Exactly How (and Why) I Bought Travel Insurance for My Next Vacation

  • Grace Lower
May 29, 2019

This summer, I’ll be traveling to Europe for the first time since college.

Although I have plenty of fond memories from my time as a student traveler, I’m looking forward to the autonomy (and the bigger travel budget!) that I’ve gained since graduation.
 

This will also be my first time traveling abroad independently: I won’t be with a student group, vacationing with family, or traveling through a provider. Instead, I’ll have full responsibility for every step of the planning process. That independence comes with a downside, however. For the first time, I won’t have built-in resources or support if an emergency occurs during my travels. 

To protect my personal and financial wellbeing while I’m on the road, I decided that travel insurance is essential. For many travelers, it’s tempting to write off travel insurance as an unnecessary luxury (“I’m healthy!” “What could possibly go wrong?”). But I knew that insuring my trip would be a relatively easy and cost-effective way to manage the risks of long-distance travel. Here are a few factors that went into my decision:

 

1. Long distance, long duration

I’m so excited for two dedicated weeks of summer travel, but being far from home can come with challenges. If something serious were to happen while I was abroad — whether that’s an accident, an illness, or a natural disaster — I wouldn’t want to experience a major financial setback for adjusting my travel plans accordingly. Fortunately, that’s where my travel insurance would come into play. 
 

2. Non-refundable expenses

Although some of my travel purchases have generous refund policies, plenty of them (I’m looking at you, plane tickets!) do not. If I had to unexpectedly cancel my trip or return home early, my trip insurance could reduce the burden of any non-refundable trip expenses. 


3. Current events

I try to stay optimistic, but these days, international affairs can seem awfully bleak. From political unrest to natural disasters, there are days when traveling internationally feels risky. While travel insurance won’t prevent bad things from happening, it can offer an additional measure of protection if an emergency occurs during my vacation.
 

4. Past experience

When I was a student, every organization I traveled with required that I purchase travel insurance. In my case, that requirement ended up paying off! When I came down with a terrible stomach flu when studying abroad, my travel medical insurance covered the cost of my hospital visit. With the finances handled, I could simply focus on getting well.
 

How I purchased travel insurance

 
Once I decided to spring for travel insurance, my next step was to pick a plan. As a regular contributor to Seven Corners’ travel blog, I knew that Seven Corners offers a variety of comprehensive and affordable insurance options. I eventually settled on Seven Corners’ RoundTrip insurance. The plan stood out for a few key reasons — namely, its affordability, its thorough coverage, and optional benefits like Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR). Here are the steps I took before purchasing:
 

1. Research and price comparison

Before making any big decisions, I wanted to learn more about travel insurance in general. I started off by scouring the web for articles and resources about international travel insurance. I compiled tips from credible news sources, poured over testimonials from travel bloggers, and visited different insurance providers’ websites. This gave me a better idea of the level of coverage I’d need and its approximate cost.
 

2. Understand benefits and exclusions

After my research period, I decided to move forward with a plan from Seven Corners. In particular, I was interested in RoundTrip insurance, because it offered coverage for both non-refundable trip expenses and emergency medical care.  
 
To better understand the levels of coverage available, I answered a brief questionnaire on Seven Corners’ website. After submitting a few basic details about my upcoming vacation, I was presented with several recommended coverage options. Out of three possible tiers, I went with the middle option: Seven Corners’ RoundTrip Choice.
 

3. Request a quote

Next, I wanted to understand exactly how much my insurance would cost. I used Seven Corners’ “quick quote” tool to generate an estimate for my preferred RoundTrip Choice plan. I entered my age, travel dates, and details about my destination, along with an estimate of my trip’s total cost. With just a few clicks, I was able to get a (surprisingly modest) quote. Travel insurance comes at a price, but it’s often more affordable than you might expect.
 

4. Chat with customer service

After researching, finding a plan, and determining its price, I still had a few lingering questions about what my coverage could offer. Using the resources available on Seven Corners’ website, I was able to chat with an agent and go over my questions in real-time. As someone who is fairly new to the world of travel insurance, I appreciated that a team of insurance professionals was available with advice and resources to help me purchase with confidence.
 

5. Purchase a plan

At long last, I was ready to actually purchase my RoundTrip Choice insurance. This was the easiest step of all. In just a few clicks, my coverage was confirmed, and minutes later, I received an email with my insurance documents. While I don’t expect any buyer’s remorse, I’m especially grateful for the flexibility that’s available. As a customer, I have the option to modify my level of coverage — or even cancel my plan — up to 10 days before my scheduled departure. 
 
 
 
Frankly, it isn’t fun to imagine a disaster striking when you’re on vacation. That’s why the right travel insurance plan can help reduce fear of the unknown. For me, purchasing travel insurance was a valuable exercise: prompting me to consider my risk-tolerance, research different options for coverage, and ask plenty of questions to ensure that I found the right plan. Now that my trip is covered and my itinerary is finalized, I can focus on feeling excited — rather than anxious —about the journey ahead.

 

About the Author

Grace Lower

Grace Lower has a love for all things writing and travel. When she's not exploring new places, Grace enjoys teaching English as a Second Language, making terrible puns, and running incredibly long distances at incredibly slow speeds.

Read more of Grace’s blogs

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