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How to Find the Best Travel Insurance

Elina Geller

Barbara Marquand is a former NerdWallet writer covering mortgages, homebuying and homeownership, insurance and investing. Previously, she covered personal finance for QuinStreet and wrote for national consumer and trade publications on topics including business, careers and parenting. Her work has appeared in MarketWatch, MSN Money, The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Sam Kemmis is a travel rewards expert at NerdWallet specializing in airline and hotel loyalty programs. In a previous professional life, he wrote comedy until a nomadic lifestyle and a lifelong obsession with saving money turned his attention to travel rewards. He is no longer funny. His work has been featured by The Associated Press, The Points Guy and Fast Company. He has spoken about travel rewards at CardCon, the Altitude conference and AwardWallet's "Award Travel 101" podcast. He is based in Ojai, California, and teaches mindfulness meditation because that's what you do in Ojai.

Elina Geller is a former NerdWallet travel writer specializing in airline and hotel loyalty programs and travel insurance. In 2019, Elina founded TheMissMiles, a travel rewards coaching business. Her work has been featured by AwardWallet. She is a certified public accountant with degrees from the London School of Economics and Fordham University.

Mary M. Flory

Mary Flory leads NerdWallet's growing team of assigning editors at large. Before joining NerdWallet's content team, she had spent more than 12 years developing content strategies, managing newsrooms and mentoring writers and editors. Her previous experience includes being an executive editor at the American Marketing Association and an editor at news and feature syndicate Content That Works.

How to Find the Best Travel Insurance

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money .

Table of Contents

What travel insurance covers

How much does travel insurance cost, types of travel insurance, how to get travel insurance, what to look for in travel insurance, best travel insurance comparison sites, which insurance company is best for travel insurance, when to skip travel insurance, travel insurance, recapped.

Travel insurance can cover medical expenses, emergencies, trip interruptions, baggage, rental cars and more.

Cost is affected by trip length, pre-existing medical conditions, depth of coverage, your age and add-ons.

You can get it through credit cards or third-party companies, & can shop on travel insurance comparison sites.

Before buying, evaluate risks, know existing coverage, obtain quotes online and review policy details warily.

Skip it if you buy flexible airfare and hotels, already have coverage or only book refundable activities.

Booking travel always carries some degree of uncertainty. Travel insurance provides a safety net so you can step out with confidence. You may not need travel insurance for inexpensive trips, but it can provide a sense of security when you prepay for pricey reservations, a big international trip or travel during cold and flu season, which can be unpredictable.

According to insurance comparison site Squaremouth, travelers in 2023 spent an average of $403 for comprehensive coverage, compared to $96 for medical-only policies. Comprehensive plans typically cost between 5% and 10% of the insured trip cost.

Since that price tag is no small amount, it helps to know how to shop smart for travel insurance. Here's how to find the right travel insurance plan for you and your next adventure.

Depending on the type of coverage you’re looking for, the chart below will help you determine what to look for when selecting a policy:

Depending on the policy, travel insurance reimburses you or offers services when something goes awry. There’s even coverage for the worst-case scenario: if you die in an accident while traveling. Accidental death coverage pays your beneficiary a lump sum in that case.

Before you buy, take a little time to get familiar with different types of travel insurance products, how it’s priced, and what it covers and excludes. If you’re traveling during these uncertain times, you’ll want to make sure that the policy you select covers coronavirus-related emergencies. Usually, the more thorough the coverage, the more it will cost.

aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Travel insurance costs vary depending on:

Length and cost of the trip: The longer and more expensive the trip, the higher the policy cost.

Cost of local health care: High health-care costs in your destination can drive up the price of trip insurance.

Medical conditions you want covered: Conditions you already have will increase the cost of travel insurance coverage.

Amount and breadth of coverage: The more risks a policy covers, the more it will cost.

Your age: Generally the older you are, the higher the price.

Any optional supplement you add to your policy : Cancel For Any Reason , Interrupt For Any Reason and more.

Keep these factors in mind when considering different travel insurance options.

You’ll find a wide selection of travel protection plans when you shop for a policy.

Typically, travel insurance is sold as a package, known as a comprehensive plan, which includes a variety of coverage.

Here are seven of the most common types of travel insurance:

Travel medical insurance

These plans provide health insurance while you’re away from home. Although in some ways these policies work like traditional health plans, generally you cannot use travel health insurance for routine medical events. For example, a routine medical checkup is usually not covered. In addition, these policies often include limitations on coverage and exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

Although most travel insurance plans cover many recreational activities, such as skiing and horseback riding, they often exclude adventure sports, such as skydiving or parasailing, or competition in organized sporting events. You may need to buy a special travel policy designed for adventure or competitive sports.

International travel insurance

Most likely, your U.S.-based medical insurance will not work while you’re traveling internationally, and Medicare does not provide any coverage once you leave the United States outside of a few very specific exemptions. If you plan on traveling abroad, purchasing travel medical insurance could make a lot of sense.

» Learn more: Travel medical insurance: Emergency coverage while you travel internationally

Trip cancellation, interruption and delay

Trip cancellation coverage reimburses you for prepaid, nonrefundable expenses if the tour operator goes out of business or you have to cancel the trip for one of the covered reasons outlined in the policy, such as:

Your own illness.

The illness or death of a family member who’s not traveling with you.

Natural disasters.

Trip interruption insurance covers the nonrefundable cost of the unused portion of the trip if it is interrupted due to a reason outlined in the policy.

Trip delay coverage reimburses you for expenses such as lodging and meals if you’re delayed during a trip (e.g., your flight gets canceled due to weather ).

Many package policies cover all three. These policies are different from the cancellation waivers that cruise lines and tour operators offer, the Insurance Information Institute says. Waivers are cheap, ranging from $40 to $60, and often include restrictions. For example, according to the institute, waivers might not refund your money if you cancel immediately before departure. Waivers are technically not insurance policies.

Some companies offer additional layers of coverage at extra cost. “Cancel For Any Reason” coverage will reimburse a large part of the trip cost, no matter why you back out. And some companies let you pay extra to cover pre-existing conditions if you cancel for medical reasons.

Some insurers and comparison sites let you customize a policy by choosing types of coverage a la carte. For example, is a comparison site that provides quotes from different providers.

Baggage and personal belongings

How does lost luggage insurance work? This coverage reimburses you for baggage and personal belongings that are lost, stolen or damaged during the trip. Some plans also reimburse you for extra expenses if you experience a baggage delay for more than a certain period, such as 12 hours.

Your renters or homeowners insurance may cover personal belongings while you are traveling. It’s best to review your homeowners insurance policy to determine the level of coverage it provides so you do not end up paying for a benefit you already have.

» Learn more: Baggage insurance explained

Emergency medical assistance, evacuation and repatriation

This coverage pays medical expenses if you get sick or injured on a trip . Medical evacuation coverage pays for transporting you to the nearest hospital, and medical repatriation pays for flying you to your home country.

» Learn more: Can I get travel insurance for pre-existing medical conditions?

24-hour assistance

This service is included with many package plans. The insurer provides a 24-hour hotline that you can call when you need help, such as booking a flight after a missed connection, finding lost luggage, or locating a doctor or lawyer.

