Find The Best Travel Insurance For Covid-19 Coverage July 2023

Editor’s note: This article contains updated information from a previously published story.

COVID-19 travel insurance can prevent you from losing all the money you’ve put toward a trip if the virus ruins your plans. Getting the protection you need is just a matter of finding a broad travel insurance policy that doesn’t exclude COVID from coverage — and all of our top-rated plans fit the bill.

The best travel insurance for COVID-19 offers generous coverage for medical treatment at your destination. It will even cover the cost — and handle the logistics — if you require medical evacuation to be treated for COVID.

The best travel insurance plans also have a reasonable price for the amount of coverage they provide and offer the option to purchase a “cancel for any reason” (CFAR) upgrade if you’d like more flexibility. CFAR provides a partial refund — up to 75% of your covered costs, depending on the policy — if you need to change your plans because of a problem the policy wouldn’t otherwise cover, like wanting to reschedule your trip because of a COVID outbreak at your destination.

Best COVID travel insurance of 2023

Best COVID travel insurance plans

Compare the best COVID travel insurance plans

How to get COVID-19 travel insurance

“Look for travel insurance that covers trip cancellation, trip interruption, emergency medical and emergency medical transportation,” said Daniel Durazo, director of external communications at Allianz Partners USA. A policy that provides epidemic-related coverage may reimburse you for costs associated with a canceled trip, travel delays, mandatory quarantines and being denied boarding due to suspected illness.

Plans that offer emergency medical coverage usually provide medical coverage for treating COVID-19, but you’ll want to read the policy to be sure.

Most travelers are surprised to learn about the 15-day review period that comes with many travel insurance policies, Durazo said. 

“Consumers should take the time to read their policy and call their provider with questions. If they don’t feel that their policy meets their needs, they can exchange it for a new product or cancel it for a full refund.”

Average cost of COVID travel insurance

The average cost of our top-scoring COVID travel insurance plans is $359. If you add the optional “cancel for any reason” (CFAR) upgrade, the average cost for these plans increases by $212, or 59%. 

CFAR coverage gives you the flexibility to cancel your travel plans for any reason, as long as you do so at least two days before your scheduled departure. When you cancel, you will be reimbursed up to 50% or 75% of your prepaid, nonrefunable trip expenses, depending on the plan. 

If you’re interested in CFAR coverage, you typically need to purchase it within two to three weeks of making your first trip deposit. 

Average cost of adding “cancel for any reason” coverage

How much you’ll pay for travel insurance depends on how many travelers you’re insuring and their ages, as well as the trip destination, trip length and total trip cost. On average, travel insurance will cost about 5% to 6% of your total trip cost. 

What travel restrictions are still in place?

Many travel restrictions that existed in the past three years due to COVID-19 are no longer in place. However, if a new, more dangerous variant emerges or if another infectious disease becomes a serious concern, national governments might reinstate previous restrictions such as requiring a negative virological test or proof of vaccination to enter the country. States and territories may have requirements that differ from national requirements.

Things are always changing, so it’s best to consult the official government website of the country you’re visiting and for the latest entry requirements and travel recommendations before booking your trip. Then, continue to check these websites as your trip date approaches to see if you’ll still be able to enter and leave your destination and re-enter the United States.

Quarantine reimbursement from travel insurance

Getting reimbursed by your travel insurance provider requires submitting documents that support your claim. Your policy should spell out what documents you’ll need. 

“Failure to get proper documentation for a claim will almost always delay processing of the claim,” said Daniel Durazo, director of external communications at Allianz Partners USA. “Never assume that your insurance company will accept less than what they ask for. Call your insurance provider if you have questions about what documentation they’ll need to process your claim.”

In the case of a quarantine claim, you’ll typically need proof of getting infected with or being exposed to COVID-19, proof that you were required to quarantine, and invoices and receipts from any medical treatment and additional lodging costs. 

For coverage purposes, “a COVID diagnosis has to be from a licensed physician who determines that you can’t travel,” said Stan Sandberg, co-founder and CEO of “An at-home, self-administered COVID test won’t be enough to pursue a claim under a travel insurance policy.”

What does COVID-19 travel insurance cover?

“Most travel insurance providers today consider COVID like any other unexpected sickness for purposes of coverage,” said Sandberg.

If your plan does not exclude costs related to COVID-19, specific types of coverage under your plan can reimburse some or all of your expenses. These might include additional hotel nights, transportation, meals, medical care, flight changes and more. Here’s how different parts of a travel insurance policy would apply as it pertains to COVID.

  • Extension of coverage. Applies if you have to stay at your destination longer than planned because you get sick and have to quarantine or new travel restrictions emerge.
  • Travel delay. Applies if you or someone traveling with you gets sick or injured en route to, at or returning from your destination or if, say, an airline refuses to let you board because of suspicion of illness. 
  • Trip cancellation. Applies if you get sick before you leave for your trip and have to cancel the whole thing. Be sure to get a diagnosis from a licensed physician. 
  • “Cancel for any reason” upgrade. Applies if you decide you don’t want to travel because of a spike in COVID cases or national entry and exit requirements change. Not all plans offer this upgrade, and it can add quite a bit to the cost of your insurance.
  • Trip interruption. Applies if you have to interrupt your trip after reaching your destination — for example, if you have to fly home early because you or someone traveling with you gets sick.
  • “Interruption for any reason” upgrade. Applies if you miss part of your trip for a reason your policy doesn’t otherwise cover — for example, because you have to quarantine, but you don’t actually have COVID. Not all plans offer this upgrade.
  • Emergency medical treatment. Applies if you unexpectedly get COVID during your trip and need health care. Pre-existing conditions are usually excluded. Plan to pay out of pocket and wait for reimbursement.
  • Medical evacuation and repatriation. Applies if you need to be transported to the nearest adequate medical facility for treatment. If, God forbid, you should die of COVID during your trip, this coverage would reimburse you for costs associated with transporting your body back home.

