Travel Insurance for a Belize Vacation 2023
Travel Insurance for a Belize Vacation 2023
Even though Belize has less than 9,000 square miles of land, it has a lot to offer tourists, from beautiful Mayan ruins to clear Caribbean beaches. Whether you’re going on vacation to Belize to relax or to see the sights, you may be curious about your options for travel insurance.
Even though the government doesn’t list travel insurance as a requirement for entry, you may still want to protect your travel and lodging costs in case your trip falls through. The Guides Home Team has put together everything you need to know about basic Belize travel insurance plans, add-ons, and upgrades to help you choose the right coverage for your trip.
Do I need insurance for my trip to Belize?
Before July 12, 2022, all foreign tourists to Belize had to buy either Belize travel insurance, which was offered by the Belize Tourism Board, the government of Belize, and the Insurance Corporation of Belize, or their own travel insurance.
Even though this insurance is no longer required, you can still get it through the Belize Tourism Board. For 21 days of coverage, the plan only costs $18 per person, but it only covers a few things. You can also buy Belize travel insurance from independent companies like Trawick or Seven Corners, which offer more coverage.
When you’re planning a trip abroad, you should know what travel insurance is and if you need it.
Some auto, home, and health insurance policies may also cover you while you travel, and many credit cards come with travel insurance benefits. Before buying extra coverage, check your existing plans and benefits. Then, learn about the different kinds of travel insurance and look for one that fits your needs.
Here are a few of the most common types of travel insurance for a trip to Belize.
Coverage You Can Drop for Any Reason
Cancel for any reason coverage (CFAR), as you might guess, lets you cancel your trip without giving a reason. You could cancel because the weather looks bad or because of an uptick in COVID-19 cases or crime — or because you simply changed your mind. This coverage may be included in premium plans or available as an upgrade to basic plans.
Before paying extra for this coverage, think about what could make you have to cancel your trip to Belize and how much money you stand to lose. This upgrade might be worth it if, for example, you bought tickets that can’t be refunded or had to put down a big deposit to book a hotel room. You could also buy CFAR coverage if you think you might have to change your appointment because of a family event or a new job.
Protection from Gear Theft
Unless you know for sure that your renters or homeowners insurance will cover your personal belongings during your trip, it may be a good idea to buy gear theft protection or baggage insurance. Many travel insurance plans include some type of coverage for your personal items. This insurance will help you get new travel documents or fix broken gear if they are stolen or lost.
From dense inland jungles to the Belize barrier reef, the country is a hotspot for travelers with gear-intensive hobbies like photography and scuba diving. Getting gear theft protection is important if you plan to travel with expensive electronics or camera equipment. With it, you should be able to replace things that you need for your trip but lost, broken, or stolen.
Insurance in case of a medical emergency and emergency medical evacuation
Because of its natural beauty, Belize is a fun place to visit, but it could also be dangerous.
If you want to explore or try new things while you’re in Belize, make sure your travel insurance covers medical care and emergency medical evacuation. These coverages will help pay for your medical bills if you get sick or hurt while you’re in Belize. This includes the cost of emergency medical care, emergency air evacuation, and repatriation if your condition requires you to go back to the U.S.
Insurance for a rental car
You could rent a car in Belize and drive along the Hummingbird Highway, a beautiful road that goes from the capital city of Belmopan to Dangriga, or to San Ignacio Town to see Mayan ruins near the border with Guatemala. Rental car protection will save you a lot of money if your car gets damaged on the way.
While your U.S. car insurance may cover you for accidents that occur in Canada and Mexico, it typically won’t extend to Central America. So, if you plan to drive in Belize, you might need to buy protection for your rental car. You can buy car insurance from the company where you rent the car or add it to a more complete travel insurance plan.
Insurance for canceling a trip
Trip cancellation coverage is part of all-inclusive travel insurance. You can also buy separate insurance for certain parts of your trip. For example, you might have to pay extra for an airline ticket that you can get back or for the ability to cancel your hotel or cruise reservation without a fee. In those situations, you would pay the airline, cruise line, or hotel for coverage.
Unless you upgrade to CFAR coverage, certain exclusions may apply. Standard cancellation insurance usually only covers things like medical emergencies, jury duty, or the death of a family member. It would also go into effect if a hurricane that hit or was expected to hit Belize made it dangerous to travel there.
How much does insurance for a trip to Belize cost?
The price of travel insurance depends on a number of things. When you ask for a quote, you will be asked for your age, the dates of your trip, the cost of the trip, and the state where you live. Your age and the total cost of your trip are the two things that will have the most effect on your insurance rates.
Here are a few sample quotes for Belize travel insurance to give you an idea of what to expect as you shop. The quotes were based on a 30-year-old traveler from Virginia who wants to go to Belize for a week in May 2023 and spends a total of $3,000 on the trip.
Keep in mind that the older you are, the more risky you are to insure, and the more you will pay for travel insurance. So, travel insurance for people in their 60s can be a lot more expensive than insurance for people in their 20s or 30s.
Companies do look at more than just age, though. The premiums for a luxury trip will be higher than those for a cheap trip because the insurance company would have to pay out more if you had to cancel or cut short your trip. Even though your destination and length of trip matter less, they can still make a difference.
