Don’t forget the camera—and your travel insurance!

It’s pretty easy to talk yourself out of buying travel insurance, especially when you’ve just spent a substantial amount of money on travel. When I was a young traveler, I never gave it a second thought. Now though, with a longtime career in travel under my belt—and after a few unavoidable travel pitfalls and 20/20 hindsight—I wouldn’t dream of heading to the airport without a travel insurance policy tucked away with my travel documents.

I’ve been incredibly lucky to have a family that loves to travel. My boys took to it right from the start, and now they’re practically pros at every part of it. I’m proud to say I’d take a trip they planned out any day! Whenever we set out on our trips, at the top of our packing checklist is: travel insurance—whether we’re headed to St. Louis to spend Thanksgiving with the kids’ grandparents, or heading to Turkey to explore the underground cities of Cappadocia.

As we veteran travelers know, unpredictability might be the only predictable thing about travel. No one plans on coming down with the flu the night before you’re due to fly to Costa Rica for your family vacation. Or, your dad, who isn’t traveling with you, takes a fall and you have to stay behind to help him out. What if your flight to Miami is delayed and you were supposed to catch that last connection to Lima, Peru? There are an infinite number of Murphy’s Laws that can get in the way of that perfect trip… lost luggage and no change of clothes for a week, an accident on a wilderness trail that nothing short of an air evacuation can fix, or that trip-of-a-lifetime that gets completely cancelled because a volcano erupts or a hurricane blows in. I hardly mean to sound like doom and gloom here, because there is little that will keep me, and my family, from traveling as much as possible. But a basic, inclusive policy can, and does, go a long way toward making things “better” in the long run if it’s needed.

Here at Thomson, whenever one of our staff heads out on the road, we require that they have travel insurance—it’s our company policy (pun intended!). And, because we feel so strongly about it, we include it in every one of our adventures for every family that travels with us.

So, when you’re making your personal plans to go anywhere—a flight a few hours away here in the U.S. to visit friends, or a group tour with another company that doesn’t include trip insurance—be sure to purchase that coverage for you and your family. If everything goes smoothly (and likely it will), you may momentarily feel bad about those few extra dollars spent. But if something should happen and that wonderful investment you made for your family vacation goes awry, you can take all the credit for your brilliant decision to purchase travel insurance.