Study: Increasingly Savvy, Travelers Investigate, Buy Insurance

airplaneTravelers are becoming more savvy about trip insurance, with three-fifths of Americans and two-thirds of global travelers having purchased the product at some point, according to a survey by TripAdvisor. 

According to the survey of 3,700 travelers, 43% of global travelers and 35% of U.S. respondents said they expect to buy travel insurance over the next year. Fifteen percent of U.S. respondents said they would purchase it because of the current economic climate.

For the most part, people tend to buy travel insurance at the time they are booking their trip. According to the survey, two-thirds of U.S. consumers said they would buy the insurance at booking. "From a marketing perspective, you need to be way out in front of them when they're making the purchase," company representative Brian Payea tells Marketing Daily. "Building [trip insurance] into the travel purchase is a big impetus."



Still, U.S. consumers like to shop around. More than half (53%) said they will check the quote on a price comparison Web site before making the purchase.

According to TripAdvisor, more than half of those who purchased travel insurance said it was for their peace of mind. Fifty-three percent of U.S. travelers say they buy insurance as a hedge against trip cancellation, while 19% say they buy in case of a medical or health emergency. Perhaps accordingly, older consumers were more likely to purchase travel insurance than younger ones. "The propensity of making this type of purchase goes up with the age of the respondent," Payea says.

According to those who said they have made a claim (20% of respondents), 18% of U.S. respondents were refused. Of them, a little over a third said they didn't know why. Of those who had made a claim, 25% said the process was simple, while 23% said it was time-consuming.

And despite the increase in intention to buy, only 8% of U.S. respondents said they have had regrets about not buying travel insurance in the past. That follows the nature of insurance, where the only people who regret not having it are people who need to make a claim but are not covered, Payea says. "It's like any insurance; I've never had a house fire, but I don't regret spending the money on homeowner's insurance."

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