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travel insurance pricing

You may be aware that travel insurance can protect your family and finances, but do you know how travel insurance pricing can vary depending on your trip?

At its core, the purpose of travel insurance is to limit potential losses incurred when you travel. Common examples of covered expenses include trip cancellation costs, emergency medical treatment, and even emergency evacuation. Depending on the details of your trip and the type of coverage you need, the price of travel insurance (or your “premium”) could vary substantially.

Below we will discuss how certain variables affect your travel insurance premium and what to expect if you need to update your policy.

Premium Variables

The two biggest factors that impact your travel insurance premium are your total trip cost and the ages of the travelers.

Many people wrongly assume that the destination or trip duration has a significant influence on premium, but their impact is in fact minimal. For example, although Sydney, Australia, may be much farther away from your home than Washington D.C., a trip that costs the same will have a similar, if not identical, premium.

Policy add-ons such as Cancel For Any Reason coverage or primary medical coverage can cause an individual policy to increase in price, but such additions are separate from the primary travel insurance premium.

Likewise, trip duration does not generally have a significant impact on premium unless you are going on an extended trip of more than 30 days. Many travel insurance plans will add a per day charge once the trip duration is longer than 30 days. Given that, the premium for a trip that is 31 days may be significantly less expensive than the premium for a trip that is 180 days.

Trip Cost

Your total trip cost is the most essential component of your travel insurance premium quote because it sets the maximum loss for you and the insurance company.  Although more expensive trips will result in a higher travel insurance premium, you will receive protection in case your plans fall through, and you need to submit a claim for a covered reason.

Again, policy add-ons would increase the price of your travel insurance overall but would also increase your coverage.


The age of the travelers is another critical factor since it directly impacts the amount of risk taken on by the insurance company. Although age is not a direct indicator of individual health, people are statistically more prone to health issues the older they get.

It is important to note that advanced age does not alone make travel insurance cost-prohibitive, but you should obtain multiple quotes and price comparisons from different insurance providers to ensure you are getting the best deal. 

Travel insurance does not require many additional personal details other than the travelers’ age and/or date of birth. While you may need to meet eligibility requirements for pre-existing conditions, you will not be required to take a health assessment like you would to purchase a standard life insurance policy.

Making Changes to Your Policy

Sometimes you need to make changes to your travel insurance policy. Maybe you accidentally entered inaccurate information when obtaining quotes, or perhaps you want to bring more people along on your trip.

If you adhere to the change deadlines set forth in your purchased travel insurance policy, you should be able to change your policy as needed.

For example, this traveler has purchased a travel insurance policy for his trip to Costa Rica:

  • Total trip cost: $2,500
  • Number of travelers: 1
  • Destination: Costa Rica
  • Age: 40
  • Average premium $145

If this traveler changes his trip details, his premium may also be impacted. The below variations of his trip to Costa Rica show how different factors affect the average premium:


Total Trip Cost$2,500$2,500$6,000$6,000
Number of Travelers1224
DestinationCosta RicaCosta RicaCosta RicaCosta Rica
Age(s)4040, 2040, 2040, 20, 66, 35
Average Premium*$145$148$295$380
*September 10, 2021 quotes pulled from

Although all four of these quotes are for a trip to Costa Rica, you can see that the travel insurance premiums vary widely from the first to the fourth scenario. The biggest price impacts come from the trip costs and the addition of extra travelers.

Let’s take a closer look:

The first example is the control trip that we outlined above. The traveler is of average age and is spending $2,500 on a solo trip to Costa Rica. The highest risk to the insurance company is the trip cost and emergency medical treatment.

The second example has the same total trip cost but is now shared by two people ($1,250 each). Since the trip’s price did not change, and the second traveler is relatively young, the average premium for this travel insurance policy only increased by a few dollars.

The third example is almost double the price of the first two because the total trip cost increased to $6,000. Since the trip is more than double the cost of the prior examples, the travel insurance premium is reflective of the increased risk for the insurance carrier, even though there are the same two travelers.

The fourth example is the highest travel insurance premium because it has a much higher average age of traveler and also a higher trip cost. Although the trip cost is the same as the third example, the insurance company is taking on additional risk by insuring the 66-year-old.

Although insuring the older traveler costs extra, the biggest impact on the overall premium is the trip’s entire cost.

Best Practices When Buying Travel Insurance

Travel insurance policies offer many customization options, add-ons, and benefits, so if you want to save money on your premium, only purchase the coverage you need. There are many policies that may result in over-insuring your trip, which would only cost you extra out of pocket.

If you want to know when you should consider changing an existing travel insurance policy, ask yourself a few questions:

  • Is my policy reflective of my trip’s entire cost?

If not, call your carrier to make sure you have adequate coverage before your departure.

  • Do I have all of the travelers in my party named on my travel insurance policy?

If not, call and add them immediately if they don’t already have separate coverage. You want your entire party to be covered in an emergency.

  • Does my policy detail my personal information accurately?

If not, identify what details are incorrect and provide your insurance carrier with updated information as soon as you can. Inaccurate data on an insurance policy can delay claims and result in confusion if you need assistance while traveling.

Final Thoughts

Travel insurance is a powerful protective tool whether you are traveling domestically or abroad. It helps mitigate losses resulting from many different travel hiccups, including lost and delayed baggage, trip cancellation, emergency medical treatment and even emergency medical evacuation.

Since your total trip cost and travelers’ ages are the most critical details when you submit a quote for a travel insurance policy, make sure you have all of the most relevant, accurate information at hand.

When you shop for a travel insurance policy, utilize price comparison tools to ensure you understand the optimal price range for the coverage you need. If you need to amend or make changes to an existing policy, work with your provider as soon as possible.


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