Many travelers consider the financial risks involved if they have to cancel a vacation or change flights, however, it is easy to overlook the potentially most expensive scenario, a medical evacuation. This could be an airlift, medical jet, ground ambulance or even a commercial flight back home, depending on the situation. When comparing travel insurance plans, it is important to review this benefit as a medical evacuation is one risk that could end up bankrupting a traveler. Travel Insurance Services recently blogged about the importance of having this coverage.
Many travelers underestimate just how many vacations are cut short by medical emergencies – some almost before they start.
A passenger on board a recent cruise to the Bahamas only made it as far as the Chesapeake Bay before getting ill. He was medevaced from the ship to awaiting EMS just hours after departure.
This was an unfortunate (and costly) end to a vacation, especially if the ill passenger did not have medical evacuation coverage. Many travel and health care policies provide little or no coverage for an emergency medevac, which can cost $100,000 or more.
Most travel insurance plans offer a comprehensive package of benefits that includes medical evacuation & repatriation. The available coverage can range from $20,000 to $2,000,000. The appropriate amount of coverage will depend on the traveler and the trip. International travelers should consider a policy with at least $100,000 of coverage, maybe more if the destination is a considerable distance from home. Domestic travelers might not require as much, since an evacuation would be a shorter distance and therefore less money.