A TikTok Influencer Shares The Top Mistake People Make When Getting Travel Insurance

If the COVID-19 global pandemic taught us anything, it's that you can get sick really easily while traveling in tightly confined spaces like airplanes or trains, and if you require care during your illness, you don't want to be worrying about how you're going to pay for it. Whether you're backpacking in the rough or going to an all-inclusive resort, mishaps and accidents can and do happen. Small injuries like twisting your ankle on those dang European cobblestones, or even big injuries (think broken bones) usually require medical and pharmaceutical care, and travel insurance can cover and facilitate all of your needs, worry free.

However, if you're in the market for travel insurance, it turns out that when you buy your policy is just as important, if not more important, than where you buy it. TikTok user @covertrip, who dubs himself the "Travel Insurance Guy," shared a video to his more than 113,000 followers, advising them that purchasing your insurance at a specific time could actually affect how much you pay, and what's included in the policy. He says "the most common mistake" travelers make is waiting too long to buy their insurance after they've booked their trip. He suggests buying your coverage within 10 days of making your first travel booking. Why? Let's take a closer look.

Buy your travel insurance early to get the maximum benefits

Buying travel insurance in January when your trip doesn't begin until August might sound a bit silly, but as @covertrip points out, you should avoid buying it at the last minute. "Some coverage is only available if you buy early," he says, specifically mentioning the Cancel For Any Reason option and coverage for pre-existing conditions as examples. This is one time you shouldn't be skeptical of things you hear on TikTok, because experts agree with this. Travel agent Michelle Osborn explained to Business Insider that, yes, it's true, "Most travel insurance policies have a time limit of when you can purchase to get the maximum benefits."

InsureMyTrip.com senior vice president Suzanne Morrow concurs, telling The New York Times, "Not all plans have a pre-existing condition waiver ... so I would need to buy a policy within 14 days of the first dollar spent." Additionally, if your travel is canceled for reasons not covered by your policy, it could be costly. But as Forbes points out, the Cancel For Any Reason option, as the name implies, would cover cancellations for any reason whatsoever — but you may have to purchase it within only a few days of booking your travel. That's a tight window!

So if you're planning your next big trip abroad, start getting insurance quotes from different brokers now, even if your trip doesn't commence for weeks. Future You will thank Past You!