COLUMBUS, OHIO - Almost half of Americans have faced fees or had to absorb the cost of losses when traveling without travel insurance, a survey commissioned by travel insurance provider battleface found. The most common charges are for cancellation fees (19%), fees for changing travel dates (19%), fees for changing travel times (14%), and costs associated with baggage loss or delay (10%).
When purchasing travel insurance, Americans say their top priority is getting coverage for trip cancellations or delays (44%), followed by getting coverage for medical expenses (other than Covid-19) while traveling (32%). Other priorities include coverage for personal accidents while traveling (31%), delay or loss of luggage (30%), and for being returned home in the event of an emergency (26%).
battleface's research suggests that the likelihood that Americans purchase travel insurance coverage has increased slightly since before COVID-19. A third of respondents (36%) said they are more likely to purchase travel insurance now than before Covid-19 for a trip abroad, and 34% said they are more likely to do so for a domestic trip.
Almost half (45%) of Americans who have purchased travel insurance for a trip abroad consider the benefits, costs, and services provided by travel insurance equally important. However, among these offerings, benefits (e.g., reimbursement for lost luggage, replacing a lost passport, etc.) come out on top and are considered most important by 22%. This is compared to only 17% and 16%, who consider services and cost as the most important offerings, respectively.
"As travel resumes and airlines and hotels bring back cancellation or change fees, it's more crucial than ever to have travel insurance. If 2020 taught us anything, it is that plans can change and that the unexpected does happen," said Sasha Gainullin, CEO of battleface. "We are confident that COVID-19 has brought on a shift in the way Americans perceive travel insurance, and that soon purchasing insurance for any kind of trip will be as normal and ingrained in the traveler's mind as selecting a seat for a flight. We would urge travelers to check international entry requirements as many countries are now asking for proof of travel insurance upon entry" he added.
The study, commissioned by battleface and conducted by Opinium, surveyed 2,000 US adults aged 18 and older in March 2021 to better understand American's habits regarding travel insurance.