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Cruise Travel Insurance for Seniors: A Step-by-Step Guide

Updated on 6/27/2022

The golden years of your life should be spent in a tropical paradise watching golden sunsets. We’re serious! You’ve worked hard for decades. There aren’t many better choices for traveling than cruises. 

There are a couple of important things to consider when you’re cruising as a senior, though. The first is travel insurance. This isn’t the most exciting topic, but having a solid understanding of your travel insurance options pays dividends when your ship departs from the port.

blue outline of arrow pointing rightSo why is cruise ship insurance for seniors so important?

Your major medical health care insurance, specifically Medicare, won’t provide medical expense coverage in other countries. Likewise, if purchasing insurance directly from cruise lines, you could also be missing out on vital coverage. Find the best cruise ship insurance for seniors, at the most affordable price, by comparing policies side by side.

Here are questions to guide you through the process of getting the best cruise ship insurance for seniors:

  1. What type of cruise should seniors go on?

 2. Should I purchase insurance offered by the cruise line?

 3. What types of cruise insurance coverage should I look for?

 4. Why is cruise holiday travel insurance for seniors important?

 5. How can I find the best cruise insurance for seniors?

Don’t delay! Keep reading our step-by-step guide on finding the best cruise insurance for seniors.

blue outline of arrow pointing right Step 1. What type of cruise should seniors go on?

 From the sandy Caribbean to the stunning Alaskan forests, cruises offer a perfect vacation for any interest or lifestyle. We’re particularly fond of European river cruises, but that’s just us. You don’t have to travel outside of the country to go on a fantastic cruise, though! There are plenty of cruises from New Jersey, New Orleans, and Baltimore and keep in mind that Alaskan cruises for seniors are also some of the most scenic. 

River cruises and ocean cruises offer a much different experience, which is why it’s important to know which one will fit your travel style. You can find out more details by reading our blog post about how each compare, but here are some things to keep in mind as you figure out which type of cruise is best for you:

Size & Number of Passengers — River cruises are smaller, but you’ll get to meet plenty of new friends whether traveling by ocean or river. 

Demographics — River cruises are best for seniors, since you’ll likely travel with others in the same age ranges as you.

Entertainment and Spas — River cruises will offer more low-key entertainment, whereas, ocean cruises have a wider variety and frequency of events going on.

Port Experience — River cruises offer more time to port at different stops along the way, but if you’re looking to relax mostly on-board, ocean cruises are the way to go!

Cuisine — Ocean cruises often have more selections of food, but river cruises will usually present options featuring local cuisine. 

blue outline of arrow pointing rightStep 2. Should I purchase insurance offered by the cruise line?

The cruise line may offer a travel insurance option with your cruise package but buyer beware, you may be purchasing a limited (and very expensive) insurance plan! Here’s why you may want to purchase cruise insurance somewhere else:

blue circle with white checkmark Often, cruise lines offer travel insurance policies that only cover the cost of your cruise. This would exclude the cost of your airfare, excursions or other nonrefundable expenses that make up your total trip cost.
blue circle with white checkmark The list of trip cancellation reasons is sometimes half as long as other travel insurance options!
blue circle with white checkmark Medical expense and medical evacuation coverage may be extremely limited, especially if you suffer from a pre-existing condition.

Check out our article in regards to what you should know about the travel insurance policies included with your cruise and airline packages. It may change your view of travel insurance forever!

green button that reads quote and compare travel insurance

blue outline of arrow pointing rightStep 3. What types of cruise insurance coverage should I look for?

Cruise travel insurance is useful for a number of reasons. When recommending policies for cruise trips, our team makes sure each policy includes coverage for missed connections, trip cancellation, trip interruption, emergency medical evacuation and general medical emergencies.

Missed Connection

Missed connection coverage protects you against missing the boat, literally. If your flight is delayed due to a crazy winter storm and you don’t make the cruise departure, missed connection coverage would provide reimbursement for lodging, meals, and the additional transportation costs to meet up with the boat. This is a vital type of coverage when it comes to travel insurance for European river cruises, since you’ll often have to fly to the port of call for your initial cruise ship departure.

Pro Tip: When comparing policies, also ensure your travel insurance plan includes missed connection.

