Survey – Only 15% of Credit Cards Available At Major Canadian Banks Include Emergency Medical Travel Insurance
Many travelers believe that they are adequately protected by their credit card travel insurance coverage. The truth is, most credit cards provide very little coverage. Those companies that do provide coverage, tend to cover only non-medical emergencies such as common carrier accident, baggage insurance, or rental car collision insurance.
Highlights of Survey
- Out of 26 credit cards only 4 offered emergency medical coverage standard.
- None of the emergency medical insurance plans cover seniors age 65 or older.
- None of the loyalty credit cards collected for free flights offer emergency medical, trip cancellation or trip interruption insurance standard.
A Note on Common Carrier Accident Insurance – The literature we read from the credit cards promoted this coverage as a major benefit. We believe that this is the reason many Canadians mistakenly believe that they have travel medical coverage from their credit card companies. Common carrier Accident insurance only covers your family if an accident occurs while you are on the common carrier (flight, cruise, train, bus, etc.) or while driving a rental car. Additionally, most credit card companies will cover you ONLY if you purchased the tickets (or booked your rental car) with the credit card that offers this coverage. We feel that those consumers should be very careful when relying on travel insurance coverage and need to read the policy in detail before departing on their trip.
Notes from researching credit card travel insurance coverage provided by the major banks credit cards;
TD Canada Trust – VISA
None of the TD Canada Trust Credit Cards offer any form of emergency medical travel insurance, baggage, or rental car collision, or trip cancellation coverage.
Common carrier travel accident insurance is available in various coverage amounts.
RBC Royal Bank – VISA
It is understandable the RBC has the best credit card travel insurance coverage of all of the big banks in Canada. RBC Insurance is a large travel insurance provider to the travel agencies. Therefore, they have better infrastructure to accommodate travel insurance plans as part of its credit card benefits.
That being said, only the preferred credit cards with high annual fees and interest rates offer the emergency medical, trip cancellation and trip interruption coverage standard.
RBC Royal Bank emergency medical travel insurance available on its preferred credit cards do not cover cardholders 65 and over.
CIBC – VISA
Similar to RBC, CIBC only offers emergency medical and trip interruption on its Gold VISA credit card. The big irony is that this is not CIBC’s highly popular Aerogold® Visa card that avid travelers hold to take advantage of loyalty points that can be redeemed for free travel. In fact, the Aerogold® card only offers common carrier accident, baggage, and rental car collision coverage standard.
CIBC’s emergency medical travel insurance available on its Gold credit cards do not cover cardholders 65 and over.
Bank of Montreal – MasterCard
Most disappointingly, Bank of Montreal offers absolutely no travel insurance coverage on any of its cards for free. All travel insurance coverage can be purchased in separate packages on an annual basis. Total comprehensive coverage will cost an additional $159 per year on top of any annual credit card fees. Lesser packages are available for lower costs.
ScotiaBank – VISA
Almost all of Scotiabank’s Visa cards offer absolutely no travel insurance coverage at all. With the exception of the passport gold Visa card, you will need to purchase any additional coverage for your trip.
Scotiabank emergency medical travel insurance available on its passport credit cards does not cover cardholders 65 and over.
We have found in our survey that misleading advertisements made by some credit card companies leave some people to believe that they are fully covered in situations where accidents and tragedies occur on their trips. It is advisable for you to take time to read the terms and conditions of the insurance provided by your credit card company to elicit correct information about the coverage offered by your card issuer
Get the right insurance to cover all your health needs while on your trip. Should you be a casual vacationer or hearty business traveler, make sure you are covered to enjoy ‘peace of mind’ while on your trip. Visit http://www.travelinsurancequotes.ca to purchase your travel insurance online.
Survey conducted July 16, 2007, information gathered from public websites of RBC Royal Bank, CIBC, TD Canada Trust, Bank of Montreal, Scotiabank.