HomeBlogAvalon Waterways Travel Insurance - 2022 Review

Avalon Waterways Travel Insurance - 2022 Review

Avalon Waterways Travel Insurance

Avalon Waterways Travel Insurance
8
Insurance Partner
10/10
Coverage Options
7/10
Price
6/10

Strengths

  • Strong Insurance Partner
  • Reasonable Medical Evacuation Coverage
  • Good List of Cancellation Reasons

Weaknesses

  • Low Medical Coverage
  • Cancel for Any Reason Does Not Pay Cash

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Avalon Waterways Cruise Travel Insurance Overview

Avalon Waterways cruises are one of the most highly regarded and industry awarded river cruise lines. Avalon have won awards from Money Magazine, Cruise Critic, and USA Today.

Avalon Waterways cruises through Europe, Cambodia, Vietnam, India, Peru, and the Galapagos Islands.

When it comes to cruise protection, Avalon have teamed up with Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company and Aon Affinity to offer their The Avalon Waterways Protection Plan insurance. Both Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company and Aon Affinity are well-known names in the travel insurance industry. Nationwide underwrites policies found on TripInsure101 as well.

Cruises

Somewhat differently to other cruise lines who offer their own branded travel insurance plans as you are booking your trip online, you won’t see prices for the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan on their website. You also won't be able to obtain a quote for the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan online. Instead, your only option is to request a quote from Avalon and then wait to be contacted. You can look at their travel insurance documents online which is helpful, but no pricing is available without speaking to a representative.

Whereas many branded cruise travel protection plans are quite terrible, we are pleased to say that The Avalon Waterways Protection Plan is actually not a bad plan. However, it is quite expensive. In our opinion other travel insurance policies, from equally reputable insurance carriers, have better coverage and most are less expensive.

When reviewing the Avalon Waterways Travel Protection Plan, be aware that it is listed as a per-person cost instead of a per policy cost. On TripInsure101, the price you see covers the entire group, whether that is one person or ten travelers!

Another thing to consider when looking at the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan is that similar to other cruise plans, the Avalon plan only covers the dates of the cruise. If you leave home a day early or add a few days at the end of your trip, these are not covered under the Avalon plan. If you want to cover these dates as well (which we suggest you should), then you will need another plan for these dates. Purchasing from a site like TripInsure101 will allow you the flexibility to insure your entire vacation, not just the cruise portion. This means you can also cover the price of airlines flights, hotels at the start and end of your trip, car rental etc, rather than buying several policies to cover the entire trip.

Our review of the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan will look at the price and coverage levels provided by the plan, and then compare it to other plans available in the wider travel insurance marketplace. From this we will be able to discuss the coverage levels we expect to see in a comprehensive travel plan, the coverage catergories we expect to see and finally compare price and value of each so you can make an informed buying decision.

In order to determine whether the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan offers good value and coverage, we need to set sail with Avalon. So sit back, relax and enjoy your sail-away cocktail as we hoist up the anchor with Avalon.

Sample Cruise Itinerary

For our example, we chose an Avalon Waterways 5-day Christmas River cruise tour through the heart of Germany. It starts on 12/10/22-12/15/22 sailing from Nuremberg to Basel, Switzerland. Travelers are two adults who are both aged 50. The cruise price is $2,082 per person for a total of $4,164.

Map

As airfare is purchased separately and pricing can greatly vary, this review includes only the cost of the cruise, instead of total trip cost including airfare, but you will want to ensure your airfares are also included in your trip insurance when you come to book.

Avalon Waterways Insurance for our trip was priced at $269 per person for a total of $538.

trip cost

Comparison Quotes

Based on our sample couple, we created comparison quotes using TripInsure101’s travel insurance marketplace engine. The trip cost used for the comparison is the cruise cost for both travelers $2,082 per person for a total of $4,164.

When traveling outside the United States, the team at TripInsure101 recommend a minimum coverage of $100,000 in Medical Insurance, $250,000 in Medical Evacuation, and we strongly suggest you purchase a travel protection plan which includes a Pre-existing Medical Condition Waiver. We used these criteria to choose the selected quotes for this review.

