Is Expedia Flight Protection Worth It?

Trip insurance is something most travelers think about today after dealing with the pandemic and constantly canceled trips. You want coverage to protect you if your flight is canceled or the unthinkable happens. But is it always worth it?

Each travel company has its own travel insurance program, including Expedia. The policies differ by company and each company usually has multiple policies too. Most travelers want to know, is Expedia Flight Protection worth it or should you skip it altogether or get protection elsewhere?

We review it below to let you know if Expedia Flight Protection is worth it.

What is Expedia Flight Protection?

Before we can discuss if Expedia Flight Protection is worth it, we must talk about what it is and how it works.

Expedia Flight Protection is offered by AIG which is a highly reputable insurance company with an A+ rating with A.M. Best. The insurance is called Travel Guard and you can only get it when you book a trip through Expedia.

Expedia offers two plans – Flight Cancellation and Flight Protection plans. Flight Cancellation plans are for domestic flights only and it covers trip cancellation or trip interruption at the full cost of the trip up to $100,000.

The Flight Protection Plan is for international flights and offers:

  • 100% of the trip cost for a canceled trip up to $100,000
  • 100% of the trip cost for trip interruption up to $100,000
  • $1,000 baggage coverage
  • $5,000 ancillary evacuation benefits
  • $5,000 travel medical expenses
  • $500 travel dental expenses

It’s important to know that both plans are very basic. They don’t cover anything out of the ordinary and basically, just cover major issues if you have to cancel your flight. Usually, when you buy trip insurance of any type it covers more issues or occurrences. 

Common Reasons for Covered Cancellation or Trip Interruption

Despite the basic nature of the insurance coverage, it’s important to know what reasons they will cover trip cancellation or interruption. 

  • Illness, injury, or death of the insured or a covered traveling companion certified by a doctor
  • The insured or a traveling companion is hijacked, subpoenaed, quarantined, or required in a court appearance as long as the insured or traveling companion isn’t a police officer or a part of the legal action
  • The insured or traveling companion’s employer involuntarily relocates him/her at least 100 miles from their current residence, but you must have been with the employer for at least 5 years
  • The insured or traveling companion involuntarily loses his/her job. To qualify, you must have been with your employer for at least 1 year and have had the insurance coverage for at least 30 days.
  • Natural disasters or a traffic accident on the way to the airport cause a delay in the ability to travel and are documented by official documents.

They are not easy with their allowances when it comes to covering the cost of a canceled or interrupted flight. Usually, you need a doctor’s note or some other type of official documentation to prove your reason for not making the flight. 

Reasons Coverage is Prohibited

Like any insurance policy, there are certain reasons coverage may not be allowed, including the following:

  • Inflicted self-harm, attempted suicide
  • You or your companion are traveling to get medical treatment
  • You used loyalty points, miles, or any other non-monetary method to pay for the trip

Despite this small list, many people claim it is very hard to get coverage for Expedia Flight Protection unless something major has happened that is unforeseen and unavoidable.

When Should You Buy Coverage?

If you decide you want Expedia Flight Protection, you have up to 24 hours after booking the trip to buy the insurance. You have up to 15 days after you buy the policy to cancel it, as long as you haven’t filed a claim. 

Is Expedia Flight Insurance Good?

At first glance, you might think Expedia flight insurance is a good deal. It doesn’t seem too expensive and it protects you should you have to cancel or interrupt your flight. 

It sounds great until you read the fine print. The insurance covers strictly only cancellation and flight interruption and nothing else. If you have any other issues while flying, they won’t be covered and the reasons you could get covered for a canceled flight are quite extreme and not common.

In almost every case you must have certified proof of the reason you are canceling and even then coverage is questionable.

What Doesn’t Expedia Flight Insurance Have?

We’ve uncovered that Expedia flight insurance is rather basic, but what is missing compared to other policies?

Travel Evacuation Insurance

What happens if you’re traveling away from home and have a medical emergency and must be brought to a medical facility nearby? The transfer itself can be quite costly and if not covered by your travel insurance may have to be paid out of pocket.

Health Insurance

Most people have health insurance today, but if you don’t or if your health insurance doesn’t cover you when you’re away from home (which is common), it could be quite expensive if you have a medical emergency.

If you landed in the hospital or even had an emergency doctor’s visit, the cost of your trip could skyrocket rather quickly and unexpectedly without proper coverage.

Flight Delay Coverage

If your flight is delayed by a specific amount of time, it can be inconvenient and costly. If it’s a matter of a few hours it might not be a big deal, but if your flight is delayed by a day or longer, it could cost you money and a lot of hassle. Flight delay coverage could make a policy more comprehensive.

Baggage Coverage

While Expedia’s international Flight Protection offers baggage coverage (up to $200 for the first item and $200 each for subsequent items) if baggage is lost, stolen, or damaged, domestic flights have no such coverage.

You don’t have to just fly internationally for something to happen to your luggage, so it would be nice if the domestic policy had this coverage too.

When is Expedia Flight Protection Helpful?

Expedia Flight Protection can be considered helpful in some cases, but not many. If you have a basic vacation planned with a domestic flight and want to have coverage should something major happen, you’ll have at least coverage for trip cancellation or trip interruption.

But, if you’re traveling internationally, Expedia coverage is less than what most people need and not worth the cost. You’re better off finding an independent policy that would cover much more in the event of a medical emergency or other major issues. 

FAQs – Is Expedia Flight Protection Worth It?

Is Expedia Flight Protection a scam?

Many people wonder if Expedia Flight Protection is a scam. It’s not – it’s a legit program, but the real question is whether or not it’s worth it. The cost isn’t incredibly high, but the coverage really isn’t much of anything except if you experience a major health issue.

So is it a scam? No, it’s not. But is it worth it? For most people, it’s not.

Is travel insurance worth it for international flights?

International flights are when you need flight insurance the most. You spend a lot more money on the flight and if something major happens, you could lose a lot of money. Traditional flight insurance usually covers more than just flight cancellation and interruption too. It protects you should you have medical emergencies while abroad or have other major emergencies.

Does travel insurance cover any lost baggage?

Most travel insurance policies have some type of lost baggage coverage. However, Expedia’s flight insurance only covers lost, stolen, or damaged baggage on international flights. Don’t assume you’re getting baggage coverage for domestic flights because you’re not.

How do you prove your claim for Flight Protection?

Expedia is particular about how you prove you have a valid claim. Health emergencies require a doctor’s note and any other issue, such as a court issue or work-related issue requires a certified letter from the appropriate authority.

Final Thoughts – Is Expedia Flight Protection Worth It?

Even though it doesn’t cost a lot of money, Expedia Flight Protection isn’t worth it, in my opinion. Your money is better spent on another policy from an independent insurance agent that covers many other scenarios.

You might sleep better at night knowing you have protection should something extreme happen, but the insurance is not likely going to be used for everyday issues you might experience. If you want to protect your investment in travel or worry about something happening, do your research and find an independent travel insurance company that will cover much more.

Kim Pinnelli is a personal finance freelance writer and contributor. She lives in the Chicago suburbs, writing from home for the last 13 years. Kim enjoys helping people understand personal finances and writes on topics about saving money, investing, planning for retirement, and ways to increase income. In her free time, Kim enjoys hanging out with her 3 children, reading, crocheting, and spending time outdoors.

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