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What is flight insurance?

Daniel Walker
Licensed Insurance Agent for 15 Years

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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Flight insurance covers different incidents, from cancelled flights to flight accidents. Typical flight insurance covers accidental death and dismemberment that begins the moment you board the aircraft until the time you deplane it. Whether flight insurance is right for you depends on a number of factors.

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Not everyone believes flight insurance is a good idea. Some people consider it a jinx while other people consider it to be a scam. Flight insurance is really neither of these things. It’s really like all other types of insurance; it benefits some while not benefitting others.

Once you understand the types of flight insurance and the benefits of flight insurance, then you can decide if it is right for you. In many circumstances, people will decide on flight insurance based on other insurance coverage they may already have.

For example, if you already have a million dollar accident death and dismemberment insurance policy, then you may not need to duplicate that coverage with flight insurance. However, if you have no medical insurance, no health insurance, and no life insurance, then you may want to consider flight insurance.

The Types of Flight Insurance

There are several types of flight insurance. Some flight insurance is purchased separately but other flight insurance can be packaged with different types of travel insurance. Flight insurance for trip cancellations or airline trip interruption insurance are usually covered through travel insurance. Insurance coverage for accidental death or loss of limbs is usually covered directly with flight insurance.

Depending on the type of insurance you already own, you may not need a complete travel insurance package. For instance, you may already have substantial medical coverage and not need additional insurance for health emergencies. However, you may not have any accidental death and dismemberment insurance or a life insurance policy, leaving you without coverage should something happen while you are on board an aircraft.

The important thing to consider with flight insurance is the safety of aircraft travel. Flying is statistically considered to be safer than driving, which means there are far fewer plane crashes than motor vehicle crashes. However, plane crashes, when they do happen, tend to have a higher fatality rate.

As technology continues to advance, flying becomes even safer. Today there is a higher survival rate for plane crashes than in the past and those numbers are only expected to grow. However, whether you are flying or driving, there are unpredictable events that can occur from which you would benefit with insurance.

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The Benefits of Flight Insurance

Flight insurance is relatively inexpensive and it offers benefits you may not have otherwise. Typical benefits of flight insurance include a 50% to 100% payout for loss of life, loss of limb(s), and loss of sight. A 50% payout covers either one limb or one eye and a 100% payout covers either two limbs or both eyes.

If you lose your life due to a plane crash, your flight insurance will pay out to your beneficiaries as per your policy for the amount of coverage you purchased. In the event your body is not recovered immediately, your beneficiaries may need to wait for one full year before receiving the payout to see if your body is recovered.

The Cost of Flight Insurance

The cost of flight insurance, as with the cost of most travel insurance, is relatively low, especially in comparison with the cost of many flights themselves. Just like with all insurance, the rates vary by the insurance company, so it may pay to shop around before buying flight insurance from the airline directly.

For as little as $14 you can buy a $100,000 flight insurance policy. Granted, this flight insurance is only good for a one time use, but where else can you buy a life insurance policy for that low of a price? If you don’t have a life insurance policy, it is tempting to spend the cost of a lunch on your flight insurance.

If a million dollar life insurance policy is more in line with your needs, then you may be able to buy flight insurance for that amount of coverage for as little as $60. This type of coverage is a little pricier in the overall scheme of the cost of the airplane ticket and possibly even the trip itself. However, this is probably the only time you will be able to get a million dollar policy for less than the cost of your cell phone bill.

Just because flight insurance is inexpensive, however, does not mean you should feel obligated to buy it. If you already have sufficient health coverage, an accidental death and dismemberment policy, or a life insurance policy, then you may not need to consider flight insurance. However, if you do not have insurance coverage, then flight insurance may be an option for you.

Having sufficient insurance coverage is usually an unpleasant thought but it is a reality everyone should consider. Enter your zip code now to start getting flight and travel insurance quotes and find out how much financial protection you can’t afford to be without.

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