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How Travel Insurance Can Protect Military Families

young girl and military father
Allianz - young girl and military father

For months, you’ve planned your much-needed family vacation: a week at the beach. And then, you receive the news that your spouse has received a temporary duty assignment and must move to a new base for a few months. Your vacation is ruined.

Scenarios like this one are all too common for military families. Leave can be revoked, or a service member might face an unexpected deployment or have to attend required training. You learn early on to adapt to unexpected changes — but the financial loss of canceling a big trip is tough to absorb. What are you supposed to do?

There’s a simple answer: Always get travel insurance. Just make sure that the travel protection plan you choose is designed with military families in mind. We’ll tell you what to look for.

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Does Travel Insurance Cover Military Duty?

Travel insurance companies vary in how they cover trip cancellations and trip interruptions related to military service. Some only allow military service members to cancel a trip if they’re called to duty because of a natural disaster. Others may cover deployment in case of war, but exclude other service-related reasons for trip cancellation.1

Most travel protection plans from Allianz Global Assistance name this specific covered reason for trip cancellation: "You, a traveling companion, or a family member serving in the U.S. Armed Forces is reassigned or has personal leave status changed, except because of war, the War Powers Act, or disciplinary action."

So, if a covered person must change their travel plans because of a temporary duty assignment, leave revocation, permanent change of station, etc., then they could be reimbursed for their nonrefundable trip costs.

What’s the Best Travel Insurance for Military Families?

Before you buy, make sure you understand your benefits. Then, get a quote to see your costs. Here are some questions military families should ask.

1. Is the military duty of family members covered by the trip cancellation benefit?

Here’s a scenario many military families experience: Michelle lives in the U.S., and her husband, Leo, is a soldier stationed in Germany. Michelle books a flight for herself, her mother and her two kids to visit Leo for a family vacation. Then, Leo’s orders change so that he’s no longer available to accommodate his family’s visit. Can travel insurance reimburse Michelle’s trip cancellation?

Yes! Unlike some other travel insurance providers, we include family members and traveling companions in the list of people whose military duties can be a covered reason for trip cancellation/trip interruption. We choose to do this because we know that military spouses and parents often travel to see their family members who are serving far from home, and we want to make sure their trips can be protected.

2. Are children covered for free?

The popular OneTrip Prime and OneTrip Premier plans both include free coverage for children 17 and under when traveling with a parent or grandparent.

These plans also can help ensure your children are taken care of if you should suffer a covered injury or illness while traveling. If you’re told by a doctor that you will be hospitalized for more than 24 hours during your trip, and you don’t have an adult family member with you to watch your children, we can arrange and pay to transport your children/dependents to your home or a location of your choice in the U.S.

3. Are assistance services included?

Military service members and spouses are skilled at dealing with unexpected crises. But you shouldn’t have to deal with travel problems alone! Every travel protection plan from Allianz Global Assistance includes access to 24-Hour Hotline Assistance. Our team of experts can help you deal with almost any scenario: medical emergencies, travel delays, lost passports or other documents, etc.

More travel insurance tips for military families

  • Always save your receipts while traveling. You’ll need them in case you have to file a claim for a travel delay or delayed baggage.
  • Understand what your travel insurance covers. Insurance won’t protect you during travel for a move, such as a PCS (permanent change of station) move. It can protect you during vacations, business travel and other trips, however.
  • Use the free TravelSmart app. The TravelSmart app makes it easy to access 24-Hour Hotline Assistance and start the claim process.
  • Make sure you include all required documentation when filing a claim. If you must cancel a trip because a military service member is reassigned or has personal leave status changed, be sure to obtain a letter from his or her commanding officer stating this change. Check the list of required documents for your claim type, so you can submit everything at once.

Questions about how travel insurance can cover military service members and their families? We’re always here to help! Contact us anytime.

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Citations
  1. Military.com

Aug 14, 2019