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Travel insurance tips for March Break

(NC) A getaway at this time of year can be just what you need to relax, recharge, and melt away the stress of your daily routines. But travel can also be a source of stress, especially if, after all the planning, investment, and anticipation, your trip doesn't go as planned.

RSA, a leading provider of insurance to Canadians, reminds us that being prepared and protected provides peace of mind so that you can make the most of your March Break holiday.

The first step is to make sure you have the appropriate travel insurance policy before you go. Without insurance, you run the risk of shouldering significant out of pocket expenses if something goes awry. Even in the event of relatively minor mishaps and ailments, it pays to have insurance coverage and assistance. In fact, colds, stomach bugs and flus can be quite common reasons for travel insurance claims.So, what if something does happen on your travels? Would you know what to do?Say your four-year-old comes down with an ear infection while on vacation in Florida. What questions would cross your mind? Would they include: where's the nearest doctor? what documentation will they need from me? how much will an examination and prescription medication all cost? how do I report my travel insurance claim?Here are some things to consider when filing a claim:

• Keep your insurance wallet card close by so you can quickly access the toll-free emergency number.

• If you think you need to report a claim or require assistance, contact your insurance provider as soon as possible. This can save time in processing the claim. There is also usually a limited period of time in which to report claims.

• Have original documents, like medical reports and receipts, on hand if they are available. Even if you are still awaiting documentation, notify your insurance company so that a claim can be opened.

• If you call the emergency assistance number, they should be able to advise you as to what to do next, the location of the nearest recommended clinic, and other helpful information.

• They may also be able to arrange direct payment of your medical expenses. If not, you will need to pay up front and submit bills for reimbursement when you return home.

RSA also advises anyone planning a trip to talk to a travel insurance expert who can help you review your coverage needs. More information is available at www.rsatravelinsurance.com.

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