Which Credit Card Issuer Has the Best Travel Insurance: American Express vs. Discover vs. Barclays?

Comments

Many credit card users are familiar with travel benefits offered by their credit cards including car rental coverage and lost luggage protection. Some credit cards go beyond this level of coverage, providing travel insurance that covers cardholders in the event of unforeseen events, accidents or illnesses.

We’ll take a look at three big credit card issuers and the types of credit card travel insurance they offer. This coverage may factor into your decision when you’re choosing which credit card to use when booking a trip, which is an important decision to make in case you need to make a claim.

Apply for a Travel Credit Card from Our Partner

INTRO APR on Purchases
0% (up to 14 months)
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% (up to 14 months)
Regular APR
See Site
Annual Fee
$0
Bonuses & Rewards
  • April 2018: Best Travel Rewards and Air Miles Credit Cards
  • Clicking "Apply Now" will take you to the Credit-Land.com website to view card offers
  • Fly on Any Airline, Anytime
  • Offers Available for Excellent and Good Credit
Show More Details
Hide Details

Two Types of Credit Card Travel Insurance

There are two types of travel insurance offered by credit cards:

  • Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • Travel Accident Insurance

Trip cancellation insurance covers the cost of your travel, up to a certain amount, if you have to cancel or delay your trip because of an illness, accident or a death in your immediate family. To take advantage of this insurance, you must have booked the trip with the credit card that includes the coverage. The insurance will most often cover the cost of carrier transportation including airfare or a train ticket, but not the cost of lodging.

Travel accident insurance is similar to life insurance, providing coverage for you and your immediate family, up to a certain amount, in the event of an illness, accident or fatality that occurs while you’re traveling. Policies are often very specific on what is covered and when it is covered. It helps to pay close attention to the terms of the policy to know when you’re covered.

Let’s take a closer look at credit card travel protection offered by American Express, Barclays and Discover.

Best American Express Cards With Travel Insurance

All American Express credit cards include travel insurance when you purchase the flight with your Amex credit card or use Membership Rewards. The coverage amount depends on the credit card.

Amex cards with up to $100,000 in coverage:

1
Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

INTRO APR on Purchases
N/A
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
N/A
Regular APR
16.74% to 20.74% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0 first year, then $95
Rewards Program
Starwood Preferred Guest®
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2x Starpoints at Participating Starwood and Marriott Rewards Hotels
  • 1x Starpoints on All Other Purchases
  • + 5 nights and 2 stays towards SPG® Elite status each year
  • $100 statement credit after spending $1,000 in 3 months
  • $100 statement credit after your first purchase at a SPG or Marriott Rewards hotel within 6 months of account opening
  • Receive a 5,000 Starpoint bonus when you transfer 20,000 Starpoints to a participating frequent flyer program
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

2
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

INTRO APR on Purchases
0% introductory APR for the first 15 months
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% introductory APR for the first 15 months on balance transfers requested within 60 days of account opening
Regular APR
14.49% to 25.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0
Bonuses & Rewards
  • % 3% at Supermarkets
  • % 2% on Gas and at Select Department Stores
  • % 1% on All Other Purchases
  • $150 Back after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months
  • 2.7% foreign transaction fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

Amex cards with up to $250,000 in coverage:

3
Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card

INTRO APR on Purchases
0% introductory APR for the first 12 months
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% introductory APR for the first 12 months on balance transfers requested within 60 days of account opening
Regular APR
14.49% to 24.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$95
Rewards Program
Membership Rewards®
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 3x Points at US Supermarkets
  • 2x Points on Gas and Travel
  • 1x Points on Dining
  • 1x Points on All Other Purchases
  • 15,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 within the first 3 months
  • 50% more points after you use your card 30 or more times on purchases in a billing period
  • 2.7% foreign transaction fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

