I get email updates from Airfarewatchdog.com with great last minute deals for flights. Sometimes the specials are only available for trip that weekend, just a day or two away.
This can be a lot of fun, and a great way to do some traveling on the cheap. Some of these spontaneous travelers wonder if they can buy travel insurance at the last minute too.
The answer is Yes, you can get insurance. But do you need to?
Let’s take a quick look at the benefits of travel insurance and how they would relate to a last minute journey. First of all, the very popular “package” plans feature benefits for canceled trips due to sickness of you or a traveling partner.
If you are buying a last minute, discounted plane ticket for a flight in a day or two, you might choose to skip the trip cancellation coverage. With a departure 2 days from now, there is little that will stop you from going (but as always with insurance, it depends on your feelings about the risk involved)
How about medical emergencies while traveling?
This depends on where the trip takes you. If the trip is domestic, many US health insurance plans cover you anywhere in the US.
For example: You live in Boston, and find a last minute deal on a flight to Florida. Instead of fun in the sun, you end up in the ER. Your insurance from Boston should get you the care you need in Florida.
What if the trip take you overseas? That’s another story, because the US insurance that protects you here will not cover you abroad. The question to ask yourself is, again, what amount of risk can you take? Even a trip of a few days can cause big problems, and big debt, if something happens that puts you in the hospital.