Tips for Insuring Baggage and Personal Belongings when Travelling

Purchasing baggage insurance for your trip is a great way to get extra piece of mind when traveling. But, unless you’ve been through an experience involving lost or stolen items and tried to make a claim on baggage insurance, there’s a lot you might not know. That’s why we’ve put together a few tips to help you cover your personal belongings while traveling. Here’s just a few suggestions:

Check coverage limits for high value items – When purchasing baggage insurance with the intention of covering high value items like laptops and cameras, you may not be getting full coverage for the value of those items. Check your policy wording, or find out the coverage limits with your broker when purchasing the coverage, to see how much you would be reimbursed if expensive items were lost or stolen.

Use your home insurance to cover high value items – You can contact your home insurance provider to get additional coverage for these items under your home insurance policy. You will likely be able to get more coverage for high value items than you could with traditional baggage insurance alone.

Take care of your stuff – Insurance companies expect you to take “reasonable care” of your belongings, and a claim could be denied if you leave something unattended in a public space or a shared hostel.

Document your gear with photos – If your baggage is lost or stolen, you will need to prove what items were lost when filing a claim. Taking photos of your items while packing, and keeping a list of what’s in your possession, can serve as proof of what was lost. You could even save your photos in the cloud so they can be accessed even if you lose your camera or smart phone.

Cover your cash – The loss of cash can be covered if proof is given, however all policies have a limit to how much they will reimburse for lost cash during a theft or robbery – the maximum is usually $100, however some policies exclude coverage for cash entirely.

Watch for exclusions – Review the exclusions of any baggage insurance before purchasing. Some typical exclusions include common personal items like contact lenses, prescription eye glasses, artificial teeth, and hearing aids. Other common exclusions include art, antiques, and fragile or brittle items.