Are you wondering if you need travel insurance for Mexico? You’re not alone. Many people ask themselves this question, myself included. The truth is, having insurance when traveling abroad is critical and can literally be a life-saver.
We often take things for granted. We make plans and sometimes don’t foresee any events that could get on our way. Sadly, more often than not, things don’t work according to plan. We then need to make adjustments and adapt our plans, and that can be costly in many aspects.
Are you one of those people who don’t buy travel insurance? You might want to read below. I hope to shed some light on the subject. I’ll discuss why it’s important and will give you some pointers to choose a plan for your next trip. Let’s get started!
Why Do You Need Travel Insurance?
A million things could go wrong. Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating a bit, but it’s a fact many things can go wrong. For example, God forbid, but have you thought about what would happen if you had an accident in Mexico? What if it’s something major that requires surgery? You could end up with a costly bill.
I remember when I was in college. I traveled with some friends to Cancun. One of them tripped and hit her head on the street curb. My friend needed some stitches and ended up paying a hefty sum for the services rendered. Not to mention she had to take a taxi to get to the hospital and we know taxis in Cancun are not cheap by any means. If you don’t have travel insurance, you will have to pay out of your pocket just like my friend did.
There is a myriad of medical emergencies you could run into. You can be bitten by an animal, find yourself in a car accident, or something even worse. Imagine going into labor if you’re pregnant or having to deal with the death of one of your companions. How would you pay for such expenses?
What if you’re mugged or you lost your wallet/purse? Imagine yourself with no cash, no credit cards, and no passport in a foreign country. It could be a nightmare.
What would you do if your luggage got delayed or lost in transit? How would you replace your belongings?
Do I have your attention now?
How Much Does It Cost?
This is the million-dollar question no doubt. Unfortunately, there’s not a standard answer. It depends on your carrier. Some will give you the option to pay only for the period you will be visiting or they may give you the option to pay a monthly/yearly fee. Of course, the latter is preferable when you travel a lot.
Every carrier has different requirements and factors such as your age may affect the quote you get. But just to give you an idea, I quoted with World Nomads, one of the largest international insurance carriers. For a one-week stay in Mexico, I would have to pay either $61.43 or $98.94, depending on which plan I choose.
You may think it’s expensive, but if you consider it carefully, you could end up paying way more if something happened during your trip and you didn’t have insurance.
What Should You Look for When Shopping Around?
Not all insurance companies offer the same benefits or have the same requirements. There are several factors to consider before buying:
- Are there any age restrictions? Some companies won’t insure you if you exceed a certain age.
- Are preexisting health conditions covered?
- Does the policy exclude any risky activities such as scuba diving or motorcycling? You might not be covered for accidents of all kinds. Make sure to read the fine print.
- Do you have any travel protection through your credit cards? You might not need to add all coverages available to your policy. As a rule of thumb, the basic coverages you should worry about are health emergency expenses, repatriation of remains and car rental insurance. Those can be really costly.
- What is the claim process like? Do they expect you to pay and then ask for reimbursement or do they pay upfront? Not all companies work the same way. If something bad happened, you might still have to pay and then wait to get reimbursed, thus limiting your planned budget.
- What are the benefit limits per person or plan?
- What are their cancellation policies?
- In case you need to cancel your trip, how long in advance do you have to let your carrier know? Are there any invalid reasons for canceling? Some companies offer the option to cancel for any reason, but this is more expensive.
- How much would you get reimbursed for if you canceled your trip? This is usually a percentage that varies between 50% and 75%.
- Is it a reputable company? How long has it been in business? What kind of reviews do they get from their customers?
- How many times a year will you be traveling? It may be more cost-effective to pay a yearly fee instead of a one-time fee.
What Are Some Benefits of Travel Insurance?
The amount of money you’re entitled to varies among providers and depends on what policy you get. Also, remember some coverages are optional. Some of the most common benefits offered by providers are:
- Luggage replacement
- Emergency medical and hospital costs
- Financial support in case of theft or loss of valuables
- Trip cancellation
- Repatriation of remains
- Personal liability
Your peace of mind should be above everything else. You don’t want to ruin your vacation because of a large unforeseen expense abroad.
What If Nothing Happens?
That’s better! Why do you want something bad to happen? Many people have this mindset when deciding whether to buy insurance or not. They think it will be a waste of money if they end up not needing it.
Accidents and other unforeseen events happen. We can never be sure about the future. Even though we take precautions, something bad can still happen. You can think your trip will go smoothly and I hope it does, but what if something bad happens? We don’t have control over everything.
It’s preferable to buy insurance thinking you won’t need it. Insurance is one of those things you buy and should hope not to use.
If you didn’t think travel insurance for Mexico is necessary, I sincerely hope you changed your mind after reading this. Unlike other countries, travel insurance in Mexico is not mandatory. However, that doesn’t mean you should skip it altogether.
There are many companies out there you can get quotes from. Their requirements and benefits offered can vary, so it’s important to search diligently. Ask your agent any questions you have and always make sure to read the fine print.
Insurance can be expensive, but even if you travel for a few days only, it’s something that could come in handy. You never know when you might need it. Your policy will probably cost less than what you would have to pay for not being covered. Better safe than sorry.
As always, feel free to leave your comments and opinions below. Do you agree or disagree? What would you add? See you soon!