Coronavirus: What you need to know about travel insurance

For those taking trips for spring break or summer vacation, the coronavirus may be putting a cramp in those plans.

There are ways you can plan the vacation, without the risk of losing money if you need to cancel.

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Susan and Mark Harter plan to go on a European river cruise in just a few months, but in light of the coronavirus, they have travel insurance to protect them.

“We've been told if we have to cancel for whatever reason or if trip is canceled we get a full refund,” Susan Harter said.

However, that travel insurance may not be enough.

Karasa Barto tracks data from travel insurance providers for SquareMouth.com.

“As soon as the Cornoavirus became a known event, providers started excluding it from coverage,” Barto said.

A travel policy bought before Jan. 21, before the coronavirus became a pandemic, will not cover most travel losses covered by the virus.

Standard travel insurance coverage doesn’t cover fear, so if you plan to cancel a trip due to the coronavirus, you may be out of that money.

But, you can get ‘cancel for any reason coverage’ that provides refunds on cancellations.  You would have to buy that coverage right way.

Most of the time, the ‘cancel for any reason’ coverage is significantly more that the standard insurance; about 40 percent more.

Trish Borah is planning a trip to London this summer and bought insurance coverage for it.

“I think I can cancel the trip if I want to,” Borah said.

And, she could, but the ‘cancel for any reason’ policy only provides a 50 to 75 percent refund.

If you file a claim with your travel insurance and it’s denied you can appeal.  You also can contact the airline or cruise provide to get future credits.

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