own research or independent financial advice. For more information on how Forbes Advisor ranks and reviews products, including how we identified our top category picks, read the methodology selection below.

Featured Partners

InsureandGo

Budget direct, southern cross, our methodology, do you need special travel insurance for a cruise, what does cruise insurance cover, covid cover on a cruise, frequently asked questions (faqs).

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Cover-More Travel Insurance

travel insurance with cruise

On Cover-more’s secure website

Medical cover

Unlimited, with a $2000 limit to dental

Cancellations

Yes, amount chosen by customer

Southern Cross Travel Insurance

travel insurance with cruise

Medical Cover

Unlimited, with a $2000 limit on dental

$2,500 with option to increase to unlimited

WAS Insurance

travel insurance with cruise

Medical Cover & Support

Unlimited* + 24/7 Support

Cancellation AND Disruption

Up to $40,000*

InsureandGo

Cabin Confinement Cover

Covered for covid, missed ports cover.

InsureandGo offers a specific cruise insurance policy to its customers which is available to those aged up to 79 years old on the bare essentials cruise policy and 100 years old for the more comprehensive cover. There is unlimited medical cover on-board (including for diagnoses and treatment related to Covid), and a $5,000 cancellation cover if travellers need to cancel due to contracting the virus. Furthermore, cabin confinement is covered up to a total of $2,500 with $75 towards every completed 24-hour period.

Missed ports cover is also included with $100 for each port up to a total of $1,000, which is paid if your cruise docks at fewer ports than what is scheduled on your original cruise itinerary. There is also compensation for cruise delays, and InsureandGo regularly runs online discounts for consumers to find the best deal.

  • Cabin confinement covered up to $2,500
  • Unlimited medical including Covid
  • Regular online discounts
  • No specific cover for formal wear
  • No live chat functionality
  • Only covered up to 79 on bare essentials cruise policy

1Cover

To be insured for a cruise via 1Cover, you will need to purchase a cruise pack on top of an existing policy. If you’re cruising in Australia, you’ll need to purchase a domestic policy and if you’re cruising in Australia as well as international waters, you’ll need to purchase a comprehensive policy. You will then need to add a cruise pack to each of these.

While all ages are covered with 1Cover, there is a $3,000 excess for travellers over 80 years old and a maximum coverage length of six months. There is unlimited medical and dental cover while onboard, and cover related to Covid-19 diagnosis, pending certain conditions.

  • Missed ports cover
  • Covid included in unlimited medical cover
  • Positive customer reviews
  • No online discounts
  • $3000 excess for travellers over 80 years old
  • No livechat functionality

Allianz

Allianz offers its cruise insurance via a cruise pack on both domestic and international policies. All ages are covered, medical cover while cruising is unlimited (including for Covid), and cancellation due to Covid is also recognised. Allianz also covers cabin confinement up to $500 if you are confined for more than a 48-hour period.

Unfortunately, Allianz does not offer any compensation for missed ports, however, there is cover for missed shore excursions. This means if you pre-paid for an excursion on-shore and then are unable to go for either medical reasons or reasons outside of your control (such as not docking at the port), you will be reimbursed up to $1,000.

  • Covid is covered under medical expenses
  • Cover for missed onshore activities cover
  • No missed ports cover
  • Must be purchased as an add-on to existing policy

Budget Direct

With Budget Direct, you can only take out a cruise insurance policy if you first purchase an international travel insurance policy and then add on the cruise pack. The cruise pack covers all ages, nearly 30 pre-existing medical conditions, and unlimited medical treatment. It also includes dental treatment onboard up to $2,000 and cabin confinement up to $1,500.

Budget Direct also offers compensation for missed ports cover if you cannot dock due to unforeseen circumstances, as well as missed shore excursions for any tours or activities that were pre-paid. At the time of writing, Budget Direct is offering a 15% online discount.

  • Unlimited medical cover
  • Some poor customer reviews
  • No specific formal wear cover

Bupa

If you purchase a domestic or international travel insurance policy with Bupa, you will have the option to purchase an additional cruise pack, which is available to all ages. It offers unlimited medical cover, including overseas medical and hospital expenses in the event that you are diagnosed with Covid; cancellation cover for Covid; and $500 for cabin confinement in the event that you are confined for more than a 48-hour period.

Unfortunately, there is no missed ports cover with the Bupa cruise pack. However, there is a marine rescue diversion cover which is paid out if your cruise must divert in order to complete a marine rescue. Additionally, there is cover up to $1,000 if you miss a pre-paid on-shore excursion due to unforeseen circumstances.

  • Cancellation cover for Covid
  • All ages are covered
  • Must purchase cruise pack as an add-on
  • Cabin confinement capped at $500

Medibank

While Medibank allows all ages to purchase its cruise pack (when purchased in addition to an international travel insurance policy) it has reduced coverage for those aged over 70. For those under 70, there are 34 pre-existing conditions automatically covered, unlimited onboard dental and medical (including Covid), medical evacuation for Covid and cabin confinement up to a total $1,500 for more than 24 hours ($100 per day).

