The best way for frequent travelers to cover their getaways is an annual plan, something that is becoming more widely available from a number of providers. “Currently, we have a total of four annual plans and five single-trip plans,” says Richard Aquino, VP of Sales at Allianz Global Assistance. At the plan comparison site InsureMyTrip, sales of annual coverage have risen by 40 percent in the past year, the company says. And travel insurers Arch RoamRight and Seven Corners also report double-digit increases.
Travel agents are helping drive the shift. “I have recommended the annual policy for a few of my clients that travel very frequently throughout the year,” says Margie Hand, a travel agent at Andavo Travel. “One couple in particular usually took at least two luxury cruises per year, and together with their smaller trips, the annual policy was a great option for them.”
While annual and multi-trip plans are not new, traditionally they were marketed strictly to hard-core international travelers. “Most annual travel plans are focused on medical coverage for medical expenses and emergency medical evacuations,” says Justin Tysdal, CEO of Seven Corners.
Meanwhile, “for domestic trips, the number one reason somebody buys travel insurance is for trip-cancellation protection,” says Cory Sobczyk, VP of business development at Arch RoamRight. Historically, he says, “there have not been a ton of annual plans out there that include a trip-cancellation component.” But this paradigm is shifting, and today some insurance companies, including Arch RoamRight, now offer annual plans with trip cancellation that cover both domestic and international travel.
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