Generally, travel insurance companies do not cover sports or any activity that can be deemed risky. If you’re thinking of incorporating adventurous activities into your vacation, choose a plan that includes adventure sports coverage.

Most travel insurers cover a wide array of services, but the specific options vary. Some plans include concierge services, providing help with restaurant referrals, tee time reservations and more. Many services also offer information before the trip, such as required vaccinations. The only way to know what’s included is to read the policy.

» Learn more: Should you insure your cruise?

Accidental death and dismemberment insurance

This coverage pays a lump sum to your beneficiary, such as a family member, if you die in an accident while on the trip. Accidental death and dismemberment insurance policies also pay a portion of the sum to you if you lose a hand, foot, limb, eyesight, speech or hearing. Some plans apply only to accidental death in a plane.

This coverage may be duplicative if you already have sufficient life insurance, which pays out whether you die in an accident or from an illness. You may also already have accidental death and dismemberment insurance through work, so it's best to check your policies to ensure you’re not overpaying.

» Learn more: NerdWallet's guide to life insurance

Rental car coverage

Rental car insurance pays for repairing your rental car if it’s damaged in a wreck, by vandals or in a natural disaster. The coverage doesn't include liability insurance, which pays for damage to other vehicles or for the medical treatment of others if you cause an accident and are held responsible.

Ask your car insurance company whether your policy will cover you when renting cars on the trip. U.S. car insurance policies generally don’t cover you when driving in other countries, except Canada.

Car insurance requirements are complex because they vary among countries. You can usually purchase liability insurance from the rental car company. Learn about car insurance requirements by searching for auto insurance by country on the U.S. Embassy website .

» Learn more: Best credit cards for rental car coverage

A note about single vs. long-term policies

Single trip insurance plans are a great option for those going on a single trip for a specific length of time (e.g., a two-week vacation) and then returning home. The price of the policy is usually determined by the cost of the trip.

Long-term travel policies cover you for multiple trips, but there are limitations to how long you can be away from home, if you can return home during your travels and how many trips you can take. In addition, trip cancellation and interruption coverage is either not offered or capped at a dollar amount that can be significantly below the total cost of all the trips taken during the covered period.

Long-term travel insurance plans — often called 'multi-trip' or 'annual travel insurance' — are a suitable option for those who travel often and are satisfied with the amount of trip cancellation coverage for all the trips they take over the duration of the policy.

» Learn more: How annual (multi-trip) travel insurance works

Below, we include how to obtain travel insurance, along with the pros and cons of each option.

Some credit cards offer trip cancellation and rental car insurance if you use the card to book the trip or car.

When you book a trip with your credit card, depending on the card you use, you may already receive trip cancellation and interruption coverage.

» Learn more: 10 credit cards that provide travel insurance

Here are a handful of credit cards that offer varying levels of travel insurance coverage for purchases made with the card.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

on Chase's website

Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card

on American Express' website

Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card

• Trip delay: Up to $500 per ticket for delays more than 12 hours.

• Trip cancellation: Up to $10,000 per person and $20,000 per trip. Maximum benefit of $40,000 per 12-month period.

• Trip interruption: Up to $10,000 per person and $20,000 per trip. Maximum benefit of $40,000 per 12-month period.

• Baggage delay: Up to $100 per day for five days.

• Lost luggage: Up to $3,000 per passenger.

• Travel accident: Up to $500,000.

• Rental car insurance: Up to $75,000.

• Trip delay: Up to $500 per ticket for delays more than 6 hours.

• Travel accident: Up to $1 million.

• Rental car insurance: Up to the actual cash value of the car.

• Trip delay: Up to $500 per trip for delays more than 6 hours.

• Trip cancellation: Up to $10,000 per trip. Maximum benefit of $20,000 per 12-month period.

• Trip interruption: Up to $10,000 per trip. Maximum benefit of $20,000 per 12-month period.

Terms apply.

Pros: Coverage is free.

Cons: You can’t customize the insurance to meet your needs. Most credit cards offer secondary car rental insurance, which pays for the costs not covered by your regular car insurance plan.

Travel agents and travel reservation sites

You can buy travel insurance when you book your flight, hotel and car rental.

Pros: Buying is as quick and easy as clicking “yes” when you book reservations. Coverage is inexpensive.

Cons: You can’t customize the coverage.

» Learn more: Airline travel insurance vs. independent travel insurance

Travel insurance comparison sites

You can compare different policies and review quotes at once based on the trip search criteria you’ve input into the search form. Examples include marketplaces like Squaremouth or

Pros: You can choose a policy that fits your needs and compare policies and pricing in one place.

Cons: Comparing multiple policies takes time.

Travel insurance companies

You can purchase travel insurance directly from an insurance provider.

Pros: You can choose a policy that fits your needs. Many travel insurer websites also offer information to help you understand the coverage.

Cons: You’ll need to go to multiple websites to compare coverage and pricing.

» Learn more: The best travel insurance companies right now

Keep these tips in mind when you’re considering a trip insurance policy.

Evaluate the financial risks you face when traveling. Can you bear those costs yourself, or do you want insurance?

Examine what coverage you already have: Does your credit card offer travel insurance? Do you have renters or homeowners insurance to cover belongings? What is the deductible? Will your health plan cover you in all the locations where you travel?

Get quotes for trip insurance online. Choose a package of the benefits you need and compare prices for similar coverage among carriers.

Narrow your choices and then read the policy fine print to understand what’s covered, what’s excluded and the limits on coverage. You may find that the lowest-priced policy is too restrictive and that paying a little more gets you the coverage you need. Or you might find that the cheapest, most basic policy fits the bill.

If you don’t know which provider to go with, it makes sense to browse a list of plans on a travel insurance comparison site. These online marketplaces will often include plans from the best travel insurance companies along with customer reviews.


aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Compare plans from more than 30 providers.

Over 86,000 customer reviews of insurers.

Under its Zero Complaint Guarantee, Squaremouth (a NerdWallet partner) will remove a provider if any customer complaint isn't resolved to its satisfaction.

Has a filter option to see policies that provide COVID-coverage.

aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Compare plans from 13 providers.

See good and poor customer ratings and reviews for each insurer when you receive quotes.

“Learning Center” includes travel insurance articles and travel tips, including important how-to information.

Quotes provided from each provider include a link to COVID-19 FAQs, making it easy for customers to review what’s covered or not.


aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Compare plans from more than two dozen providers.

More than 70,000 customer reviews.

“Anytime Advocates” help customers navigate the claim process and will work on behalf of the customer to help with appealing a denied claim.

Includes a link to plans that offer COVID coverage.

aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Compare plans from 11 providers.

Search coverage by sporting activity, including ground, air and water sports.

Many types of plans available for students, visiting family members, new immigrants, those seeking COVID quarantine coverage and more.

aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Compare different insurance plans from 35 providers.

Over 5,600 customer reviews on Trustpilot, with an average 4.9 stars out of five.

Formerly known as AardvarkCompare, AARDY includes a “Travel Insurance 101” learning center to help customers understand various policies and benefits.