Missed port cover is also included up to a total of $1,000 for unforeseen circumstances, and missed shore excursions are covered up to $1,000, granted they were pre-paid and are non-refundable. While there is currently a 15% online discount, it is only available to Medibank members.

  • Many preexisting conditions automatically included
  • Unlimited medical and dental
  • $1,500 cabin confinement cover
  • Cover is reduced for those over 70
  • Discount only available for Medibank members
  • Average customer reviews

Cover-More

Cruise cover is available as an add-on to Cover-More’s international travel insurance plan and is available for those aged up to 99 years of age, pending acceptance via set criteria. There are 32 pre-existing conditions that are automatically covered, as well as unlimited medical and dental cover, including for Covid. There is also cancellation cover related to Covid, with the amount depending on whether the cruise has already departed.

Meanwhile, cabin confinement is covered up to $100 per day when the period of confinement is more than 24 hours, up to a maximum cover of $1,500. Missed ports and missed excursions are also covered up to $1,000 each.

  • No online discount
  • Tougher criteria for older travellers

Whether you are travelling domestically or internationally on your cruise, you will need to purchase the cruise ‘boost’ plan to Freely’s international travel insurance policy. The plan is available up to 99 years of age, with unlimited on-board medical and dental. There is also cover available for Covid, however, an excess applies for medical and cancellation cover related to the virus. Cabin confinement is also covered up to a maximum of $1,500 (if not related to Covid).

Missed ports cover and missed on-shore excursions cover are also insured up to $1,000 each. As Freely is new on the market, it does not have a large amount of reviews online, and has only scored 1.0 stars out of 5 from fewer than 10 reviews, at the time of writing. More reviews would be required to form an accurate picture of Freely’s customer satisfaction levels.

  • Cover up to 99 years
  • No discounts
  • Covid not covered under ‘cabin confinement’
  • Small number of reviews

Southern Cross

Cabin Confinement

With Southern Cross travel insurance, cruise cover can be added to both the domestic and the international travel insurance policies depending on where you are travelling. Cover is up to age 118, although there are no pre-existing conditions that are automatically covered (assessment is required for all). There is, however, unlimited medical cover with certain sub-limits applying, as well as emergency dental and Covid cover.

Unfortunately, there is no specific cover available for cabin confinement, nor is there any cover for missed ports or missed on-shore excursions. There is cover for special events under cancellation cover, although this again requires meeting certain criteria.

  • Positive online reviews
  • Cover up to 118 years old
  • Preexisting conditions not automatically included
  • No cabin confinement cover
  • No missed ports or onshore excursions cover

In order to choose our top picks for the best travel insurance for cruises, Forbes Advisor Australia looked at and analysed nearly 30 different travel insurance providers. In doing so, we found the top nine ranking providers after carefully considering a range of factors.

These factors, and the details of such, were:

  • The underwriter: who underwrites the insurance policy;
  • Cruise cover type: if it is a standalone policy or an optional add-on;
  • How the cruise insurance needs to be purchased: whether you need to purchase a domestic or international policy before you can add cruising, or if it can be purchased individually;
  • Maximum age covered: what ages are covered by the policy, and if there are any conditions for travellers above a certain age (such as a higher excess);
  • Pre-existing conditions: how many, if any, pre-existing conditions are automatically covered, and what requirements are necessary to have other pre-existing conditions covered;
  • Onboard medical and dental treatment: whether or not the onboard medical cover is unlimited and, if so, whether dental is included within that medical treatment or if it has its own sublimit;
  • Medical Covid cover: if Covid is included within the unlimited medical cover, or any conditions that would make it void;
  • Cabin confinement cover: whether or not you are compensated for cabin confinement due to medical reasons or unforeseen circumstances, as well as how long the confinement must be to qualify and the total compensation amount;
  • Emergency evacuation: if you are covered for emergency evacuation due to a worsening medical condition onboard when not nearby to a port;
  • Stolen items cover: cover for any stolen items such as laptops or phones;
  • Formal wear cover: cover for any damage or theft of formal wear, due to the popularity of black tie events on cruises;
  • Lost luggage cover: general lost luggage cover, including sub-limits of items;
  • Missed ports cover: whether you’re covered if your cruise misses a port if you are unable to dock due to unforeseen circumstances;
  • Missed on-shore excursions cover: whether or not there is any compensation and reimbursement for activities and excursions that are pre-paid and missed, whether due to medical reasons or due to not being able to port;
  • General cancellation cover: any general cancellation cover available, such as if you have to cancel the trip prior to embarking or due to Covid;
  • Average consumer rating: what the average consumer rating out of 5 is from customers via Australia’s independent review site, ProductReview;
  • Online discounts: any online discounts available at the time of writing, and whether there are conditions in order to receive such discount (such as being a customer of the insurer already); and
  • Customer service: the customer service capabilities of the company, including any emergency lines and ease of making claims.

