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Travel Insurance With COVID-19 Coverage: Stay Safe and Protected

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Jessica Merritt
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Jessica Merritt

Editor & Content Contributor

82 Published Articles 472 Edited Articles

Countries Visited: 4U.S. States Visited: 23

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 ca...
Edited by: Keri Stooksbury
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Keri Stooksbury

Editor-in-Chief

32 Published Articles 3109 Edited Articles

Countries Visited: 45U.S. States Visited: 28

With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now Editor-in-Chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...

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‌COVID-19 continues to add a layer of uncertainty to travel, especially international journeys. Travelers may be unsure how to travel protected from COVID-19 and navigate international vaccine, testing, and quarantine requirements.

While most countries have dropped COVID-19 entry requirements, there’s still a threat COVID-19 could interfere with your travel. You may have to cancel or delay your trip if you develop COVID-19 before departure. 

And if you pick up COVID-19 while traveling, your travel may be interrupted by quarantine, and you may need medical treatment. Severe COVID-19 symptoms may necessitate emergency medical evacuation, particularly when visiting a destination with limited medical care.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages travelers to consider travel insurance in case they need medical care abroad.¹ Other precautions you can take include getting up to date on COVID-19 vaccines and wearing a mask in crowded or poorly ventilated indoor areas, such as on public transportation or in transportation hubs such as airports.

Even if you’re cautious about COVID-19 while traveling, COVID-19 could still interfere with your journey. That’s where travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage comes in.

Travel Insurance With COVID-19 Coverage

COVID-19 travel insurance coverage can offer a safety net for traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic, offering financial protection and assistance if COVID-19-related issues impact your trip. These include trip cancellations, interruptions, medical emergencies, or quarantining.

Your travel insurance policy with COVID-19 coverage can include coverage for trip cancellations if you contract COVID-19 before your departure date or during your trip. Some plans also offer trip interruption coverage if you have to quarantine on your trip.

The medical coverage offered by your COVID-19 travel insurance policy can cover treatment if you need medical attention due to COVID-19 on your trip. That means you don’t have to worry about steep medical expenses for necessary medical care if you become sick with COVID-19 on your travels. And your coverage may offer medical emergency evacuation if your COVID-19 illness becomes critical.

International Travel Insurance With COVID-19 Coverage

Traveling internationally adds another layer of complexity to COVID-19 coverage. Countries may have COVID-19 mitigation measures such as testing upon arrival, quarantine periods, and vaccine requirements. Most countries have dropped these requirements, particularly for fully vaccinated travelers, but travel rules can change at any time — and travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage can help you manage COVID-19 requirements, particularly quarantines.

Some countries require valid travel medical insurance with COVID-19 coverage to qualify for a visa.

And if you contract COVID-19 while traveling, having travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage can be a lifeline with major financial savings, particularly if your destination has limited medical care.

Hot Tip:

Learn why you need medical insurance to cover medical emergencies and access quality healthcare when traveling abroad.

What COVID-19 Travel Insurance Covers

COVID 19 nasal swab test
COVID-19 travel insurance may cover testing before or during your trip. Image Credit: Seventyfour via Adobe Stock

COVID-19 travel insurance often covers testing, quarantine, emergency medical, emergency medical evacuation, and trip cancellation and interruption — you can also usually add on Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) coverage. Let’s explore the details of these COVID-19 travel insurance coverages:

  • Emergency Medical Coverage: Travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage usually covers emergency medical treatment if you contract COVID-19 during your trip. 
  • Emergency Medical Evacuation: Your travel insurance may provide coverage for emergency medical evacuation to a suitable medical facility if adequate COVID-19 care is unavailable at your destination.
  • COVID-19 Testing: COVID-19 travel insurance may cover the cost of testing for COVID-19, whether you’re testing pre-trip or on your travels.
  • COVID-19 Quarantine: If you contract COVID-19 before or during your trip, you may need to quarantine. Travel insurance covering COVID-19 quarantine can reimburse you for additional accommodation and other necessary costs.
  • Trip Cancellation and Interruption: Travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage may cover trip cancellation or interruption due to COVID-19-related reasons such as contracting the virus before departure or during the trip, travel advisories, or government-imposed restrictions.
  • Cancel for Any Reason: With supplemental CFAR coverage, you can cancel your trip for any reason and receive a partial refund of your prepaid nonrefundable trip expenses. For example, you could cancel your trip if you have concerns about contracting COVID-19 at your destination during an outbreak.

COVID-19 Travel Insurance Costs

Expect to pay between 1% to 10% of your trip cost for single-trip travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage. For example, if your total trip cost is $3,000, you’ll pay about $30 to $300 for COVID-19 travel insurance. 

