Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
Etexvrc

DO NOT Buy Trip Insurance offered through Viking !

Recommended Posts

Need to vent just a bit....

 

 

Six months ago (Jan 2018) I booked our 5th & 6th Ocean cruise with Viking. Iceland's Majestic & South American cruises. Bought trip insurance (1st time to purchase it) on both trips.

The South American cruise is Dec, 2019, currently a year and a half from when I write this.

 

 

After thinking about and discussing with wife we considered canceling the S.A. trip. (We got a child starting college....) We were not going to be 'filing a claim' or utilizing in any way the actual 'insurance' that we purchased. This was strictly a voluntary trip cancellation.

 

 

Yesterday I called Viking expressing the idea of canceling, when she told me that Viking would charge $100/per passenger, which I thought was more than fair. Then she told me our entire insurance premium of $1,838 is non-refundable. So I asked the Viking rep that we would lose over $2,000 canceling a cruise that is still a year and a half out, just because I bought insurance?

 

 

Her answer was "That's correct".

 

 

I will be the first to say this is all out of my area of expertise, and maybe I'm looking at this in a completely wrong way. But in my simple mind here is how I see an analogy. If I purchase a home and at the same time I also purchase insurance on this home. And the insurance I buy is a 24 month policy that I pay in one lump sum on day 1.

 

Six months later I sell this home.

 

Would I not be entitled to a return of principle (or a refund) on the remaining, unused 18 months of insurance considering that I'm no longer the owner of this asset?

 

 

This morning I've talked with 'TripMate' (the insurance company Viking uses for this) and the rep (who really didn't know the answer and had to put me on hold to 'ask a supervisor') and said that that is the case. I would lose the entire premium ($1,838) paid up front. It is not prorated.

 

 

We are still booked on the cruise and will not cancel because I'm not going to forfeit over $2,000 just for having a cruise booked for six months (and is still 18 months away)! Just trying to wrap my head around all this.

 

 

Thanks for letting me 'vent'.

We still LOVE Viking........BUT.........IMO, DON'T BUY TRIP INSURANCE THROUGH VIKING.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's correct and well documented in the insurance Terms and Conditions. Unfortunately I had to cancel similarly for personal reasons and had purchased the coverage from Viking. I knew that was a sunk cost when I purchased but believed the only way I would cancel would be for a covered event. $1600 poof. Live and learn, now I purchase coverage only at the time of final payment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, insurance is a sunk cost the minute you buy it no matter where you get it. I usually check insuremytrip.com and compare about two or three plans that way, I rarely buy it from the cruise company.

 

The only way you need it at time of booking is if you have pre-existing conditions or want 'cancel for any reason' insurance. Otherwise, it's best (like Luv2Cruise said) to buy it at the time of final payment.

 

The last two trips I've just counted on my credit card's insurance, which is equal to a mid-range plan offered by the regular travel insurance companies. Covers up to $20K for two for losing a cruise, has interruption and basic medical, only cancel for covered reasons, etc. We have a MedJet yearly policy that will get us home from wherever we are if needed. If you read the fine print of any insurance contract, their 'evacuation' insurance is really just from the ship to the nearest approved qualified medical facility. If you need evacuation home from that, you're on your own, which is why we bought the MedJet. I had a friend who learned that the hard way!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We purchase trip insurance with a commercial company that does a lot of travel insurance (I don't believe board policy allows me to identify the company), and we purchase it within 15 days of booking the trip, even two years in advance. We do this because we have very elderly parents, and should we need to cancel because of their health, we don't want any argument about an exclusion for pre-existing conditions.

 

I assume that if we cancelled the trip for any reason that was not covered, the insurance company would not refund our premium. I doubt that Viking is doing anything that you could get around with any other insurance company.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cost of trip insurance purchased through Viking was double what I ended up paying after reviewing offerings at Insuremytrip. My Travel Guard policy doesn't have cancel for any reason, but the all-important medical evacuation coverage is double Viking's. Choosing the right policy can be stressful. I've found cc's travel insurance forum to be helpful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We purchase trip insurance with a commercial company that does a lot of travel insurance (I don't believe board policy allows me to identify the company), and we purchase it within 15 days of booking the trip, even two years in advance. We do this because we have very elderly parents, and should we need to cancel because of their health, we don't want any argument about an exclusion for pre-existing conditions.

 

I assume that if we cancelled the trip for any reason that was not covered, the insurance company would not refund our premium. I doubt that Viking is doing anything that you could get around with any other insurance company.