About Star Rankings

You will note that we have included a star rating next to each product or provider. This rating was determined by the editorial team once all of the data points above were considered, and the pros and cons of each product attribute was reviewed. The star rating is solely the view of Forbes Advisor editorial staff. Commercial partners or advertisers have no bearing on the star rating or their inclusion on this list. Star ratings are only one factor to be considered, and Forbes Advisor encourages you to seek independent advice from an authorised financial adviser in relation to your own financial circumstances and investments before you decide to choose a particular financial product or service.

It depends on the insurer. As there are certain events unique to cruises, as well as certain risks associated with travelling by sea, many travel insurance companies offer cover that’s tailored to cruising. Others simply cover cruising as part of their comprehensive plans, addressing the terms and conditions of cruising in the pds.

Among those who offer cruising as separate from other travel insurance, there are two main ways to ensure you’re covered for cruising. Some providers allow you to directly purchase a distinct cruise policy, while others require you to purchase an add-on or a ‘cruise pack’ as an adjunct to one of their pre-existing policies.

When analysing the above policies, we also looked at how these were offered by each provider, and considered what the cruise pack was called (if it was an additional add-on), and the level of difficulty for the consumer in understanding their cruise cover.

Domestic Cruise Cover

If you are cruising in Australian waters, you may think that an Australian domestic policy would cut it: but that isn’t necessarily the case. While some policies will allow you to add a cruise pack to a domestic policy if only travelling in domestic waters, it is common for insurance providers to offer the international policy instead—and then ask you to pick ‘domestic cruise’ as the cruise destination under the international policy.

This is because once your ship leaves the port, you’re no longer covered for hospital or medical expenses by Medicare–meaning you won’t be covered for any expenses incurred on-board the ship even if you are travelling in Australian waters. You’re also not covered by Medicare or private health when you’re on land for cruise excursion even if you’re in an Australian state or territory–instead you will need to pay for the onboard medical staff who are not Medicare registered GPs and often very expensive.

This is why a domestic travel insurance policy isn’t enough coverage; you need, at the very least, international comprehensive insurance, with unlimited medical cover.

Travel insurance is encouraged when travelling overseas, and cruising is no exception. With a different travel style comes different travel needs, so here is a brief outline of some of the common events and coverage unique to cruise insurance.

Weather can be unpredictable at the best of times, and can play havoc with cruising schedules. While your itinerary will have planned ports to stop at, allowing you to go onto land and visit different destinations, changes may be made to your itinerary due to unforeseen circumstances, such as weather restrictions, natural disasters or mechanical failures.

If you are unable to dock at your designated port or ports, some insurers may offer compensation–known as missed ports cover. Commonly, there is an amount of cover for each port missed (such as $250, for example) and a total maximum cover. This is commonly $750 across the insurance market.

You will usually need a written statement from the cruise company confirming the reason for missing the port, and proof that the port was part of your original itinerary, in order to make a claim with most insurance providers.

Missed on-shore excursions

Similar to missed ports cover, missed on-shore excursion cover is for excursions and activities that you cannot attend at a port: whether because the port was missed, or due to other unforeseen conditions.

These unforeseen conditions included cabin confinement, medical reasons, circumstances outside of your control or other unexpected events as covered under the particular policy.

There is usually a limit to the amount of cover the insurer will provide (commonly around $1000), and it can only be put towards the nonrefundable cost of a pre-paid excursion.

Stolen or damaged formal wear

It’s a common occurrence on cruises to have formal evenings, including Great Gatsby-themed nights and black tie events. Because of this, the majority of cruise-goers often have formal attire in their luggage, from tuxedos and evening gowns to expensive jewellery.

As with all insurance policies, the details of the formal wear cover will vary from provider to provider. Commonly, you’ll have a monetary value of cover if your formal wear is stolen, accidentally damaged or permanently lost, however, some other providers may provide cover if your formal wear is delayed before the time of vessel departure and also cover the cost to hire or replace the formal wear in the meantime.

Some policies do not have formal wear cover specifically, but rather include formal wear as a sub-limit with the general lost luggage cover included in the policy.

Cabin confinement

As we learnt during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, cruise ships can be a breeding ground for infections. The Ruby Princess was a clear indicator of this, with the Australian cruise ship playing host to more than 850 infected passengers.

Cruise ships have since had to adapt–as have cruise insurance policy providers–to ensure travellers are protected should an outbreak of a Covid happen again (or of any other virus, for that matter).

Commonly, cruise providers will offer a cabin confinement allowance if you are confined to your cabin or in a medical facility for a certain period, up to a maximum amount. This can cover a daily stipend for you to use on room service or for any needs you require while confined.

The maximum cover is usually around $1,500, so anything around that ballpark is considered a good cabin confinement offer.

