How to Select Study Abroad & Travel Insurance
So Many Types of Coverage! What to Get?
A guide to study abroad and travel insurance to help students select and purchase a plan.
Do I Need Insurance for Study Abroad?
Studying abroad is a life-changing experience, but along with the journey come many speed bumps and headaches. You can never anticipate the issues that may arise while studying abroad and traveling, which is why travel insurance is a great thing to consider because there’s always that chance…
… you get sick and require treatment
… you break a leg skiing in the Alps
… your flight is cancelled and your entire weekend trip gets derailed due to a transportation strike
… your phone or laptop gets stolen from your hostel
… you break your camera
… a family member dies and you need to fly home immediately
These can set you back thousands upon thousands of dollars and without the proper coverage you might be paying for them out of pocket. Try explaining that one to mom and dad back home!
Even the most experienced travelers have the occasional setback and it’s smart to be prepared for the worst. Having insurance that provides you with medical, logistical, and financial support is important.
School-Sponsored Group Policies
Some colleges and universities in the United States suggest students enroll in their program’s group policy before they even set foot on the plane to Europe. These policies can usually be purchased in supplement to your upfront pre-departure expenses and coverage is often limited to international health insurance.
While some United States domestic health plans offer overseas coverage, a good number do not, so before you opt-in for a group policy, first double check your existing coverage to see if it offers you any benefit. If you don’t have domestic health insurance, a sponsored group policy might serve as your only insurance while studying abroad.
If your domestic provider doesn’t offer overseas coverage and your school doesn’t have a group policy, you’re on your own for insurance.
I went to Rome with a few of my friends. Before we got there, our tour guide, Rhianne, sent us plenty of information regarding how to arrive at the hostel, and what our Itinerary would be like. She also made it a point to meet up with people the night before if their flight got in early so students would have something to do. Having a tour guide that lived in the city was amazing. It made me not have to stress about getting lost, and provided many opportunities to eat at the best restaurants, and, most importantly, the best Gelato places. By the end of the tour, I was good friends with each of the 14 members of the tour group, including our tour guide. I definitely recommend taking a tour through WSA because the guides make you feel like they actually care about each person on the trip. I knew that I could just relax, and enjoy my trip.Kyle Cook, Lebanon Valley College ~ Kingston University, London, Fall 2015
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