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Does Travel Insurance Cover Cruise Excursions? [Comparisons and Exclusions]

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Jessica Merritt
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A cruise can take you to exciting destinations with adventurous shore excursions, but no trip is immune to unexpected interruptions. Cancellations, delays, missed port calls, or illness can all interfere with your plans. But cruise excursion travel insurance can help if you experience any of these unfortunate setbacks.

Cruise excursion travel insurance covers nonrefundable excursion costs and more, offering financial protection if you’re unexpectedly unable to complete your planned activities.

This guide highlights some of your cruise excursion travel insurance options, what you should expect to pay for it, common coverages, and how to choose the best policy.

The 5 Best Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance Plans

You have many options for cruise travel insurance that covers excursions, but you should customize your coverage based on your needs and planned activities.

Consider these cruise excursion travel insurance plans that offer good value for the coverage provided:

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Cruise Travel Insurance PlanBest forWhat’s Covered
battleface Discovery PlanScuba excursions
Trip cancellation, medical primary coverage, and medical evacuation
WorldTrips Atlas Journey PreferredParagliding
Trip cancellation and interruption, secondary medical coverage, and medical evacuation
Tin Leg AdventureBungee jumping
Trip cancellation and interruption, primary medical coverage, and medical evacuation
Aegis Go Ready ChoiceCOVID-19
Trip cancellation and interruption, secondary medical coverage, and medical evacuation
Seven Corners Trip Protection BasicSeniors
Trip cancellation and interruption, secondary medical coverage, and medical evacuation

Best Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance for Scuba Excursions: battleface

The battleface Discovery Plan covers trip cancellation, though you can add trip interruption coverage. There’s also hurricane and weather coverage, including common carrier delays, mandatory evacuations, and uninhabitable accommodations.

It offers up to $100,000 in emergency medical as primary coverage with a $0 deductible and up to $500,000 in medical evacuation and repatriation benefits. These benefits extend to excursions, including snorkeling and diving up to 40 meters deep, but deep-sea diving, skydiving, bungee jumping, and other extreme activities are excluded. For a 35-year-old cruising the Bahamas with plans to snorkel and scuba dive, our quote was $36.54.

Best Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance for Paragliding Excursions: WorldTrips

With the WorldTrips Atlas Journey Preferred plan, you can get covered for trip cancellation and interruption, emergency medical treatment, medical evacuation and repatriation, and more.

With an adventure sports upgrade, some covered activities include bungee jumping, cave diving, kitesurfing, paragliding, surfing, and diving up to 10 meters deep. There’s secondary emergency medical coverage of up to $100,000 with preexisting conditions covered if you purchase your policy shortly after booking.

Medical evacuation and repatriation benefits are $1 million, along with coverage for travel and baggage delays and loss of baggage or personal items. There’s also a missed connection benefit. Our quote for a 25-year-old cruising Cozumel with plans to paraglide came to $67 for full coverage.

Best Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance for Bungee Excursions: Tin Leg

Your cruise and adventurous excursions are covered by the Tin Leg Adventure travel insurance policy. This policy offers trip cancellation and interruption coverage, up to $100,000 in primary medical coverage, and $1 million in medical evacuation coverage.

Although this isn’t a Cancel for Any Reason policy, you can cancel for medical or work reasons to receive full reimbursement. You’re also covered for travel or baggage delays, missed connections, and loss of baggage or personal items. Limited sports and adventure activities are covered, and we confirmed bungee excursions are included in coverage with this policy. We got a quote for a 40-year-old cruising New Zealand with plans to bungee jump that cost $72.

Best Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance for COVID-19 Coverage: Aegis

If you’re concerned COVID-19 could derail your cruise and excursion plans, it’s a good idea to select a policy with COVID-19 coverage, such as the Aegis Go Ready Choice plan. This travel insurance policy covers trip cancellation and has secondary medical coverage of up to $500,000 with COVID-19 coverage, whether you need to cancel or get medical treatment.

