Cruising is starting to come back! While this is great news for people who work in the cruise industry and folks who enjoy cruising, the landscape of cruising has changed in the post-COVID world.
How have things changed?
Some cruise lines are requiring all passengers over age 12 to be fully vaccinated. With some lines, children under 12 who cannot yet be vaccinated are not allowed to cruise.
Other cruise lines have enacted policies that make unvaccinated people feel like second-class citizens. Some lines are relegating unvaccinated individuals to certain parts of the ship and letting those who are fully vaccinated go where they please.
One thing is for certain: if you plan to cruise any time soon, you may want to get COVID travel insurance, just in case. For some cruise lines, you may even be required to have it if you’re not vaccinated.
Here’s what you need to know about COVID travel insurance: how it works and who may need it going forward.
Travel Insurance for COVID
Insurance policies purchased after January 21, 2021, when the COVID-19 pandemic became a named event, will cover unforeseen scenarios involving COVID when traveling. Purchasing a comprehensive travel insurance plan will apply to circumstances such as:
If you fall ill and must see a doctor or go to the hospital during your travels, a comprehensive policy will cover it.
Emergency Medical Evacuation
If you require movement to a different place or back home, because you fall ill while traveling, a comprehensive plan will cover this, too.
Interruptions to the Trip
If travel gets disrupted by required evacuation due to illness, you are covered.
Cancel for Any Reason
If you want to make sure you can recoup costs in the event your trip must be canceled due to illness, look for coverage that allows cancellation for any reason. In COVID times, it’s not uncommon for travel warnings to disrupt your plans, so this is a good idea to protect your investment in a vacation.
Make sure any plan you choose includes coverage for pandemics/epidemics, providing coverage for issues related. That’s why it’s important to read the details of the plan before you purchase – because not every plan will have this type of coverage.
It’s also important to keep in mind that travel insurance is for coverage of unexpected events. Once something becomes known, such as COVID, it may not be covered. This stands as yet another reason to read the fine print of any policy you may consider.
Expanded Insurance Offerings
Due to COVID, many companies that sell travel insurance have adapted or expanded their coverage for travelers. In addition to what was discussed above, you may want to look for a policy that offers coverage for:
- Medical reimbursement for covered treatments related to COVID
- Cancellation of a trip due to a physician’s order due to COVID
- Cancellation of a trip because of a quarantine order
It’s important to note that travel insurance policies do not cover costs associated with COVID tests that may be required for you to travel or embark on a cruise ship.
Who Should Buy Travel Insurance?
Some cruise lines are requiring unvaccinated guests to buy travel insurance, but even if you are vaccinated, it’s a safety net you may want to consider. After all, COVID adds uncertainty to any travel situation, so it’s not a bad idea to give yourself peace of mind.
About the Author:
Andrew Winston is a partner at the personal injury law firm of Winston Law. For over 20 years, he has successfully represented countless people in all kinds of personal injury cases, with a particular focus on child injury, legal malpractice, and premises liability. He has been recognized for excellence in the representation of injured clients by admission to the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and named one of America’s Top 100 High-Stakes Litigators. Mr. Winston is AV Preeminent Rated by the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, enjoys a 10.0 rating by AVVO as a Top Personal Injury Attorney, has been selected as a Florida “SuperLawyer” from 2011-2020 – an honor reserved for the top 5% of lawyers in the state – was voted to Florida Trend’s ”Legal Elite,” recognized by Expertise as one of the 20 Best Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys, named one of the Top 100 Lawyers in the Miami area for 2015-2017, and one of the Top 100 Lawyers in Florida for 2015-2017 and 2019.