SeaDream Yacht Club Travel Insurance - Review
SeaDream Yacht Club caters to small ship experiences on mega-yachts. Currently, they sail the Mediterranean in summer and the Caribbean in winter.
SeaDream cruise insurance offers two options: Classic Plus and Premier. They provide an option to add Cancel For Any Reason for a 50-55% cost increase. Although you can book a cruise online, you must call SeaDream to enroll in insurance.
Starr Indemnity and Liability Corporation underwrites SeaDream cruise travel insurance. They are a reputable underwriter that also backs the John Hancock travel insurance policies at AARDY.
But are either of these policies a good deal for SeaDream Yacht Club passengers? This article examines the policies in detail and compares them to alternative options.
Our Cruise: Barcelona to Civitavecchia (Rome)
In this review, we picked the 8-day Barcelona to Civitavecchia cruise to illustrate travel insurance comparisons. The total cost for two senior travelers, ages 55 and 60, is $11,774.
When comparing policies, it's essential to know what you need.
In general, we recommend travelers cruising outside of the US take at least $100,000 medical insurance, $250,000 emergency medical evacuation, and a Waiver of Pre-existing Medical Conditions. This level of travel insurance coverage abundantly pays for a medical emergency overseas.
Next, we compare SeaDream with two policies available on AARDY Travel Insurance Marketplace.
First, we look at iTravelInsured Travel SE because it’s the least expensive plan that meets our recommended coverage levels: $100,000 Medical Insurance and $250,000 Medical Evacuation. It also covers Pre-existing Medical Conditions when you purchase the policy within 20 days of the initial deposit or payment.
Plus, we include iTravelInsured Travel LX in the comparison because it’s the least expensive plan that offers Cancel For Any Reason.
Unfortunately, neither Starr Assist plan includes Cancel For Any Reason as a standard feature. Instead, you add it at purchase and pay an additional 50-55% premium.
In this comparison, we show you the prices with and without Cancel For Any Reason included on both SeaDream plans.
Price and Value
First, both SeaDream policies cost more than $1,000 each to add Cancel For Any Reason. However, Travel LX with Cancel For Any Reason built-in costs less than $1,000.
Second, SeaDream Classic Plus’s costs more than Travel SE, but covers less Medical Insurance.
Third, SeaDream Premier is a robust policy, but we think the price is too high for what you get. In this case, Premier’s benefit levels closely resemble Travel SE but costs 50% more than Travel LX.
Overall, you get far more value from the Travel SE and Travel LX policies for your money.
In general, when you look for travel insurance through a marketplace like AARDY, you’ll find more coverage for the money. Seniors, in particular, find the most value from a travel insurance marketplace.
Both of SeaDream’s travel insurance policies include a 100% refund for cancellation due to:
- Injury, sickness or death of you, your traveling companion, your family member, your children’s caregiver or your business partner that results in medically imposed restrictions
- Inclement weather, natural disasters, terrorist attacks or mechanical breakdown of the common carrier
- Mandatory evacuation ordered by local authorities at your destination due to a natural disaster.
- Natural Disaster that renders your primary residence or the accommodations at your destination uninhabitable.
- Adverse weather or natural disaster resulting in the obstruction of public roadways or curtailment of public transportation that prevents your ability to arrive at your land/sea arrangements.
- A road closure causing a delay in reaching your destination for at least 12 hours.
- Strike that causes complete cessation of travel services of your common carrier for at least 48 consecutive hours.
- Bankruptcy and/or default of your travel supplier that occurs more than 14 days following the effective date of your scheduled departure date must be no more than 12 months beyond the effective date.
- A documented security breach in the airport terminal within 12 hours of arrival or while you are physically at the terminal.
- A politically motivated terrorist attack that occurs within 30 days of your departure and within 50 miles of a city listed on your itinerary.
- A documented theft of passports or visas.
- You or your traveling companion directly involved in or delayed due to a traffic accident substantiated by a police report, while en route to departure.
