If you’ve ever had an issue with your baggage on a trip, you know the feelings of anxiety, frustration, and hopelessness that it can cause. That might sound slightly dramatic to those who haven’t experienced it themselves, but trust us—it’s all too real.
When you’re off your flight and waiting at the baggage claim until the last piece of luggage comes around only to find out that your bag hasn’t made it to your destination, there are a few things that most often happen. If you’re lucky, your bag is simply delayed and your airline will return it to you relatively quickly and easily. It’s also possible that it could take far longer, causing more inconvenience for you. Worst case scenario, your bag is gone for good, lost somewhere in the world.
The good news is that there’s a specific type of travel insurance coverage that will help you out immensely if your bag doesn’t make it to your destination as planned: baggage loss and delay insurance. This kind of baggage insurance can save you time and money in getting the gear you need so you can carry on with your plans. Here’s what the different elements look like:
When your luggage is delayed, especially for more than 24 hours, you may have to buy clothes, toiletries, and other essential items to get by while you wait to get it back. Depending on where you’re traveling, who you’re with, and what your needs are, those expenses can add up quickly. Say, for instance, you’re traveling to Spain to embark on your dream cruise through the Mediterranean Sea. Although you make it to your cruise ship in time, your luggage is not as lucky and is stuck somewhere in Paris where you had a layover.
The first step is to contact your airline’s customer service over the phone or through an agent at the airport, as they may be able to assist you directly and provide some financial support. Unfortunately, common carriers like airlines tend to have long exclusion lists when it comes to delayed baggage. If you choose a travel insurance plan that includes baggage delay coverage, expenses for essential items like clothes or toiletries would be reimbursed!
It’s important to read your policy details as the time limit varies policy to policy. Most policies will require your baggage be delayed 12-24 hours before coverage is activated. Be sure to document everything and keep all your receipts so you can submit your claim for reimbursement.
Baggage & Personal Effects
The baggage delay insurance we just discussed will help you out if your bags will eventually be returned to you, but what if they’re gone for good or damaged in some way? This is where the baggage and personal effects element comes in. If your belongings are actually lost or irreparably damaged, this element of your policy will reimburse you for your lost belongings up to a certain dollar amount. Again, always contact your insurance company to verify and then save all documentation and receipts for your claims.
Here’s hoping that you and your bags arrive safely at your destination on your next trip and if not, that you have an insurance policy that helps you get the situation figured out as quickly and easily as possible.