By the time you’ve finished shopping around for different types of health insurance and car insurance — and maybe renters insurance, too, for good measure — you’ve probably maxed out the time and attention you’ve budgeted for thinking about insurance. But, once you’ve had a breather, it’s worth diving back in for one more look at your options.
Why? Well, ever thought you could live out of a backpack for a week, until you actually tried it and realized just how many things you use things in a day that you never would have thought to pack? Insurance is kind of the same thing. Skip the regret and consider these three types of insurance you might not know you need.
1. Travel Insurance
Passports? Check. Sunscreen? Check. Travel insurance? Wait, what?
You may have thought travel insurance was one expense you could skip — after all, haven’t you dropped enough cash on your dream vacation as it is? — but think again before you set out for adventure. Travel insurance offers important coverage for a variety of incidents, from getting sick before the vacation and needing to cancel to breaking your leg abroad and needing an emergency medical evacuation. Plus, travel insurance may cover things like emergency dental treatment, disaster evacuations, travel delays and other medical problems while you’re away.
Now, is it a necessity for every trip? No. If you’re tooling around Disneyland or visiting your parents in Florida, you might be able to skip it — but for trips abroad, it’s a smart precaution to take. Because of the advance planning and significant cost of major trips abroad, having coverage really can pay off. Your major medical may pay for some customary charges in large international cities if you fall sick or get injured, but costs can quickly skyrocket. Travel insurance is a great way to protect your vacation — and yourself — from the high cost of any health-related problems before or during international travel.
2. Pet Insurance
Most of us think of our pets as members of the family, and rightly so. But when Fluffy gets sick, vet costs can add up to thousands, even if you avoid expensive emergency veterinarian centers and stick with your regular vet. Just like human insurance, pet insurance is designed to help take the bite out of costly vet bills. Plans have a deductible, a monthly premium and a set amount they cover for various procedures and care. Some go beyond standard illnesses, procedures and lab work to cover wellness and exams.
Pet insurance generally works on a reimbursement basis. You pay the vet, submit a claim and then the insurance reimburses you. Individual plan costs are based on your pet’s geographical location, breed, age and size.
The journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association says that owners with pet insurance are more likely to seek veterinary care and treat their pets. So, if you don’t want to have to make the heartbreaking choice between opening your wallet and getting your pet the care it needs, equip yourself ahead of time with a pet insurance policy.
3. Supplemental Health Insurance
A supplemental health policy can provide extra protection for accidents, injuries, hospitalizations and unexpected illnesses your major medical plan doesn’t cover. Since supplemental plans pay out cash benefits directly to you, that money can go toward anything from medical costs like deductibles and copays to everyday expenses, meaning your rent or child care is fair game.
When looking for the right supplemental plan, don’t duplicate coverage that you already have or buy coverage for things you don’t need. Instead, evaluate your health risks and what your major medical policy doesn’t cover, and use that information to buy a policy that fills gaps in your current coverage. For instance, if you have a high-deductible policy, you might need help paying your out-of-pocket expenses if you ever find yourself in a medical emergency.
When it comes to different types of health insurance, there are countless products and policies available. Some of them will protect your financial future, while others are just a drain on your bank account. Weigh your options carefully — don’t miss out on a plan that could keep your finances afloat six months down the line.