Quote search results page includes COVID-coverage highlighted in a different color to make it easier for customers to review related limits.

Whether you’re looking for an international travel insurance plan, emergency medical care, COVID coverage or a policy that includes extreme sports, these providers have you covered.

Our full analysis and more details about each organization can be found here: The Best Travel Insurance Companies Today .

Allianz Global Assistance .

Travel Guard by AIG .

USI Affinity Travel Insurance Services .

Travel Insured International .

World Nomads .

Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection .

Travelex Insurance Services .

Seven Corners .

AXA Assistance USA .

There are a few scenarios when spending extra on travel insurance doesn't really make sense, like:

You booked flexible airline tickets.

Your hotel room has a good cancellation policy.

It's already included in your credit card.

You haven't booked any nonrefundable activities.

» Learn more: When you don't need travel insurance

Yes, especially for nonrefundable trips and travel during the COVID-era. Whether you purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy or have travel insurance from your credit card, you shouldn't travel without having some sort of travel protection in place to safeguard you and your trip. Travel insurance can protect you in case of an unexpected emergency such as a canceled flight due to weather, a medical event that requires hospitalization, lost luggage and more.

There are many good travel insurance policies out there and a policy that may be great for you may not be good for someone else. Selecting the best plan depends on what coverage you would like and your trip details.

For example, World Nomads offers a comprehensive travel insurance policy that has excellent coverage for adventure sports. Allianz provides coverage for trips of varying lengths of time through its single trip plans and multi-trip plans. Some providers offer add-on options like Cancel For Any Reason travel insurance. If you’re not sure which plan to go with, consider looking at trip insurance comparison sites like Squaremouth or Insuremytrip.

Yes, you can. However, it's better to purchase it sooner rather than later, ideally right after booking your trip because the benefits begin as soon as you purchase a policy.

Let’s say you’re going on a trip in a month and a week before departure, you fall and break your leg. If you’ve purchased a travel insurance policy, you can use your trip cancellation benefits to get your nonrefundable deposit back.

Most comprehensive travel insurance plans offer trip cancellation, trip interruption, emergency medical and dental, medical evacuation, trip delay and lost luggage coverage. Many plans offer COVID coverage, but you’ll always want to check to ensure that the policy you choose provides that benefit if you’re traveling during these times. Some plans may also allow you to add features like Cancel For Any Reason travel insurance.

It depends which credit card you have. Premium travel cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve® and The Platinum Card® from American Express offer travel insurance benefits if you book a trip using your card or points.

However, the coverage provided by the credit cards is usually lower than if you purchased a standalone policy. Review the travel insurance benefits on your credit card and check that the limits are adequate before foregoing from purchasing a separate plan.

Let’s say you’re going on a trip in a month and a week before departure, you fall and break your leg. If you’ve purchased a travel insurance policy, you can use your

trip cancellation benefits

to get your nonrefundable deposit back.

It depends which credit card you have. Premium travel cards like the

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

The Platinum Card® from American Express

offer travel insurance benefits if you book a trip using your card or points.

Unpredictability is one of the mind-opening joys of travel, but travel insurance should contain no surprises. The time you spend to understand your options will be well worth the peace of mind as you embark on your next adventure.

Whether you’re seeking a single or a long-term policy, each travel insurance option offers different strengths and weaknesses. Choosing the right policy depends on your trip needs, your budget and how important various benefits are to you.

Keep reading

If you want to dig in deeper to world of travel insurance, these resources will point you in the right direction.

What is travel insurance?

How much is travel insurance?

Is travel insurance worth it?

What does travel insurance cover?

Does travel insurance cover COVID?

Insurance Benefit: Trip Delay Insurance

Up to $500 per Covered Trip that is delayed for more than 6 hours; and 2 claims per Eligible Card per 12 consecutive month period.

Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply.

Please visit for more details.

Underwritten by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.

Insurance Benefit: Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance

The maximum benefit amount for Trip Cancellation and Interruption Insurance is $10,000 per Covered Trip and $20,000 per Eligible Card per 12 consecutive month period.

Insurance Benefit: Baggage Insurance Plan

Baggage Insurance Plan coverage can be in effect for Covered Persons for eligible lost, damaged, or stolen Baggage during their travel on a Common Carrier Vehicle (e.g., plane, train, ship, or bus) when the Entire Fare for a ticket for the trip (one-way or round-trip) is charged to an Eligible Card. Coverage can be provided for up to $2,000 for checked Baggage and up to a combined maximum of $3,000 for checked and carry-on Baggage, in excess of coverage provided by the Common Carrier. The coverage is also subject to a $3,000 aggregate limit per Covered Trip. For New York State residents, there is a $2,000 per bag/suitcase limit for each Covered Person with a $10,000 aggregate maximum for all Covered Persons per Covered Trip.

Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

Insurance Benefit: Car Rental Loss & Damage Insurance

Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance can provide coverage up to $75,000 for theft of or damage to most rental vehicles when you use your eligible Card to reserve and pay for the entire eligible vehicle rental and decline the collision damage waiver or similar option offered by the Commercial Car Rental Company. This product provides secondary coverage and does not include liability coverage. Not all vehicle types or rentals are covered. Geographic restrictions apply.

Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company. Car Rental Loss or Damage Coverage is offered through American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are some of the best travel credit cards of 2024 :

Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express

Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

1x-10x Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Travel℠ immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

60,000 Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.

1x-5x 5x on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠, 3x on dining, select streaming services and online groceries, 2x on all other travel purchases, 1x on all other purchases.

60,000 Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.

Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

1x-2x Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases. Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare. Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services, and select streaming. Earn 1X points on all other purchases.

50,000 Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

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Travel Pack and Travel Plus Pack: frequently asked questions

How can I manage my travel insurance?

If you have a Travel Pack or Travel Plus Pack, you can manage your travel insurance online by visiting the Aviva website . You can also view frequently asked questions, make a claim, request a call back from Aviva or get proof of travel insurance.

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Aviva Travel Insurance Review: One Basic Plan to Customize

Aviva Travel Insurance Review

  • Getting a 10% discount for online applications
  • Covering insolvency
  • Not paying extra for baggage cover

Editor's Rating

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here .

Compare Cheap Travel Insurance

Protect your holiday today. Quick quotes from 20 insurers.

We like that Aviva offers one, basic level of travel insurance, simplifying the purchasing process—this means that consumers don't have to make the (often confusing) choice between different tiers of cover. Unlike most other travel insurance plans, however, Baggage is not included as standard (but can be added for additional cost). With prices in line with market averages, Aviva travel insurance may be a good choice especially if you buy online to secure a 10% online discount—but if you are looking for insolvency cover , you'll need to look elsewhere.

In This Review

  • Aviva Travel Insurance Price Comparison

Notable Features

  • Policy Limits and Coverage Options
  • Comparing Aviva to the Competition

Aviva Travel Insurance Review: What You Need to Know

Aviva travel insurance offers a simple and customizable approach to travel insurance. You can buy either single trip or multi-trip (annual) policies with cover for Cancellation and Emergency Medical, but unfortunately Baggage and Travel Disruption are not included as standard. These features, as well as airspace closure, winter sports, golf, scuba diving and business cover are available to purchase for an extra cost.

