HomeBlogTauck River Cruises Travel Insurance - 2022 Review

Tauck River Cruises Travel Insurance - 2022 Review

Tauck River Cruises Travel Insurance (Cruise & Event Protection) Review

Tauck River Cruises Travel Insurance (Cruise & Event Protection) Review
6
Insurance Partner
8/10
Coverage Options
5/10
Price
5/10

Strengths

  • Strong Insurance Partner

Weaknesses

  • Low Medical And Evacuation Coverage
  • High Cost
  • Difficult To Buy

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Tauck is a family-owned travel company that has been serving unique and customer-oriented travel for over 96 years. They pride themselves on delivering more than what's expected. With journeys across 7 continents, in over 100 destinations and to 70+ countries, they focus on finding new ways to enhance travel experiences that will be memorable for a lifetime and have been named to Travel + Leisure's "World's Best" list for 24 consecutive years.

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Our Cruise – Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island

Our sample couple, ages 55 and 60, selected an 8-day trip to Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island for $3,740 per person for a total of $7,580. The trip leaves September 1,2022 and returns September 8,2022.

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Unfortunately, you cannot purchase a Tauck’s cruise online, you must speak to one of their travel insurance agents. During the call you will be presented with the option to purchase their ‘Guest Protection Plan’. Of course, you are under no obligation to buy Tauck’s travel insurance, regardless of how much pressure the sales agent puts on you. Although Tauck offers travel insurance over the phone when you make a deposit or initial payment, it is the only time they permit enrollment in their insurance program.

Tauck’s travel insurance program is called Cruise & Event Protection (the ‘Tauck Protection Plan’) and underwritten by United States Fire Insurance Company, a strong insurance partner. Aon Affinity administers the plan and processes claims. 

Their Protection Plan pairs a barebones travel insurance plan with Tauck’s “Cancellation Waiver.” The Cancellation Waiver is not an insurance feature; it’s administered by Tauck and is simply a reduced cancellation fee. It does allow you to cancel at any time, but you will pay an increasing penalty amount as the departure date draws closer.

Cancellation Penalties

You must purchase their trip insurance to be eligible for these reduced cancellation fees. While some cruise lines set insurance rates on a percentage of the total trip cost, Tauck charges a flat $349 per person fee regardless of trip cost. Also, Tauck’s insurance only covers travel arrangements made through them. If you buy airfare or pre/post-cruise hotels and tours on your own, it won’t be covered under their policy, so you’d have to buy separate travel insurance for that.

For our two travelers, Tauck’s insurance plan would cost an additional $698. The insurance itself is minimal: $10,000 of medical coverage and $50,000 of medical evacuation coverage. Trip cost without their insurance is limited to the airline ticket cost and trip interruption only pays out a maximum of $5,000. Let’s see if we can find a more robust policy in the open marketplace.

Comparison Quotes

We used our trip details and cost to receive comparison quotes from TripInsure101 and were presented with 25 options to choose from. When traveling outside US borders, TripInsure101 recommends having $100,000 of medical coverage and $250,000 of medical evacuation coverage. We used these limits to choose several policies to compare with the Tauck Cruise & Event Protection plan

The least expensive plan with our recommended coverage is the AIG Travel Guard Plus for $340.98.

AIG TG Plus

This policy provides $100,000 of medical coverage and $1 million of medical evacuation coverage. In addition, it covers Pre-existing Medical Conditions if purchased within 21 days of your Initial Trip Deposit or Payment.

If we want a Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) policy, we’ve chosen two options for our review: The AIG Travel Guard Plus (CFAR 50%) and the John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%). The AIG policy has the same coverage as the standard AIG Travel Guard policy but adds the CFAR option which will refund 50% of our trip cost if we cancel for a reason not listed in the policy. Total cost for both travelers is $426.27

AIG TG Plus (CFAR 50-)

If we prefer a higher refund, we’ve chosen the John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%). This policy will refund 75% of our trip costs if we cancel for a reason not listed in the policy.

JH Silver (CFAR 75-)

Next we’ll compare the Tauck Protection Plan to our TripInsure101 policies side-by-side:

Benefit

Tauck Protection Plan

AIG Travel Guard Plus

AIG Travel Guard Plus (CFAR 50%)

John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%)

Trip Cancellation

Total air ticket cost

100% of trip cost

100% of trip cost

100% of trip cost

Trip Interruption

Up to $5,000

150% of trip cost

150% of trip cost

150% of trip cost

Medical Insurance

$10,000

$100,000

$100,000

$100,000

Medical Evacuation

$50,000

$1,000,000

$1,000,000

$500,000

Baggage Loss/Damage

$1,500

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

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

$1,000 per person

Baggage Delay

$300

$400

$400

$500

Travel Delay

(Incl quarantine)

$750

$1000 per person

$1000 per person

$750 per person ($150 per day)

Missed Connection

$750

$1,000 per person

$1,000 per person

$750 per person

Cover Pre-existing Medical Conditions

Yes, if purchased within 10 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

Yes

Yes

No

Interrupt For Any Reason

No

No

No

No

Cancel For Any Reason

 

Yes, minus penalties

No

No

Yes

Accidental Death & Dismemberment

$10,000

$25,000

$25,000

$100,000

Cost of Policy

$698

(9.2 % of trip cost)

$340.98

(4.5% of trip cost)

$426.57

(5.6% of trip cost)

$621.00

(8.2% of trip cost)

Cost Comparison

Overall, the Tauck Protection Plan has minimal coverage compared to the other plans. Their cancellation benefit has steep penalties and is only available if you have purchased their travel insurance as well.

