Some types of travel insurance allow you to add a deductible to your policy. How does this work? And is it a good deal?

What is a deductible?

The deductible is the amount that the insured (the policyholder) agrees to pay if they need to make a claim. The insurance company then reimburses the costs over and above that amount. With most travel insurance policies, the deductible is applied to emergency medical care costs. It may also extend to baggage or trip cancellation/ interruption coverage.

Deductible terms and conditions vary depending on the insurance provider. There may be a single deductible amount per policy, regardless of the number of insureds. Alternatively, each insured may have their own deductible. In you purchase annual travel insurance, there may be one deductible for the entire year, or one per trip.

Can you benefit from adding a deductible to your travel insurance?

Insurers usually offer a range of deductible amounts. The higher the amount, the greater the discount on the premium. So adding a deductible is especially advantageous for people paying high premiums—e.g., those staying abroad for months at a time.

The key point to remember is this: you should add a deductible to your policy only if you would have no problem paying that amount out of your own pocket in the event of a claim.

In short, you can save money by adding a deductible to your travel insurance. It’s up to you to define your comfort zone: decide how much you’re prepared to pay in case of a claim, and then see whether the discount is worth it. Of course, buying travel insurance without a deductible is also an excellent choice, because it means complete peace of mind!

The cost of health care in other countries

Getting health care in another country, especially the United States, can be very expensive. You may be surprised at how quickly the amount of a bill can increase. Here are some examples of deductible amounts, matched to health care of the same value.

$250: Consultation for a cold ($200) and appropriate medication ($50)

$500 to $1,000: Emergency room visit (cost varies by hospital) or transportation by ambulance

$2500: Transportation by ambulance and doctor’s appointment

$5000: Transportation by ambulance, appointment with a specialist doctor, tests, and a one-day hospital stay

Did you know?

With CAA-Quebec Insurance, you can now add a deductible to the emergency medical care coverage, and get a discount of up to 35% on your premium.