Travel Insurance For A Trip To Sweden – Forbes Advisor

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American tourists vacation in Sweden to enjoy its rich culture, outdoor recreation opportunities and magnificent Northern Lights.

“Winter sports such as dog sledding, snowmobiling, skiing and snowshoeing make Sweden an ideal destination for the adventurous traveler,” says Scott Adamski, a spokesperson with AIG Travel Insurance.

But expenses for a trip to Sweden can add up quickly as you start paying for flights, accommodations, tours and excursions. The best way to protect your trip investment is to purchase a robust travel insurance plan.

What to Look for in Travel Insurance for a Trip to Sweden

The best travel insurance plans will include coverage for:

Trip Cancellation: Maybe Next Time, Northern Lights

When you book a trip, you’re likely not thinking about canceling it, but sometimes emergencies occur. Trip cancellation insurance can help you recoup any pre-paid, non-refundable expenses.

“Paying for Transatlantic or long-haul flights to Sweden and nights in hotels and vacation rentals can cost you an arm and a leg,” says Lisa Cheng, a spokesperson with World Nomads, a travel insurance company. “Luckily, trip cancellation coverage can return your non-refundable, pre-paid trip expenses if you have to cancel your trip for a covered reason, such as an unexpected sickness.”

Typically, acceptable cancellation reasons covered by a standard travel insurance plan include:

  • Your death, or the death of a close family member or your traveling companion
  • Severe weather that halts travel operations
  • Severe illness or injury to you, a travel companion or an immediate relative
  • Unexpected job loss
  • Military orders or legal obligations, such as a court order

Not all reasons will be covered. For example, if you decide that you don’t want to go to Sweden because of a rise in Covid-19 cases, you can’t rely on your trip cancellation benefits to cover any losses you incur.

Always check your policy for acceptable cancellation reasons. Cheng also advises checking the maximum benefit amount of your trip cancellation insurance to make sure it covers the entire cost of your trip.

“Cancel for any reason” insurance

If you want maximum flexibility, you may want to add “cancel for any reason” coverage to your standard travel insurance policy. This top-tier upgrade permits you to cancel your trip for any reason, including:

  • Fear of travel
  • A disappointing weather forecast
  • The dates are no longer convenient

“Cancel for any reason” insurance will increase your coverage cost by about 50%. You’ll also have to abide by the cancellation window and cancel your trip no later than 48 hours before your scheduled departure.

If you meet the criteria for this benefit, you can file a claim to recover 50% or 75% of your trip expenses, depending on what it says in your policy.

Trip Delay: Getting to Gothenburg Late

Flights to Stockholm usually require a connecting flight, particularly if you begin your trip on the West Coast. For instance, if you’re leaving from Seattle, you may need to stop in Chicago before you fly to Stockholm.

If your connecting flight is delayed for 10 hours because of a security lock-down in Chicago, trip delay insurance will reimburse you for expenses associated with the delay. This can include the cost of meals, a hotel stay and some personal items to hold you over. Just be sure to hold on to your receipts.

Trip delay benefits will also cover the cost of prepaid, non-refundable outlays for things you will miss due to a covered delay. So if you paid for a private car service and a tasting tour in Gothenburg that you will miss due to late arrival in Sweden, you can recover those losses too.

Keep in mind there is probably a waiting period before your trip delay benefits kick in. This could be anywhere from three to 12 hours, so check your policy.

Trip Interruption: So Long, Stockholm

When you travel abroad there is always the chance you may have to return home early. A travel insurance plan with trip interruption benefits can save you thousands of dollars if that happens.

Under a standard travel insurance policy, covered trip interruption reasons typically include:

  • Injury or illness to you, a travel companion or a relative back home
  • Serious family emergency
  • Civil unrest or a national transportation strike

For instance, if your mother needed emergency heart surgery while you were in Sweden, your policy would cover the cost of a last-minute, one-way flight home. If leaving early causes you to miss out on the rest of your pre-paid hotel stay and a non-refundable cruising tour of the Stockholm Archipelago, you can file a claim for reimbursement.

