Insurance policies

Which travel insurance policies are best for snowbirds?

Which travel insurance policies are best for snowbirds? | TheRecord.com

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Medical insurance is important when traveling, and your travel policy should take age into account, especially for snowbirds over 65, says Matt Hands of Ratehub.ca.Medical insurance is important when traveling, and your travel policy should take age into account, especially for snowbirds over 65, says Matt Hands of Ratehub.ca.

A standard travel insurance policy may only cover you for 21 days, but snowbird travel insurance coverage is often available for around six months.

As many Canadians prepare to head south for the winter, having the right insurance for your getaway is essential.

Matt Hands, director of insurance at Ratehub.ca, explains that the type of insurance you choose depends on the length of the trip.

“First and foremost you should consider medical insurance, then if you are traveling more in an all-inclusive style of travel you may also want to consider theft and accident insurance.”

According to Hands, a standard travel insurance policy can only cover you for 21 days, but snowbird travel insurance coverage is often available for around six months.

“You need to figure out how long you’ll be away and make sure your coverage is in place for the duration of your stay,” says Hands. This means that you are covered in the event of trip cancellation, lost luggage and trip interruption, especially if your trip includes several flights. You can also check if your policy also covers trip interruptions related to COVID-19.

Pay attention to the fine print when selecting a policy, advises Hands. It is important that the travel policy takes your age into account, especially for snowbirds over 65. If you have pre-existing medical conditions, make sure your policy covers medical visits. “What a lot of insurance companies look for is whether your pre-existing condition is stable enough when you take out the policy,” Hands says.

Traditional institutions like Sun Life, RBC and Desjardins offer travel insurance for snowbirds, as do newcomers like Goose Insurance, an app-based insurance program.

Hands recommends looking at several factors when comparing policies. “Insurance is specific to your needs, and just because someone you know got a good rate doesn’t mean it will work for you, as it may depend on your destination, age, duration of your stay,” he said.

“Do your research, shop around, talk to multiple travel insurance companies to understand who offers the best coverage at the best price.”

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