Most cruise insurance policies offer unlimited medical cover while on board the ship, and most ships have extensive medical facilities to help protect you should you fall ill or injure yourself. But in this day and age, Covid is something all travellers would want to be covered for, too.

Of the top nine cruise insurance providers Forbes Advisor Australia chose, all of them offered Covid cover. Any insurer that didn’t offer this specification was ranked lower, due to the increased need for Covid cover in general–but especially while sailing at sea.

The level of cover for Covid varies across providers, but it is expected that travellers are covered for hospital and medical needs under the unlimited medical cover. Some providers may have certain excess requirements for certain Covid-related claims, and may also cover cabin confinement should you fall ill with the virus.

More premium providers will also include Covid as a reason for cancellation prior to embarking on your trip, and a reason to be able to claim missed ports cover or missed on-shore excursions. There may be excess requirements with these claims, or certain sub-limits depending on the provider.

It’s essential that you read the product disclosure statement before taking out a cruise insurance policy so you know exactly what you’re covered for, Covid-related and otherwise.

Should you have travel insurance for a cruise?

Yes, if you are going on a cruise, you should purchase travel insurance. In fact, most cruise companies will not allow you to embark on the cruise without a travel insurance policy. As cruises have different requirements for travel insurance, you will need to ensure your international comprehensive cover includes cruising, purchase a policy that is specific to cruising, or an add-on a cruise pack to your regular policy. You can find out how to purchase the policy through your travel insurance provider, as they each have different processes.

What type of insurance do you need for a cruise?

To travel on a cruise you need a cruise-specific travel insurance, travel insurance which offers cruise cover as an add-on or comprehensive travel insurance that includes cruising.

Which companies offer cruise insurance?

There are many different insurance companies that offer specific cruise insurance, including health insurance companies, such as Medibank and Bupa, to newer insurance startup companies focused on travel insurance, such as Freely.

Sophie Venz is an experienced editor and features reporter, and has previously worked in the small business and start-up reporting space. Previously the Associate Editor of SmartCompany site, Sophie has worked closely with finance experts and columnists around Australia and internationally. Sophie grew up on the Gold Coast and now lives in Melbourne.

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Vacation Protection Insurance

The purchase of vacation protection insurance* before taking a cruise is highly recommended. Any vacation is an investment and trip insurance is an important way to protect that investment from the unexpected.

If you are a US resident and would like more information about trip insurance please contact one of our agents and they will be happy to assist you with your insurance options or view insurance policy options . Terms, conditions, and exclusions apply.

Canadian residents can purchase Allianz Canada Travel Insurance . Policies purchased through this website are confirmation of your insurance coverage.

NOTE: We are unable to offer insurance to non-US residents / non-Canadian residents at this time.

* U.S. Residents: Terms, conditions, and exclusions apply. Insurance benefits are underwritten by either BCS Insurance Company or Jefferson Insurance Company and may not be available in all jurisdictions. AGA Service Company is the licensed producer and administrator of these plans. Plans include insurance benefits and assistance services. Contact AGA Service Company at 800-284-8300 or 9950 Maryland Drive, Richmond, VA 23233 or [email protected] .

* Canadian Residents: Travel Insurance is provided by CUMIS General Insurance Company and administered by Allianz Global Assistance. Allianz Global Assistance is the registered business name for AZGA Insurance Agency Canada Ltd. and AZGA Service Canada Inc. All coverage is subject to the terms and conditions of the policy.

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The Best Travel Medical Insurance of 2024

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Allianz Travel Insurance »

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Seven Corners »

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GeoBlue »

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WorldTrips »

Why Trust Us

U.S. News evaluates ratings, data and scores of more than 50 travel insurance companies from comparison websites like TravelInsurance.com, Squaremouth and InsureMyTrip, plus renowned credit rating agency AM Best, in addition to reviews and recommendations from top travel industry sources and consumers to determine the Best Travel Medical Insurance Plans.

Table of Contents

  • Allianz Travel Insurance
  • Seven Corners

Buying travel insurance is a smart move for any type of trip, but you may not need a policy that covers everything under the sun. If you don't need coverage for trip cancellations or delays because you're relying on your travel credit card to offer these protections, for example, you may find you only need emergency medical coverage that works away from home.

Still, travel medical coverage varies widely based on included benefits, policy limits and more. If you're comparing travel insurance plans and hoping to find the best option for unexpected medical expenses, read on to learn which policies we recommend.

Frequently Asked Questions

The term travel insurance usually describes a comprehensive travel insurance policy that includes coverage for medical expenses as well as trip cancellations and interruptions, trip delays, lost baggage, and more. Meanwhile, travel medical insurance is coverage that focuses on paying for emergency medical expenses and other related care.

Travelers need international health insurance if they're visiting a place where their own health coverage will not apply. This typically includes all international trips away from home since U.S. health plans limit coverage to care required in the United States.

