Does Travel Insurance Provide Coverage for Flight Disruptions?

11.20.23 by Travelex Insurance
Image credit: Getty Images
Worried about potential flight issues leaving you with unexpected expenses on your next trip? Discover how flight travel insurance can provide financial coverage for unexpected disruptions.

After spending time researching, planning, and booking your trip, you’re likely more than ready to take off on your next adventure. Amidst all the excitement, though, the last thing you want to deal with is an unanticipated flight disruption…

If something unexpected occurs that impacts your flight schedule, flight travel insurance coverage can help ensure that you don’t feel stranded or financially burdened because of unforeseen delays or cancellations.

What is the definition of a flight disruption in relation to travel insurance?

Flight disruption refers to delays, cancellations, missed connections, or rescheduling of your flight that happens because of a variety of reasons, such as adverse weather conditions, technical glitches, or even administrative causes.

Does Travelex travel insurance provide coverage for flight disruptions?

Both of our comprehensive plans—Travel Basic and Travel Select—offer protection for covered reasons due to flight disruptions via several benefit types: trip cancellation, trip interruption, trip delay, and missed connections.

The benefit you can file a claim under in the event of a flight disruption will depend on the scenario, so be sure to check your policy wording if you need to make a claim.

How much of my insured trip costs can be reimbursed if I experience flight disruption(s)?

Here are the coverage limits for each benefit relevant to flight disruptions on our comprehensive plans:

Coverage

Travel Basic 

Travel Select

Trip Cancellation

100% of insured trip cost, up to a maximum of $10,000 

100% of insured trip cost, up to a maximum of $50,000 

Trip Interruption

100% of insured trip cost, up to a maximum of $10,000

150% of insured trip cost, up to a maximum of $75,000

Trip Delay

$500 (Minimum delay of 5 hours; Daily limit of $250)

$2,000 (Minimum delay of 5 hours; Daily limit of $200)

Missed Connection

$500 (Minimum delay of 3 hours)

$750 (Minimum delay of 3 hours) 

It’s important to keep in mind that our travel protection plans offer coverage for unanticipated incidents—meaning your claim must relate to an event that you did not expect to happen or know about beforehand for your claim to be approved.

What counts as an unforeseen covered event in relation to flight disruptions?

As a Travelex policyholder, you can claim for flight disruption coverage for unforeseen covered events such as:

  • Inclement weather or natural disaster (Flight cancellations due to natural disasters making your destination uninhabitable is only eligible on Travel Select).  
  • The plane has mechanical or equipment failure on your departure date (only eligible on Travel Select). 
  • Your scheduled airline goes on strike, resulting in complete interruption of travel services at the point of departure or destination (If another airline is available, coverage will be limited to the additional expenses, change fees, and increase in fare [if any] to book with the new airline). 
  • You or a traveling companion is a traveler on a hijacked airplane.

Still have questions about what counts as an unforeseen covered event? You can reach out to our Customer Solutions team for support on 1-800-228-9792.

Does travel insurance cover missed flights?

There are several ways in which you could miss a flight while traveling, from the flight being canceled to you missing your connection because of the flight landing later than planned.

Here are the ways you can receive financial reimbursement under our flight travel insurance coverage depending on your type of flight disruption.

Trip Cancellation coverage

If you have a Travelex protection plan with travel insurance for flight cancellation, you can receive reimbursement for extra transportation costs incurred while getting to your destination if only part of your trip is canceled or changed and the pre-paid and insured portion of your trip expenses that you didn’t use—as long as you cancel before your scheduled departure date, and the cancellation is due to a covered reason within the policy.

Important: For coverage to apply, you must notify the airline and initiate a claim within 72 hours of canceling your trip.

Trip Interruption coverage

If your trip is interrupted for an unforeseen covered reason, you can receive a refund for the part of your pre-paid and non-refundable insured vacation expenses that you didn’t use, plus the additional transportation costs that arise to return home, rejoin your trip, or reach your destination after a delay.

If you planned to travel with someone but they canceled their trip for an unforeseen covered reason, we can also reimburse extra accommodation fees you are faced with.

Important: For coverage to apply, you must notify the airline and initiate a claim within 72 hours of experiencing the scenario that caused the trip interruption.

Trip Delay coverage

If you are delayed for at least five hours, you can be reimbursed for unexpected situations related to flight disruptions such as:

  • Airline delay.
  • You or your traveling companion's passports, documents, or money are lost or stolen.
  • Strike.
  • Other unforeseen covered events that apply to trip cancellation and trip interruption.

Plus, as long as you have receipts, our travel insurance flight delay benefit will offer coverage for certain reasonable additional expenses until you are able to return home or reach the scheduled destination.

Important: We will only provide coverage for one delay per trip. This means if you experience more than one delay on the same trip, we will reimburse the delay that cost the most.