Trip Cancellation

Cruises are usually a larger financial investment, especially if you’re traveling abroad to meet up with the boat. Trip cancellation coverage protects the amount of non refundable, prepaid deposits for your trip if you have to cancel for an unforeseen reason. This would include your flights, hotels, cruise deposits, or any other travel cost that you wouldn’t be getting a refund for if you have to cancel. Make sure you add up this amount and enter it as your total trip cost when quoting travel insurance. Trip interruption coverage would also protect your nonrefundable trip expenses should you have to return home early due to a covered event.

Pro Tip: Make sure you insure only the non refundable costs for your trip to keep the price of your policy as low as possible! Most hotels allow you to cancel at no cost up to the day before your arrival date so you may not need to include that expense as you add up your total trip cost. 

Emergency Medical Evacuation

This type of coverage protects you if you’re hurt or become extremely ill and need to be evacuated to a hospital. While cruise ship physicians are incredibly skilled, they’re not always able to treat every medical emergency. The same goes for doctors in the various ports along your cruise. If you’re injured for whatever reason, 24/7 emergency medical assistance is a phone call away with every comprehensive travel insurance policy. If you choose to purchase a plan offered by the cruise carrier, you might be missing out on valuable coverage –it’s estimated these policies withhold 10-30 times less coverage than general retail policies! Instead, get more comprehensive coverage by comparing policies online

Emergency Medical Expense

Emergency medical expense coverage protects you from incurring bills for medical treatment on the boat itself. A little-known fact of cruising is that you’re charged if you need to visit the on-ship doctor, as well as for any prescriptions you receive. Protecting your wallet with cruise medical travel insurance is a smart idea. Just make sure to keep those receipts to file a claim when you return home!

Now that we’ve touched on the basics of what cruise travel insurance is and what it covers, let’s look at the unique benefits it offers to seniors

blue outline of arrow pointing rightStep 4. What benefits does cruise holiday travel insurance for seniors offer?

Saving Money

There are a lot of important benefits to cruise travel insurance for seniors, the most immediate of which are that it can save you a significant amount of money. Especially if Medicare is your primary source of health insurance. As stated before, Medicare coverage never extends outside of the United States. With travel insurance, you’re covered for everything from medical emergencies to missed connections to cancellations and interruptions. In fact, cruise travel insurance can save you so much money that we included it in our list of tips first-time cruisers need to know

Pre-Existing Conditions

If you’re worried a pre-existing condition might flare up again while on your cruise vacation, make sure you purchase your cruise travel insurance policy as soon as possible after you place your first trip payment or deposit. This will ensure you still get medical coverage if you’re eligible for a pre-existing condition waiver. Most cruise travel insurance policies include a pre-existing condition waiver, but only within a certain time period, usually fourteen to twenty-one days, after that first deposit is made. It pays to be prepared!

To compare travel insurance policies with this specific type of benefit, simply run an instant quote and select the filter displayed below.

i have a pre-existing medical condition

Our team of friendly humans would be happy to help you find a policy with pre-existing medical condition insurance so you can plan your trip with peace of mind. Give us a call or shoot us an email to walk through which travel insurance plan has the benefits you need. 

Peace of Mind

Both of these coverages hint at our personal favorite benefit, which isn’t immediately apparent. Cruise travel insurance for seniors offers peace of mind while traveling. You don’t want to worry about racking up expensive medical charges or stress over what happens if you miss a flight. That’s not why you went on vacation. You’re trying to get away from it all, not add another headache to your life.

blue outline of arrow pointing right Step 5. How can I find cruise ship insurance for seniors?

Comparing cruise travel insurance policies is the best way to find cruise ship insurance for seniors –you’ll find the most comprehensive plan at the most affordable price. Don’t worry, you won’t have to do it on your own! Our instant quote tool generates travel insurance policies for the way you travel, including specific cruise coverage you’re looking for.

Join us as we explore your cruise insurance options, and make sure to take a look at our senior travel insurance guide too. Whatever cruise you’re planning, and whatever type of coverage you’re looking for, we’re here to help. Contact one of our friendly humans via phone (855-358-6433) or email ([email protected]) for a custom cruise travel insurance quote today!  

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