 

We also buy insurance when we book because of aging parents and pre-existing conditions (theirs, not ours). However, we cover only the deposit that we have paid, that is $500pp. If we buy our own flights, we then raise the coverage to cover that amount as well. When we make our final payment, we raise the amount to cover the entire cost of the trip.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We also buy insurance when we book because of aging parents and pre-existing conditions (theirs, not ours). However, we cover only the deposit that we have paid, that is $500pp. If we buy our own flights, we then raise the coverage to cover that amount as well. When we make our final payment, we raise the amount to cover the entire cost of the trip.

 

Thanks! We'll look into doing it that way next time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I buy Allianz through my TA, following the same phased approach as Peregrina. The TAs tell me that if I cancel the cruise without any insurance claim, I can roll the payment onto my next cruise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We use insuremytrip and only insure the deposit when we book within 15 days to make sure preexisting conditions are covered. We raise the amount at final payment and if we need additional coverage for hotels, etc. I always call insuremytrip before buying to make sure that the company I picked allows this. The other thing that I have done is if I need to cancel my trip I call insuremytrip and they will transfer the premium and the coverage to a new trip so that I don't lose any money. I've done this many times over the course of over 50 cruises. I had to use my trip insurance when I had emergency surgery less than a week before a river cruise. Not only did they refund my cruise fare, but they reimbursed my nonrefundable Priceline hotels, the amount AA charged to redeposit my miles into my FF account, and a nonrefundable deposit on a tour. I've been very happy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Need to vent just a bit....

 

 

Six months ago (Jan 2018) I booked our 5th & 6th Ocean cruise with Viking. Iceland's Majestic & South American cruises. Bought trip insurance (1st time to purchase it) on both trips.

The South American cruise is Dec, 2019, currently a year and a half from when I write this.

 

 

After thinking about and discussing with wife we considered canceling the S.A. trip. (We got a child starting college....) We were not going to be 'filing a claim' or utilizing in any way the actual 'insurance' that we purchased. This was strictly a voluntary trip cancellation.

 

 

Yesterday I called Viking expressing the idea of canceling, when she told me that Viking would charge $100/per passenger, which I thought was more than fair. Then she told me our entire insurance premium of $1,838 is non-refundable. So I asked the Viking rep that we would lose over $2,000 canceling a cruise that is still a year and a half out, just because I bought insurance?

 

 

Her answer was "That's correct".

 

 

I will be the first to say this is all out of my area of expertise, and maybe I'm looking at this in a completely wrong way. But in my simple mind here is how I see an analogy. If I purchase a home and at the same time I also purchase insurance on this home. And the insurance I buy is a 24 month policy that I pay in one lump sum on day 1.

 

Six months later I sell this home.

 

Would I not be entitled to a return of principle (or a refund) on the remaining, unused 18 months of insurance considering that I'm no longer the owner of this asset?

 

 

 

 

I think that is pretty standard... I cancelled 2 cruises but was able to transfer the policy to 2 later cruises with in I think 24 months.. But there was no refund.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We never purchase travel insurance until final payment day. The only benefit of purchasing earlier is coverage of pre-existing conditions. If you don't have any why not wait?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yup!

 

Doesn't pre-existing condition mean that you had it and were being treated for it the day you bought the insurance?

 

Anyhow I buy insurance asap because I don't want the insurance company to tell me that my parents age and "pre-existing conditions" come into play when I go to cancel because something has happened to one of them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you don't buy it until final payment anything that was treated within a certain amount of days prior (determined by the insurance policy) would count as preexisting. If you wait until final payment you risk developing something between the time you book the cruise and then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I buy Allianz through my TA, following the same phased approach as Peregrina. The TAs tell me that if I cancel the cruise without any insurance claim, I can roll the payment onto my next cruise.

 

We also use insuremytrip. Last year we had to postpone our sailing to this year. I called the insurance company and they allowed me to move our insurance to the new date. I believe we had to book it within 12 months. Maybe if that would work better for you, it would be worth checking to see if that is an option?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vineyard View, exactly our experience. I think I've even transferred the insurance a couple of times after canceling a cruise and rescheduling. Even to a different cruise line.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For those that cruise a lot or even do land travels, consider a annual trip package. We are both mid 60's and cost 320 dollars for the whole year.

 

I do not us insuremytrip as they are just too expensive. Google more options, under annual pass.

 

They copy a lot of my credit card amenities, but do get the medical excavation part when on the open waters.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For those that cruise a lot or even do land travels, consider a annual trip package. We are both mid 60's and cost 320 dollars for the whole year.

 

 

 

I do not us insuremytrip as they are just too expensive. Google more options, under annual pass.

 

 

 

They copy a lot of my credit card amenities, but do get the medical excavation part when on the open waters.