Note that if you don't have travel health insurance and you become sick or injured abroad, you'll be responsible for paying back any health care costs you incur.

Many travel insurance policies cover emergency medical expenses you incur during a covered trip. However, the included benefits of each policy can vary widely, and so can the policy limits that apply.

If you're looking for a travel insurance policy that offers sufficient protection for unexpected medical expenses, you'll typically want to choose a plan with at least $100,000 in coverage for emergency medical care and at least that much in protection for emergency medical evacuation and transportation.

However, higher limits can provide even more protection from overseas medical bills, which can become pricey depending on the type of care you need. As just one example, Allianz says the average cost of emergency medical evacuation can easily reach up to $200,000 or more depending on where you’re traveling.

Your U.S. health insurance policy almost never covers medical expenses incurred abroad. The same is true for most people on Medicare and especially Medicaid. If you want to ensure you have travel medical coverage that applies overseas, you should purchase a travel insurance plan with adequate limits for every trip. Read the U.S. News article on this topic for more information.

The cost of travel medical insurance can vary depending on the age of the travelers, the type of coverage purchased, the length of the trip and other factors. You can use a comparison site like TravelInsurance.com to explore different travel medical insurance plans and their cost.

  • Allianz Travel Insurance: Best Overall
  • Seven Corners: Best for Families
  • GeoBlue: Best for Expats
  • WorldTrips: Best Cost

Coverage for preexisting conditions is available as an add-on

Easy to purchase as needed for individual trips

Relatively low limits for medical expenses

No coverage for trip cancellations or trip interruption

  • Up to $50,000 in emergency medical coverage
  • Up to $250,000 in emergency medical evacuation coverage
  • Up to $2,000 in coverage for baggage loss and damage
  • Up to $600 in baggage delay insurance
  • Up to $1,000 for travel delays
  • Up to $10,000 in travel accident insurance
  • 24-hour hotline assistance
  • Concierge services

Purchase comprehensive medical coverage worth up to $5 million

Coverage for families with up to 10 people

Low coverage amounts for trip interruption

Medical coverage options vary by age

  • Up to $5 million in comprehensive medical coverage
  • Up to $500,000 in emergency evacuation coverage
  • Up to $10,000 in coverage for incidental trips to home country
  • Up to $25,000 in coverage for terrorist activity
  • Up to $500 in accidental dental emergency coverage
  • Up to $100 per occurrence in coverage for emergency eye exams
  • $50,000 in coverage for local burial or cremation
  • 24/7 travel assistance
  • Up to $25,000 in coverage for accidental death and dismemberment per traveler
  • Up to $500 for loss of checked baggage
  • Up to $5,000 for trip interruptions
  • Up to $100 per day for trip delays
  • Up to $50,000 for personal liability

Qualify for international health insurance with no annual or lifetime caps

Use coverage within the U.S. with select providers

Deductible from $500 to $10,000 can apply

Doesn't come with any nonmedical travel insurance benefits

  • Up to $250,000 in coverage for emergency medical evacuation
  • Up to $25,000 for repatriation of mortal remains
  • $50,000 in coverage for accidental death and dismemberment

High limits for medical insurance and emergency medical evacuation

Covers multiple trips over a period of up to 364 days

Deductible of $250 required for each covered trip

Copays required for medical care received in the U.S.

  • Up to $1,000,000 of maximum coverage
  • Up to $1,000,000 for emergency medical evacuation
  • Up to $10,000 for trip interruptions
  • Up to $1,000 for lost checked luggage
  • Up to $100 per day for travel delays
  • Up to $25,000 in personal liability coverage
  • Medical coverage for eligible expenses related to COVID-19
  • Ability to add coverage for your spouse and/or child(ren)
  • Repatriation of remains coverage up to overall limit
  • Up to $5,000 for local burial or cremation 
  • $10,000 to $50,000 for common carrier accidental death

Why Trust U.S. News Travel

Holly Johnson is an award-winning content creator who has been writing about travel insurance and travel for more than a decade. She has researched travel insurance options for her own vacations and family trips to more than 50 countries around the world and has experience navigating the claims and reimbursement process. In fact, she has successfully filed several travel insurance claims for trip delays and trip cancellations over the years. Johnson also works alongside her husband, Greg, who has been licensed to sell travel insurance in 50 states, in their family media business.

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12 Best Travel Insurance Companies of January 2024

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9 Cheapest Travel Insurance Companies Worth the Cost

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Protect Your Trip »

12 Unconventional Ways to Save on Travel

Points and miles are major, but there are other cheap ways to travel too.

Hands put money coin in the glass jar with passport and model plane for saving money and travel.

(Getty Images)

Consider setting up airfare alerts, housesitting and traveling midweek to help stay in budget.

Traveling can be expensive, and even when you rely on widely known savings tactics – such as traveling in off-peak seasons or staying at a hostel or a rental with a kitchen – the costs inevitably add up. If you're looking for ways to save on your next trip, add these unconventional tips provided by travel industry experts to your hat of travel tricks.

