The financial realities of young families can sometimes be difficult. Even being financially responsible with RRSPs and an RESP can strain your funds. Families may be surprised to learn that there are a couple of ways they can save on their travel insurance costs and still enjoy those well-earned (and well-needed!) family vacations. With a family multi-trip annual plan, dependents travel free—even a family of five or six members can take advantage of this discount. But to plan responsibly, families need to be aware of the limits of the insurance.
Who is considered a dependent?
For children to be covered free under their parent’s policies, the child must meet certain requirements set out by the insurer. Guidelines vary from plan to plan, but the basic requirement is that they must be at least 15 days old. From this age, they can be included on their parent’s policy at no extra cost. Usually until the age of 21 they will be considered dependents as long as they continue to reside in their parents’ household and are unmarried. Full-time students are also eligible for inclusion at no cost, up to the age of 25. In certain cases, there is no age limit for dependents with specific mental or physical disabilities.
How does the coverage work?
If your clients purchase a single-trip plan, the coverage will begin and end within the trip dates. However, if they purchase an annual plan, each member of the family is allowed to travel independently throughout the term of the policy. There is great potential of savings for families when they purchase an annual plan.
Printable PDF: Tips for Annual Plan Holders
For example, an annual travel plan will cover a teen going on a school trip out of province and a parent travelling out of the country on business … at the exact same time. There is no need to travel together for the policy to be active for both! These multi-trip annual medical plans even offer economical and flexible emergency medical travel insurance for families.
What do family members need to know about their travel insurance?
Typically, parents are thought to be risk-averse (and that’s why they buy insurance!), but their children could be less so. Although most insurance policies will offer comprehensive coverage for almost any situation, it is important for parents to know the limits and explain them to their children. They should know what exclusions are placed on high-risk activities like scuba diving, professional and non-professional competitions, and motorized speed contests. As spring break approaches and mature students prepare for vacations, they should be made aware of limitations on coverage stemming from intoxication and the abuse of alcohol and drugs. Accidents, injuries, or sicknesses can be denied if it is found that the insured abused alcohol, drugs, or medication prior to or during the trip. A discussion of these limitations could be a great way to broach this sensitive topic with a travelling dependent.
Families face many challenges, and to help them save money and avoid excessive risks, a family travel insurance policy is a great option. Annual travel medical plans that cover dependents at no extra cost are the most economical choice for the long term. By discussing the basic limitations of the travel insurance policy, parents can rest easy when their children go on spring break.
This article was provided by Patrick Chiasson, Broker Services Manager, Ingle International & Imagine Financial