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Are you planning a group travel event? Maybe you have a large family, or you’re heading to an event hosted by your employer. Whatever the case, you may be looking to purchase travel insurance for your time out of town; but since there are so many of you, it may make sense to purchase group travel insurance instead.
If this is something you’re considering, read on to discover the different types of travel insurance, where to find group travel insurance plans and other tips for booking this type of insurance.
Types of travel insurance
Before you begin searching for travel insurance, you’ll first want to figure out what you’re looking for. Different companies will sell different types of travel insurance with varying levels of coverage, and the price changes to match.
Most often, you can expect to find these varieties of travel insurance available for purchase:
Most individuals purchase base level travel insurance coverage and then customize their plan to better fit their specific trip needs. Cancel For Any Reason insurance is a popular add-on; while it's an upcharge, it can help you get back up to 75% of your nonrefundable travel expenses.
What to know before booking travel insurance for groups
After you’ve figured out what you’re looking for, there are still a few things for you to consider before buying your insurance. Here are our top tips.
1. Purchase early
Navigating travel insurance can be overwhelming on its own and can be compounded when you’re traveling with a group. Since every traveler will have different needs, you’ll likely want to get the most comprehensive insurance available. That means buying early.
There are certain time limitations to specific types of insurance. Specifically, both pre-existing condition insurance and Cancel For Any Reason insurance are time sensitive.
After these time frames, these insurances become unavailable and anyone in your group needing them will have to look elsewhere.
You’ll also need to purchase travel insurance before an incident occurs. If you break your leg just before your trip but haven’t purchased insurance yet, it won’t cover the costs for cancellation.
2. Get multiple quotes
Not only do travel insurance companies sell different types of insurance, but they price it differently as well. This is true for travel insurance for groups and individual insurance. This means you’ll want to get more than one quote for your travel insurance.
We tested the waters with our own search. In it, we put down a group of nine travelers heading overseas for a two-week vacation. The average cost for each traveler was $4,500 and their ages ranged from 35 to 55.
An insurance search comparison tool like SquareMouth can show you a variety of options for a given trip. In this example, it came back with a quote of $2,431 all-in. The other option we looked into, Seven Corners, returned a cost of $2,286.
» Learn more: How to find the best travel insurance
3. Negotiate discounts
This tip is more applicable to those with larger groups or those who may be traveling more often. If, for example, you’re a corporate customer whose employer is planning on quite a few conferences, you’ll likely need to purchase group travel insurance more than once.
With the power of a crowd or the promise of additional business, you may want to consider contacting your travel insurance company directly to negotiate a better rate for your group.
» Learn more: What does travel insurance cover?
4. Opt for flexible insurance
The needs of the many necessitate flexibility, and nowhere is this more evident than when trying to purchase a group travel insurance policy. We noted earlier that you’ll want to opt in early if you’re looking for the best coverage availability.
Because you’re traveling with a group, you’ll also want to choose insurance that gives you flexibility. This can come in many forms. Some insurances will provide you with reimbursement if you’re laid off, for example. Others will allow you to purchase an add-on that allows you to cancel for any reason.
It may be more expensive, but you’ll likely want to choose those additional coverages for your group insurance so that everyone is covered for a variety of incidents.
Finally, you’ll also want to consider flexibility when it comes to a return period. Insurance providers will generally offer money-back guarantees on their policies. The amount of time you’ll have to consider your decision will depend on your plan. This can range from 10 to 14 days, but it can span a longer period.
» Learn more: Is travel insurance worth it?
5. Consider travel card travel insurance
Did you know that many travel cards come with their own form of complimentary travel insurance? Coverage limits and types will depend on the card that you hold, but generally, you can expect to see things like rental car insurance, lost luggage insurance, trip cancellation insurance and trip delay insurance.
Your group may even be covered when an individual uses their card to pay for the trip. With the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, for example, the cardholder and their family members are all covered in the event something goes awry. Covered travelers include:
Aunts and uncles.
Nieces and nephews.
Parents and siblings.
That’s quite a range!
The Platinum Card® from American Express also features travel insurance, though its definitions for who is covered are even broader. You’ll still need to pay for the trip with your eligible card, but you, your family members and your traveling companions all qualify for this insurance. Note that a traveling companion is someone who has made advanced arrangements with you or your family members to travel together on a covered trip. Terms apply.
However, before you go all-in on travel card insurance, you’ll want to review the coverage limits. With a large enough group, you may find that the complimentary insurance offered by your card isn’t sufficient for your needs.
» Learn more: The best travel credit cards right now
If you want to book group travel insurance
Travel insurance can provide peace of mind when you’re away from home, and there’s no reason why groups shouldn’t want it, too. Before purchasing a group policy, make sure you’re getting multiple quotes and searching for flexible plans so that everyone has what they need.
Finally, check out your travel card to see if its complimentary insurance that fits with your travel plans.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2023, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card