Also, note that their standard excess has doubled since before the pandemic, from £50 per person per incident to £100.

Does Aviva Travel Insurance Cover Trips in the UK? Holidays in the UK are covered under Aviva policies, so long as you pre-booked at least 2 consecutive nights of accommodation.

Pre-Existing Conditions: You might get cover with Aviva for pre-existing conditions , but you'll need to disclose and get pre-approval first. Here's when you need to tell Aviva:

  • You’ve received advice, medication or treatment for any serious illness, injury or disease in the last 12 months
  • You’re waiting for test results for any diagnosed or undiagnosed condition
  • You’re planning to stay with someone who has a serious illness, injury or disease

Over 65s: Those over age 65 are eligible for Aviva travel insurance, up to the age of 75 for Annual Multi-Trip policies and 80 for Single Trip policies.

Aviva Travel Insurance Key Points

  • One level of cover with add-ons available for an extra cost
  • Single-trip cover for trips up to 120 days
  • Multi-trip cover for trips up to 31 days (or up to 90 days for an extra charge)
  • Upper age limits of 75 for Annual Multi-Trip and 79 for Single Trip
  • Optional extras: winter sports, golf, scuba, baggage, airspace closure, travel disruption
  • Extended Stay cover available for longer trips
  • Insolvency not covered
  • Baggage cover not standard but available as an add on
  • Prices in line with market averages

Aviva Price Comparison

According to our research, Aviva prices are typically in line with the average cost of travel insurance in the UK marketplace.

While Aviva's basic plans initially appear to be cheap vs. market averages, these basic plans do not include baggage and travel disruption as standard. Therefore we also gathered quotes for plans across geographies (e.g., Europe and America ) including baggage and travel disruption cover. As you can see in the following charts, there is a bit more value found in Aviva's single-trip policies relative to market averages.

Insurance quotes can vary significantly from day to day and according to each individual's details, so please just use the following data for general educational purposes only about the travel insurance market; your quotes may reflect a large degree of variation.

chart showing Aviva multi-trip travel insurance prices compared to market averages

Cost of Add-On Extras

We've also gathered quotes for annual, worldwide policies across geographies for a 30-year-old single male in order to break down the additional premium you might expect to pay with add-on features such as baggage and travel disruption. If you're considering adding on any extra cover, it can be useful to have a rough idea of expected costs. While quotes are likely to vary according to your particular application details, you can get a general idea of travel insurance add-on costs in the table below.

Aviva travel insurance rates with age

As with all travel insurance, rates for Aviva will rise with age—in particular, once people reach ages 60 to 70. The below chart can give you an idea as to how much Aviva travel insurance rates can change with age. As you can see, it's expected that a 70 year old can easily pay 3X the rate of a 30 year old. And that's if they're healthy. Many 70 year olds will pay an even higher amount, if they have pre-existing conditions.

chart showing Aviva multi-trip travel insurance prices compared to market averages

We've combed through the Policy Documents and noted the following feature highlights. Of course, standard features like Medical and Personal Liability are also included on Aviva policies, limits for which can be found below in the Policies . For more complete details and exclusions, please see the policy documents .

Types of Aviva Travel Insurance Policies

Aviva offers Single and Multi-trip travel insurance with optional extras including Baggage, Winter Sports, Airspace closure (e.g., volcanic ash), Travel Disruption, Extended stay (45, 60 or 90 days), Golf, Scuba and Business cover.

Single Trip: Aviva's Single Trip travel insurance covers trips up to 120 days abroad.

Annual Multi-Trip: Aviva's Annual Multi-Trip policies cover trips abroad up to 31 days in length, for travellers between age 16 and 75. (For an extra cost, you can extend the length of covered holidays up to 90 days).

Here is a highlight of some features on Aviva policies:

Aviva Cover Limits (Single & Annual Multi-Trip)^

^For inner limits please see the Policy Wording

Optional Add-On Extra Cover Limits

Please read some of our Travel Insurance Guides if you're trying to decide between Single Trip or Multi-Trip policies, learn about What May Not be Covered by Travel Insurance or decide if you Need Travel Insurance or Not .

How does Aviva Travel Insurance Compare to Competitors?

To better understand the value of Aviva travel insurance you need to look at it in the context of other available options. We compared it to other plans in the market so you can see which may be more suitable for you.

Aviva Travel Insurance vs AXA Travel Insurance

AXA Travel Insurance Review

In our opinion, AXA travel insurance offers solid cover for reasonable prices, offering good value for money. Insolvency, Baggage, Cancellation/Delay/Curtailment and Catastrophe are included on all plans.

Bottom Line: If you really want cover for End Supplier Failure and Baggage included as standard, then AXA might be a more comprehensive travel insurance option for you.

Aviva Travel Insurance vs AA Travel Insurance

AA Travel Insurance

AA travel insurance is another provider offering good value. In particular, we like their higher-tier Standard plan as it offers higher limits plus includes Abandonment and Financial Failure, may cover pre-existing conditions and you can add extended Travel Disruption protection. Personal Belongings and baggage are covered on all policies, although cover limits may be too low for some travellers. When purchased online, customers can lock in a 20% online discount for the first year.

Bottom Line: If you want a larger online discount, AA offers 20% off to new customers.

Aviva Travel Insurance vs Holidaysafe Travel Insurance

Holidaysafe Travel Insurance

Holidaysafe offers travellers a vast array of Annual and Single Trip travel insurance plans, with varying cover limits to suit most needs. Prices are very competitive and solid value can be found amongst plans that can be customized to cover your particular activities, such as Sailing, Scuba, Mountain Biking, Motorcycling, Golf, Running & Triathlon, Cycling, Marathon and Winter Sports. The Premier Plus plans come in at market average prices, and include financial failure and natural disaster cover.

Bottom Line: If you're looking for customizable travel insurance cover, Holidaysafe offers many options to get the cover you need.

Other Useful Information

  • Aviva Travel Insurance Policy Wording

Erin Yurday is the Founder and Editor of NimbleFins. Prior to NimbleFins, she worked as an investment professional and as the finance expert in Stanford University's Graduate School of Business case writing team. Read more on LinkedIn .

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Aviva Travel Insurance

Your peace of mind is crucial to make the most out of your trip or travels. It’s great to keep an itinerary handy but let’s get down to the brass tracks to get rid of the looming fear of going facing the unknown. Travel insurance provides much-needed security against unforeseen circumstances by taking care of the monetary aspect of travel. When you make a claim, you would be reimbursed for expenses covered by the policy. A trusted company that caters to the needs of travellers is Aviva.

Aviva travel insurance typically covers medical expenses, trip cancellations or disruptions, lost or stolen baggage, and emergency assistance services while travelling. They also offer different levels of coverage to suit the needs and budgets of customers. There is an option to add additional benefits like coverage for risky sports, delays in travel, damages, and much more. This article will review what Aviva travel insurance covers, what’s not covered, types of policies and their claims process.

