Another cautionary tale about trip insurance

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Patina

Verified Member
Dec 22, 2015
1,170
1,944
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#1
I want to share our recent experience with trip insurance and how glad we were we purchased a policy. In a nutshell:

We traveled to Europe for 5 weeks last summer. Midway through the trip I was experiencing symptoms that were of concern. While in Paris we went to the emergency room at American Hospital of Paris where they did a CT scan and found a large cyst. The ER doctor stated that it needed to be removed immediately due to his concern it could rupture. He said we could have it done in Paris the next morning or recommended we fly home immediately to have it removed stateside. We opted for surgery in Paris. I spent two nights in the hospital, was released and continued on with our trip.

The total cost of the surgery, hospital stay and medication was over $14,000. We submitted all the pertinent information to the trip insurance company and received a check after 4 months, 100% reimbursement for our out-of-pocket expenses.

Word of advice for anyone who purchases trip insurance: build a folder with all of the receipts for non-refundable payments that are covered by the policy. Keep this at home in case you need it to submit a claim. Even though our claim was medical related, the insurance company required I provide them with proof of payment for all the items that were covered under the policy, i.e., non-refundable hotel and rental apartment payments, event tickets, etc. This was the hold-up on completing the claim. They never asked for this upfront, only asking for one document at a time taking two weeks to review it before asking for another document. Once I enlisted the help of the customer service manager for the company (thanks Elliott forum for the contact info!) I realized what other documents they would need before they asked and presented all the necessary documents at once rather than one at a time. In addition to a copy of a receipt, they required I show them proof of payment from a credit card statement. It is a tedious process but one I gladly did in order to recoup our expenses.

By the way, if you ever find yourself in need of medical care in Paris, I personally would recommend American Hospital of Paris. It was as pleasant as an experience could be under the circumstances.
 

Patina

Verified Member
Dec 22, 2015
1,170
1,944
113
#3
Thank you for sharing this, Patina. I wonder how many travellers are strong enough to spend two nights in a Paris hospital, then bounce out and continue their trip ... very impressive.
When your food is brought to you by waiters in white coats with brass buttons, offering your husband a wine list, it felt more like a hotel than a hospital! Besides, anything said in French is always better ;)
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#4
I saw a dr. at the American Hospital and also agree about the quality of the health care. My issue was not as serious as Patina. In the past I have self insured because I buy more flexible tickets and same for hotels. But unfortunately it seems that I am not getting younger and now need to think about health issues and travel insurance.
 
Likes: AMA and VoR61

Patina

Verified Member
Dec 22, 2015
1,170
1,944
113
#5
I saw a dr. at the American Hospital and also agree about the quality of the health care. My issue was not as serious as Patina. In the past I have self insured because I buy more flexible tickets and same for hotels. But unfortunately it seems that I am not getting younger and now need to think about health issues and travel insurance.
In our case, we opted for trip insurance because we were attending two events (Formula 1 races) that were expensive, non-refundable and non-transferable as well as the non-refundable hotel bookings in those two cities. Everything else had quite lenient cancellation policies. I signed up for trip insurance (including CFAR), not necessarily for the medical insurance but if we needed to fly home due to an issue with elderly parents. Never did I imagine that I would have an emergency health event considering I have never spent a night in a hospital nor suffered even a broken bone! As they say, never say never......