We all worry. As parents, it’s a pretty natural state of existence. We want our kids to grow up healthy and strong, do well in school and have good friends that don’t lead them astray.
The same goes when we travel. One of the first things people ask me about when I tell them we travel with kids is how do we enjoy safe travels and avoid disasters.
Well, the simple answer is, you can’t avoid mishaps and accidents no matter where you are in the world or your method of travel. We have had more bumps, cuts and bruises at home than anywhere else. It’s just part of raising kids.
Unless you plan on wrapping your kids in bubble wrap (I don’t advise this!), you can’t stop them from hurting themselves. Kids will also pick stuff off of the ground and stick it into their mouths. They are kids. This is what they do.
What you can do is educate yourself and stock up on the tools that will help you in the event of an emergency. This is what safe travels is really all about.
Multi-trip Insurance is Your First Step
The first step to traveling safely is to buy a multi-trip travel insurance plan. This is a no-brainer if you take more than one trip per year. Even if you only travel domestically, these plans are worth it to help you have a safe journey.
Did you know that if you break your leg on a winter ski vacation, your health insurance will not buy you a plane ticket home? Chances are, that economy ticket you have won’t cut it either. You will need a first class or a business class ticket for that leg. Say good-bye to a few grand for that last-minute airplane ticket. The airline will have no sympathy for your broken leg.
You know who would? Travel insurance. Your policy would have taken care of that plane ticket home for you. Do I have a policy? Yes, I’ve had a multi-trip policy for my entire family for the past five years.
Which brings us to our next travel safe trip step– downloading the TravelSmart app by Allianz Travel.
ALLIANZ TRAVELSMART APP
Allianz, an international travel insurance company, has been quietly taking care of travelers for decades.
Yes, you all know them as that add-on flight protection insurance you grab from one of those online booking engines, like Expedia.com or Travelocity.com. But they are so much more than that. They are a travel companion on your journey across the globe.
The Allianz TravelSmart app is where this really comes across, and where they have been stepping up their game. Even if you aren’t a customer, you can use this app to get emergency information right at your finger tips. While many of the features do require data or Wi-Fi access, a number of features can be accessed offline.
What’s included in your TravelSmart App?
- Flight status updates in real time, plus boarding gate information.
- Local emergency numbers: find the police, fire, and ambulance numbers for the country you are in (accessible whether you have data access on your phone or not).
- Assistance Around Me: Find doctors, hospitals, pharmacies, police stations, and U.S. embassies within 10km of your location (when your enable your Apple or Google maps. Data usage rates do apply) with turn-by-turn directions. Check marks next to hospitals mean that these facilities are recommended by Allianz Travel.
- First-Aid translations: 60+ first aid terms translated from English to 18 common foreign languages (more languages being added).
- Medication translator: If you need to fill an emergency prescription overseas, the TravelSmart app gives you the universal name for more than 750 common medications. I’ve had to use this in a pinch when I ran out of migraine medication in Europe. It was a lifesaver!
What if you have an Allianz Travel Insurance Policy?
For those with an Allianz Travel policy, you get even more help direct from your phone. Add in your policy information, and you have access to it 24/7.
If the worst should happen, and you must be rushed to the hospital while you are out and about on vacation, you don’t have to worry about rushing back to your hotel for any paperwork or searching through emails. Your policy information, as well as access to customer service, is right in your app.
- TravelSmart Hotline: Get emergency help and find the medical professionals you need quickly.
- Allianz customer assistance: Chat with a claim specialist right away.
- Policy Management: File a claim, update documents and track its progress all from your phone.
Don’t have a policy? Check out your Travel Insurance options here.
Getting the most out of your Allianz Policy with SmartBenefitsSM
Everyone wants to make their travel insurance benefits work for them, but not everyone actually knows HOW to do that. With SmartBenefitsSM you can easily get your claims covered through the TravelSmart app, make no-receipt claims and receive payments for covered travel delays and baggage delays. Sounds simple, right? OK, maybe you need a few more details.
Who can access SmartBenefitsSM ?
Proactive Claim Payments for Covered Flight Delays
If you are traveling and experience a covered delay on a flight that is monitored by Allianz Global Assistance, you could be eligible for an automatic claim payment of $100 per person, per day. This benefit is proactive because the customer doesn’t need to file a claim; Allianz detects the delay and lets you know when you are eligible.
To get this benefit you need to:
- When you purchase your policy with the travel delay benefit, you must submit your flight information on the TravelSmart app or allianztravelinsurance.com.
- Indicate how you want to receive communications: via text, email, both or none. (If you pick none, you will still receive a check if eligible, you just won’t get any communication about it).
- Two days before your trip, you will receives an email confirming the flight information Allianz has on file. You can make changes at that point.
- If a covered delay is detected on a monitored flight, and that delay meets the length threshold specified in the customer’s plan, then you will get an email or text letting you know that you are eligible for an automatic claim payment.
- BONUS: If the airline later reverses or shortens the delay, you still receives your money! However, if your flight is cancelled, you aren’t eligible for proactive payments, as cancellation is not a covered reason for the Travel Delay benefit.
No-Receipt Claim Payments for Covered Travel Delays
If you experience a covered travel delay, you could be eligible for a fixed claim payment of $100 per person, per day. You don’t need to submit receipts; you only have to file a claim and provide proof of a covered delay.
How is this different from a proactive claim? Proactive claim payments only apply to monitored flights. Fixed-payout claim payments apply to all kinds of covered delays — train, boat, bus, etc. Keep in mind that a fixed claim payment only applies to one delay per 24-hour period.
To get this benefit:
- If you experience a covered travel delay that meets the length threshold specified in your plan, then you can file a claim online, in the TravelSmart app, or over the phone. You don’t need to submit any receipts for expenses; you only need to show proof of the delay, such as an email, revised itinerary or other notification from your travel provider.
- If you’re covered expenses during the travel delay exceed $100, you can still submit receipts for the remaining expenses, up to the max. benefit specified in your plan.
No-Receipt Claim Payments for Covered Baggage Delays
If your bags are delayed 12 or more hours, you can file for a fixed, no receipts required claim payment of $100 per person, per day. You don’t need to submit receipts; you only have to file a claim with proof of a covered baggage delay (claim form from the airline and delivery receipt). If your expenses exceed the $100 per day, you can still submit a claim with receipts to be reimbursed.
Why do you need a Travel Safe App?
I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of apps on my phone. So many that I’m not sure what some are at this point. The last thing I need is more travel apps.
That’s the beauty of the Allianz TravelSmart App. I now have six apps in one. No more medical translators, insurance app, U.S. embassy locator, medical assistance locator, flight updates, or fumbling through Google in another country to find the local emergency numbers. The last thing I need to be doing is trying to figure out how to call the police when I’ve got an injured kid in my arms.
I love technology, and if a company like Allianz wants to make my life easier with a FREE travel app, who am I to argue.
It’s time to travel safer with your kids. You have nothing to lose, except peace of mind if you don’t.
This post is part of a paid partnership with Allianz Travel Insurance. I am also a paying customer of Allianz and use the TravelSmart app when we travel. As always, my opinions are my own. When they aren’t you will be the first to know.
Lost woman and anxious mom via Shutterstock.com