 

 

 

This is something you may not be aware of this past December we were on a Princess South American 21 day cruise I had to be taken off the ship in Lima Peru as I was having shortness of breath the ship doctor said I needed to see a Cardiologist make a long story short ended up having a heart stint I had no health coverage (I thought) well not true if you have a Medicare supplement through AARP it has $50k coverage for medical emergencies out of the country it paid my $22K at 80% and my credit card paid $5K for trip interruption

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
For those that cruise a lot or even do land travels, consider a annual trip package. We are both mid 60's and cost 320 dollars for the whole year.

 

I do not us insuremytrip as they are just too expensive. Google more options, under annual pass.

 

They copy a lot of my credit card amenities, but do get the medical excavation part when on the open waters.

 

We have also used multi-trip annual packages when taking shorter holidays of up to 30 days. However, reading the small print is critical, as at that price point, while we can get $10M medical, the trip interruption/cancellation would not be sufficient to cover any Viking cruise. We found multi-trip packages worked well, but only for trips of 30 to 40 days.

 

For our 2020 WC, we had to go with the Viking Insurance as no local broker, Insuremytrip or the TA could find an insurance company that will cover the deposit for almost 2 years and full payment 6 months out. Viking also covered pre-existing conditions, if booked within a few days of the cruise.

 

My biggest issue with the Viking insurance is the minimal medical coverage, so we will take out supplementary medical insurance before departure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I usually buy trip insurance from tripinsurancestore.com and have been happy.

I buy early and insure the trip for a minimum and increase it afterwards.

I'm more interested in the medical coverage than the cost of the trip,

so I usually only insure for $500-$1,000 but you still get the full medical coverage.

I know they have a 14 day cancel/change policy.

 

Thank you for the "heads-up" when buying insurance.

I'm not sure that this is unique to Viking though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've learned things from Trip Insurance Store; they're great. We use either them or insuremytrip. We never use the cruise line's insurance.

 

Any policy I've ever looked at has a lot of exclusions and definitions that can narrow what's covered. While tedious, I try to pick a few policies that look good, pull up the policies and read every word.

 

I occasionally look for annual policies, but so far haven't found any. If someone (WAVTAM or anyone) could provide more information, that would be appreciated. I hate paying so much for insurance.

 

Drneal, I currently have a Travelex policy for an upcoming trip. I do what you do, insure for a low amount and increase later. However, Travelex told me I would lose my pre-existing coverage if I don't report (and pay for increased coverage if applicable) all hotel, train, etc. costs that I book pre-trip, even if I'm willing to take a hit on a hotel if we don't use the reservation and don't cancel. Do you know anything about that? I didn't think the medical coverage had anything to do with other coverage like airline tickets, hotels, etc. but now I'm wondering if it does. I want to reserve hotels in advance of the trip, but don't want to pay a lot in insurance cost, as what I'm already paying is pretty high due to age. You wouldn't think hotels would bump up the cost that much, but they are starting to do that.

Edited by roothy123

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Drneal, I currently have a Travelex policy for an upcoming trip. I do what you do, insure for a low amount and increase later. However, Travelex told me I would lose my pre-existing coverage if I don't report (and pay for increased coverage if applicable) all hotel, train, etc. costs that I book pre-trip, even if I'm willing to take a hit on a hotel if we don't use the reservation and don't cancel. Do you know anything about that? I didn't think the medical coverage had anything to do with other coverage like airline tickets, hotels, etc. but now I'm wondering if it does. I want to reserve hotels in advance of the trip, but don't want to pay a lot in insurance cost, as what I'm already paying is pretty high due to age. You wouldn't think hotels would bump up the cost that much, but they are starting to do that.

 

As far as I understand the medical is the same whether you insure the trip for $10,000 or $500.

It's the trip cancellation/interruption that's affected.

My father just came off a Regent cruise and his girlfriend fell the night before they disembarked. She had to go for emergency surgery. The insurance is great for the medical but there was essentially nothing left on the trip interruption as, understandably, as the trip progresses your insurance interruption coverage diminishes.

Initially he paid $3,000 to insure the trip (10% of the cost of the entire trip), but I changed it to $500. $46 for her as she is 64 and $79 for him, 81.

I use Travelex as well.

You should ask Steve at tripinsurancestore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry if this has already been asked but since there are several knowledgeable posters here who have used other than Viking insurance, here's the issue. For the World Cruise I had trouble finding insurance which would do the "for any reason" type coverage for over 90 days. As our WC was 120 days we finally went with Viking. Pricey and we didn't need it. Not complaining, there were several fellow passengers that did need it. Just interested in the over 90 day coverage if you have any suggestions. Thanks, J.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Q&A with the Coral Expeditions Team
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...