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Travel insurance for Colombia
Compare the best Colombia travel insurance in 2021.
Thanks to a concerted effort by the Colombian government to increase the safety and security of travelers, Colombia has become a vibrant tourist destination. Many of the country’s museums and galleries have been freshly renovated and its natural wonders are some of the most stunning in the world.
Before you leave, pick up a comprehensive travel insurance policy so you can relax knowing that you’re covered if anything happens.
What's changed in 2021?
The US government has issued a travel advisory for Colombia as of October 2020. Read the fine print of your travel insurance policy to learn whether it covers emergencies, evacuations, interruptions or cancellations for your trip during the pandemic. Learn more about restrictions and requirements for US travelers by country.
*Be aware that most travel insurance policies don’t offer COVID-19 coverage. To find one that does, have a look at travel insurance policies that cover the coronavirus.*
How to compare travel insurance plans for Colombia
Consider the nature of your trip and itinerary to figure out everything you’ll need coverage for.
- Medical coverage. If you get sick or injured, medical bills can start to pile up quickly. A travel insurance policy can make sure you’re covered for food poisoning, mosquito-borne illnesses, altitude sickness or injuries. Doctors and hospitals will require payment up front or confirmation of travel insurance health coverage before providing treatment.
- Reimbursement for lost or stolen belongings. If your luggage is lost or your new camera is snatched while you’re out taking pictures, your insurer can reimburse you.
- Reimbursement for trip delays or cancellations. If civil unrest or terrorism cancels your trip, your insurer can reimburse you for your flight and any lost deposits or cancellation fees. If you get stuck in Colombia longer than expected when a sudden storm delays your flight, your insurer can pay to get you on a new one, plus cover any extra hotel nights.
- 24/7 access to help. For any other mishaps or disasters on your trip, most insurers will have a 24/7 helpline you can call for advice and assistance.
- Adventure sports. If you’ve got your heart set on the likes of bungee jumping, skydiving or BASE jumping, look for a policy that covers adventure sports.
- Photographing the scenery. If you’re bringing expensive camera equipment on your trip to Colombia, check to see if the limit for stolen items is high enough to cover it if it gets stolen or damaged. If not, talk to your insurer about adding on coverage for your equipment.
- Repatriation and medical evacuation. Particularly if you’re in Colombia to tick off a thrill list or you’ll be in a more remote part of the country, this coverage is a good idea to have in place for the unexpected.
Compare travel insurance plans for Colombia
How to stay safe in Colombia
While Colombia is generally a safe place to visit, there are certain risks you need to watch out for.
- Crime: Travel with someone else and only use ATMs in secured areas such as inside banks or hotels.
- Disease: Be aware of the risk of yellow fever, malaria, Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases and visit a doctor immediately if you start to feel ill. Altitude sickness can occur and respiratory conditions may be exacerbated at heights. Drink boiled or bottled water and avoid ice cubes and undercooked foods.
- Weather events: Colombia is at risk for natural disasters including active volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, flooding and landslides. Check weather reports before you leave and delay your trip if a inclement conditions are forecast.
- Civil unrest: Tensions on the Colombian and Venezuelan border mean it can be closed for extended periods. Don’t attempt this border crossing by land. Strikes may disrupt transport, such as recent strikes by taxi drivers protesting the use of Uber.
- Terrorism: Conflicts continue between Colombian authorities and the various rebel groups operating in the country. If there’s a terrorist attack, you may have to cancel or delay your trip.
What doesn’t travel insurance cover?
While exclusions can vary from plan to plan, there are some things you should avoid to make sure you don’t end up with a denied claim:
- Inebriation. If you injure yourself or someone else while drunk or on drugs not prescribed by a doctor, your insurer can deny your claim.
- Irresponsible behavior. If you leave your luggage unattended in a public place and it gets stolen, your insurer can deny your claim.
- Ignoring travel advisories. The US Department of State advises against visiting certain areas of Colombia. Ignoring these warnings can lead to a denied claim.
Who do I contact if something goes wrong?
Depending on the nature of your emergency, you may contact:
- 123. For police, fire or ambulance, dial 123.
- Your insurer. Your insurer should have a 24/7 helpline to call if you need assistance.
- A US embassy or consulate. If you lose your passport, get into trouble or if there’s a countrywide emergency, contact the closest US embassy.
Travel tips for Colombia
- Learn the language. The official language of Colombia is Spanish. While many locals will speak at least some English, learning a few words before you go will go a long way with blending in.
- Visit the museums in Bogotá. If you’re a history fan, the capital city is rich with museums.
- Almost everything closes on holidays. Colombia has many holidays, 11 of which are celebrated on Mondays. During these holidays, buses are crowded and restaurants and stores often close. Research ahead of time if you’re traveling during a holiday so you can avoid being hungry or in need of any necessities when things close down.
Over the last few years, Colombia has become one of the hottest vacation spots in South America. Whether you’re planning on climbing mountains or lounging on the beach with a good book, a travel insurance policy can make sure you come home with a lifetime of memories instead of a lifetime of debt.
Frequently asked questions
What are the entry requirements for Colombia?
US citizens visiting Colombia don’t need a visa for visits of up to 90 days. You will need a valid passport and proof of intent to leave, such as a return ticket home.
Can I get travel insurance if I have a pre-existing health condition?
Possibly. If you have a pre-existing health condition, tell your insurer before you buy a policy to find out if you can get covered. If your condition flares up while in Colombia, your insurer can deny any related claims if it’s not listed in your policy.
When is the best time to buy travel insurance?
Buy your travel insurance policy when you buy your flight so that you’re covered if your trip gets canceled.
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