- You and/or your traveling companion are hijacked, quarantined, required to serve on a jury, subpoenaed, required to appear as a witness in a legal action, provided you or your traveling companion are not a party to the legal action or appearing as a law enforcement officer;
- You and/or your traveling companion are victims of felonious assault, having your principal place of residence made inaccessible and uninhabitable by a natural disaster, or burglary or vandalism of your principal place of residence within 10 days of departure.
It's excellent that SeaDream cruise insurance provides a comprehensive Cancellation list. However, we noticed something missing from SeaDream’s travel insurance: Cancel For Work Reasons.
Cancel For Work reimburses you if your employer rescinded your time off, or laid you off. Fortunately, iTravelInsured covers all of the above cancellation reasons, as well as Cancel For Work reasons.
Both SeaDream cruise insurance programs are Interruption policies. So, if your sister had a stroke during the trip and you had to leave immediately, Trip Interruption coverage reimburses the cost of returning home early. It also refunds you for the unused part of the trip.
Plus, Trip Interruption compensates you if something delays the start of your trip. For example, a winter storm shut down the airport and delayed your flight to the port. Your policy refunds you for the missed days and new travel arrangements to reach the destination.
SeaDream cruise insurance uses the same list of covered cancellation reasons for Trip Interruption. iTravelInsured Travel SE and Travel LX work the same way.
Sadly, most travelers assume their private health insurance and Medicare pay for all of their medical needs while traveling. Within the US, this may be true, but once you leave the US border, you’re financially exposed.
If you need medical treatment overseas, you must pay out-of-pocket for costly services. Even in countries with nationalized medicine, they rarely extend coverage to people who are not citizens. Indeed, Americans receive treatment at private hospitals, not public hospitals, so they bill you the full cost.
Likewise, the US State Department and the CDC urge travelers to take robust Medical Insurance when traveling outside the US. Few people realize that government organizations like Medicare and the State Department deny payment for Americans’ health care overseas.
Even if you have a private Medicare supplement, the coverage is limited. Some supplements provide for $50,000 of emergency medical treatment. However, it’s a lifetime limit, and you must pay 20% of that amount. Even with a $40,000 bill, Medicare makes you pay $8,000 in cash. For treatment costs over $50,000, Medicare requires you to pay the rest of it yourself.
That’s why AARDY recommends each traveler take at least $100,000 Medical Insurance when leaving the US. If you travel with less than $100,000 Medical Insurance, your retirement savings could vaporize paying for medical treatment in a foreign country.
Regrettably, SeaDream’s Classic Plus cruise travel insurance only provides $50,000 of medical insurance.
On the other hand, SeaDream Premier trip insurance includes a $250,000 Medical Insurance benefit. We are delighted to see this amount. It's significantly higher than we recommend and covers virtually any medical emergency.
In the same way, iTravelInsured Travel SE provides $150,000 Medical Insurance, while Travel LX covers $500,000.
Emergency Medical Evacuation
Travelers need Medical Evacuation insurance if they have an unexpected injury or illness that requires further treatment at a high-quality hospital or back home.
Medical Evacuation pays for emergency transportation from the location of injury or illness to a local hospital. Then, if medically necessary, it covers commercial or private transport to return home.
Unfortunately, transportation prices are high. A private jet equipped with medical equipment and a medical team runs $15,000 to $25,000 per flight hour. A return trip home can cost upwards of $200,000 to $250,000. That’s why AARDY recommends all travelers leaving the US get at least $250,000 Emergency Medical Evacuation protection.
Both SeaDream trip insurance policies provide $500,000 of Medical Evacuation benefits per person. We are quite pleased to see that. Also, iTravelInsured Travel SE offers $500,000 for evacuation, and Travel LX covers up to $1,000,000.
Pre-existing Medical Conditions
Does the phrase “Pre-existing Conditions” make you sad? Us too. But guess what? Travel insurance looks at it differently. They aren’t interested in your life’s history.