You may also have to pay more if you already have a health problem. Most of the time, travel insurance companies don’t ask about your health or your medical history. But many policies don’t cover preexisting conditions unless you pay extra for a specific waiver or policy add-on.
Don’t take the first price you hear. instead, do some shopping. Request prices from several companies and compare plans. When you’re shopping for a plan, you should look at more than just the price. You should also look at the coverage limits, terms, and benefits of each plan. Think about what you really need from your travel insurance.
How do I get insurance for my trip to Belize?
You can get cheap travel insurance for a trip to Belize from a number of companies. Another option is to buy Belize Travel Insurance. For a flat fee of $18 per person, you can get a single plan that covers you for 21 days up to $50,000.
Check to see if you already have travel insurance before you buy it. If you pay for your trip costs with your credit card, you may get free trip cancellation insurance or protection for your rental car.
Find out what your health insurance will cover and what it won’t if you get sick or hurt while you’re traveling. You should also check to see if your home or renters insurance will cover your bags and gear while you’re away.
Once you know what your current policies cover, you can buy travel insurance to cover what they don’t. You can buy insurance through your airline or cruise line, or you can use the form below to get quotes from trusted independent companies.
The flight to Belize
Most people probably take planes to get to Belize. Philip Goldson International Airport is the only international airport in the country. Located 10 miles outside Belize City, this airport is serviced by several major airlines, including American Airlines, Delta, Southwest and United.
If you plan to fly to Belize, you might want to buy flight insurance or a full travel insurance plan that includes reimbursement for flights, just in case.
Most of the time, you can buy flight insurance from your airline, which may be the cheapest way to do it. But since flight insurance only covers the cost of your flight, you might still have to pay for other costs if you have to cancel or delay your trip.
Taking a ship to Belize
Belize is also a popular place for cruise ships to stop, and there are a lot of things to do on land in and around Belize City. Anchoring at this port of call gives people the chance to see Maya ruins, try local food, shop in the tourist village, or go scuba diving at places like Ambergris Caye or the Great Blue Hole, which are close by. Several places of interest can be reached on foot from the port.
If you’re going to Belize by boat, you might want to buy cruise insurance. Most of the time, you can buy coverage from your cruise line or a third-party company. There are many companies that offer travel insurance plans just for cruise passengers. However, some standard plans also cover cruises.
Make sure that any trips you plan to take in Belize are covered by the plan you buy.
Belize Safety Tips
The best way to stay safe in Belize is to learn as much as you can about the country before you go. The U.S. Department of State, the Belize Tourism Board, the U.S. Embassy in Belize, and the Belizean embassy in Washington, D.C. all publish helpful and accurate information for travelers. In particular, make sure to look into COVID-19 protocols and official travel advisories that might affect your trip.
In July 2022, the government of Belize took away all measures for public health at its ports of entry. No longer do people who want to visit Belize have to show a negative COVID test or proof of vaccination.
Citizens of the United States do not have to go through any health screenings or stay in quarantine. But if you need a PCR test while you are in the country, there are several places where you can get one.
If you are staying in a hotel in Belize and start to feel like you have COVID, you should tell the front desk. The hotel will then use its COVID Response Plan in line with the current rules of the country.
The Belize Tourism Board says that if you test positive, you will have to pay for your own quarantine. Since you will have to pay for the quarantine, the country suggests that you buy travel insurance that will cover the cost of an extended stay, if needed.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has stopped requiring that air passengers entering the U.S. from another country show a negative COVID-19 test. But it’s still a good idea to be careful on your trip to avoid getting COVID.
The Belize Tourism Board suggests that you only stay at hotels, visit attractions, eat at restaurants, and book tours with companies that have been approved by the country’s Tourism Gold Standard Recognition Program.
Safety and Crime
As of October 2022, the U.S. State Department has issued a Level 2 travel advisory for Belize. This means that people should be more careful when traveling there. The advisory says to be careful because there are a lot of crimes,
and it says that violent crimes happen even in tourist areas during the day. Tourists should stay away from the south side of Belize City and the more remote parts of the country’s borders.
In the past few years, hotel room break-ins, purse thefts, and pickpocketing have become more common, according to the U.S. Embassy in Belize. It tells Americans to pay attention to their surroundings, travel in groups, and stay in the main plazas of any ruins they visit.
Even though most crimes happen during spring break and winter break in Belize City, they can also happen in other tourist areas.
If you are a victim of a crime, like a robbery, you should call the U.S. Embassy at 822-4011 and also call 911 to report it to the nearest police station. In Belize, especially in San Pedro, there are a number of groups that steal money from credit cards.
The country has one of the highest murder rates per person in the world, but most violent crimes are caused by gangs. Local police often don’t have the training or tools to handle serious crimes well.
Tours, trips, and day trips
The U.S. State Department says that there are different rules for the tourism industry in Belize. So, it’s important to book activities, tours, and trips through a reliable source. On the official tourism website for Belize, there is a list of places that meet the Gold Standard. You can also ask the travel insurance company you choose for some suggestions.
Lastly, before you go, you should sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). This service makes it easier for the U.S. Embassy, friends, and family to get in touch with you in an emergency. If you register your trip with STEP, they will also send you safety alerts about Belize.