Travelers Spent Less on Travel, More on Travel Insurance in 2016

Jan 6, 2017

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More travelers chose to stay close to home in 2016, while opting to purchase travel insurance plans prior to their departures. Both discoveries were released as part of the 2016 Travel Trends Report, completed by travel insurance broker

Across all adventures, the broker saw an 18% increase in travel insurance purchases on trips around the world, fueled by concerns of terrorism, storms and the outbreak of disease. After terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels Airport within months of each other, the number of travelers seeking cancellation and protection benefits for terrorist attacks doubled compared to all of 2015.

Additionally, more travelers decided to visit destinations closer to home, instead of traveling far abroad in 2016. While the United States was the most popular destination for travelers in 2016, Mexico saw an 18% uptick in travel, while Canada saw a 46% increase in visitors. However, Cuba saw the most growth among outbound travelers, thanks to relaxed regulations in traveling to the once-forbidden nation. Travelers seeking insurance for trips to the island increased by 148% compared to 2015, the largest jump of any destination around the world. Cuba is one of a small number of nations requiring travelers to have proof of travel insurance upon landing.

Thanks to greater accessibility, Cuba saw the most growth in number of US travelers in 2016. Image courtesy of Buena Vista Images via Getty Images.

Among international destinations in the Western Hemisphere, Italy and France were the most popular among travelers, with both countries ranking in the top five for travelers. The United Kingdom was the sixth most popular destination, followed by Spain, Germany and Israel.

The amount spent on trips also decreased in 2016, matching trends set by lower fuel prices and the increasing strength of the US dollar around the world. The average trip cost was $3,668, reflecting nearly a 1% decrease in trip price from the year before, and the first decrease in three years.

The age gap was also reflected in how much individuals spend on their travel. Baby Boomers and seniors spent the most on their travel experience, with seniors spending an average of $2,749 on travel before travel insurance. Millennials spent an average of $1,149 on their travel plans, with only 13% of this age group opting to add travel insurance to their trips.

While travel insurance became more popular in 2016, many travelers already have protection on their trips through their preferred method of payment. Many travel-focused credit cards offer insurance benefits for those who pay the balance of their trip with their cards. In one example, those paying with the Chase Sapphire Preferred card have trip cancellation benefits, trip interruption benefits and accidental death and dismemberment benefits extended to those on their itinerary.

Why did you choose to purchase travel insurance in 2016?

Featured image courtesy of Getty Images.


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