I was having lunch yesterday at work and the topic inevitably rolled around to my upcoming trip to Bali and a trip that my co-worker and his wife were about to embark on to Europe on a cruise. He and his wilfe will be travelling over to Europe several days in advance of the cruise and will be staying several days afterwards in order to do some exploring on their own in a rental car.
I asked who they were using for travel insurance and got a blank stare in return. "Why would I need to have insurance on the trip? That is just an added expense." I asked him what he thought he would do if there was an accident away from the ship while he and his wife were on their own and he said that he was comfortable paying for anything on site and that he would make a claim when he got home.
We talked about my travels to Asia in 2006 and he felt that those places were so far away that having travel insurance was a real necessity. I had travel insurance for both trips in 2006 and will be booking another policy for the trip to Bali. For me it is a small price to pay to be assured that if there is a medical emergency, there is a team of experts that can be contacted to help with the details including but not limited to emergency medical/dental, medical evacuation, travel accident, baggage theft, trip cancellation, and more. It really depends on the policy.
I have traveled with World Nomads coverage on my last two trips and they are certainly not the only travel insurance company that is available. If you want to learn about some of the benefits of travel insurance, visit their site. As with any recommendation, do your homework before you buy.
You may never need it. But if you do, it can make all the difference. Will my friend and co-worker opt for it? I am not sure but I at least I gave him some things to think about.