Aviva Travel Insurance plans

Aviva Travel Insurance caters to the needs of different types of travellers and their budgets. Here is a list of their main plans:

Single-trip travel insurance

The single-trip travel insurance provides coverage for one trip and is available for up to a year. This is a great option for those that don’t travel often but have an important trip to take. The coverage typically includes medical expenses, trip cancellations or disruptions, and lost baggage.

Annual multi-trip insurance

The annual multi-trip travel insurance Aviva offers extensive coverage for multiple trips within a year, with a limitation of up to 31 days per trip. This option is recommended for those that are constantly on the go. This is an affordable choice for globetrotters, and includes the same coverage as that of a single tip cover, with additional security for travel delays and missed connections.

Optional extra covers:

  • Winter sports: This provides coverage for winter sports like skiing and snowboarding. This would typically include cover for medical expenses, gear damage or loss, and piste closure.
  • Backpacker: This is a more risky more of travel as leisure is not a top priority. With several things that could go wrong for the backpacker, this plan will cover for medical emergencies, cancellations, and damage to personal belongings. Its extended trip cover goes for up to 18 months.
  • Travel disruption: This provides security for cancellations and trip abandonments due to a pertinent authority forbidding the travel or when there are strikes in the destinations due to which transportation gets cancelled. It is also applicable when natural disasters take a toll on the accommodations.
  • Airspace closure: If the airport is closed on the date of travel, this extended clever comes into action. It is also applicable when volcanic activity affects travel or when there are no alternatives for transport for more than 24 hours from the time of departure.
  • Baggage: This cover will provide insurance for damage or loss of personal belongings of up to  £1,500 per person. However, this is not applicable if the baggage has been left unattended or if the loss was left unreported for 24 hours.
  • Golfing: This provides coverage for loss or damage of golfing equipment for up to £1,500 per person. However, this is not applicable if the equipment was stolen from a motor vehicle and left unreported for 24 hours.
  • Scuba diving: A standard insurance will cover the diver for up to 15 m in depth but with this additional cover, it is extended to 30 metres. The specifics depend on the policyholder and there will be variations in the details.

Availing of extra coverage is a smart choice to stay ahead of hazardous accidents or incidents.

What’s not covered

Unfortunately, there are instances when Aviva travel insurance won’t provide coverage. They are:

  • Cancellations: Unless you’ve taken out the travel disruption cover, Aviva won’t provide coverage for cancellations of trips if the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advises doing so.
  • If any event was bound to occur when purchasing a policy that would inhibit you from continuing the travel or affect travel plans.
  • If there are costs recoverable from the travel/accommodation provider, or the bank, you’re advised to go to them instead.
  • If the mishaps were not a part of any extra covers.
  • Activities specifically excluded in the policy wording.
  • If problems occur due to documents being out of date.

How the claims process works

Keep your documents ready: A dedicated team is available to help you 24/7 online or over the phone. Keep your policy number handy to start a claim, along with a copy of your insurance documents.

Expert Review: The speciality team will look at the claim and work out how to best help you. They will review the photos or documents you submit as part of the claim, along with receipts for emergencies.

Quick response- When the due process has been followed, they will reach out post-haste to sort things out.

At home or abroad, the Aviva travel insurance team are there for you. Travel insurance is crucial to provide protection against unforeseen circumstances. You can add up to 8 family members or friends on the Aviva travel insurance. Go through the policies to make the best of it and not blindsight you later on. It promises to give you peace of mind while you’re away from home. The insurance will come into action if things don’t go as planned. For more information, visit Tripcolumn.

Also, Read- Avanti Travel Insurance | Tesco Bank Travel Insurance | Travel Insurance with COVID Cover |

Does Aviva travel insurance cover a cancelled flight?

Aviva travel insurance covers you for costs that can’t be recovered anywhere else. If your flight is cancelled, the first thing to do is check with the airline to find out what options are available. If all costs cannot be recovered, they will look into your circumstances and see if there is help available.

Does Aviva travel insurance cover strikes? 

In case of flight cancellations, contact your airline first or travel agency. If you’ve added the Travel Disruption cover, you might be covered for cancellations due to strikes. This will ultimately depend on when the strikes were announced, the time of booking, and the time of purchasing the insurance. If the strikes we announced to take place in the media, you won’t be covered.

Will the insurance cover missed flights due to delays at the airport?

No, you won’t be covered for missed flights due to delays at or by the airport. Contact your airline or travel provider to see what options are available for you.


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Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance

aviva travel insurance for existing customers

Relax with HSBC Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance

Enjoy worldwide travel insurance for you and your loved ones.

Cover is provided by Aviva Insurance Limited. You must complete an application to be covered. Please read the  Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance Product Information Document (PDF, 152KB)  for a summary of terms, conditions, limitations and applicable exclusions.

For the latest coronavirus travel guidance, see  what’s covered under HSBC Travel Insurance .

If you already have Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance, find out how you can manage your policy or make a claim.

Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance is only available to HSBC UK Premier bank account holders. It is not available on savings or other accounts. Subject to application.

What's included

Worldwide cover for you, your partner, your dependent children and grandchildren.

The cover is for you (the HSBC account holder) and your domestic partner - if you're both under 70 years of age on the start date of your trip - and any dependent children or grandchildren travelling with you.

Your children are also covered if they're staying with a close relative, travelling with a relative who's over the age of 23, or going on a school/college trip independently with a teacher.

Children covered by this policy must be under 23. Grandchildren covered by the policy must be under the age of 23 and don’t have to live with you.

All insured persons must be residents of the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man.

To be covered for medical claims, you must be registered with a doctor in the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man.

Holidays in the UK

Holidays taken in the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man are covered if they involve a stay of at least 2 consecutive nights.

They must also have either of the following:

  • pre-booked holiday accommodation in commercially-run premises 
  • pre-paid bookings on public transport, including flights and ferries

Please see our definition of ‘pre-booked holiday accommodation’ in your policy document.

Business trips

You're covered to travel outside the UK in connection with an insured person’s job to carry out non-manual work such as administrative tasks, meetings and conferences.

We don't cover any claim in connection with an insured person’s job where the trip involves:

  • manual or physical work of any kind
  • working with children
  • providing healthcare, policing, security or military service
  • an insured person’s role as a politician, religious leader, professional entertainer or sportsperson

While this isn’t a specific cruise policy, cruises are covered as standard since they're simply another type of holiday. However, there is no cover for some items that cruise policies may specifically cover, e.g. missed ports, unused excursions, and change of itinerary.

Medical conditions

You'll need to call the HSBC Medical Risk Assessment Helpline on 0800 051 7457 before booking your trip if you, or any insured person, has in the last 12 months, experienced any of the following for a condition not on the accepted conditions list in your policy wording: 

  • been prescribed medication, including newly prescribed or repeat medication
  • received or is awaiting medical treatment, tests or investigations
  • been referred to, or is under the care of, a specialist/consultant
  • been admitted to hospital or had surgery

You must also tell us if any of the above happen regarding conditions you have already declared, if there are any changes to prescribed medication or if any of the conditions deteriorate.