The least expensive plan with adequate coverage on our quote from TripInsure101 is the Trawick First Class. This plan would be comparable to the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan. The total cost for both travelers is $201.74, which is $336.26 LESS than Avalon’s Waterways’ Protection Plan! That is quite a considerable saving.

Trawick

For a Cancel For Any Reason policy, we chose the Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%), because it is the least expensive plan with Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) benefits and would be comparable to the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan, which includes cancel for any reason benefits. The total cost for both travelers with the Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) is $342.96 which is $195.04 LESS than Avalon’s Waterways’ Protection Plan!

Trawick CFAR

The difficulty with comparing and reviewing quotes and plans is being able to see the benefits and coverage levels. To make this easier for you, we next break the plans down into the benefits of each policy nd siplay them in a side-by-side comparison table.

Benefit

Avalon Travel Protection Plan

Avalon Travel Protection  Plan(with CFAR)

Trawick First Class

Trawick First Class(CFAR 75%)

Trip Cancellation

100% of trip cost

100% of trip cost

100% of trip cost

100% of trip cost

Trip Interruption

150%

150%

150% of trip cost

150% of trip cost

Medical Insurance

$50,000

$50,000

$150,000

$150,000

Medical Evacuation

$300,000

$100,000

$1,000,000

$1,000,000

Baggage Loss/Damage

$2500

$2500

$500/article up to $2,000 per person

$500/article up to $2,000 per person

Baggage Delay

$250

$250

$400

$400

Travel Delay

(Incl quarantine)

$2,000 ($250/day)

$2,000 ($500/day)

$1000 per person

$1000 per person

Missed Connection

$1000

$1000

$1,000 per person

$1000 per person

Cover Pre-existing Medical Conditions

Yes if purchased within 14 days of deposit

Yes if purchased within 14 days of deposit

Yes if purchased within 14 days of deposit

Yes if purchased within 14 days of deposit

Cancel For Work Reason

No

No

No

No

Interrupt For Any Reason

No

No

No

No

Cancel For Any Reason

 

No

100% of trip cost (cruise credit only)

No

75% of trip cost

Accidental Death & Dismemberment

$25,000

$25,000

$25,000

$25,000

Cost of Policy

$538.00

(12.92% of trip cost)

$538.00

(12.92% of trip cost)

$201.74

(4.84% of trip cost)

$342.96

(8.24% of trip cost)

Cost Comparison

As we mentioned at the outset, generally speaking the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan has decent coverage, although we feel the medical coverage is rather low. Their Cancel for Any Reason option provides a cruise credit valid for two years instead of a cash refund. Whilst we always favor a cash refund over cruise credit, if they are going to provide credit rather than cash, Avalon at least give this for a 2 year period, rather than the normal one year we often see on other cruise travel insurance plans. That said, we still recommend cash as the benefit over credit whenever possible. It should also be pointed out again that any and all trip costs incurred outside of Avalon Waterways are not refunded. This includes your flights and transfers.

By shopping for cruise insurance through TripInsure101, our two travelers can save anywhere from $195.04 – $336.26 which can be applied to airfare, additional tours, or shopping.

In the following sections, we discuss know what to look for when shopping for travel insurance for your Avalon Waterways cruise.

Trip Cancellation

A significant concern for travelers is Trip Cancellation. If you became ill or had an accidental injury prior to your departure date, you may have to cancel your travel arrangements, resulting in financial losses. While disappointing, Trip Cancellation is doubly painful without cancellation insurance.

