How to File a Travel Insurance Claim & Why You Need To

How to File a Travel Insurance Claim & Why You Need To

If you had a travel insurance plan and needed to use your coverage during your trip, the next step is to file a claim with the insurance company for your expenses.

Short-term travel insurance requires insurers to fill out and submit a claim form for every claim in order to be either reimbursed or covered.

The travel insurance claim process can be tricky, so it is important to understand how to properly file a claim and why it is required in order to take advantage of your coverage.

Why Filing a Travel Insurance Claim Is Necessary

While the idea of filling out paperwork may be daunting, filing a claim is an important part of availing the benefits of travel insurance and also accelerates the process of getting compensated smoothly.

Additionally, there are certain reasons why travel insurance companies require claims be filed in order to receive benefits from their plans. These reasons include the following:

Verification of Your Identity

The insurance company needs to ascertain the details of the insured individual, such as date of birth, name, etc. Only an ID can serve as a legitimate proof. The basic identification that visitors to the U.S. have is their passport, which works both as personal identification and proof of their legal status as visitors to the U.S. The insurance company needs to verify the identity and all other related information about the insured person to ensure eligibility of the claim.

Auditing Purposes

The U.S. government insurance law mandates insurance companies to obtain complete documentation before making any authorized payment.

Fraud Prevention

It is essential for insurance companies to ensure that the payment for a claim is genuine. To protect the insurance industry from numerous kinds of fraud, the claim form and passport information are a prerequisite.

Faster Reimbursement

Faster reimbursement or bill settlement: Since there are multiple decision makers on a claim, keeping all the details of the insured handy helps insurance companies to effectively communicate with providers, facilitating a faster and easier claim processes, thus enabling you to get your reimbursement as soon as possible.

What Is Needed to File a Travel Insurance Claim?

In order to file a travel insurance claim, you will need to gather key information and documentation to start the claims process.

First, you should download your travel insurance provider’s claim forms which you will fill out and file with your supporting documents.

You will also need to gather all necessary and supporting documents to support your claim. The documents that you will need will depend upon the type of travel insurance plan you have, whether trip insurance or travel medical insurance, and the type of claim that you are making.

Here are some examples of what supporting paperwork or information you may need for specific claims.

Medical Expenses

  • Documents detailing your diagnosis or injury/illness
  • All invoices and receipts for your medical care
  • Proof of payment if you paid out of pocket and need to be reimbursed
  • Verification of your travel arrangements

Lost or Stolen Baggage or Personal Items

  • Verification of where your items with lost or stolen
  • Police or local authority report of stolen or lost items
  • Purchase receipts for items

Trip Cancellation

  • Proof from travel provider showing trip was canceled
  • Documentation for proof of why your trip was canceled
  • Proof of payment for trip
  • Purchase receipts for prepaid accommodations or activities
  • Flight ticket copy Letter from travel provider that fees were nonrefundable or receipt of refunded expenses
Always check with the travel insurance provider to understand exactly what information you will need to provide for your claim. The above are just general examples of supporting information.

How to File a Travel Insurance Claim

To file your claim, you first should download any claim forms you need to fill out, or locate online where you can fill out your claim form digitally if this is offered by your insurance provider.

Make sure you gather all supporting documents as outlined by your insurance provider for your specific type of claim (medical, trip cancellation, lost baggage, etc.).

You may also need to include a copy of your passport or other valid travel document along with your claim.

Ensure that you file your claim swiftly in order to have smooth processing. Typically, you will need to file your claim within 90 days of the event that you are claiming coverage for, but this can vary depending on your plan so be sure to check the appropriate claim timeline and file promptly.

Is It Worth Claiming on Travel Insurance?

Yes, it is definitely worth filing a claim on your travel insurance plan if you want to take advantage of coverage for an event that occurred during your trip. 

As long as you are requesting coverage for a covered reason under your travel insurance plan and your expenses aren’t related to an exclusion or limitation under your plan, you should be able to receive coverage for any eligible expenses as stated in your policy’s fine print.

Keep in mind that you must file a claim on your travel insurance plan if you used coverage, even if the insurance company was billed directly.

What Is the Most Common Travel Insurance Claim?

Typically, travel insurance claims specifically for travel medical insurance are in relation to medical expenses incurred due to an illness or injury abroad.

How Do I Win a Travel Insurance Claim?

There’s no sure way to win a travel insurance claim. However, by making sure that you fill out your claim form accurately and completely and provide all supporting documentation to the insurance provider, your claim process will go smoothly.

Additionally, educating yourself on what your travel insurance plan covers and what it doesn’t can help you understand whether or not your claim will be approved. Read through your plan’s exclusions and limitations to discover what types of claims might not be approved.

Why Travel Insurance Claims Are Denied

Travel insurance claims can be denied for a multitude of reasons - at the end of the day, the insurance provider determines whether or not they approve your claim based on the plan’s description of coverage and possible exclusions.

The most common reasons why travel insurance claims are denied typically include:

  • Medical event is related to pre-existing conditions
  • Incomplete paperwork
  • Lack of supporting documentation
  • Claim is for a service that is not covered
  • Claim falls under a plan exclusion

How Long Does It Take to Settle a Travel Insurance Claim?

It can take anywhere from a few weeks to a couple months for your claim to be reviewed and approved or denied. You can check the status of your travel insurance claim through your insurance provider to stay informed.

No company wants to complicate consumer processes. So, while the insurance company figures out a way to best assist you, following these steps will make it easier to process and resolve your claims faster. If you have any questions, contact our Customer Success Team for assistance.