Travel insurance claim tips: 10 most common claim submission mistakes

03.15.24 by Travelex Insurance
Image credit: Getty Images
If something goes wrong during your trip, you’ll want to make things right — and fast. When filing a claim, use our travel insurance claim tips to avoid making common submission mistakes. If you do, you could help speed up the claim submission process — and maybe even prevent a rejected claim.

Get our expert travel insurance claim tips for a smoother claim submission process

Vacations are a great opportunity for relaxation and rejuvenation, affording us precious time to spend with loved ones, explore new places, and indulge in hobbies or activities that we love.

But sometimes it doesn’t matter how well you plan a trip; something can still go wrong. From bags that don’t arrive at your destination to a slippery surface that causes you to fall and break a bone, the unexpected can happen at any time during a vacation — and to anyone.

Thankfully, if you’ve packed travel insurance, you won’t have to deal with unexpected hiccups on your own. If you’re traveling with a Travelex policy, you can submit a claim easily online whenever and wherever something unexpected occurs.

To help ensure filing a claim is as smooth as possible for you, we’re sharing the biggest claim submission mistakes we see from our customers – and our travel insurance claims tips to help you avoid them, too.

Common mistakes people make when submitting a travel insurance claim:

1. Submitting inadequate or missing supporting documents.

2. Claiming under the wrong policy benefit or leaving a benefit out.

3. Forgetting to provide bank details.

4. Leaving the claim submission incomplete.

5. Attaching unreadable documents.

6. Not signing a printed or PDF claim form.

7. Submitting a claim without proper explanation.

8. Listing the same claim expense multiple times on the claim form.

9. Forgetting to sign medical forms.

10. Sharing supporting documentation via incorrect formats.

10 claim submission mistakes that can lead to rejected claims

Mistake #1: Inadequate or missing supporting documents

The top claim submission error that our claims team sees is a lack of necessary required documentation. Proof of loss in general is often not provided, such as verification of a flight delay from the airline. Travelers also often forget to include their original itinerary and receipts. This is important information to share, because we need to know what was originally booked to then see what changed.

When it’s time to file a claim, it’s important to include all the supporting documents you’re asked for, such as:

  • Receipts and itemized bills for travel expenses.
  • Documentation of any refunds or expense allowances from your tour operator, airline, travel agency, etc.
  • Medical certificates and receipts.
  • Police or airline reports associated with the claim, such as lost, damaged, or stolen luggage or personal belongings.

The documentation you need to include with your Travelex claim depends on the type of claim you’re submitting. Make sure to save all your receipts, reports, and travel records, because they help support your claim and lessen the likelihood of a rejected claim.

Our travel insurance claim tip: Be sure to include all documents relevant to what you’re claiming for. Providing complete documentation from the start of your claim submission process can result in faster reimbursement.

We recommend keeping your travel insurance policy information easily accessible while you’re traveling so if something goes wrong, you can easily refer to your policy and collect the documentation you need along the way.

Want to know the best way to keep your policy handy? Download our Travel On app, which not only shows you your travel insurance coverage, but it also sends you real-time safety alerts, lists destination risk ratings, and more.

Mistake #2: Claiming under the wrong policy benefit or leaving a benefit out

One of the most common mistakes is selecting the wrong policy benefit that applies to your claim. If you don’t choose the right benefit type during the claim submission process, the online portal could ask for the wrong information and supporting documents, which can delay claim processing.

Another mistake we see with policy benefits is failing to include all losses in the claim from the start. For example, if you’re claiming under trip delay and trip interruption, you’ll need to include both benefits in your claim. Sometimes, our travelers file under only one benefit. Then, when they receive payment for one benefit and ask about their other expenses, they have to open a second claim. Telling us all your losses at the time you open the claim saves time and can ensure a quicker settlement, if it’s a payable claim.

Our travel insurance claim tip: Read more about our benefits to understand which benefit you should file your claim under before starting the process. If you’re not sure which benefit is the right one, give our claims team a call at 1-855-205-6054 so they can help.

Mistake #3: Forgetting to provide bank details

It’s an easy part to overlook, but if your bank details are missing or incomplete, we can’t settle your claim — or send you your money!

Our travel insurance claim tip: Double check that you’ve provided your full routing and account numbers — along with the account name — so we can reimburse you for any approved claims without delay.