All pre-existing medical conditions must be on the 'accepted conditions' list in your policy wording to be covered, otherwise they must be disclosed to and accepted in writing by the insurer.

What's not covered

Pre-existing conditions.

Pre-existing conditions are not covered at any time under the policy unless listed on the accepted conditions list, or were disclosed to and accepted in writing by the HSBC Medical Risk Assessment Helpline. You may be able to get cover for these from a specialist insurer. MoneyHelper has a list of these insurers – you can check its travel directory or call  0800 138 7777 .

Undiagnosed symptoms

Undiagnosed symptoms are not covered. There is no cover for any claim where you knew that you or your travelling companion may be unable to travel or may need to come home early at the time you opened your HSBC Premier Account or booked your trip (whichever is later). For example, if one of you fell ill.

Things to know

Are you eligible for premier worldwide travel insurance.

Please ensure you can answer yes to the following questions:

Do you hold an HSBC Premier account?

Are you under 70 years of age?

Are you resident in the UK (not including the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man)?

  • Are any dependent children/grandchildren under 23 years of age, on the start date of the trip?  

Your application must have been accepted by HSBC for cover to apply.

When does the cover start and end?

Cover starts from the date your travel insurance application is accepted. It remains in place until the account is closed, its converted to a different account, you cancel your policy, or you are no longer eligible for cover – whichever is sooner.

How to make a claim

For details of how and when to make a claim, please visit our travel Insurance claims page.

Make a travel insurance claim

Policy documents

  • Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance Product Information Document (PDF, 152KB) Premier Worldwide Travel Insurance Product Information Document (PDF, 152KB) Download
  • HSBC Travel Insurance Policy Wording: HSBC Private Banking, HSBC Premier (retained Jade benefits), and HSBC Premier Accounts (PDF, 528KB) HSBC Travel Insurance Policy Wording: HSBC Private Banking, HSBC Premier (retained Jade benefits), and HSBC Premier Accounts (PDF, 528KB) Download
  • Privacy Notice (PDF, 160KB) Privacy Notice (PDF, 160KB) Download
  • Premier (retained Jade benefits) Travel Insurance Product Information Document (PDF, 257KB) Premier (retained Jade benefits) Travel Insurance Product Information Document (PDF, 257KB) Download

How do I find out if I already have travel insurance with my HSBC bank account? 

Premier Travel Insurance is available to HSBC UK Premier customers only. That means customers with an HSBC Premier bank account, an HSBC Premier (retained Jade Benefits) or an HSBC Private Banking account.

HSBC UK Premier customers:   You should have travel insurance with your account if you're under 70, are resident in the UK and have successfully completed an application

HSBC Premier (retained Jade Benefits) or an HSBC Private Banking customers:   You should have travel insurance with your account if you're under 80, are resident in the UK and  have successfully completed an application.

You can request confirmation of your travel insurance on Aviva's website at

Do you need to notify us before you use your HSBC debit or credit card outside the UK? 

No, you no longer need to notify us before you travel. To find out more about managing your money whilst you travel, see  using your card abroad .

I've lost my invitation to apply for HSBC Premier Travel Insurance. How do I apply? 

Call us on 03457 70 70 70 . We'll provide you with the link to apply once we've verified your account information.

Our lines are open 08:00 to 20:00 every day.

Do I have to apply for HSBC Premier Travel Insurance at the same time as I open my bank account? 

No. You can apply at any time as long as you meet the eligibility criteria and hold a Premier account.

You can call us on 03457 70 70 70 and we'll provide you with the link to apply.

You won't be covered if you don't complete a successful application.

Can I get help to complete my application for HSBC Premier Travel Insurance? 

If you need help, please call us on 03457 70 70 70 to make an appointment for a member of our team to complete the application with you over the phone.

I have a joint account. Can I complete the application for HSBC Premier Travel Insurance for both of us? 

Yes, although only one account holder should complete the application. If you don’t have permission to provide the other account holder’s details, you won’t be able to complete the application online and will need to call us on 03457 70 70 70 to book an appointment (for which both account holders will need to be available). Our lines are open 08:00 to 20:00 every day. 

When can my HSBC Premier Travel Insurance cover start? 

Assuming you're eligible, your cover will start as soon as you submit your application. 

When will I receive my HSBC Premier Travel Insurance policy documents? 

It can take up to a week to process your application and issue your welcome pack and policy documents. If you'd like to review your policy documents now, you can find them in the insurance section at . 

How can I get written confirmation I am covered by HSBC Premier Travel Insurance? 

If you need confirmation of your cover, you can request it on Aviva's website . If you applied for cover in the past 7 days, please call us on 03457 70 70 70 .

My HSBC Premier Travel Insurance mentions restricted cover. What does this mean? 

If your recent HSBC Worldwide Travel Insurance application displayed a restricted cover decision, this is because you, or someone to be covered by the policy, is either:

  • not registered with a doctor in the UK; and/or
  • has a pre-existing medical condition

There is no cover for any medical claims for anyone not registered with a doctor in the UK.

To change this please register with a doctor in the UK. Once registered, please read the ‘Your Health’ section in your Policy Wording for full details of when and what you must declare.

Anyone with a pre-existing medical condition not shown on the ‘Accepted conditions’ list in your Policy Wording will need to complete a screening. To do this please call the Medical Risk Assessment Team on 0800 051 7457 . There is no cover for any pre-existing medical conditions until this has been completed.

Explore more

See all insurance options, things to consider when booking a holiday, how to make an insurance claim, customer support.

  • Best for customer satisfaction
  • Best for older adults
  • Best for long-term care
  • Best for high returns
  • Best for agent support
  • Best for term life
  • Why you should trust us

Best Life Insurance Companies of July 2024

Affiliate links for the products on this page are from partners that compensate us (see our advertiser disclosure with our list of partners for more details). However, our opinions are our own. See how we rate insurance products to write unbiased product reviews.

Life insurance is as complicated as the policyholders and beneficiaries who use it. That means there's no single "best" life insurance company. Instead, you can find the best option based on what you want or what you prioritize.

Best Life Insurance of 2024 Summary

  • Best for customer satisfaction: State Farm Life Insurance
  • Best for older adults: Prudential Life Insurance
  • Best for agent support: New York Life Insurance
  • Best for long-term care: Columbus Life
  • Best for high returns: Allianz Life
  • Best for term life: North American Company

Top Life Insurance Companies of 2024

While there is no such thing as the objective best life insurance policy, you will be able to find the best insurance policy for your specific needs. Here are our picks for the best life insurance companies, whether you want to use your life insurance policy to build wealth through cash value or you're just looking for a term life insurance policy .

Best Life Insurance for Customer Satisfaction

State farm life insurance.

State Farm Life Insurance gets the best life insurance ranking in J.D Power's Individual Life Insurance Study, with a score of 843/1,000. The company is also ranked A++ with AM Best for its financial stability with term, universal, and whole life insurance options. 

All State Farm policies have to be purchased through a State Farm agent. Your agent can help you bundle and save or buy one policy. State Farm is also among the companies offering "survivorship universal life insurance ," which means the policy covers two people, and it kicks in after the second person dies. Couples looking to maximize their death benefit for beneficiaries with one premium payment each month may enjoy lower overall costs.

