Wave Season Travel Insurance - 2020 Review
Wave Season Travel Insurance is a great way to protect the investment you made in your winter cruise.
Before you buy travel insurance from the Cruise Line, know that they charge between 8% and 12% of the cruise cost for their insurance policies.
Typically, travel insurance costs 6% of the trip cost. Fortunately, marketplace policies can offer you more Medical Insurance and Medical Evacuation coverage than Cruise Lines.
You will get more for your money if you compare the market.
When to Buy Wave Season Travel Insurance
Once you lock in your deposit with the Cruise Line, start comparing travel insurance policies.
You get the best coverage when you have multiple options.
Here's what you should look for in a good Wave Season Travel Insurance policy:
- At least $100,000 in Medical Insurance Coverage
- At least $250,000 in Emergency Medical Evacuation
- A Pre-existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver
- Good Value for Money
For example, travel insurance excludes Pre-existing Medical Conditions unless you purchase the policy within 10-21 days of the initial trip payment or deposit. If you wait, you're no longer eligible for Pre-existing Condition coverage.
Let's look at each of these benefits.
Trip Cancellation reimburses your prepaid and non-refundable Trip Costs if you cancel your travel plans due to a reason listed in the trip insurance policy.
The most common covered reasons can include:
- Illness, injury or death to the traveler, a traveling companion, or a family member
- Traffic accident en-route to the departing airport
- Having to serve on a jury
- Natural disaster rendering you home or destination uninhabitable
- Bankruptcy of your travel supplier
- Hospitalization or death of your host at your destination
If you must cancel the cruise because of a reason named in the policy, you receive 100% cash reimbursement of the prepaid and non-refundable Trip Costs insured.
Likewise, Cruise Line insurance also does not cover any travel arrangements you make outside of the Cruise Line. If you set up your airfare, hotels, car rentals, excursions, or pre/post-cruise stays yourself, the Cruise Line insurance leaves you exposed to the risk of loss. You would have to buy a separate policy to cover these additional expenses.
You end up in a cycle of buying multiple policies with weak travel insurance from the Cruise Line, airline, Expedia, etc. Instead, any policy from AARDY can cover all of your travel expenses.
Wave Season Trip Interruption Insurance
Trip Interruption Insurance reimburses you for the unused portion of your trip plus the added cost of returning home early if you must curtail your trip. Typically, Trip Interruption uses the same list of reasons as Trip Cancellation.
Some policies limit the Interruption refund at 100% of the Trip Cost. Typically, Cruise Lines provide 100% Trip Interruption, the minimum. Other policies, like most of the plans at AARDY, offer up to 150% reimbursement of prepaid, non-refundable Trip Costs, and return transportation expenses.
At Aardy, we recommend shopping for a trip insurance plan with all of the benefits and limits that work for you.
As you can see, very few Cruise Lines provide 150% Trip Interruption. Usually, a benefit of less than 150% is a red flag for a minimalist policy.
Wave Season Medical Insurance
Travel Medical Insurance pays for medical treatment if you have an illness or injury during the trip.
We always recommend American travelers buy at least $100,000 in Medical Insurance coverage when traveling outside the US.
Almost every Cruise Line insurance gives you as little as $10,000 in Medical Insurance on their plans. If you have a serious accident or illness during the trip, $10,000 just isn't enough to cover your medical bills. That is why we recommend a minimum of $100,000. The Cruise Line's low coverage would leave you paying for all other treatment out-of-pocket.
The major US Cruise Lines offer low Medical Insurance:
- Azamara - $10,000
- Carnival - $10,000
- Celebrity - $10,000
- Cunard - $20,000
- Disney - $10,000
- Holland America (Standard) - $0
- Holland America (Platinum) - $10,000
- MSC - $25,000
- Norwegian (Standard) - $10,000
- Norwegian (Platinum) - $20,000
- Oceania - $10,000
- Princess (Standard) - $10,000
- Princess (Platinum) - $20,000
- Regent - $10,000
- Royal Caribbean - $10,000
- Silversea - $10,000
- Seabourn - $20,000
- Viking - $100,000
- Virgin - $10,000
Fortunately, it's easy to find affordable, robust Travel Medical Insurance. At AARDY, you can easily compare travel insurance coverage levels.
Wave Season Emergency Medical Evacuation
Medical Evacuation comes in many forms. Transportation might be a seat on a commercial airline to a private medical transport plane accompanied by a physician and nurse.
When it comes to emergencies, AARDY suggests you buy at least $250,000 in Medical Evacuation whenever you travel outside the US.
US Cruise Lines notoriously provide minimal levels of coverage:
- Azamara - $25,000
- Carnival - $30,000
- Celebrity - $25,000
- Crystal - $50,000
- Cunard - $50,000
- Disney - $30,000
- Holland America (Standard) - $0
- Holland America (Platinum) - $25,000
- MSC - $50,000
- Oceania - $25,000
- Norwegian (Standard) - $25,000
- Norwegian (Platinum) - $50,000
- Princess (Standard) - $25,000
- Princess (Platinum) - $50,000
- Regent - $50,000
- Royal Caribbean - $25,000
- Silversea - $50,000
- Seabourn - $50,000
- Viking - $100,000
- Virgin - $25,000
Remember, look for a minimum of $250,000 of Medical Evacuation coverage, or $500,000 if traveling remotely.
Wave Season Pre-existing Medical Conditions Waiver
Earlier, we mentioned Time Sensitive benefits. Coverage for Pre-existing Conditions is one of those benefits. All travel insurance plans specifically exclude coverage for Pre-existing Medical Conditions unless the policy offers a Waiver.
Generally, a Pre-existing Condition is any condition that required medical treatment, medical testing, or new or changed medication in the 60-180 days before purchasing the insurance.
