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Travel insurance tips

Los Angeles Times

If you're spending a lot of money on a trip, consider travel insurance to protect against the unexpected. Key things to know:

• Typically, travel insurance reimburses you for such things as nonrefundable cruise deposits or airfares — and for the cost of rescheduling flights — when weather, illness, natural disaster or terrorism cause a trip to be canceled or delayed. Plans differ slightly, so read the fine print.

• Some policies cover medical expenses incurred outside the United States, and may pay for emergency evacuation in case of a serious injury or health problem. Some providers will not cover pre-existing medical conditions.

• You can buy travel insurance through a travel agent, your tour company or sites such as, and The cost typically is 4 to 8 percent of the trip's price. You may get a better rate if you buy a policy within 14 days of making the first deposit for your trip.

• If you want the option to back out of your trip and get your money back at any time, some carriers offer "cancel for any reason" coverage at an extra cost. The price is around 10 percent of the trip's cost.