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Some credit cards have built-in travel protection for trip delay and cancellation, and lost or delayed luggage. It can help if you have a sudden illness or injury, or if another unforeseen circumstance pops up at the last minute.
I’ll share the cards with the best coverage!
Best Travel Insurance Credit Cards
Different cards have varying levels of coverage if a trip is delayed or cancelled. Or if your bag is lost or delayed.
Some of them also cover trips paid for with miles or points. And some do NOT.
Here’s what the top cards cover:
|Card||Trip Cancellation||Trip Delay||Lost Luggage||Delayed Luggage||Award tickets covered?|
|Chase Sapphire Preferred||Up to $10,000 per trip||After 12 hours, up to $500 per ticket||Up to $3,000 per person||After 6 hours, up to $100 a day (up to 5 days)||Yes|
|Chase United MileagePlus® Explorer Card||Up to $10,000 per trip||After 12 hours, up to $500 per ticket||Up to $3,000 per person||After 6 hours, up to $100 per day (up to 3 days)||Yes|
|Citi Prestige® Card||Up to $5,000 per person, per trip||After 3 hours, up to $500 for yourself, spouse, and dependents||Up to $3,000 per person, per trip ($2,000 per person, per bag, per trip for New York residents) |
Maximum of $10,000 per trip
|After 3 hours, up to $500||Only if booked with Citi ThankYou points|
|Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard®||Up to $5,000 per person, per trip||After 3 hours, up to $500 for yourself, spouse, and dependents||Up to $3,000 per person, per trip ($2,000 per person, per bag, per trip for New York residents) |
Maximum of $10,000 per trip
|After 3 hours, up to $500||No|
Note: With these benefits, you can purchase food, hotel rooms, extra items of clothing, toiletries, and anything else necessary to help you until you can travel again.
Necessary is the key word. No fur coats just because your flight is late!
1. Chase Sapphire Preferred
Link: Chase Sapphire Preferred
A solid card for travel protection is the Chase Sapphire Preferred. It has comparable coverage to the other cards on the list, but is lacking in the trip delay category.
You’d have to wait 12 hours before your benefit of up to $500 per ticket starts. That’s a long time to wait! Because delays are usually addressed by the airline or travel provider before that much time passes, you’ll probably never need to use this benefit.
But the other coverage is very good, and you only have to wait 6 hours without your bags before you can claim up to $100 a day for 5 consecutive days.
So if your main concern is trip cancellation or any issues with your bags, this is still a great choice for your travel purchases. And, award travel is covered!
2. Chase United Explorer
This card has the same coverage levels as the Chase Sapphire Preferred. But folks who fly United Airlines will like the other benefits of the Chase United Explorer card, like priority boarding and 1st checked bag free for yourself and a companion, and 2 United Club passes per year. Keep in mind that to get the free checked bag perk, you’ll have to pay for the tickets with your Chase United Explorer card.
3. Citi Prestige
Link: Citi Prestige
Citi Prestige travel perks kick in after only 3 hours for trip delay and baggage delay coverage, 1 of the shortest wait times across the board.
Trip cancellation insurance is up to $5,000 per person each trip. And if your bags are lost, you can claim up to $3,000 per person, with a maximum of up to $10,000 per trip (but only $2,000 per person for New York residents).
If your main concern with travel is being delayed, Citi Prestige is the best card to have. Because its benefits start after only 3 hours of delays.
And, tickets bought with Citi ThankYou points are eligible for travel protection!
To take advantage of this benefit, the trip must be paid for in full including taxes and fees with your Citi card, Citi reward points or a combination of both.
Keep in mind coverage is secondary, so if you have other insurance you’ll have to file a claim with them first, then with Citi.
And, coverage extends to your spouse, partner, and dependents, as long as your Citi card was used to the book the trip. Your authorized users are also covered!
4. Citi AAdvantage Executive
You’ll get priority boarding on American Airlines and US Airways flights, and the 1st checked bag free for yourself and up to 8 companions on the same itinerary.
You’ll also earn 2X American Airlines miles per $1 spent on American Airlines and US Airways flights. So if you fly American Airlines often, consider the Citi AAdvantage Executive Card for its travel perks!
Keep in mind that award tickets whose taxes and fees you charge to the card are NOT covered.
Like coverage with Citi Prestige, coverage is secondary, and includes your partner or spouse, and dependents traveling with you, as long as all the tickets were paid for with your Citi card.
A few credit cards have superior levels of travel protection for trip cancellation or delay, and baggage loss or delay.
Coverage varies depending on the card, so be sure to look at each card’s terms and conditions closely. For example, Citi Prestige and Citi AAdvantage Executive Card have trip and baggage delay coverage that start after only 3 hours.
Be sure you understand exactly what your card covers before you depart. So if anything happens unexpectedly, you’ll be prepared to make a claim!
Let me know in the comments if you have an experience with a delayed or canceled trip, or a delayed or lost suitcase!
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