What does COVID-19 travel insurance not cover?

“Most travel insurance providers that offer comprehensive policies have done a great job at accommodating COVID-related disruptions, providing reimbursement for events like quarantines and hospital stays,” said James Clark. Clark is a spokesperson for the travel-insurance comparison site Squaremouth, which is also the company behind Tin Leg and Cat 70 travel insurance. 

“However, there have been a handful of events that travel insurance simply does not cover,” Clark said. “During the height of the pandemic, when countries would close their borders for travel due to the coronavirus outbreak, many customers were unhappy that border closures were not covered by their standard trip cancellation policy.” 

“Policyholders that no longer wanted to travel due to negative test and face mask requirements were also unable to receive reimbursement through standard policies,” he said. “In order to receive reimbursement in these scenarios, a customer would have needed the ‘cancel for any reason’ upgrade.” 

That upgrade also covers “fear of travel,” which almost all travel insurance policies usually exclude, according to Clark. Canceling your trip out of fear of COVID infection or fear that the virus will disrupt your trip somehow is only covered by the CFAR upgrade, he explained.


Our insurance experts reviewed 42 aspects of 53 policies to find the best COVID travel insurance plans. We used data provided by Squaremouth, a travel insurance comparison provider. For this rating, we only scored travel insurance plans that cover COVID. 

For companies that offer more than one travel insurance plan that cover COVID, we shared information about the highest-scoring plan. Some companies may offer plans with additional benefits or lower prices than the plans which scored the highest, so make sure to get travel insurance quotes to see your full range of options. 

The benefits we scored out of a possible 100 points include:

Cost (70 points): We scored the average cost for each COVID travel insurance policy for a variety of trips and traveler profiles:

  • Couple, age 30, for an 8-day trip to Mexico costing $3,000.
  • Couple, age 40, for a 17-day trip to Italy costing $6,000.
  • Family of four for a 17-day trip to Italy costing $15,000.
  • Couple, age 65, for a 17-day trip to Italy costing $6,000.
  • Couple, age 70, for an 8-day trip to Mexico costing $3,000.

Medical expenses (10 points): We scored travel medical insurance by the coverage amount available. Travel insurance policies with travel medical expense benefits of $250,000 or more per person were given the highest score of 10 points.

Medical evacuation (10 points): We scored each plan’s emergency medical evacuation coverage by coverage amount. Travel insurance policies with medical evacuation expense benefits of $500,000 or more per person were given the highest score of 10 points.

“Cancel for any reason” upgrade (10 points): We gave travel insurance plans with the option of a “cancel for any reason” upgrade 5 points if it offers 50% reimbursement and 10 points if it offers 75% reimbursement.

Why you can trust us

Our insurance experts follow strict editorial guidelines to ensure fairness and unbiased reviews. We reviewed 42 aspects of 53 policies to find the best COVID travel insurance plans. Plans with the highest scores came closest to meeting these standards:

  • Low cost for the base policy.
  • Medical expense coverage of at least $250,000.
  • Medical evacuation coverage of at least $500,000.
  • CFAR coverage upgrade option, with reimbursement of up to 75%.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

If you’re traveling within the United States or the U.S. territories, check with your health insurance provider to see what coverage you get outside your state of residence. You may have coverage for emergency care and telehealth visits, but not for routine care. It’s also possible that your in-state plan may have arrangements with providers in other states that give you reduced rates.

With the end of the U.S. national emergency and public health emergency declarations related to the COVID-19 pandemic ending in May 2023, group health plans and individual health insurance plans will no longer be required to cover COVID tests and testing-related services without cost-sharing or prior authorization. This, too, could mean an extra expense for you.

Medicare usually does not pay for health care you receive abroad (unless you’re in a U.S. territory, or, in rare cases, near the border of Canada or Mexico).

Other U.S. health insurance may not cover international health care, either, or the deductible may be high.

For these reasons, it’s important to choose a travel insurance policy with good emergency medical coverage — which usually has no deductible — when you’re traveling abroad.

Yes, as long as the policy covers COVID-19 and travel to the country or countries you visit. All of the travel insurance plans in our Best COVID travel insurance cover COVID.

Your travel insurance policy’s trip cancellation benefits will apply if you have to cancel your trip before you leave because you test positive for COVID-19. But you need to get diagnosed by a licensed physician if you hope to file a successful claim for your prepaid, nonrefundable trip costs like airfare and lodging.

Cruise insurance is just travel insurance that doesn’t exclude cruise-related issues or has additional cruise-specific benefits. If you’re going on a cruise and want COVID-19 coverage, make sure your travel insurance policy covers COVID-19 and has high coverage limits for emergency medical and medical evacuation.

You should expect to spend your own money if you need proof of a negative COVID-19 test for travel because travel insurance does not cover predictable expenses. In some cases, such as when you’re recovering from a COVID infection, your health insurance or travel insurance may cover a doctor-ordered test.

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