Mistake #4: Leaving the claim submission incomplete

Sometimes, our customers don’t have all the required documentation on hand when they start the online claim submission process. But it’s important to understand that choosing to provide documents later will put the claim on hold indefinitely until more information is provided.

Our travel insurance claim tip: If possible, gather all the required supporting documents before creating your claim so it’s ready for review upon submission. If you don’t want to wait, opt to provide documents later only if you'll remember to complete the process.

Mistake #5: Attaching unreadable documents

When you attach documents to your claim, make sure they’re clear and legible. The best way to ensure you send readable attachments is to use a scanner for physical documents. Taking photos of a document with a smartphone instead of scanning it often results in unreadable documents. And when we have to reach out to you to send legible documents, your claim submission process time will be extended.

Our travel insurance claim tip: If scanning isn’t an option for you, contact our claims team and ask for a fillable PDF claim form rather than taking photos with your phone. If you do choose to take photos, make sure the camera is focused on the document text and there’s sufficient lighting. Before submitting the photos for review, check that the text is legible.

Mistake #6: Not signing a claim form that you send to us

Forgetting to sign a printed or PDF claim form before you mail or email it to us is an easy mistake to make, but your signature is essential in helping us process your claim.

Our travel insurance claim tip: If you’re submitting your claim via mail or email, always double check your claim form is properly completed before submitting. The signature space on a downloaded claim form must always be completed or we can’t proceed with the claim review.

Note: This doesn’t apply to claims submitted online.

Mistake #7: Submitting a claim without proper explanation

We need to know why you’re making a claim, and not including a sufficient explanation can slow the process.

Our travel insurance claim tip: Even if you think the reason for your claim is obvious, our team needs a short explanation of the claim events to properly access your unique situation. It doesn’t need to be an essay; a few sentences should be enough in most cases. For more complex travel situations or incidents, consider using a cover letter to provide adequate context.

If you don’t have receipts or can't include a document we ask for, it’s helpful to provide us with as much information as you can — including why you don’t have the required documentation — so we can consider this when assessing your claim.

Mistake #8: Listing the same claim expense multiple times on the claim form

When filing a claim, you can only claim your travel expenses once under the relevant benefit type listed in the policy. If you list the same expenses on the claim form multiple times under different policy benefit sections, you could end up slowing your claim submission process.

Our travel insurance claim tip: Make sure you only list each expense you wish to claim once and place it under the relevant policy benefit. For example, the expenses related to a lost suitcase should be filed under the baggage and personal effects benefit. If you’re unsure which policy benefit is correct for your expense, please call our claims team — they’re always happy to help.

Mistake #9: Forgetting to sign medical forms

Encountering medical issues or illness while traveling can be stressful, and the last thing you want to think about is paperwork. But failing to sign any relevant medical forms means we can’t contact your doctors for further information, which can delay your claim.

Our travel insurance claim tip: Before submitting your medical claim, make sure the traveler involved in the claim signs the medical certificate’s authority section. This signature authorizes us to request medical information from the traveler’s doctor if required, helping to keep the claim submission process moving along smoothly.

Mistake #10: Sharing supporting documentation via incorrect formats

Providing supporting documentation in a file format that we can’t open or via a file sharing service like Dropbox or Google Drive can make it impossible for us to access your documents, causing delays in processing.

Our travel insurance claim tip: Attach your documents in supported formats: PDF, Word, or image file formats like .JPEG. Avoid sharing documents via systems like Dropbox or Google Drive, because we may not be able to open them since they often conflict with our internal IT security.

Ready to start the claim submission process?

When we assess your travel insurance claim, it’s like we’re completing a puzzle — and we need all the required pieces before we can complete the process and issue payment. If you’re thorough, provide a clear explanation of what happened, and provide all supporting documentation, we can put the puzzle together quickly to hopefully resolve the claim.

Did you know our online claims portal makes it easy to submit your claim while traveling? But don’t worry if you’re already back home and want to start the claim: you can still submit a claim within 60 days of the return date shown on your Travelex confirmation of coverage.

Want more travel insurance claim tips or information? Read how to file a claim or call our helpful team at 1-855-205-6054.

Ready to get a travel insurance quote? Get a quote online now.

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