These Credit Cards Have the Best Built-In Travel Insurance

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Travel is a mess right now, and with so many things going wrong, it’s entirely possible that you’ll be stuck overnight somewhere or have your luggage delayed on an upcoming trip. Of course, you can always purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy to cover any additional expenses you might incur, but many credit cards have some level of built-in coverage. It may be enough that you can save the expense of a dedicated policy. Here are some of the best cards that come with travel insurance.

Chase Sapphire Reserve: Most comprehensive travel coverage

The Chase Sapphire Reserve has the most comprehensive travel insurance of any credit card on the market—but it’ll cost you a $550 annual fee. The included travel insurance benefits include:

  • Primary auto rental collision damage waiver: Up to $75,000 in coverage
  • Trip-delay reimbursement: Up to $500 per covered passenger when your trip is delayed by six hours or more
  • Trip cancelation/interruption: Up to $10,000 per covered passenger ($20,000 per covered trip)
  • Baggage delay coverage: Up to $100 per day for up to five days per covered passenger when your bag is delayed by at least six hours
  • Lost luggage reimbursement: Up to $3,000 per covered passenger
  • Roadside assistance: Up to $50 per incident, up to four times per year
  • Emergency evacuation: Up to $100,000
  • Emergency medical and dental: Up to $2,500
  • Travel accident insurance: Up to $1,000,000 for Common Carrier Travel Accident Insurance or $100,000 for 24 Hour Travel Accident Insurance

For the card’s high annual fee, cardholders will also receive up to $100 to cover the application fee for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, a Priority Pass Select lounge membership, and a $300 annual credit that is automatically applied to the first $300 in travel purchases made.

The card earns 10 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent on hotels and car rentals booked through Chase Travel, five points per dollar spent on flights booked through Chase Travel, three points per dollar spent on all other travel and dining purchases, and one point per dollar on all other purchases. Points can be redeemed for 1.5 cents each through Chase Travel and on eligible purchases through Pay Yourself Back or transferred at a 1:1 ratio to Chase’s travel partners.

Chase Sapphire Preferred: Most comprehensive travel coverage with annual fee under $100

The travel insurance offered through the Chase Sapphire Preferred is almost as good as that offered through the Reserve, and the card only has a $95 annual fee. The benefits include:

  • Primary auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Trip-delay reimbursement: Up to $500 per covered passenger when your trip is delayed by 12 hours or more
  • Trip cancelation/interruption: Up to $5,000 per covered passenger (maximum two) ($20,000 maximum per 12 month period)
  • Baggage delay coverage: Up to $100 per day for up to five days per covered passenger when your bag is delayed by at least 12 hours
  • Lost luggage reimbursement: Up to $3,000 per covered passenger
  • Travel accident insurance: Up to $500,000 for Common Carrier Travel Accident Insurance or $100,000 for 24 Hour Travel Accident Insurance

The Chase Sapphire Preferred also offers an annual 10% bonus on points earned and an annual $50 credit that can be used to book hotels through Chase Travel.

This card earns five Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent on travel booked through Chase Travel, three points per dollar spent on dining, online grocery and streaming purchases, two points per dollar spent on all other travel purchases and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases.

Ultimate Rewards points associated with the Chase Sapphire Preferred can also be transferred to Chase’s partners at a 1:1 ratio but are redeemable for a lower value of 1.25 cents each through Chase Travel or Pay Yourself Back.

Other credit cards with good travel insurance

A number of other credit cards offer good travel insurance, but you’ll have to dig through the fine print on various cards to make sure there aren’t any gotchas. Other notable cards include:

Capital One Venture X

The Capital One Venture X offers the following travel benefits:

  • Primary auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Trip-delay reimbursement: Up to $500 per covered passenger when your trip is delayed by six hours or more
  • Trip cancelation/interruption: Up to $2,000 per covered passenger
  • Lost luggage reimbursement: Up to $3,000 per covered passenger
  • Travel accident insurance: Up to $1,000,000 in coverage

The Capital One Venture X also offers cell phone insurance coverage, a Priority Pass Select lounge membership, $300 annual travel credit, 10,000 annual bonus miles, up to $100 TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee credit and earns valuable points that can be redeemed through Capital One Travel or transferred to Capital One travel partners.

The Venture X earns 10 miles per dollar spent on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, five miles per dollar spent on flights booked through Capital One Travel and two miles per dollar spent on all other purchases. The card charges a $395 annual fee.

U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve

The U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve offers the following travel protections:

  • Primary auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Trip-delay reimbursement: Up to $500 per covered passenger when your trip is delayed by six hours or more
  • Trip cancelation/interruption: Up to $2,000 per covered passenger
  • Lost luggage reimbursement: Up to $3,000 per covered passenger
  • Travel accident insurance: Up to $500,000 in coverage

The card also offers a $325 travel credit each year, Priority Pass lounge access, an application fee credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry and earns points that are redeemable for 1.5 cents each toward travel.

The Altitude Reserve earns five points per dollar spent on prepaid hotels and car rentals booked through the Altitude Rewards Center, three points per dollar spent on travel and mobile wallet purchases and one point per dollar spent on other purchases. The card has a $400 annual fee.

The Platinum Card from American Express

The Platinum Card offers some travel insurance benefits that are more generous than other cards on the market, but some that are lacking:

  • Secondary auto rental collision damage waiver (cardholders have the option to pay an additional fee of $12.25 to $24.95 for primary coverage with increased limits)
  • Trip-delay reimbursement: Up to $500 per covered passenger when your trip is delayed by six hours or more
  • Trip cancelation/interruption: Up to $10,000 per trip ($20,000 per 12 month period)
  • Lost luggage reimbursement: Up to $3,000 per covered passenger for carry-on bags or $2,000 per covered passenger for checked bags with a combined limit of $3,000 per person, per trip
  • Emergency evacuation: No cost cap

The Platinum Card from American Express has a ton of additional benefits packed in, but with a $695 annual fee it’s one of the most expensive personal credit cards on the market. It offers up to $240 annually in digital entertainment credits, up to $200 in airline incidental fee credits, up to $200 in Uber Cash credits, up to $300 in Equinox credits, up to $100 in credits for Saks Fifth Avenue, up to $189 in credits for CLEAR, up to $155 in Walmart+ credits, and access to Priority Pass lounges, Amex Centurion Lounges and Delta SkyClubs when flying Delta same-day.

The card earns five Membership Rewards points per dollar spent on flights booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel (on up to $500,000 in purchases per calendar year), five points per dollar spent on hotels booked through Amex Travel and one point per dollar spent on all other purchases. Membership Rewards points can be transferred at a 1:1 rate to various airline and hotel partners.

No annual fee cards with limited travel insurance

While all of the best credit cards that offer travel insurance charge an annual fee, there are a few no-annual-fee cards that offer limited coverage. For example, the Chase Freedom Flex offers:

  • Secondary auto rental collision damage waiver: Secondary means that you’ll have to make a claim to your personal car insurance before the credit card insurance will kick in
  • Trip cancellation/interruption: Up to $1,500 per passenger ($6,000 per trip)

The Chase Freedom Flex also includes cell phone insurance coverage.

Bottom line

Travel insurance through a credit card is an amazing perk, and as a general rule, all you need to do is charge your travel expenses onto the card (which should be even easier if your credit card offers bonus points on travel). Take a look at the credit cards you already have to see if any offer built-in travel insurance. If they don’t, or if the coverage isn’t sufficient for you, consider whether another credit card might do the trick.

   

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