Most plans will only 'look back' 60 days, but there are some insurance companies that use 90 or even 180 days.
However, some policies offer a Waiver that eliminates the 60-180 day look back period if you meet specific requirements:
- Be medically fit to travel on the date of insurance purchase
- Purchase the insurance within 10-21 days of initial trip payment or deposit
- Insure 100% of all prepaid and non-refundable Trip Costs
Pre-existing Condition Waivers matter because the Cruise Lines leave you exposed to significant, unnecessary financial risks.
First, if you cancel the trip due to a Pre-existing Condition, most Cruise Lines don't offer you any compensation. Some Cruise Lines provide 75% of the cruise costs in future cruise credits, not cash. Usually, the credits expire within 12 months. If you're unable to travel within 12 months, you lose the reimbursement. Essentially, credit is worthless.
On the other hand, all policies available through AARDY pay cash, never future credit.
Second, if you interrupt your trip because of a Pre-existing Condition, the Cruise Line doesn't cover it at all. You receive no reimbursement for the unused portion of the trip.
Third, if you require medical treatment for a Pre-existing Medical Condition during the trip, Cruise Line travel insurance will deny coverage entirely.
To summarize, the Cruise Line travel insurance rarely offers Pre-existing Condition coverage. It's a simple benefit that can save you thousands of dollars if you have an unforeseen medical emergency.
Wave Season Cancel For Any Reason
Once in a while, something else comes up that forces you to cancel your cruise for a situation not listed under Covered Cancellation reasons. The Cancel For Any Reason benefit lets you cancel the trip for any other circumstance. As a result, you'd receive 75% reimbursement.
What if you had an elderly pet that suddenly became ill a week before the trip? You might want to cancel your plans to stay home with your beloved furry family member.
The Cruise Line insurance locks you in with extremely limited coverage, so if you cancel, they have your money no matter the outcome. If you cruise again, you will spend more money on board. If you don't cruise again, the Cruise Line hasn't lost anything. It has your cruise fare and your insurance money.
When we reviewed the Cruise Lines' travel insurance, we found that most provide a minimal list of covered cancellation reasons. Several of the Cruise Lines offer policies that include a Cancel For Any Reason benefit. However, the Cruise Lines' benefit will only reimburse 75% of the prepaid and non-refundable Trip Costs in the form of cruise credit. Again, cruise credit must generally be used within 12 months of the original departure date or is lost.
At Aardy, every travel insurance policy with Cancel For Any Reason reimburses in cash.
Do you need to buy Cancel for Any Reason? For most people, it is not necessary, so do not pay extra for this coverage.
Of course, it is useful for those who want the ultimate flexibility in Trip Cancellation. You can throw the trip away for no reason at all and still get the majority of your money back.
Cancel For Any Reason has a few rules:
- Buy the policy within 10-21 days of your Initial Trip Payment
- Insure 100% of all prepaid, non-refundable trip costs
- Cancel at least 48 hours or more before your Departure Date
- Be medically fit to travel on the date of policy purchase
Wave Season Trip Cancellation – Work Reasons
Most trip insurance policies will show some "work" reasons in the list of covered reasons. For example, the basic work reasons are:
- Your or Your Traveling Companion's place of employment is rendered unsuitable for business due to fire, flood, burglary or other Natural Disaster and You and/or Your Traveling Companion are required to work as a result
- Involuntary employer termination or layoff of You or a Traveling Companion. Employment must have been with the same employer for at least one (1) continuous year
- You, Your Traveling Companion or Family Member traveling with You is directly involved in the merger of Your employer or the acquisition of Your employer by another company
- Your or Your Traveling Companion's transfer of employment of 100 miles or more by the employer with whom You or Your Traveling Companion are employed on Your Effective Date that requires Your or Your Traveling Companion's principal residence to be relocated
And some plans will have this additional coverage listed:
- You, Your Traveling Companion or a Family Member traveling with You is required to work during the Trip. A written statement by an unrelated company official and/or the human resources department demonstrating revocation of previously approved time off will be required. (on plans that offer this added cancel for work reason benefit, it is typically available only within 20 days of initial trip payment)
Most cruise insurance plans do not cover "work" cancellation reasons in the policy.
If you or another traveler are currently working, Cancel For Work Reasons could be important have. Covered Cancellations is another good reason you should compare travel insurance policies before purchasing. Buy the plan that works best for your needs.
How Much Does Wave Season Travel Insurance Cost?
Our reviews of many Cruise Lines reveal high-cost and low-benefit travel insurance plans. Typically, Cruise Line travel insurance fees add 8%-12% to the trip cost. For two travelers on an $11,000 trip, the Cruise Lines charge $880-$1,265.
On the other hand, AARDY's website provides plans with higher benefits for a lower cost. Overall, the traveler receives a much better value.
We found the Travel Insured Worldwide Trip Protector and Seven Corners RoundTrip Choice have excellent coverage:
When comparing the travel insurance market against policies pushed by the Cruise Lines, you find vast differences in price and benefits.
Our mission is simple.
We find the best possible plan for travelers' individual needs. Wave Season Travel Insurance should not be forced into a "one size fits all" policy. Make sure you know what is available when buying protection for your cruise.
Will Wave Season Travel Insurance cost less if I buy from the insurance provider directly?
Travel insurance costs the same whether you buy directly from the provider or purchase through a Travel Insurance Marketplace like AARDY.
Did you know that Travel insurance is heavily regulated?
Each company files prices with every state's insurance commissioner. The rates must remain the same until the insurer files for new rates.
AARDY guarantees that you will not find lower rates for the same plans on our site anywhere else, even on the provider's website.
Travel Insurance Questions