The AIG Travel Guard Plus plan is over $358 LESS than the Tauck Protection plan while the AIG Travel Guard Plus (CFAR 50%) is $272 LESS than Tauck. Our most expensive option of the three policies chosen, the John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%) is still $77 LESS than the Tauck policy. All three TripInsure101 policies have $100,000 the medical coverage instead of the low $10,000 offered by Tauck. Medical evacuation coverage is more robust with the TripInsure101 policies as well at $500k - $1million versus the low $50,000 for Tauck. Best of all, the TripInsure101 policies cost less for significantly higher coverage than the Tauck policy!

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

Tauck’s Protection Plan permits cancellation for the following reasons:

  • Unexpected injury, illness, or death of traveler or non-traveling family member.
  • Involvement of a traffic accident that causes you to miss your cruise
  • Residence uninhabitable by natural disaster, fire, flood, burglary
  • Revocation of military leave
  • Mechanical breakdown of a common carrier
  • Strikes
  • Inclement weather
  • Hijacked or quarantined
  • Subpoena or being called to serve jury duty
  • Pregnancy or childbirth
  • Hospitalization due to mental, nervous or psychological condition

Unfortunately, Tauck’s list of cancellation reasons lacks some important coverages.

We recommend policies that also include:

  • Terrorism
  • Default or bankruptcy of the common carrier or travel supplier
  • Cancel For Work Reason (traveler required to work during the trip)
  • Employer-initiated transfer of 250 miles or more
  • Destination uninhabitable or unreachable by fire, flood, or natural disaster
  • Mandatory evacuation
  • Hurricanes
  • Documented theft of passports or visas.

Also, Tauck’s Protection Plan does not cover any travel arrangements booked outside of Tauck.

The TripInsure101 policies can cover all travel arrangements, regardless of where you booked them. In addition, these plans offer 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 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 Tauck Protection Plan, Trip Interruption benefits share the same list of covered reasons as Trip Cancellation.

palm-trees-gca8c07708 1920

Credit: Pixabay

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.

Tauck’s Protection Plan includes a Cancellation Waiver with “Cancel For Any Reason.” In the case that you cancel for a reason not covered by the policy, Tauck does not pay a 50% or 75% cash refund like a regular travel insurance policy. Instead, Tauck Cruise Protection merely reduces their standard cancellation fee.

Cancel 120 days or more before departure you receive 100% refund

119-60 days before departure you lose 25% of the cruise price

59-1 day before departure you lose 50% of the cruise price

Alternatively, travel insurance policies like AIG Travel Guard Plus (50%) or the John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%) will pay cash refund of all prepaid, non-refundable trip costs including arrangements made outside of Tauck. 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.

Tauck only provides a $10,000 benefit for Medical Insurance. The AIG Travel Guard policies and John Hancock’s Silver (CFAR 75%) policy include $100,000 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.  However, if traveling to Asia or Africa or beyond, we recommend a minimum of $500,000 for Emergency Medical Evacuation due to the distance from the US.

The Tauck Protection Plan includes Medical Evacuation up to $50,000 per person. The John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%) offers $500,000 per person for Medical Evacuation, and the AIG Travel Guard Plus policies provide $1 million for Medical Evacuation. With these policies you can feel secure knowing you have adequate coverage to transport you back home if needed.

prince-edward-island-g224bc8124 1920

Credit: Pixabay

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 Tauck Protection Plan covers Pre-Existing Conditions if the policy is purchased within 10 days of the initial trip payment or deposit date.

The AIG Travel Guard Plus policies will cover Pre-existing Medical Conditions if you purchase within their 21-day Time Sensitive Period.

The John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%) covers Pre-existing Medical Conditions if you purchase within the 14-day Time Sensitive Period.

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Credit: Pixabay

Price and Value

The Tauck Protection Plan offers minimal coverage for a higher price than other available options. The medical insurance coverage is only $10,000, and only $50,000 for medical evacuation, which may not be adequate for a serious illness or injury. Cancellation reasons are missing some key reasons such as bankruptcy or insolvency of the travel supplier. Their Cancel For Any Reason option merely reduces their standard cancellation fee. Overall, the Tauck Protection Plan offers limited value for the price.

In contrast, by comparison shopping, we found the AIG Travel Guard Plus policy was $358 LESS than the Tauck Protection Plan while the AIG Travel Guard Plus (CFAR 50%) is $272 LESS than Tauck. Even the John Hancock Silver (CFAR 75%) is still $77 LESS than the Tauck policy. These savings could be used for shopping or additional excursions. All three AARDY policies have more robust medical coverage and medical evacuation coverage with longer Time Sensitive Periods to purchase the policy to get a waiver to cover pre-existing medical conditions.

Conclusion

The Tauck Protection Plan cruise insurance provides travelers with a minimal insurance policy and could leave travelers unpleasantly surprised during an emergency. Medical coverage and medical evacuation limits are low, and their Cancel For Any Reason is really just a reduced cancellation fee. Overall, we rate it a 6 out of 10.

Travelers planning a Tauck cruise 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 a Tauck 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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