Avalon Waterways’ Protection Plan is quite good, and much better than many cruise line branded plans in that it permits a wide range of cancellation reasons listed below:

  • Unexpected injury, illness, or death of traveler or family member.
  • Hijacking, quarantine, jury duty, subpoena
  • Residence made uninhabitable by natural disaster, fire, flood, burglary
  • Destination made uninhabitable by natural disaster
  • Common carrier delays due to inclement weather, mechanical breakdown, or strike
  • Bankruptcy of travel supplier
  • Involuntary termination (layoff)
  • Job transfer of 250 miles or more
  • Terrorism
  • Revocation of military leave to provide aid due to a Natural Disaster

This is a very good list of cancellation reasons which we were pleased to see, and far more comprehensive than most cruise lines allow.

However, while the cancellation reasons are generous, the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan does not reimburse any travel arrangements booked outside Avalon Waterways. This is potentially a very costly omission if you need to cancel your trip.

Both the Trawick First Class policy and the Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) policies can cover all travel arrangements, regardless of where you booked them. In addition, they both offer a 100% refund for covered Trip Cancellations, a 150% refund for covered Trip Interruptions, and a broad list of covered reasons, including cancelling due to contracting COVID.

Trip Interruption

Trip Interruption is a situation during your trip that causes you to miss some or the rest of your vacation. It’s like Trip Cancellation but happens during your travels.

The most common trip interruption is the injury or illness of a traveler. If you had an injury or illness on your vacation but can continue traveling after treatment, trip interruption reimburses the unused portion of the trip, and the cost to rejoin the trip in progress.

Trip interruption also includes cutting a trip short due to a family member who had a sudden grave illness or passed away. If your covered situation requires curtailing the trip and going home early, Trip Interruption also reimburses for the unused portion of the trip, plus the added cost of going home early.

In the Avalon Waterways travel insurance, Trip Interruption benefits share the same list of covered reasons as Trip Cancellation which is to be expected. They offer 150% refund for Trip Interruption. That amount includes reimbursement of unused trip costs plus the added cost of transportation home. Travel insurance plans like the Trawick First Class and Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) also offer 150% of trip costs for interruption, covering up to 100% of the unused costs, plus up to an additional 50% to cover transportation costs to return home.

castle on hill

Cancel For Any Reason

Cancel For Any Reason cruise insurance provides the highest level of flexibility and reimbursement if you must cancel your trip for any reason not covered by the policy.

Avalon Waterways’ Protection Plan does have Cancel For Any Reason included in the policy.  This benefit will allow you to cancel your trip up to 24 hours prior to departure for literally any reason not listed in the travel insurance policy. We are very impressed with the Avalon plan in this regard.

With Avalon Waterways’ Cancel for Any Reason insurance, cancellation fees are waived. This sounds pretty good; however, you will not be reimbursed cash if you use the cancel for any reason. This benefit only provides reimbursement in the form of cruise credits, travel certificates, or a voucher for a future cruise valid for up to two years.

This might work for some, but what if this was the only time you could travel, or you became unable to travel and could not use the future travel certificates? Keep in mind that most cruise travel insurance works this same way.

Also, note that cruise credits are typically restricted in the length of time that they can be used. Those that we see are normally only valid for 12 months. Avalon Waterways’ vouchers have a generous two-year expiration limit. However, a regular travel insurance policy, like those found at TripInsure101, will pay in cash for its cancellation benefits. This includes Cancel for Any Reason. It comes down to this: cash or credit? Which do you prefer? For us the answer is imple - we would pick cash everytime!

Alternatively, travel insurance policies like the Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) pay a 75% cash refund of all prepaid, non-refundable trip costs including arrangements made outside of Avalon Waterways. This could include flights, hotels, rental cars, excursions, and transfers.

Cancel For Any Reason policies have several stipulations:

  1. Purchase the policy within 10 - 21 days (depending on policy), of your initial payment or deposit date and
  2. Insure 100% of the prepaid trip costs subject to cancellation penalties or restrictions. For additional prepaid non-refundable payments made after the purchase of the policy, insure within 10-21 days (depending on policy), of each subsequent payment added to your trip, and
  3. Cancel your trip 2 days or more before your scheduled departure date.

Medical Insurance for Emergency Treatment

One of the most important factors in selecting trip insurance is having adequate Medical Insurance when you travel. Anything can happen, including accidental injuries or sudden illness.

