Purchasing souvenirs is always a highlight when you’re on vacation. Sometimes they’re pricey or unique to the destination you’re visiting. Or sometimes the items seem like value-packed deals.
While most travel insurance policies can offer coverage for luggage that is lost, stolen, or damaged, be sure to read your policy for limits. “This benefit typically covers luggage and personal items throughout the entire trip, even for luggage lost on the way home,” says Kasara Barto, a spokesperson for Squaremouth, a travel insurance provider. “There are select policies, however, that will only cover luggage while it is checked on a common carrier, such as an airplane, train or bus.”
Pack Valuables with Caution
It’s important to note that travel insurance for lost luggage is designed to provide reimbursement for normal items lost during a trip—things like clothing and toiletries. This coverage has a per-item limit, as well as an overall maximum amount.
“These amounts typically range between $100 to $500 per item, and up to $3,000 overall, depending on the policy,” says Barto. Because of these reimbursement limits, this coverage is not designed for expensive items, such as jewelry or electronics. “If travelers purchase items valued at over $1,000 on their trip, we recommend insuring them through other sources, such as the credit card that was used to purchase the items,” Barto says.
Making a Claim for Trip Purchases
Bailey Foster, a spokesperson for Trawick International, recommends you keep all of your receipts for souvenirs and other purchases, as they will be needed if you have to submit a claim. Organized paperwork and dated, itemized receipts will help expedite a claim. If you plan on packing or purchasing big-ticket items, plan accordingly. Before you pack the items, take a photo of them on your phone. This proves that you had the item.
AIG Travel offers a product enhancement called “Baggage Bundle,” which doubles the coverage limit under the policy for lost, stolen or damaged items for many of its Travel Guard plans. “So, many of the souvenirs or electronics you might buy while traveling could potentially be covered within the enhanced limits under our baggage coverage,” says Scott Adamski, a spokesperson for AIG Travel.
Daniel Durazo, a spokesperson for Allianz Global Assistance, says a deductible and certain exclusions can apply for baggage-related travel insurance claims.
And you must first make a claim with your airline or credit card; baggage coverage is usually secondary to these. And all losses must be reported to the airline, airport, police or other relevant authority. It’s important to file the appropriate reports and paperwork to ensure you can get insurance reimbursement later.
Durazo stresses that you’ll need to provide original receipts for items if you file a baggage insurance claim.
What if Purchases Weren’t in Luggage?
Of course purchases can disappear from other places, like your hotel room. If your items are stolen from a hotel room, you can make a claim on your homeowners insurance.
Article By: Erica Lamberg