Victoria Zidwick a RoamRight Blog Author

Travel Insurance 101: How Does It Work?

What is travel insurance?

Travel insurance is a type of coverage that helps protect you if your vacation or business travel plans change. It also may provide medical coverage for emergencies that occur outside of your network.

There are a number of travel insurance coverages that are important to know as you compare plans and look for the one that best fits your needs. Keep in mind, that as travel plans may change, so may your coverage needs. A road trip to a nearby city may warrant different coverage than an international adventure trip.

The benefits and features outlined below vary from plan to plan. You can click on each listing for a more detailed description of each travel insurance feature, including exclusions and limits.

Real Traveler Story: Stroke in Australia

One real Arch RoamRight traveler experienced firsthand how travel insurance works in an emergency situation while far from home.

When Sharon Burchette was planning a trip to Australia with her 84-year-old mother, they both had concerns. A four-day stay in Sydney followed by a cruise around the continent and New Zealand leaves a lot of possibility for things to go wrong.

“My mom was concerned that due to her age she might have to cancel the cruise,” said Burchette in an email to Arch RoamRight. “I was concerned that we would need coverage in the event of an injury prior to the cruise. I thought that my mom would probably fall while we were touring Sydney and either need stitches or evacuation home.”

Instead of letting these concerns keep them from embarking on this dream Australian trip, Burchette and her mother discovered Arch RoamRight online and bought travel insurance.

“We each bought a package, hoping we wouldn’t need it,” said Burchette.

Having a stroke in Sydney

After arriving safely in Sydney and spending the first two days touring, Burchette and her mother spent the third day on an all-day tour. After the tour, Burchette’s mother started to not feel well.

“We started walking to a local hotel to get a taxi back to our hotel,” said Burchette. “My mom told me she needed to stop for a moment to catch her breath. Then I noticed the left side of her face was drooping and she was unable to walk.”

“She was having a stroke,” said Burchette.

Burchette asked the next passerby to call an ambulance. Her mother was transported to a local hospital where a CT scan revealed a blood clot in her brain was causing the stroke. She was given medication to dissolve the clot and was transported to another hospital in a nearby town where a specialist performed emergency surgery to remove it.

Changing travel plans

While her mother recovered in the hospital, Burchette first called the cruiseline to cancel their cruise, then she called Arch RoamRight.

“[They] were great,” said Burchette. “The first thing they wanted to do was make sure that my mom was taken care of.”

Working with our designated emergency assistance provider, Arch RoamRight opened a claim on the behalf of Burchette, provided her with the necessary claim forms, and prepared for a possible emergency evacuation.

Flying home

After spending a few days in the hospital and a week recovering in an Australian hotel, doctors deemed that Burchette’s mother would be fit to fly home as long as she flew first class or business class where she could lay flat for the duration of the flight in order to prevent more clotting.

Burchette quickly discovered that her mother’s Medicare plan did not cover international medical care, and her supplemental plan only partially covered the medical expenses. It also did not cover the first class airfare. However, she was glad that the upgrade she purchased for enhanced coverage under the Arch RoamRight policy actually covered the additional expenses that her mother would otherwise be responsible.

Paying for treatment and airfare

In total, Arch RoamRight reimbursed $16,047 in expenses to Burchette and her mother. This was covered under travel insurance plans that cost the two women $77 in insurance premiums.

At the resolution of the claim, Burchette was eager to let Arch RoamRight know about her experience with the hopes that others planning trips would also consider travel insurance.

“I want to say that your customer service staff and claims staff are the greatest,” said Burchette. “The first thing any of them said was ‘I’m so sorry that your mom was taken ill,’ and then the next thing was ‘What can we help you with?”

“I have told everyone to check out RoamRight for their travel insurance needs,” said Burchette.

How to choose an Arch RoamRight travel insurance plan

On we offer a handful of products designed to meet specific traveler needs. We know finding the best plan for your travel needs can be complicated, so we have taken steps to help you find the best possible option.

Are you looking for coverage for one trip or many trips?

Many travel insurance providers will offer two types of travel insurance plans: single-trip and multi-trip.

A single-trip travel insurance plan provides coverage for a single, standalone trip, like a week’s vacation in London or a month spent exploring eastern Asia.

Multi-trip plans, or annual plans, are designed for the frequent travelers who want to insure all the trips they take within a year, up to a trip cost and trip length limit. That means the February road trip to visit family in Chicago and the babymoon spent in France can both be insured under the same multi-trip plan.

Finding the best single trip plan for you

Arch RoamRight offers three different single-trip plans on Essential, Preferred, and Elite. These plans come with varying levels of coverage and benefits, and it is important to know which plan to choose for your needs.

When you get a quote on (you can do this by visiting the home page and filling out the quote form, or use the form to the right on this page) you are taken to a product comparison page. If you move your mouse to the end of your screen, you will see a pop-up that can help you select the plan you are looking for.

If you answer “Not sure which plan to buy” on the first question, you will then be asked a series of questions that guide you towards one plan.

And as always, you can contact our award-winning customer service team at 800-699-2845 with questions about purchasing an Arch RoamRight policy.

How to file a travel insurance claim with Arch RoamRight

The easiest way to file a claim with Arch RoamRight is by visiting On our online claims site, you will be able to complete any claim form you may need. The site allows you to upload supporting documentation and is compatible with your desktop, mobile phone, and tablet.

You can also file a claim via traditional mail, fax, or email. If you would like to submit a claim using one of these methods, visit the claims section of our website.

Be prepared to spend at least 15 minutes filling out the claim form. There are many pieces of information that we need in order to properly review each claim. If you can provide as much information as possible with your initial claim submission, it can help avoid us requesting additional information later on in the process.

Note: Available plans and coverages may have changed since this blog was published.


About the Author

Victoria Zidwick

Victoria Zidwick, a RoamRight Blog Author RoamRight's Marketing Communications Specialist, Victoria Zidwick, has worked in the travel insurance industry for more than five years. She has traveled extensively throughout the United States and has a handful of international travel experiences.Victoria's travel experiences have changed in recent years, as her family grows and she is learning the ins and outs of traveling with children. Connect with Victoria on LinkedIn or follow her onTwitter or Google Plus.

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