Get a set of packing cubes

Traveling with just a carry-on bag is a cost-effective option since it's typically free on most major airlines, but it's often easier said than done. That's why packing cubes are a good investment. They don't cost much – you can get a quality set like this one by Bagail for less than $25 – and they inevitably allow you to save space and fit more in your carry-on (or checked luggage ).

[Read: Guide: Carry-on Luggage Sizes by Airline .]

Choose the flight, then the destination

Scott Keyes, flight expert and founder of Scott's Cheap Flights , recommends changing the way you search for flights to save on airfare . Instead of looking for flights to a specific destination, use a flight comparison tool like Google Flights , Momondo or Skyscanner to browse a variety of airfares from your preferred airport(s). Maybe a trip to Barcelona wasn't what you originally had in mind, but if the price is right, why not head there instead?

Consider alternate airports

While flying from the airport closest to home is always the most convenient option, Keyes also suggests comparing fares from other airports, even those that are a few hours away. You may find prices are hundreds of dollars less to get to the same location, making the combined cost of gas, parking and driving time an excellent investment.

If you can drive a few hours to a larger airport with more flight options in general, that may be even better. Not only do you have the potential to save money, but you're more likely to find a direct flight or a route with fewer layovers.

[Read: What to Do If Your Flight Is Canceled or Delayed .]

Set up airfare alerts

If you're eager to travel far and want to save big on airfare, keep an eye out for short-term airfare offers on websites like Hopper and Trip.com . These sites offer deals that usually last a short time, meaning you have to strike while the iron is hot. "I do this every time I book a flight and I usually save at least 10%, but sometimes up to 75%," says Josh Band of A Backpacker's World . "I once got a flight that should have been $200-plus for just over $50 by setting up an alert."

Go to Europe for Thanksgiving

Many Americans opt to head to Grandma's house or another domestic destination for turkey dinner. However, not as many escape to the Caribbean and Mexico, and even less go to Europe – which means you're more likely to find flight deals to Paris , London and other European vacations you've been wanting to cross off your bucket list.

Travel midweek

There's no set day of the week to book the cheapest airfare, but there are less expensive days to travel, says Keyes. He recommends flying on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays since most business travelers fly on Sundays and Mondays (and consequently drive up the cost of airfare on those days).

Consider a 'bleisure' trip

If you have an upcoming business trip in a unique or new-to-you destination, consider tacking on a few personal days to the journey. This way, you can enjoy a mini-vacation sans airfare (assuming your company will cover that portion).

[Read: The Best Garment Bags for Travel, According to Reviews .]

Buy travel insurance

It may sound counterintuitive, but purchasing travel insurance can save your bank account (and your sanity) in the event that you or a family member falls ill or has another emergency that forces you to change your vacation plans before or during the trip. A basic and cheap travel insurance policy will suffice, though there are coverage options for a wide variety of needs – including cancel for any reason travel insurance (which is exactly what it sounds like).

Housesit for free accommodations

Did you know you can enjoy free accommodations in exchange for housesitting? Sites like House Sitters America and Mind My House offer housesitting opportunities for a small annual fee (less than $50). Many of the homeowners have pets who need TLC while they're gone, too, making this a fun and budget-friendly alternative to traditional rentals like Airbnb. No matter where you travel, it doesn't get much better than living like a local and playing with pups.

Similarly, you can try couch surfing, which allows you to stay with a local for free. Services like the site Couchsurfing charge a negligible monthly or annual fee to sign up and get verified for safety purposes, while others such as BeWelcome are free. These services also provide exclusive meetups with other travelers.

Read: The Best Vacation Rental Travel Insurance Plans

Sign up for a family loyalty program

Did you know there are loyalty programs that allow family members or groups to pool rewards or freely transfer rewards to others?

"This can be a great option for infrequent travelers who may not rack up enough points or miles for a free flight or hotel room individually – but can reach those rewards when combined," says Nick Ewen, director of content for The Points Guy . "In some cases, it's a single, pooled account that automatically combines points (like JetBlue). In other cases, you can simply transfer points from one account to another (like Hilton Honors, World of Hyatt, or Marriott Bonvoy)." He recommends reading the full terms and conditions of these programs, as some impose time limits, maximum transfer amounts and other restrictions.

Use travel rewards on experiences

Don't forget that both airline credit cards and airline rewards programs can be used to cover more than flights and hotels. Programs like Chase Ultimate Rewards make it easy to redeem points for sporting events, dining (including reservations, exclusive culinary experiences and takeout orders) and more.

You can also use points earned on hotel credit cards as well as hotel rewards programs to pay for fun experiences in hundreds of destinations around the world. Options range from cooking classes and concerts to outdoor activities and spa experiences .