State Farm agents can run quotes and compare options to find the right plans for each applicant. The range of options, discounts, and familiar name all contribute to the popularity of State Farm's life insurance.

Read our State Farm Life Insurance review .

Best Life Insurance for Older Adults

Prudential life insurance.

Prudential Life Insurance is available in all states except New York. New York residents can buy the Pruco Life of New Jersey VUL Protector plan. This plan allows buyers to pull money out of their plan to pay for nursing home expenses. Cash value policy premiums are fixed, so you won't have to worry about extra costs later on. Internal costs are low, which minimizes risk. Due to age, many older adults want a safe investment option for their money. Prudential VUL Protector invests to avoid loss. That also means you're not as likely to see big increases in your available funds outside of what you deposit.

Read our Prudential Life Insurance review .

Best Life Insurance for Long-Term Care

Columbus life.

Columbus Life offers a wide range of riders to customize your policy with affordable premiums. The company also allows you to convert term policies to whole life insurance policies until the end of your term (generally around age 70). For this and many other reasons, customer satisfaction is high.

When using living health benefits (otherwise known as accelerated death benefits), buyers are allowed to pull money from policies early to pay for medical bills, living costs, etc. under certain circumstances. Most companies use a discounted death benefit, which reduces your final payout using two models. Columbus uses the lien method, which makes it easier to calculate the financial impact of pulling money out early.

Best Life Insurance for High Returns on Income

Allianz life.

Allianz Life plans are geared towards high-income adults looking for more tax-free income. Allianz offers a 40% multiplier bonus with a 1% annual assets charge. In short, the professionals managing your investments take 10%. Overall, your investments would pull in an extra 14%-1% asset charge. This means you end up with 3% more than what you deposit every year your life policy is active. This plan offers strong returns when using a life policy to supplement your retirement savings. Allianz also offers specialized plans to grow your income by as much as 20% according to some estimates.

Of note: Allianz also offers plans for foreign nationals, including those with H-1B visas.

Best Life Insurance for Agent Support

New york life insurance.

New York Life Insurance agents go through extensive training before they ever hit the sales floor. What does this get you? Policies vary widely, and New York Life offers both large and small payouts. Some policies have significant penalties for early withdrawal, but taking a loan offers more options. Whatever your questions, New York Life agents are trained to offer comprehensive support giving you accurate information about its policies every time. The company comes in at position eight in J.D. Power's latest life insurance customer satisfaction study.

Read our New York Life Insurance review here.

Best Life Insurance for Term Life

North american company.

North American Company offers term policies alongside accelerated death benefits for critical, chronic, and terminal illnesses and more. The company allows one conversion on a 20-year policy at 15 years or 70 years old (whichever is earlier). The conversion cannot happen later than the five-year marker regardless of which policy you choose or the length. North American Company also offers a term policy with a lower premium renewable up to the age of 95 for qualifying insureds.

Types of Life Insurance

While there's many different types of life insurance policies , broadly speaking, there are two types of life insurance: temporary and permanent. Let's go over each in detail.

Temporary life insurance

Temporary life insurance is often called term life insurance. This type of policy covers you for a set amount of time before expiring, usually between 10-30 years. If you pass away after your policy expires, your family won't receive any benefits. Additionally, your policy won't accrue cash value like a permanent policy. That said, some term life insurance policies offer a conversion from term to whole life insurance, so you can extend your coverage. 

Because its benefits aren't guaranteed, term life policies are generally cheaper than permanent life insurance. That said, the vast majority of term life insurance policies never pay out. on

Permanent life insurance

Permanent life insurance is an umbrella term for a variety of life insurance policies that will insure you indefinitely and guarantee a payout as long as you maintain your policy. Policy types that fall under permanent life insurance includes:

  • Whole life insurance
  • Universal life insurance
  • Variable life insurance
  • Variable universal life insurance
  • Simplified life insurance
  • Guaranteed issue life insurance

These policies vary widely in purpose and intended buyers, but all guarantee death benefits to your loved ones. Some permanent life insurance policies, like whole, universal, and variable have a cash value component , which you can use as a savings tool or to leave your heirs a larger death benefit.

How to Pick the Best Life Insurance Policy for You

Finding the right fit in life insurance starts with finding a trusted insurance agent. Because there are so many state regulations, shopping for homeowners or auto insurance can be easily done online. Life insurance is not required. So it's a voluntary purchase. Many buyers don't know what they need or when they need it. Before making your selection, consider a few things:

Some companies will sell you a policy for your child as soon as they're born. While this may seem morbid, early sign-up means lower rates for a policy your child could enjoy in the future. Regardless, early sign-up equates to more policy for lower premiums and a higher likelihood of acceptance. At 20, you may be healthier and be able to pay into the policy for a longer period compared to when you're 50 with more age-related conditions.

As a general rule, never agree to more than you can afford. For the average life insurance agent, their job is to sell you a large policy with a large commission. Consider not only how much you make now, but how likely your current income is to continue. If you work on a project basis and your project is scheduled to end in 12 months, you may want to reconsider a policy premium outside your monthly savings.

How much are you prepared to buy? Some people only want a small policy to cover funerals and other end-of-life expenses. Others build a life policy into their retirement plan. Whatever direction you're going, involving a financial planner could help you make the right decisions. Depending on the carrier, customers can also compare set limits with index universal life policies, which set no limit. These policies never expire, and the value builds over the entirety of your life.

Living Benefits

Life happens unexpectedly. You could be healthy one day and in the hospital the next. Many life policies offer living benefits. These allow you to draw a limited amount out of your policy to cover medical and other bills you cannot pay while sick.

Much like a 401(k), many life insurance policies have penalties for early withdrawal. No matter what policy you want, this question is critical to an informed decision. It's a question of how early you can withdraw and how much you'll lose from the total to have the money in 10 years instead of 30 or after death.

Some policies require insured parties to pay premiums for at least one year before any significant payout would be available. Suicide exclusions are common. Even with no medical exam policies, the company may still do a check for known conditions. An insurance company has to mitigate its risk.


Once you've been denied a life insurance policy, a mark goes on your record. No matter the reasons, other insurance companies may deny you coverage based on the first denial. So consider your whole situation and choose your policy carefully before you submit any applications. Some policies have greater flexibility if you lose your job or otherwise can't make payments. Others will lapse if you miss even one payment.

Payment Type

Even within whole life or term life insurance policies, customers have the option to choose guaranteed fixed or variable rates. Some have guaranteed payouts, but you'll need to ask your agent for details.

What is your intended use? Why are you shopping for a life insurance policy in the first place, and what are your goals? Many successful financial planners also have a background in life insurance. So while they may not be able to find you a specific life insurance policy, financial planners can help you set out a blueprint for your purchase.

Why You Should Trust Us: How We Reviewed the Best Life Insurance Companies

In life insurance, it's easy to get "sold a bill of goods." Many life insurance agents pass a state test to be thrown into the deep end. Agents sell the company product, but not all know the products. In this vein, we look at the products each company offers. We also look at agent training.