If you have a medical emergency when traveling and don’t have proper medical insurance coverage while overseas, you could find yourself with huge, unexpected hospital bills. Many Americans mistakenly believe countries with universal health care will treat them for free. Unfortunately, this is not the case.

Instead, Americans receive treatment at private hospitals, not public, and must pay like anyone else. Admission for inpatient care can cost $3,000-$4,000 per day, plus the cost of treatment, x-rays, surgeries, and specialists.

A common misconception is that Medicare will pay for hospitalization overseas.  Unfortunately, they won’t. Medicare does not pay providers outside the US. Some Medicare supplements do cover overseas, but have lifetime limits or reduced benefits, and pay for emergencies only. They can still require you to pay 20% of the costs. As a result, you could go on vacation and end up with medical bills in the thousands.

TripInsure101 urges overseas travelers to take travel medical insurance of at least $100,000 per person. In a medical emergency, $100,000 provides ample health care and helps protect your retirement savings from unexpected financial burdens.

The Avalon Waterways’ Protection Plan only provides a $50,000 benefit for Medical Insurance, which is lower than what we would recommend and could leave you financially liable for any medical costs over this limit.

Trawick’s First Class policy and the Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) include $150,000 per person of Medical Insurance, so you can receive proper treatment without ending up in debt.

Emergency Medical Evacuation

Medical Insurance isn’t the only potentially expensive part of a trip. Emergency Medical Evacuation transports you from the place of injury or illness to the closest hospital. Once you’re stable enough for transport, Medical Evacuation brings you home via commercial flight or, if necessary, private medical jet.

Medical flights can cost up to $25,000 per hour and regular health insurance does not cover it. In addition, the US State Department does not offer any medical treatment or evacuation assistance for US citizens. TripInsure101 advises travelers to get at least $250,000 Medical Evacuation to assure there’s enough coverage to get them back home from almost anywhere if they experience a serious medical event.

Avalon Waterways’ Protection Plan shines in this area. We recommend at least $250,000 of emergency medical evacuation if traveling within several hours from US borders, or $500,000 if traveling to a more remote area of the world. Avalon Waterways travel insurance offers $300,000 of emergency medical evacuation, which is an adequate amount for most cruises they provide.

Both the Trawick First Class and the Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) provide $1,000,000 per person for Medical Evacuation, so you can feel secure knowing you have adequate coverage to transport you back home if needed.

castle

Pre-existing Medical Conditions

A significant concern for senior travelers can be pre-existing medical conditions. A Pre-Existing Medical Condition is one in which you’ve received medical treatment, testing, medication changes, added new medications, or received a recommendation for a treatment or test that hasn’t happened yet. Most travel insurance policies exclude pre-existing conditions unless you purchase the policy within the required time period from your initial trip deposit date (called the Time Sensitive Period). Otherwise, the insurer will look backward 60, 90, or 180 days (depending on the policy) from the date you purchased the insurance to see if there are any pre-existing medical conditions they won’t cover. This is called the Look Back Period. Any medical conditions older than this Look Back Period, unchanged or stabilized with no medication dosage changes are covered, as are any new conditions that arise after you purchase the policy.

If you must cancel, interrupt, or seek medical treatment for a medical condition while traveling, travel insurance policies typically exclude claims related to Pre-existing Medical Conditions. However, if you purchase the policy within a few days of your Initial Trip Payment or Deposit date, many policies add a Waiver to the policy that covers Pre-existing Conditions. As a result, there is no Look Back Period and Pre-existing Conditions are covered.

The Avalon Waterways’ Protection Plan covers Pre-Existing Conditions provided that:

  • Your payment for this plan is received within the Time Sensitive Period (14 days of Initial Trip Payment) and
  • You insure 100% of the cost of all Travel Arrangements that are subject to cancellation penalties and
  • You or the individual with the Pre-Existing Condition, are not disabled from travel at the time You make Your payment for this plan

The Trawick First Class and Trawick First Class (CFAR 75%) also cover Pre-existing Medical Conditions with the same requirements as Avalon Waterways, including the same 14-day Time Sensitive Period.