Book a refundable car rental

While some companies offer discounts for prepaid car rentals, many travelers say they've had better luck with booking refundable car rentals , allowing them to secure a reasonable rate while keeping a watchful eye for price drops. If a better price pops up, simply cancel your original reservation and book at the lower rate. Frequent traveler Pamela Howard, who writes about her experiences on Our Adventure Is Everywhere , says she's consistently able to save anywhere from $25 to $100 using this tactic on Costco Travel car rentals. "It's simple and that little bit of time rechecking rates pays substantially in savings."

Ewen says you can do the same when you book a flight or hotel using points since many loyalty programs have flexible cancellation policies. "If you lock in a flight at 35,000 miles and see that your same ticket is 30,000 miles just a week later, you should be able to rebook and get those 5,000 miles back into your account," he explains.

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Top Things to Remember While Buying a Travel Insurance Plan

Travel-Insurance-Plan

Jetting off on a dream holiday or a quick getaway is always exciting. But what if something unexpected happens along the way - illness, accidents, lost luggage or flight delays? That’s where having a good travel insurance policy by your side can make all the difference.

As you look for a suitable travel insurance plan, whether for your family or yourself, there are some key things Indians should keep in mind. This blog takes you through the most important factors when choosing travel insurance online so your next international trip is stress-free!

Selecting the Right Travel Insurance Plan: Things to Remember Beforehand

When buying travel insurance, pick a plan that suits your destination and has adequate coverage for medical emergencies, trip delays, COVID-19, etc. The points below offer the top tips for buying travel insurance.

Choose an Optimal Cover Amount

The first thing to decide is how much coverage you actually need for your trip duration and destinations. Travel insurance plans offer cover amounts ranging from basic lower sums to comprehensive higher amounts.

Assess your trip budget, expected expenses for emergencies and healthcare costs at the destinations you plan to visit. Opting for adequate coverage is essential to avoid paying hefty bills during medical emergencies or accidents abroad.

Compare Plans Thoroughly

With so many  international travel insurance  options available, you need to compare different plans carefully before zeroing in on one. Check claim settlement ratios and review policy wordings to understand inclusions/exclusions. Compare features like medical cover, evacuation assistance, trip delays/cancellations, lost baggage and theft.

Opting for travel insurance from reputed providers ensures comprehensive coverage and reliable assistance overseas.

Consider Your Itinerary

Your travel insurance needs can vary greatly depending on where you are going and what you plan to do. If you are planning adventure activities, ensure those are covered under standard policy inclusions or specific add-ons.

For multi-country trips, verify the geographical scope of the policy to know the eligible destinations supported. If travelling to multiple Schengen countries, check if the coverage duration resets or continues cumulatively when crossing borders.

Check Pre-Existing Disease Coverage

Many basic travel insurance plans exclude pre-existing illnesses from coverage. So, if you have any medical condition diagnosed earlier, ensure it is explicitly covered under your chosen policy. Also, check if routine follow-up expenses related to pre-existing diseases are covered during the trip tenure.

Some comprehensive plans do offer coverage for pre-existing diseases at additional premiums. If your existing health condition needs regular treatment, it is best to opt for such plans with relevant covers instead of basic options.

Verify Geographical Scope

Another factor you must verify before buying international travel insurance is its geographical scope. Most standard products cover popular tourist destinations across Asia, Europe, the US and the Middle East.

However, if you are planning holidays to exotic locations in South America, Africa, Eastern Europe, or Australia, check with your insurer if medical/accident coverage also extends to these countries. Adventure tourism plans specifically cater to offbeat destinations globally.

Evaluate Perks and Add-Ons

Higher-priced premium  travel insurance  plans often include value-added benefits beyond just medical or evacuation coverage. Look for policies offering perks like:

·  Global emergency assistance services

·  Cover for adventure sports like skiing, hot air ballooning, etc

·  Financial shield for trip delays/cancellations

·  Loss of passport/checked-in baggage insurance

·  Automatic policy extensions in medical emergencies

Such additional benefits can come in very handy in unforeseen situations abroad or even domestically. Compare the bonuses and freebies offered to get maximum bang for your buck!

Don’t Miss Out On Co-Pay Clause

Several travel insurance products mention a co-payment or deductible clause associated with claims. This means you need to bear 10-20% (approx) of the claim amount approved, even if the insurer covers the rest.

For instance, if your overseas hospital bill comes to ₹5 lakhs and the policy has a co-pay clause of 20%, you must shell out ₹1 lakh from your own pocket first. So be aware of such clauses before locking a plan to avoid surprises later!

Check For Cashless Hospitalisation Facility

One significant advantage offered by top [travel insurance online India] companies is the cashless hospitalisation facility at partner networks abroad. This lets policyholders obtain direct admission into overseas hospitals without needing to pay hefty deposits initially.

The insurer directly settles payment with the healthcare provider as per policy limits later. So do check if your shortlisted insurer has tie-ups with reputed hospitals at major tourist destinations you plan to visit. Cashless hospitalisation access brings immense relief if health emergencies strike overseas.

