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Travel Insurance for the Pandemic

Decided to do a road trip rather than a flight-based vacation or cruise? Or maybe you’re looking for COVID-19 medical coverage on a trip to Europe. Either way, there’s never been a time when more people were looking to travel insurance to help cover their trips. But the tricky thing is, at this point, most travel insurance providers aren’t offering much in the way of COVID-19-specific travel insurance. Which is why I took notice when I found two Seven Corners trip insurance policies that could be particularly helpful for family travel during the current COVID-19 pandemic.  

Road Trip Insurance

Seven Corners’ Armor policy is designed to cover the financial risks of a serious accident during a road trip. It provides annual coverage for road trips in the US, Canada, and Mexico, and covers $50,000 for emergency medical evacuation, $50,000 in non-emergency transportation, $50,000 for child return, $5,000 in vehicle return, and $1,000 for pet return. The cost, not age-rated, is $45 for the primary insurer plus $25 for each spouse or dependent, with a maximum age of 73 years for any insured person. It covers multiple trips of 100+ miles from home during a year, so long as no trip exceeds 30 days. For a family of four, the annual cost would be $95.

This road-trip insurance plan is designed to fill the holes that your regular health insurance, roadside assistance program, and standard auto insurance do not fill. If you have a bad accident or get sick while on a road trip, your roadside program tows your vehicle, your health insurance coves medical costs, and your collision insurance covers repair to your vehicle. Armor covers the costs of getting you home if you can’t drive, getting your vehicle home, and getting your family home, even if emergency medical evacuation is required. Basically, it’s very broad medevac with a few extras. Note, though, that the Armor plan does not include trip-cancellation coverage.

Covid-19 Travel Insurance

The Liaison Travel Plus policy specifically lists COVID-19 sickness (along with other variations) at your destination as a covered reason—which many ordinary policies do not. That means it provides up to $100,000 in medical expenses and up to $500,000 in emergency evacuation (medevac), along with a long list of other conventional medical insurance coverages, including some minor co-pays, depending on the option you select. All main coverages are secondary, meaning the policy covers only what you can’t first recover some other way.

The cost of a sample trip for “Family 1,” ages, 45, 40, 16, and 13, on a two-week European trip costing $10,000, is $153.88. “Family 2,” ages 67, 66, 45, and 40, is $343. The maximum age for any insured traveler is 73. 

The Liaison Travel Plus plan is designed to avoid the problem with the many travel insurance policies that regard getting Covid-19 as a “foreseeable” risk and is therefore not covered. But note that the policy is limited to medical risks. It does not include trip-cancellation/trip-interruption (TCI) benefits due to COVID-19 or any other reason.

Getting Travel Insurance Coverage

You can buy either policy directly from Seven Corners. But if you need something different—most notably TCI (trip cancellation/trip-interruption coverage)—I recommend you check with at least one of the big independent travel insurance agencies to make sure you can’t find a policy that better meets you needs. Among the agencies I usually cite:

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Ed Perkins
Ed Perkins is a longtime consumer advocate and reporter. He spent 25 years in travel research and consulting and was founding editor of Consumer Reports Travel Letter. He is the author of "Online Travel" (2000) and "Business Travel: When It's Your Money" (2004). He was also the co-author of the annual "Best Travel Deals" series from Consumers Union. Perkins' travel expertise has led to frequent television appearances, including ABC's "Good Morning America,” "The CBS Evening News," CNN, and numerous local TV and radio stations.