We think that Avalon Waterways travel insurance is very good when compared to some of the other cruise line trip insurance plans available, however, there are less expensive cruise insurance plans with better coverage out there. TripInsure101 can help you find them.

bridge

Price and Value

Remember, at TripInsure101, we recommend a minimum coverage:

  • $100,000 Emergency Travel Medical Insurance
  • $250,000 Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance
  • Pre-Existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver


Avalon Waterways Travel Insurance - $538

  • $50,000 Emergency Travel Medical Insurance
  • $300,000 Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance
  • Pre-Existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver – Included
  • 100% Cruise Credit refund under cancel for any reason

Trawick First Class Plan - $201.74

  • $150,000 Emergency Travel Medical Insurance
  • $1,000,000 Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance
  • Pre-Existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver – Included


Trawick First Class Plan (CFAR 75%) - $342.96

  • $150,000 Emergency Travel Medical Insurance
  • $1,000,000 Emergency Medical Evacuation Insurance
  • Pre-Existing Medical Condition Exclusion Waiver – Included
  • 75% cash refund under cancel for any reason

In summary, whilst we are very impressed with teh Avalon plan against other like-for-like cruise plans from other cruise lines, we still feel that the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan carries minimal medical coverage and is more expensive than other available options. The medical insurance coverage is only $50,000, though the medical evacuation is a generous $300,000. The Cancel For Any Reason option only grants future cruise credits that expire after two years. Overall, the Avalon Waterways Protection Plan offers somewhat limited value for a rather expensive price.

In contrast, by comparison shopping, we found the Trawick First Class policy comes in at $$201.74, ($336.26 LESS than Avalon Waterways!) It includes superior medical and evacuation benefits, 100% refund for trip costs for covered cancellation, 150% refund for covered trip interruption, and a robust list of cancellation reasons.

The Avalon Waterways cancel for any reason was still more expensive than a comparable policy from TripInsure101 with a cancel for any reason benefit included. The Trawick First Class (CFAR 75 is $342.96, ($195.04 LESS than Avalon Waterways!) It includes $150,000 medical insurance and $1,000,000 medical evacuation. Plus, it includes a Cancel For Any Reason provision that refunds 75% of trip costs back in cash, rather than future credit. It has superior coverage over Avalon Waterways’ policy at almost half the cost.

Conclusion

We think that Avalon Waterways travel insurance is good compared to some of the other cruise line trip insurance plans. However, there are less expensive cruise insurance plans with better coverage out there. TripInsure101 can help you find them.

Avalon Waterways’ Protection Plan insurance provides travelers with a less than optimal insurance policy for a high cost that could leave travelers unpleasantly surprised during an emergency. Medical coverage limits are low, and cancel for any reason reimbursement is in the form of cruise credits not cash. Though they have a strong partner in Nationwide, the insurance itself is not as robust on the medical side as we expected. Overall, we rate it an 8 out of 10.

Travelers planning an Avalon Waterways vacation will find the best value for their money and peace of mind when they shop for travel insurance at TripInsure101 Travel Insurance Marketplace. There, you can review dozens of options and select the best policy to fit your needs.

To help you find the best policy, TripInsure101 recommends having at least $100,000 in travel medical coverage and $250,000 emergency medical evacuation when traveling outside the US. And, if you purchase the policy within the 14-21 days of initial trip payment, please consider a travel insurance policy with the pre-existing condition waiver included to ensure the most coverage for your money.

If you are planning an Avalon Waterways cruise in 2022, be sure to pack insurance before you travel. You never know when you may need it.

Have questions? Chat with us online, send us an email at agent@TripInsure101.com or alternatively call us at +1(650) 397-6592. We would love to hear from you.

Safe Travels!

This article has been written for review purposes only and does not suggest sponsorship or endorsement of AARDY by the trademark owner.

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