A good life insurance agent may not volunteer all facts upfront. But a company's agents should answer questions about its products accurately and in a way the average consumer can digest. Agents should be able to inform you about the long-term benefits and limitations. This will help customers find the right policy for their long-term plan.

We consider affordability, policy sizes available, and performance for a comprehensive assessment in our life insurance rating methodology . If you can, we recommend also working with a financial advisor to make a plan for your future with life insurance.

Our Expert Panel for The Best Life Insurance Companies

To inform our choices for the best life insurance companies, we spoke with the following experts:

  • Paul LaPiana , head of product at MassMutual
  • Barbara Pietrangelo , CFP, CLU, and chair of the nonprofit Life Happens
  • Wykeeta Peel , Corporate Vice President and Market Manager, African American Market Unit at New York Life

The Experts' Advice on Choosing The Best Life Insurance for You

How much life insurance coverage do you believe the average buyer should have.

Paul LaPiana, Head of Product at MassMutual

"There are different approaches to determining how much life insurance you need. One is the 'human life' approach, which estimates the current value of your future earning potential. Another is securing specific coverage to pay off debts such as a mortgage or provide for the education of children. A comprehensive protection plan should provide the right amount of coverage over the course of your working life and into retirement."

Barbara A. Pietrangelo, Chair of Life Happens

"There is no one-size-fits-all life insurance policy because everyone is different. One way to get a rough estimate is to multiply your income by 10 to 15; another is adding $100,00 to that amount, should you have a child and anticipate college education expenses.

Your best bet is to talk to a financial professional or use the Life Insurance Needs Calculator on to analyze what's right for you."

Wykeeta Peel, Corporate Vice President & Market Manager African American Market Unit at New York Life

"As you consider what policy best meets your needs, it can help to answer four key questions: First, how much death benefit do you need? Second, how long will you need that coverage? Third, what is your budget (or how much monthly premium can you afford to pay?), and finally, what is your investment risk tolerance?

To determine how much death benefit makes sense, it's helpful to think beyond using life insurance to cover funeral expenses and consider whether anyone is relying on the policy owner's income to maintain a lifestyle, pay rent or a mortgage, or fund a child's education and for how long.

There are various rules of thumb regarding the right amount of Life insurance coverage. Some tips can be found online, but they only provide an estimate and don't necessarily factor in an individual's specific needs. In my opinion, human guidance, powered by technology, is required. Basically, it comes down to how much money your loved ones would need to remain on firm financial ground if your earnings were no longer in the picture and that is different for everyone."

What is the biggest opportunity you see for improvement in the life insurance industry?

"Increased accessibility through digital and other channels as well as through underwriting enhancements. Increased tailoring of products and features. And an increased emphasis on health and wellness programs."

"Having enough qualified insurance professionals to walk potential buyers through the multiple benefits of life insurance will be pivotal to the growth of the industry. Education is a key factor here, as professional agents also need to be able to explain life insurance and its benefits in an easy, digestible way, especially when there are so many misconceptions about life insurance."

"The need for life insurance is greater than ever. In fact, a recent New York Life Wealth Watch survey found that 37% of adults have been thinking about life insurance more often these days – and half of adults report that financial products that provide protection (50%) and reliability (50%) are more important now compared to last year. This may be especially true for middle-market and Cultural Market families.

Our organizational structure of having Cultural Market agents embedded in the communities where we live and work allows us to understand the needs of diverse communities and develop solutions that resonate with them."

What advice would you give to buyers who are debating whether or not to buy life insurance?

"It is difficult to say with any certainty how healthy you will be years from now. That's why securing life insurance, and insuring your insurability, today, when you are the youngest you'll ever be again, and perhaps your healthiest is a wise decision."

"Do you love someone? If the answer is yes, then life insurance is certainly something you should consider. Many buy gifts and experiences to express their love, but haven't considered that life insurance is just another way to say I love you. Nothing says support like ensuring your family's financial security and peace of mind."

"If you have someone depending on your income, you should consider purchasing life insurance. A death benefit from a life insurance policy can replace income from the loss of a breadwinner, ensure a family can stay in their home, fund educational or retirement expenses, address debt and so much more.

A life insurance policy can also help you grow your family's wealth over time. Once the risk of an unexpected loss has been managed, you can begin to think more broadly about your family's financial future. Life insurance can enable your mindset to shift from death to growth."

What's the most important thing buyers should look for when choosing a life insurance agent/company to buy from?

"With life insurance, you are securing a future commitment that may be decades away. Research the company behind the policy to ensure it has high financial strength ratings, longevity, and an excellent track record of paying claims."

"When looking for an insurance agent or company, be sure to do your research. When comparing companies, be sure to remember that the policy features that fit you and your loved ones best is the most important factor. Don't automatically assume you should buy from the higher-rated company.

If the policy from the other company has more of what you're looking for, it might be the better choice. If you're unsure where to start, try the Life Happens Agent Locator to find an insurance professional in your area."

  • "The insurers' track record: At its core, life insurance is protection - a hedge against the unexpected - and you are paying premiums in exchange for the promise that the insurer will be there when you need them, so the financial strength and track record of the company backing your policy is critical.
  • Customer service: Are service professionals available by phone and digital channels? Is there is an online dashboard where you can manage your policy? Beyond ensuring assistance is available after you purchase a policy, it's also critical to ensure you have access to trusted advice and guidance before you buy.
  • Flexibility in conversion: How easy is it to change? Life can be unpredictable and while term insurance can cover your loved ones through a critical period of time, you may decide that access to cash value is an important piece of your strategy.
  • Accelerated online applications : Online applications are convenient but don't replace human guidance. Keep in mind that accelerated online applications may have a maximum coverage amount, meaning that you may not be able to get all the coverage you may need exclusively through an online process.
  • A range of payment options: It's important to understand how often you're required to make premium payments and whether and how often you can change the frequency of payments."

Best Life Insurance FAQs

A whole life insurance policy has a schedule of payments to earn the total death benefit. Past a certain waiting period, you'll get the full payout if something happens. However, you can also pay it off entirely if you live longer or make larger payments early. In either of these situations, you are no longer required to make further payments to keep the policy active.

There isn't one best life insurance company, because the best option for you will depend on the type of policy you're looking for. It's best to work with a qualified insurance agent to help you find the best coverage. If you're deciding between multiple similar options, it's also worth consulting J.D. Power's life insurance customer satisfaction study . The latest study ranks State Farm as the top pick for individual life insurance, outpacing Nationwide by three points.

Each situation is different and requires a knowledgeable life insurance agent to assess your best options. Bring all your questions and the coverage you're looking for to an insurance agent near you to explore your options.

No, medical exams aren't necessarily required for life insurance. Some life insurance policies are advertised as "no medical exam." This doesn't mean the insurer won't ask you about known conditions or look at medical records. You can find our guide on the best no exam life insurance here.

The most popular type of life insurance is term life insurance . Term policies are only good for a specified term that you select when opening the policy — the fact that they don't last forever also makes these policies the most affordable. That said, a very slim minority of term life insurance ever pays out. 

aviva travel insurance for existing customers

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