Missed Connection coverage

If you experience a flight cancellation or delay that lasts for at least three hours and results in you missing a connection, you can be reimbursed for additional transportation expenses and non-refundable, unused trip costs you’ve already paid for.

Our covered reasons for missed connections include inclement weather, a named storm, or a delay caused by an airline. The airline must certify the delay of the regularly scheduled airline flight.

Important: Keep in mind that you won’t receive coverage for a missed connection if you have less than one hour between connecting domestic flights and less than two hours between connecting international flights. So, when booking flights with connections, always be sure to check you’re allowing enough time between flights.

What doesn’t Travelex travel insurance provide coverage for in relation to flight disruptions?

Here are some potential flight disruption reasons that we do not provide coverage for:

  • War and acts of war.  
  • Epidemic or pandemic, unless otherwise covered by the policy.  
  • Pre-existing medical conditions, unless otherwise covered under the policy.  
  • Normal pregnancy or childbirth.  
  • Government regulation.  
  • You decide to change your plans (unless you have the Cancel for Any Reason upgrade included in your policy).  
  • Financial circumstances.  

We also will not offer flight disruption coverage when:

  • The policy is not in effect.  
  • You travel for the purpose of medical treatment.  
  • You travel against doctor’s orders.  
  • You travel less than 100 miles from your home.  

Want more information? It’s a good idea to read your travel insurance policy details and reach out to our Customer Solutions team on 1-800-228-9792 if you have any questions about flight disruption coverage.

How can I reach the Travelex 24/7 assistance team if I’m traveling and experience a flight disruption?

As a Travelex policyholder, you can reach our assistance experts in two ways:

1. Via the Travelex Travel On app, which has a tap-to-call travel assistance feature. You can download the app before your trip so you can access its features and your policy details easily in the palm of your hand.

2. Via the Travelex travel assistance services at 1-844-215-1672 (toll-free) if you're in the U.S. or Canada or 1-647-775-8042 (collect) if you're outside of the U.S. or Canada.

How can I receive travel alerts during my trip that might cause a flight disruption?

It’s a good idea to stay updated on the travel advisories posted by the U.S. Department of State, as well as the travel alerts on our website that may affect your policy coverage.

Travelex policyholders also have exclusive access to our Travel On app, which offers real-time security alerts, location information, immediate tap-to-call travel assistance, and more. Downloading our app as soon as you’ve purchased your policy can help you stay informed if there is a scenario that may cause flight disruptions on your trip or at your chosen destination(s).

Are there certain countries that Travelex does not provide coverage for?

Our travel insurance does not offer coverage for a destination that has been sanctioned by the U.S. government. To understand which destinations have active sanctions, visit the Office of Foreign Assets Control website. Additionally, Travelex does not provide coverage to Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Israel, or Palestinian Territories.

Does Travelex offer travel insurance coverage for trip cancellation for any reason?

Our Travel Basic and Travel Select plans provide trip cancellation coverage for several scenarios; however, if you want the flexibility to be able to cancel your trip for any reason—including flight disruptions—you may want to consider purchasing our Travel Select plan and adding the Cancel for Any Reason upgrade to your policy. With this upgrade, you can call off your trip for any reason up to 48 hours before it starts and receive reimbursement of up to 75% of your insured trip expenses (up to $7,500).

To be eligible to include this upgrade in your policy and make a claim under this benefit, the following must apply:

  • Your policy coverage includes all non-refundable trip costs (up to $10,000) when first purchased.
  • Your trip lasts 30 days or fewer.
  • You added the Cancel for Any Reason upgrade when you first bought your Travel Select policy, and that occurred within 15 days of your first trip payment.

Is travel insurance worth it for domestic flights?

Even when traveling domestically, flight travel insurance coverage can provide essential protection against unforeseen circumstances and help you financially if things go wrong. For example, it can insure disruptions such as flight cancellations, delays, and missed connections, so you aren't left out of pocket.

How do I file a claim for a flight disruption?

If you’re a Travelex customer, you can file a claim for a flight disruption via our online claims portal.

If you want help filing a claim or have questions about submitting your flight disruption claim, please contact our claims administrator:

Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Company

Enjoy a smoother trip with travel insurance coverage for flight disruptions

If you have a flight disruption that affects your vacation, having travel insurance with adequate coverage may provide you with a feeling of relief knowing financial support and assistance is available.

However, it’s important to understand your policy’s benefits and limitations before setting off on your trip so you are prepared and knowledgeable if something unexpected comes up.

If you still have questions about travel insurance coverage for flight disruptions, you can reach out to our Customer Solutions team at 1-800-228-9792 from Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST.

Want to protect your trip from flight disruptions? Help safeguard your vacation from unforeseen flight issues with our travel insurance and get a quote now.

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