Don’t Miss Advisory Services

Some travel insurers offer value-added concierge and advisory services alongside core coverage. Right from helping with lost passports, emergency translations, legal referrals, etc., to providing weather/currency updates - such assistance services can make a big difference.

Especially for first-time international travellers, having an assistance provider available round-the-clock brings significant peace of mind. So do check what emergency assistance benefits are included along with your travel insurance policy before making the purchase.

Evaluate Extensions in Emergency

Falling seriously ill or having an accident right before your trip ends can be very stressful. But most basic travel insurance plans only offer cover for fixed tenure initially opted - say 7 days or 15 days of overseas trip.

Getting extensions to continue the existing policy while being hospitalised can be challenging. However, some high-end products do offer emergency extensions without asking too many questions during claims. This ensures you remain covered health-wise until it is safe to return back home.

So, based on your destinations and trip duration, evaluate if your shortlisted insurer offers provision for emergency tenure extensions within the policy. It may make a difference if medical exigencies arise towards the end of your sojourn.

Check For Ease of Claims

Last but definitely not least, assess how easy or difficult it will be to submit claims when required. Quick turnaround on claims with minimal document requirements holds significance during overseas emergencies or accidents.

Before buying travel insurance online, compare communication channels, assistance portals and the claims process conveniently. Valid reasons, like a family emergency or natural disaster, may sometimes force cancellation of your trip. So you should receive claims-related payments as refunds smoothly from the insurer within reasonable timelines.

Planning an international or domestic trip involves not just booking tickets and hotels but also investing in adequate travel insurance. For Indian travellers, comparing different plans based on your trip duration, destination, and planned activities ensures you get optimal coverage.

Assess aspects like medical coverage, claim processing ease, and emergency assistance services before picking a policy that lets you travel stress-free. With relevant protection against cancellations, accidents, illness, etc, you can create memorable moments on your holidays without worrying about burning a hole in your pocket due to unforeseen events.

Ensure you evaluate these key considerations diligently before sealing a suitable travel insurance deal for your next vacation!

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Evolving luxury

Saga floats idea of selling stake in ocean cruises arm

The over-50s travel and insurance specialist could outsource the operation of its two ocean cruise ships under plans being explored by its board, Sky News learns.

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City editor @MarkKleinmanSky

Friday 26 January 2024 00:36, UK

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Saga is exploring ways to release money from its ocean cruises operation which could involve selling its two flagship vessels or offloading the entire business under a licensing arrangement.

Sky News has learnt that the heavily indebted company, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange, is working with advisers on a range of potential options, which also include selling a stake in the division.

City sources said on Thursday that the process, which has been under way for a number of weeks, had yet to reach any firm conclusions.

They added, however, that Saga's board had determined that its ocean cruises arms, which operates the Spirit of Adventure and Spirit of Discovery, offered the likeliest route to unlocking substantial new financing.

In November, Sky News revealed that Saga, which specialises in providing insurance and holidays to the over-50s consumer, had drafted in bankers from Lazard to advise.

Saga, which is scheduled to update the City on trading next week, has been labouring under the weight of a large debt pile for years.

In the autumn it tapped its chairman, Roger de Haan, for a £35m, adding to the substantial sum of money it owes him.

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Reviving the sale of its insurance underwriting division, which was on the cards a year ago, is not thought to have been ruled out altogether.

However, more realistic alternatives are said to include selling and leasing back the two cruise ships, which are now operating at near-capacity, selling a stake in the division or outsourcing its operation to another cruise company under a licensing deal.

The evaluation of new corporate activity by Saga's board comes ahead of a £150m bond repayment which is due in May but which is understood to be repayable from money lent by Mr de Haan.

In its interim results announced last September, Saga's balance sheet was saddled with net debt of more than £650m.

The company's shares have fallen by nearly a fifth during the last 12 months, leaving it with a market capitalisation of just over £200m.

Mr de Haan, the company's former chief executive, was parachuted back in to lead a turnaround in the summer of 2020, investing £100m as part of a broader capital-raising.

That came after it spurned a takeover bid from private equity investors.

At the start of last year, it unveiled a global website called Saga Exceptional, aimed at providing advice and services to over-50s consumers.

However, it has been forced to contend with a change of leadership in recent weeks following the resignation in November of chief executive Euan Sutherland.

He is being replaced by finance chief Mike Hazell.

A large part of the company's current travails relate to conditions in the motor insurance market, which it said had been impacting its ability to generate cash and reduce debt.

Saga had also been in talks to sell its underwriting business to Open, an Australian insurer, but failed to finalise a transaction.

Mr de Haan, the son of the company's founder, had already lent Saga £50m before extending that to an £85m facility earlier in the autumn.

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Shares in Saga closed on Thursday at 146.8p.

A spokeswoman for the company declined to comment.

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