How to avoid overspending on a policy

Travel insurance

Travel insurance comparison site Squaremouth has shared four tips on how consumers can avoid overspending when they next buy a travel insurance policy.

Their first tip is not to insure more than necessary, advising that consumers only ensure pre-paid and non-refundable expenses. "If you can cancel all your hotels for just a small penalty, insure the cost of the penalty rather than the full amount of the hotels," said Squaremouth product manager Adam Rusin. "A lower trip cost generally means a lower premium, and you're still covered for the amount you would lose if you cancelled."

Their next tip is to compare options. Squaremouth highlights that travel insurance policies are not one-size-fits-all, and that consumers should use a travel insurance comparison site to review options. "We get a lot of calls from travellers looking for advice, or trying to understand and compare the coverage they're being offered by their cruise or tour operator," said Squaremouth customer service director Jessica Harvey. "Customers are often surprised to see so many other options that offer the same or better benefits at a lower price."

Squaremouth also suggests that customers should not upgrade to cancel for any reason, stating that this can increase the cost of a policy by as much as 40 per cent, while only reimbursing a portion of the cost of a trip. "The most common concerns we see are generally covered by standard cancellation policies, such as cancelling due to an illness or a family member passing away," said Squaremouth quality assurance manager Emily Phinney. "We don't recommend cancel for any reason unless someone has a unique concern that isn't otherwise covered."

Finally, Squaremouth advises consumers to purchase the least expensive policy, stating that a higher price tag doesn’t necessarily equate to better service or benefits. "We always recommend purchasing the least expensive policy that meets your needs, as long as it's with a reputable provider," said Squaremouth spokesperson Rachael Taft. "Good indicators are a high A.M. Best Rating and some kind of external accountability, like the Zero Complaint Guarantee we have for providers on Squaremouth."