Instead, SeaDream trip insurance only cares about the 180 days before you bought the plan. If you received medical advice, diagnosis, new or medication change, care, or recommendation in that time, they would exclude it from coverage. But anything older than 180 days, under control with medication and hasn’t worsened, is covered.
Fortunately, SeaDream’s insurance covers Pre-existing Conditions if you buy the plan within 14 days of your initial deposit.
We're happy they offer a Waiver to include Pre-existing Conditions, but 180 days is not the most generous rule. Most policies at AARDY have a better deal: a 60-day window and 20-21 days to purchase the plan, so it covers Pre-existing Conditions.
No matter where you cruise, AARDY recommends all travelers, especially seniors, purchase a travel insurance plan that covers Pre-existing Conditions whenever possible. This extra layer of protection makes the difference between a claim being paid or denied.
Cancel For Any Reason - SeaDream Cruise Insurance
If you want the most flexibility and protection with travel insurance, Cancel For Any Reason delivers. You can cancel your trip for any reason not listed under covered cancellations. For instance, if your pet was gravely ill or injured and you don’t want to leave her while you take a cruise, you can get a refund.
Fortunately, this benefit comes standard on some top tier policies, like iTravelInsured Travel LX. Although SeaDream trip insurance has the option to add Cancel For Any Reason, that feature adds a surcharge of 50% to 55%.
SeaDream travel insurance has a few rules if you want to use Cancel For Any Reason:
- Purchase policy 14 days of the Initial Payment or Deposit date,
- Increase coverage within 14 days of each subsequent payment,
- Cover 100% of all non-refundable covered trip arrangements, and
- Cancel the covered trip no less than 2 days before the scheduled departure date.
Then, Cancel For Any Reason provides a 75% refund if you cancel for any reason not listed in the policy.
While we are thrilled to see the option to add Cancel For Any Reason, it’s an expensive upcharge. On the other hand, senior travelers receive more value from Travel LX since it includes Cancel For Any Reason by default.
Cancel For Any Reason - iTravelInsured Travel LX
iTravelInsured Travel LX resembles SeaDream travel insurance Cancel For Any Reason but differs in a few key areas.
First, iTravelInsured requires purchase within 20 days of Initial Trip Payment rather than within 14.
Second, you must cancel the trip 48 hours or more before your departure date.
Third, it costs less to purchase a policy with Cancel For Any Reason built-in rather than added-on.
Finally, Travel LX includes Interruption For Any Reason, but neither SeaDream plans offer it.
Interruption For Any Reason
Cancel For Any Reason gives you flexibility, but the SeaDream trip insurance policies don’t let you Interrupt For Any Reason.
Interruption For Any Reason is a helpful tool if something happens during your trip that makes you want to go home early. For example, your dog ran out of the house and was hit by a car. You don't want to continue the trip knowing your dog is injured.
With Interruption For Any Reason, you can go home early and tend to your dog, and receive reimbursement for a portion of the trip you missed.
To take advantage of Interruption For Any Reason, interrupt any time 48 hours or more after departure date. You’ll receive 75% of the unused portion of the trip costs.
Overall, the SeaDream policies are quality comprehensive travel insurance plans. Although Classic Plus’ Medical Insurance falls short of our recommendation by 50%, we would recommend the Premier plan.
The other troublesome area is the Cancel For Any Reason add-on. Including the benefit brings the price of the policy up so high that it’s less expensive to get a policy with Cancel For Any Reason built-in.
When buying travel insurance for overseas adventures, we urge you to look for robust policies. We recommend at least $100,000 Medical Insurance, $250,000 Medical Evacuation, and a Pre-existing Condition Waiver.
If you want Cancel For Any Reason perks in your policy, you must purchase it within 20-21 days of your Initial Deposit or Payment.
It makes sense to buy your travel insurance shortly after making the Initial Trip Deposit, so you get the most benefits in your policy.
Whatever the case, visit AARDY first to shop around before buying the cruise line’s insurance. Stop by and have a chat, send an email, or give us a call at 650-492-6298.
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