Not all reasons will be covered by trip interruption insurance. So if you miss your dog, and want to cut your trip short due to puppy love, you will have to personally cover any financial losses.

Medical Expense Coverage: A Djurgården Doctor Visit

Travel insurance that includes medical coverage is essential when you travel to foreign countries because your US-based health insurance likely won’t travel with you. Check with your personal health carrier before you travel to see if global benefits apply.

Travel medical insurance will cover the cost of medical treatment for an unexpected illness or injury on your trip.This typically includes:

  • Ambulance
  • Doctor and hospital bills
  • X-rays and lab tests
  • Treatments and prescriptions

There are plenty of walking and hiking destinations in Sweden. And as Adamski of AIG Travel points out, a “can’t miss” part of Sweden is a stroll through Stockholm’s Old Town, which hosts a fairly extensive network of twisting and hilly cobblestone streets.

These pavers are hundreds of years old, Adamski cautions. If they get wet, they are exceedingly slippery and falls are fairly common. If you do slip and twist your ankle and need to be seen by a doctor, your travel medical benefits will cover the cost of medical attention, imaging, medicine and even a hospital stay.

Emergency Medical Evacuation: Need a Little Help In Hemavan

Travelers who plan to hit the Swedish slopes or hike in remote areas should make sure they have a travel insurance policy with enough medical evacuation coverage. The most generous plans include $500,000 in medical expense benefits.

With this coverage, your travel insurance can coordinate and cover the cost of an air ambulance to transport you to a trauma center. Without this benefit, you could be personally liable for these costs, which could be thousands of dollars.

Baggage Loss: Skiing in Sälen Without a Suitcase

When traveling internationally, and especially when taking connecting flights, there is always the possibility that your checked luggage may be delayed, misdirected or lost. If this happens, baggage insurance can reimburse your losses up to your policy limit. Just make sure to get a report from the airline documenting the event so you can submit this with your claim.

Your travel insurance plan will also protect your personal belongings while you are traveling. “Sweden has a low crime rate, however, violent, and nonviolent crimes do occur, mostly in major cities like Stockholm,” says Walch with InsureMyTrip.

To protect yourself, don’t wear flashy jewelry, don’t flaunt that you’re a tourist and be aware of your surroundings. If you do get your cell phone stolen or your backpack swiped off your chair, be sure to file a report with the venue manager, the local authorities and the tour operator. You will be asked to submit this documentation.

Although comprehensive, your travel insurance policy will have item limits, maximum reimbursement caps and exclusions like lost or stolen cash. The limits may be lower than you expect (like $100 per item) and may require a receipt in order to be reimbursed.

Other Considerations When Buying Travel Insurance for a Trip to Sweden

Extreme weather and natural disasters

Its snow-covered villages are picturesque, but Sweden’s winter weather can present a problem for some travelers.

“Blizzards and avalanches can occur in the northern mountains,” says Meghan Walch, a spokesperson with InsureMyTrip. “Another concern is the freezing conditions and icy roads during Sweden’s long winters.”

Walch stresses that travel insurance will not cover a “known issue” or natural disaster. “So, if a blizzard or avalanche impacts your trip, you will not find coverage if you purchase a travel insurance policy after the event,” she explains. “If a natural disaster happens after you have already purchased a policy, you may find coverage.”

Every policy is different, so read yours carefully.

Swedish adventures

Walch says that Sweden is known for its outdoor activities, with skiing, dog sledding, snowmobiling and “cold bathing.” However, some of these activities can be considered dangerous.

“Some policies may exclude adventure sports or offer limited coverage,” she continues. So, if you break your leg while alpine skiing in Hammarbybacken, you want to be sure that your travel insurance policy does not exclude this activity.”

If you’re planning an activity-packed getaway, always check your travel insurance policy to find out what it will and will not cover.

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