There’s also trip interruption coverage and up to $500,000 in medical evacuation benefits, along with benefits for travel or baggage delay, missed connections, and loss of baggage or personal items. There’s limited coverage for excursions and activities, with extreme sports such as bungee jumping, skydiving, cliff diving, and parasailing excluded from coverage. For a 45-year-old cruising Hawaii, our quote came to $54.22.

Best Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance for Seniors: Seven Corners

Seniors purchasing cruise excursion travel insurance should expect to pay more than younger cruisers, but quotes and coverage are still reasonable.

The Seven Corners Trip Protection Basic plan offers trip cancellation and interruption coverage with up to $100,000 in secondary medical coverage and $250,000 in medical evacuation benefits.

The policy also covers missed connections, baggage and travel delays, and loss of baggage and personal items. Our quote for a 65-year-old cruising Norway came to $89.

What Is Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance?

Cruise excursion travel insurance is travel insurance coverage that includes coverage for activities and tours you’re taking on your cruise. Generally, cruise travel insurance covers trip cancellation and interruption, medical emergencies, and travel support 24/7, but some activities, such as adventure sports, may not be included. That’s where cruise excursion travel insurance comes in, extending cancellation, interruption, and medical benefits to cover your cruise excursions, too.

Is Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance Worth It?

Katie snorkeling with a Galapagos sea lion
Snorkeling excursions are probably covered by your cruise travel insurance but don’t count on deep-sea diving. Image Credit: Katie Seemann

If you’re planning pricey, nonrefundable cruise excursions, it’s generally worth insuring them. You could lose your excursion costs if you cannot get a refund for a canceled, delayed, or missed excursion. 

Cruise excursion travel insurance is often worth it for the medical coverage, too. Your regular health insurance may not extend to the location or activities. That means if you’re injured on a cruise excursion, you might not get any help with medical bills — unless you have cruise excursion travel insurance to cover your activities.

Travel Insurance Often Excludes High-Risk Activities

It’s a good idea to get travel insurance. Still, remember that some travel insurance policies cover low-risk activities such as hiking or snorkeling but exclude adventure sports such as diving or ziplining. 

Specific exclusions depend on the insurance policy, but these are some activities that may be excluded from standard travel insurance policies:

  • Base jumping
  • Bungee jumping
  • Martial arts and combat sports
  • Motor racing and motorsports
  • Mountaineering and rock climbing
  • Off-piste skiing and snowboarding
  • Paragliding and hang gliding
  • Scuba diving and deep-sea diving
  • Skydiving

You may need to upgrade your plan or add on activities coverage if the excursions you’ve planned aren’t covered by your travel insurance policy.

Credit Card Travel Insurance May Exclude High-Risk Excursions

As with basic travel insurance, you may find your credit card travel insurance lacking coverage for adventurous cruise excursions. Generally, credit card travel protections are limited to basic medical expenses, trip cancellation or interruption, lost baggage, and travel accidents

Credit card travel protections often exclude extreme or adventure sports such as diving or ziplining, though you should read the terms and conditions of the benefit to be clear about what is and isn’t covered.

Consider upgrading your travel insurance to include your cruise excursions if you plan to do risky excursions not covered by your credit card travel protection.

Bottom Line:

Credit card travel insurance may not cover your cruise excursions, so find out the details of coverage and consider paying for travel insurance if your activities aren’t covered.

What Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance Costs

Cruise excursion travel insurance costs depend on your coverage, activities, and other factors, but you should generally expect to pay about 5% to 10% of your total trip cost for comprehensive travel insurance that covers cruise excursions.

Factors that influence the cost of your cruise excursion travel insurance policy include:

  • Activities
  • Destination
  • Trip cost
  • Trip duration
  • Traveler age

What Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance Covers

Cruise excursion travel insurance is generally part of a comprehensive travel insurance policy that includes trip cancellation and interruption, medical emergency, baggage protection, evacuation and repatriation coverage, and more

Coverage specific to cruise excursions includes:

  • Excursion Cancellations: You may be reimbursed if your scheduled excursion is canceled by the cruise line or tour operator.
  • Excursion Delays: You could get compensation for missed time or an alternative activity if your excursion is delayed.
  • Medical Emergencies: Your policy may cover medical emergencies that arise during the excursion.
  • Missed Port Calls: If you can’t participate in an excursion because your cruise ship didn’t make the port call, you may be reimbursed.

