I bet you are asking yourself: Why do I need travel insurance when I’m traveling in the United States?

Honestly, you may not need it. If you’re taking the 3-hour drive to your family beach house, you are probably not worried about trip delays due to weather or losing a bag along the way. Some trips just don’t call for travel insurance.

We think you should consider purchasing travel insurance anytime you are traveling more than 100 miles away from home AND have a travel investment you’d like to protect. There are various benefits that would be useful, even if you aren’t traveling internationally.

Trip Cancellation and Trip Interruption

Regardless of where you are traveling, the benefits of trip cancellation or trip interruption should not be ignored. The reasons for canceling a trip can range from severe weather that renders your accommodations uninhabitable or delays your flight to unforeseen illness or injury of a traveler or non-traveling family member. Even if you’re only flying to another part of the country, these things can affect your trip. Travel insurance can reimburse your pre-paid, non-refundable trip cost if you have to cancel or interrupt your trip due to unforeseen reasons covered within the plan.

Cancel for Any Reason

Think you may need to cancel for a reason not covered in your plan? You should consider a plan that allows you to add optional Cancel for Any Reason coverage for an additional premium. This benefit gives you the flexibility to cancel for ANY REASON AT ALL up to 72 hours prior to the trip. This benefit reimburses a percentage of your pre-paid, non-refundable trip cost (typically around 75%), is time-sensitive and, depending on the plan, the benefit must be purchased within 10-30 days after your first trip payment. It’s something that must be considered nearly immediately upon booking a trip (or part of a trip).

Baggage Coverage

If you are traveling from Boston to LA with one or two stops along the way, it’s very possible your luggage won’t make it to your destination at the same time as you. Comprehensive travel insurance plans include baggage delay benefits if your luggage is delayed over a number of hours. This will allow you to purchase the essentials when you arrive at your destination and submit a claim for reimbursement when you return. Hint: Save all your receipts, as these are essential to filing a successful claim!

Emergency Medical

Even when traveling domestically, we recommend consulting your health insurance company to determine if you are covered in the location to which you are traveling. Emergency medical coverage in a comprehensive travel insurance plan often acts as secondary health insurance. This means, you may still have to file a claim with your primary health insurance company first, then your travel health insurance. If they deny your claim for expenses due to a medical emergency on your trip covered by your plan, you can then file a claim with the travel insurance company for reimbursement.

Cruise Specific Coverage

While not all comprehensive plans are ideal for cruises, some will provide missed connection coverage if you should miss the initial departure of your cruise ship due to a covered cancellation or delay of scheduled flight. Travel insurance may offer reimbursement, up to a stated limit, for the additional cost it takes to meet up with your cruise.

For instance, if you are cruising through the Hawaiian Islands and a covered flight delay causes you to miss the cruise departure, you may be able to submit for reimbursement you for a puddle jumper to get you to the next island the ship is expected. Also, if your excursions are pre-paid and non-refundable prior to departure, you may be entitled to a limited reimbursement if your cruise is cancelled or rerouted for any reason and you are not able to participate in the activity at all.