We got a quote via Squaremouth for a 25-year-old traveler visiting Ireland with a total trip cost of $2,500. Quotes offering full COVID-19 coverage, including trip cancellation, interruption, medical, and medical evacuation, ranged from $44 to $169.40.

covid 19 travel insurance quote with the lowest price
A COVID-19 travel insurance quote with the lowest price. Image Credit: Squaremouth

The lowest-priced quote offers $50,000 in secondary medical insurance and a $250,000 medical evacuation benefit. It has up to $2,500 in trip cancellation coverage and $3,750 for trip interruptions. COVID-19 is covered for both cancellation and medical.

covid 19 travel insurance quote with the highest price
The highest-priced COVID-19 travel insurance quote. Image Credit: Squaremouth

The highest-end COVID-19 travel insurance quote offers COVID-19 trip cancellation and medical coverage with up to $250,000 in secondary medical expense benefits and $1 million in medical evacuation coverage. The policy offers up to $2,500 for trip cancellation benefits and $3,125 for trip interruption.

Your actual cost of COVID-19 travel insurance depends on several factors, including your age, trip duration, destination, coverage limits, and the level of COVID-19 coverage.

Hot Tip:

Some credit card travel insurance covers COVID-19 medical expenses and cancellations or interruptions, but it depends on the card. Check your card’s guide to benefits to confirm whether your included travel insurance has you covered for COVID-19 or not.

An annual or multi-trip plan with COVID-19 coverage could be cost-effective if you plan to take several trips throughout the year. You’ll pay more for annual coverage — usually $300 to $1,000 or more — but that may be less than purchasing separate coverage for each trip you take.

Tips for Choosing COVID-19 Travel Insurance

As you consider which COVID-19 travel insurance to purchase, consider these factors to make sure you have comprehensive coverage for your needs:

  • COVID-19 Coverage Details: Review your policy to understand what’s covered under COVID-19 and what’s not. While most COVID-19 travel insurance policies cover trip cancellation and interruption, not all cover medical expenses or emergency evacuations.
  • Coverage Limits: Consider how much coverage the policy offers, especially for medical expenses and emergency evacuations, to ensure you’ll have enough coverage in an emergency.
  • Preexisting Conditions: If you have any preexisting medical conditions, confirm these conditions are covered by your COVID-19 travel insurance.
  • Policy Exclusions: Read the policy to understand exclusions and limitations, particularly those related to COVID-19.
  • Customer Support: Confirm the insurance company offers reliable customer support and assistance services, particularly a 24/7 assistance hotline.
  • Provider Reputation: Research the financial stability and reputation of the insurance provider, including customer reviews and how well they handle claims — especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hot Tip:

Lost in COVID-19 travel insurance options? See our guide to buying the best travel insurance.

How To Make a Claim for COVID-19 Travel Insurance

If you need to make a claim for your COVID-19 travel insurance, you’ll follow the insurer’s claim process. That generally includes contacting the insurer, submitting documentation, submitting your claim, and following up throughout the claims process. 

Learn more about the steps for making a COVID-19 travel insurance claim:

  • Review Your Policy: Before you travel, review your COVID-19 travel insurance coverage to understand what’s covered, particularly benefits relevant to the pandemic.
  • Contact Emergency Assistance: If you need medical treatment for COVID-19 during your trip, contact your insurance company’s 24/7 emergency helpline to get connected with medical treatment and guidance on how to proceed. 
  • Gather Documentation: Before you make a claim, prepare all the documentation you’ll need to support it, including medical records, medical expense receipts, and cancellation or change fees.
  • Submit Your Claim: Following the insurer’s claim submission process, contact the insurer to submit your claim. You may need to fill out claim forms and submit necessary documentation via email, an online portal, or mail.
  • Stay Updated: After you submit your claim, wait for a response and follow up as necessary with additional documentation or information. 
  • Escalate if Necessary: Know your rights as a policyholder and what the insurance company is obligated to do for you. If you feel your claim is wrongfully denied, you can escalate your claim with the insurance company or get help from regulatory authorities, such as your state’s department of insurance.

Travel Insurance Companies Offering COVID-19 Coverage

These are some of the best COVID-19 travel insurance options:

