Although there are lots of ways to save money on Disney vacations, they typically aren’t cheap.
Families and travelers often save for months to afford them, and want to protect that investment.
One of the questions we get asked frequently is “should I buy travel insurance”?
Which, of course, raises other questions: “Should I buy the insurance offered by Disney?” And, “which is travel insurance is the best?”
We are going to tackle all of these questions, and take a look at the popular offerings from some of the major travel insurance brands.
In this article
Do I need travel insurance for a Disney trip?
Let’s cut right to the chase: for most travelers, buying travel insurance is smart. We recommend it for almost anyone.
You hope you don’t need it, but if you do, you’ll be very glad you have it.
Here’s a true story.
A family of 4, close friends of ours, took a Caribbean cruise. Their 8 year old son started having abdominal pain on the second day.
“Oh no,” thought mom, we are going to get norovirus and the whole ship will be infected. But the diarrhea never came. The abdominal pain got worse and the boy became lethargic.
On day 4, the ship physician diagnosed a suspected ruptured appendicitis. The boy was airlifted to a children’s hospital in Florida from the boat, where he had an appendectomy.
The helicopter ride cost $37,000.
The total hospital cost, including surgery and a 3 day admission was $51,000. Of course, it was out of network and only covered at 70% by their medical insurance.
And, least of all, the vacation, which cost $5,500, was shot.
Total costs: $78,200, and no vacation. That’s the average American household’s annual income!
Of course, a ruptured appendix is a somewhat unlikely bit of misfortune. But, a bout of flu interrupting a vacation really isn’t.
That’s why we always book trip insurance. Our vacations are an investment, and they are usually costly. Protecting our investment just makes sense.
Let’s take a look at the numbers
The average American household income in 2014 was $73,000 according the U.S. Census Bureau.
Disney World vacations can cost any where from $2000 – $20,000, depending on where you stay, how long you stay, and what options you select.
That means a Disney World vacation costs between 3% and 10% (or more) of your annual income. Suppose your cost is 5% of your annual income, which is right in the middle of that range. That’s a lot of money to leave vulnerable.
Travel insurance, on the other hand, costs about 4-10% of the total vacation cost, depending on the package.
As an example, a Disney World vacation for a family of 4 might cost about $5,000. The insurance would be between $100 and $300, depending on the provider and the coverage.
Let’s look at the risks and benefits
There are a lot of variables out of your control when you plan a vacation:
This a very real concern, especially if you will be flying. Snow and storms can and do cause flight cancelations. On average there are 107,400 flight cancelations per year, though the number can be much higher.
Another common problem, especially for families with young children and older travelers. Influenza infects millions annually, and you definitely won’t be feel like going to Disney World if you come down with the flu.
- Major life events:
You can’t plan for everything, and life happens. Loss of a job, a death in the family, or another major life event can easily derail a vacation.
On the other hand, there are a lot of benefits to travel insurance:
- Trip interruption or delay:
Get reimbursed for your cost and inconvenience for almost any interruption or delay of your trip.
- Weather coverage:
Get reimbursed costs and inconvenience of missed days, changed flights, and extra hotel rooms.
- Illness & medical coverage:
You’ll be covered if you miss days or a whole vacation due to illness. You’ll also be covered if you become ill while on vacation and need medical attention.
Traveling when pregnant carries it’s own set of risks. This is a scenario where travel insurance is even more important.
- Life events:
You’ll be covered for missed travel, missed days, or missed vacation.
Your luggage will be covered, and you’ll even be reimbursed for the inconvenience of delays.
- Peace of mind:
This one is huge. Even if you don’t end up needing the coverage (and we hope you don’t), you won’t have any worries. This helps with vacation relaxation, and to us, it’s invaluable.
The bottom line is, a vacation is an investment. It’s an investment in family, mental health and happiness. It’s an investment that costs thousands of dollars. In our opinion, it’s an investment that should be insured.
