I would like to give a shout out to our sister site, Airfarewatchdog.com, which recently posted a shiny new chart (click here for the chart) that examines several unfortunate circumstances—such as a getting a flat tire on the way to the airport—and tells you whether or not the snafu is covered by insurance. The chart details coverage from three prominent insurance providers, which allows you to compare offerings from each.
Here's a sample snafu, as well as the coverage you can expect:
The airline leaves a message on your answering machine a week before your trip informing you that they no longer fly to Peoria. They're offering a full refund but now flights on other airlines are $500 round-trip, not the $128 you originally paid. Will insurance cover you?
With insurance provider CSA, the answer is, "Unfortunately not. Trip Cancellation and Interruption benefits pay for additional airfare due to cancellation or delay caused by weather, mechanical breakdown or strikes. Changes in flight schedules and price differences due to using a different carrier, as you've noted in this scenario, are not covered."
Access America says, "Our Cancel Anytime product offers trip interruption benefits for unforeseen situations that our customers may encounter after they depart on their trip. This particular situation would not be covered."
Any hope from Travel Guard? "This would not be covered. But Travel Guard would help the customer rebook the flight and find the most affordable options available."
Oh well. But the point is that this chart can help you choose an insurance provider based on your needs and concerns, and know ahead of time whether or not a certain type of circumstance will be covered. And that kind of peace of mind can go a long way toward making your trip, and trip planning, a better experience.