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Travel Insurance CompanyPlanCOVID-19 Cancellation CoveredCOVID-19 Medical Covered
Allianz Global AssistanceOneTrip PrimeYesYes
AXA Assistance USAGoldYesYes
battlefaceDiscoveryYesNo
Berkshire Hathaway Travel ProtectionExactCare ValueYesYes
Generali Global AssistanceStandardYesYes
GoReady Pandemic PlusYesYes
HTH WorldwideTrip Protector EconomyYesYes
IMGiTravelInsured Travel EssentialYesNo
John Hancock Insurance AgencyBronzeYesYes
NationwideEssentialYesYes
Seven CornersTrip Protection BasicYesYes
Tin LegEconomyYesYes
Trawick InternationalSafe Travels Single TripYesYes
USI AffinityRubyYesYes
WorldTripsAtlas Journey PreferredYesYes
  • Allianz Global Assistance: A OneTrip Prime plan from Allianz Global Assistance offers epidemic coverage — including trip cancellation, trip interruption, and medical coverage for COVID-19 and future epidemics or pandemics.
  • AXA Assistance USA: You can cover COVID-19 cancellations and medical expenses with an AXA Assistance USA Gold plan. There’s a $500,000 medical evacuation benefit.
  • battleface: battleface’s Discovery Plan covers COVID-19 cancellation but not COVID-19 medical expenses. You’ll get a $2,500 cancellation coverage benefit.
  • Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection: On the ExactCare Value plan, you’ll get a $25,000 medical benefit and a $500,000 medical evacuation benefit. Cancellations are covered up to $2,400, and interruptions up to $3,750.
  • Generali Global Assistance: Generali Global Assistance’s Standard plan covers both COVID-19 cancellation and medical expenses, with cancellation expenses of up to $2,500 and medical of up to $50,000 with a $250,000 medical evacuation benefit.
  • GoReady: GoReady’s Pandemic Plus plan covers COVID-19 cancellation and medical expenses with a medical limit of $50,000 and emergency evacuation of up to $250,000.
  • HTH Worldwide: You can get up to $2,500 in trip cancellation or $3,125 in interruption benefits from the Trip Protector Economy plan, with $75,000 in medical coverage (including COVID-19) and a $500,000 medical evacuation benefit.
  • IMG: IMG’s iTravelInsured Travel Essential plan does not cover COVID-19 medical or medical evacuation expenses, but you can get $2,500 trip cancellation and $3,125 interruption benefits. IMG’s higher-tier plans cover medical expenses and medical evacuation, including COVID-19.
  • John Hancock Insurance Agency: Bronze coverage with John Hancock Insurance Agency gets you up to $2,500 in trip cancellation and $3,125 in interruption benefits. Medical expenses — including COVID-19 — are covered up to $50,000 and medical evacuation for up to $250,000.
  • Nationwide: The Nationwide Essential plan offers medical expense coverage up to $75,000 and medical evacuation up to $250,000, including COVID-19 coverage. 
  • Seven Corners: A Seven Corners Trip Protection Basic plan covers COVID-19 cancellation and medical expenses with up to $100,000 in medical expense benefits.
  • TinLeg: On a TinLeg Economy plan, you can cover COVID-19 medical expenses up to $20,000 and medical evacuation up to $100,000. Trip cancellation or interruption expenses are covered up to $2,500.
  • Trawick Explorer: Using a Trawick International Safe Travels Single Trip plan, you’re covered for COVID-19 medical expenses of up to $75,000 and medical evacuation of up to $350,000. This plan offers primary coverage, so you don’t have to make a claim with other applicable insurance first.
  • USI Affinity: A USI Affinity Ruby plan offers primary coverage for up to $250,000 in medical expenses, including COVID-19. Medical evacuation coverage is up to $500,000, along with $2,500 in trip cancellation and $3,750 in trip interruption coverage.
  • WorldTrips: You’re covered for up to $1 million in medical evacuation, including COVID-19, with a WorldTrips Atlas Journey Preferred plan. Medical expenses are covered up to $100,000; you’ll have $2,500 in trip cancellation and $3,750 in interruption benefits.

Final Thoughts

Traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic isn’t as risky as it used to be, but taking precautions is still wise. Even if you do your best to avoid COVID-19, it could still impact your travel. Travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage can ensure you’re covered if you need to interrupt or cancel your trip due to the coronavirus. And it’s there to help if you need to quarantine or get medical care.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does travel insurance cover COVID-19?

COVID-19 travel insurance coverage depends on the insurer and plan. Some travel insurance policies offer coverage for COVID-19-related medical expenses, trip cancellations, or interruptions. Other travel insurance plans may exclude COVID-19.

What travel insurance covers pandemics?

COVID-19 travel insurance covers the COVID-19 pandemic. Some travel insurance plans offer coverage for future pandemics, but specific coverage and limitations vary widely among insurance providers and plans. It’s a good idea to check your plan’s terms and conditions for specific coverage inclusions and exclusions.

Can you cancel travel insurance and get a refund?

In some cases, you can cancel travel insurance and get a refund, but you’ll need to meet the policy’s terms and conditions for doing so. For example, most insurance companies offer a full refund if you cancel the policy within a certain period after purchase, and your refund amount goes down from there.

What does secondary coverage mean for travel insurance?

When you have secondary coverage on travel insurance, your insurance policy will only provide benefits after your primary insurance policies, such as health insurance or homeowners insurance, have been exhausted.

Is it worth having primary and secondary insurance?

Having both primary and secondary travel insurance can be helpful if you’re concerned your primary insurance has insufficient coverage. Secondary insurance can provide additional coverage and reduce out-of-pocket expenses.

Jessica Merritt's image

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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