Your sunscreen, toothbrush and passport are packed – you’re ready for your holiday! And while most vacations are wrinkle-free, sometimes issues come up: luggage could be lost or family members could become ill. Keep reading for tips and information about travel insurance.
Consumer Protection BC is responsible for administering BC’s travel laws, including licensing travel agents and wholesalers operating in BC and managing the Travel Assurance Fund. While we don’t oversee travel insurance, it’s a question that we get asked from time to time on our Facebook page. Here’s what we learned from the Office of Consumer Affairs (OCA) website (a great consumer resource, by the way!):
1. Read the fine print.
It’s always important to read the terms and conditions of any agreement. Does the policy cover pre-existing conditions? What about accidents that occur during risky activities, such as parasailing or skydiving? Know exactly what you’re agreeing to.
2. What happens if you need to cancel your trip?
Find out if you’re on the hook for a portion – or even all – of the cost of your trip if the unexpected happens and you’re forced to cancel.
3. Research medical coverage.
If you travel outside Canada, you are responsible for medical costs that exceed the rates set by the province. The cost of health services in some countries may be much higher than costs in Canada. How much does your policy cover?
Do you have a travel insurance story to share? Tell us in a comment below!
The Travel Assurance Fund
Why it matters: displaying a business licence
Tips for booking travel online
Has bad weather delayed or cancelled your flight?
10 thoughts on “Travel insurance – the basics”
have purchased blue cross for years and this spring i got sick in england and they would not pay for any of the costs associated with getting home. Their copout was that it does not cover trip interuption only medical expenses which there were none. I fought with them for a while but gave up talking to the robots at blue cross as they all had the same rehersed speech even when their booklet clearly states the items are covered but they state that there is a clause on the first page that say that they are not but i was not able to find it. For anyone travelling out of country you best ask about trip cancellation and interuption insurance specifically to make sure your return flights and hotels are covered because you never know
Same thing happened to me in Mesa,AZ. I got a terrible inflammation on my foot to the point I could not walk. Went to a clinic because I was afraid it was some sort of bite- it looked awful. The diagnosis was I had gout.was given a prescription and a 90$ bill. Our travel insurance or Blue Cross would not cover even that small amount . It was not a emergency they claim. Just glad it was not a major cost. Now we are sceptical about being covered . It’s all about money not ours but theirs.
When ever I travel to the states I get my insurance from BCAA. As with a few of my friends who travel.no problems.
my little granddaughter got sick, we had insurance; went to a couple of walk in clinics; but they would accept the insurance; Stated any insurance plans; One place finally told us to go to the emergency at the local hospital; This was in the U.S.A.; and the accepted our bought insurance plan; maybe just a little heads up;
I just purchased my ticket through airmiles, along with travel insurance and traveled to a sick cousin. Upon arrival it was all worse than expected and the family asked if I could stay awhile longer, so I called an rebooked for the following week and was charged the difference and was told to claim when I got home. I called the number when I got home and was told as it was a cousin and not a family member my claim would not be covered…definitely a rip off
Hi Trudi, that sounds like a frustrating situation for you. We always encourage people to read the fine print so they know exactly what is covered so they can make an informed decision.
Hi Sam, sounds like you had to spend some time looking for the right place but I’m glad you were able to use your insurance in the end. Thank you for sharing your story!
We booked a trip with Transat on November 25 2021. On December 21 2021 Transat canceled the trip. Transat refunded all money paid but Manulife will not refund the money we paid for travel insurance. They are charging me for a service I never received . Do I have any recourse to recover my money?
I replied to your original post but here is my response again:
Hi Dan, the laws we oversee at Consumer Protection BC do not apply to insurance. I’m not sure if there is a recourse for that but you may want to contact your credit card provider and see if they can provide you with a charge-back. I hope you will be able to get your money back!
Thank you, I couldn’t find my original post when I went back to the site. We will try to get a charge back from the the credit card company.