Types of Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance

Getting cruise excursion travel insurance that exclusively covers shore excursions is possible. However, this type of policy isn’t common. Most travelers find it more cost-effective and helpful to choose a comprehensive travel insurance policy that covers general cruise travel and cruise excursions.

What To Look For in a Cruise Excursion Travel Insurance Policy

As you consider cruise excursion travel insurance policies, you should shop around and get quotes from multiple companies. Consider these factors as you compare your options for cruise excursion travel insurance:

  • Add-Ons: Optional coverage, such as Cancel for Any Reason coverage, can expand your protection.
  • Cost: Consider each policy’s overall cost compared to its coverage value.
  • Coverage for Your Excursions: Read the policy’s terms and exclusions to ensure your specific excursions or activities are included in the coverage. For example, exclusions may include adventure sports, diving, parasailing, and ziplining, though you may have the option to select coverage for these activities.
  • Coverage Limits and Deductibles: Compare each policy’s coverage limits and deductibles to ensure they align with the cost of your excursions and planned travel.
  • Exclusions: Understand what’s specifically excluded in the policy by reading the terms and conditions that stipulate situations and circumstances that aren’t covered.
  • Extensive Coverage: Look for a policy that offers coverage for excursion cancellations, interruptions, delays, missed port calls, medical care, and 24/7 assistance services.
  • Provider Reputation: Read reviews to learn about the provider’s customer service, claims process, and other insights into what working with the insurance company is like.

How To Get Travel Insurance for Cruise Excursions

Norwegian cruise line
Include your cruise excursions in your total trip cost and confirm coverage includes your planned activities. Image Credit: Norwegian Cruise Line

To get cruise excursion coverage, you’ll need to do 2 things:

  1. Include the cost of your cruise excursions in your total trip cost when you get travel insurance quotes.
  2. Ensure you select a travel insurance policy that covers cruises and the activities you plan to do, such as adventure sports.

Start by researching and choosing a comprehensive travel insurance policy covering cruises and the specific excursions you’ve planned. Calculate your total trip cost, including all nonrefundable prepaid expenses, such as your cruise fare and excursions. Then, review the policy details, including the terms and conditions, to confirm whether your cruise excursions are covered, specifically looking at exclusions and limitations of the policy.

Once you’ve found a policy that meets your needs, purchase it and retain your documentation, including policy details, coverage, and contact information to get help on your trip if needed.

Final Thoughts

Cruise excursion travel insurance can be a valuable addition to your cruise plans, protecting you from nonrefundable excursion costs and offering medical coverage for activities. As you shop for travel insurance for cruise excursions, ensure you include the cost of your excursions in quotes and confirm that the policy covers all of your planned activities so your entire cruise is covered onshore and off.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does my health insurance cover me on a cruise?

Cruise health insurance coverage depends on your health insurance provider and where you’re cruising. Before you set sail, check with your health insurance company to confirm your coverage and any limitations. You may be able to add a cruise supplement if your health insurance doesn’t cover cruises.

Are cruises covered under travel insurance?

Yes, cruises are generally covered by comprehensive travel insurance plans. These plans cover your travel to and from the port, the cruise, and beyond, with trip cancellation and interruption coverage, medical emergency coverage, and coverage for lost luggage, evacuations, and more. You should confirm with the insurer that your policy covers missed port calls and other cruise-related incidents. If you want to cover cruise excursions, be sure to include the cost of excursions in your total trip cost and confirm that your planned activities aren’t excluded from coverage.

What is cruise coverage on travel insurance?

Cruise coverage on travel insurance is specific to cruises, such as missed port calls or onboard medical emergencies.

Is travel insurance worth it for a cruise?

Cruise travel insurance is generally worth the cost. Cruise lines tend to be unforgiving with cancellation policies, so trip cancellation coverage can come in handy. And if you experience an illness or accident on your cruise, travel insurance can help you get and pay for the medical care you need. Covering your excursions makes sense, too, if your excursion costs are nonrefundable.

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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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