Should I buy the Disney travel insurance?
Disney travel insurance is provided by Travelex, and can be purchased up until the final nonrefundable payment on the vacation is made.
Here is a table of the coverage provided by the Disney Travelex program:
|Benefit||Max coverage per Person|
|Trip cancelation||100% of trip cost|
|Trip interruption||100% of trip cost|
|Trip delay||$600 ($200/day)|
|Baggage and possessions||$2000 ($500/item)|
|Emergency medical & dental||$25,000|
|Accidental death & dismemberment||$25,000|
|Rental car damage||$25,000|
Here’s the fine print.
We recommend comparing Disney travel insurance to other provider prices before making the purchase.
You should also wait until you are ready to submit your last payment before adding it to your trip.
As soon as you add it, you will be charged, and it is nonrefundable after 14 days. You don’t want to buy the insurance, and then end up not buying your trip.
How much does Disney trip insurance cost?
For the Walt Disney World Resort, the cost of the insurance is $77.50 per adult over 18. Minors are covered automatically, if adults have purchased insurance.
So, for most families, the cost will be $155.
For Disney Cruise Lines, the cost of travel insurance is 5-10% of total trip cost, depending on the age of the travelers.
Children are not covered automatically, but cost less than adults.
Other Disney trip insurance providers
There are a number of independent trip insurance providers besides the Disney Travelex program.
Often, you can find better coverage or lower prices through other providers. Let’s compare some of the major providers, and look at a way to comparison shop.
Another major benefit of buying through a third party, is the option to buy an annual plan. If you are traveling frequently – or even more than once – an annual plan probably makes sense.
Allianz is a major financial and insurance services company, and one of the premier providers of travel insurance. Here is a comparison of coverage for 3 of their most popular plans:
Allianz Plan Comparison
|Benefit||Essential Plan||Basic Plan||Classic Plan|
|Baggage and possessions||$500||$1,000|
|Emergency medical & dental||$10,000||$25,000|
Pricing very competitive. To get exact prices, you will have to go to their website and provide some basic details about your trip.
Allianz also offers annual plans, which can save you a considerable amount of money if you are traveling more than once in a year.
Travel Guard is a subsidiary of insurance giant AIG, and another major travel and trip insurance provider.
One way Travel Guard plans seem to differ from other insurers, is high coverage for medical expenses and medical evacuations across plans.
Travel Guard also options a “cancel for any reason” upgrade, which expands your cancelation coverage for … any reason. (“I changed my mind” isn’t usually covered.)
Here is a comparison of coverage for 3 of their most popular plans:
Travel Guard Plan Comparison
|Baggage and possessions||$750||$1,000||$2,500|
|Emergency medical & dental||$15,000||$25,000||$50,000|
Again, you’ll need to go to the website and enter some trip details for exact pricing.
Notably, the Silver and Gold plans include minors at no additional cost (just like the Disney Travelex plan).
Travel Guard offers annual plans, too.
Travelex is the provider of the trip insurance you can get directly through Disney, but they also offer products independently. You can get a wider range of coverage by booking directly.
Travelex Plan Comparison
|Baggage and possessions||$500||$1,000||$2,500|
|Emergency medical & dental||$15,000||$50,000||$100,000|
You’ll need to enter a few trip details on their website for price comparison.
Travelex has some annual and multiple trip offerings.
Disney Travel Insurance Comparison Shopping
Of course, to get the best deal, it helps to be able to compare plans side by side. There are a few sites that offer travel insurance comparison tools.
We recommend Squaremouth for comparison shopping. You can enter your plan details, and compare of 110 policies from 21 different providers. It’s the Kayak.com of trip insurance.
Squaremouth is known for excellent customer service, and has been around since 2001. They offer a zero complaint guarantee.
Here’s Squaremouth in action
Wherever you decide to get travel insurance, we hope you decide to protect your trip and we hope you never need your policy!