General Information

Understanding the Travel Delay Benefit of Travel Insurance Policies

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When it comes to air travel, flight delays are a regular occurrence. For those who do any amount of flying, chances are that at some point, they’ve been stuck at the airport enduring a dreaded delay. Although airports can be fascinating places to people watch, the interest level wanes as exhaustion and frustration mounts.  For the lucky, airline delays may be short and uneventful; but for others, they can mean several hours of waiting that leads to disruptions in flight connections, accommodations and more.

Many travel insurance policies provide a travel delay benefit which will reimburse travelers for certain expenses incurred as a result of a delay. The length of time that a traveler must be delayed in order to claim the benefit varies by policy, but can be anywhere from 3 to 24 hours.  Additionally, covered expenses and benefit maximums will depend on the policy, so it is important to read policy details carefully. Usually, covered expenses include food, accommodations and local transportation costs that are incurred due to a delay. Some policies, such as American Express Global Shield Deluxe will also cover personal emergency necessities and business effects.

In order for a delay to be covered by travel insurance, the cause of the delay must be one that is listed in the policy. Most policies include common carrier delays, sickness, lost or stolen travel documents, and adverse weather conditions. Additional covered reasons can be found in the policy’s certificate.