4
American Express® Blue Cash Preferred® Card

INTRO APR on Purchases
0% introductory APR for the first 12 months
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% introductory APR for the first 12 months on balance transfers requested within 60 days of account opening
Regular APR
14.49% to 25.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$95
Bonuses & Rewards
  • % 6% at Supermarkets
  • % 3% on Gas and at Select Department Stores
  • % 1% on Dining
  • % 1% on All Other Purchases
  • $200 back after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months
  • 2.7% foreign transaction fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

Amex cards with up to $500,000 in coverage:

5
Delta Reserve Credit Card

INTRO APR on Purchases
N/A
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
N/A
Regular APR
17.24% to 26.24% Variable±
Annual Fee
$450
Rewards Program
SkyMiles®
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2x Miles on Delta Purchases
  • 1x Miles on Dining
  • 1x Miles on Gas
  • 1x Miles on All Other Purchases
  • 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. (10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after your first purchase)
  • Up to 30,000 MQMs and up to 30,000 bonus miles after you spend $60,000 in a calendar year
  • Annual first/business class companion certificate
  • Complimentary Sky Club lounge access
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

What Does American Express Travel Insurance Cover?

American Express travel insurance provides coverage for loss of life and dismemberment that occurs while on a common carrier. To be covered, you must pay for the entire trip using your credit card. You won’t be covered if you use frequent flyer points from another program or another form of payment for any part of the trip. However, if you combine American Express Membership Rewards Points and a credit card to pay for your ticket, you will be covered.

While American Express does not automatically provide coverage for trip cancellation or trip delays, they do offer a separate travel insurance package that consumers can purchase regardless of the credit card used to book travel. Coverage includes trip cancellation and interruption, travel accident protection, global medical protection, global baggage protection, global trip delay, and 24-hour travel assistance starting at $59. You can also choose individual coverage for as low as $11.

Best Discover Cards With Travel Insurance

All Discover credit cards come with flight accident insurance when you purchase the flight with your Discover credit card. These credit cards include:

1
Discover it® - Cashback Match™

Discover it® Miles Card
How to apply
To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank
Read Review
INTRO APR on Purchases
0% intro APR for 14 months from date of account opening
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% intro APR for 14 months from date of first transfer, for transfers under this offer that post to your account by August 10, 2018
Regular APR
13.49% to 24.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0
Rewards Program
Cashback Bonus®
Bonuses & Rewards
  • % 5% in rotating categories each quarter like Gas, Dining, Amazon.com, Wholesale Clubs and more
  • % 1% on Travel
  • % 1% on Groceries
  • % 1% on All Other Purchases
  • Up to 5% cash back
  • Discover automatically matches all the cash back you earn dollar for dollar at the end of your first year
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • % 3% balance transfer fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

2
Discover it® Chrome Card

Discover it® Miles Card
How to apply
To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank
INTRO APR on Purchases
0% intro APR for 14 months from date of account opening
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% intro APR for 14 months from date of first transfer, for transfers under this offer that post to your account by August 10, 2018
Regular APR
13.49% to 24.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0
Rewards Program
Cashback Bonus®
Bonuses & Rewards
  • % 2% on Gas and Dining
  • % 1% on Travel
  • % 1% on Groceries
  • % 1% on All Other Purchases
  • Up to 2% cash back offer
  • Discover automatically matches all the cash back you've earned at the end of your first year
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

3
Discover it® Miles Card

Discover it® Miles Card
How to apply
To apply for this offer please contact
Discover Bank
Read Review
INTRO APR on Purchases
0% intro APR for 14 months from date of account opening
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
10.99% intro APR for 14 months from date of first transfer, for transfers under this offer that post to your account by August 10, 2018
Regular APR
13.49% to 24.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0
Rewards Program
Discover it® Miles Rewards
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 1.5 Miles on Airfare
  • 1.5 Miles on Hotels
  • 1.5 Miles on Gas
  • 1.5 Miles on All Other Purchases
  • Unlimited 1.5X rewards on every purchase
  • Miles earned are matched at the end of the first year of cardmembership
  • Up to a $30 statement credit each year for in-flight Wi-Fi purchases
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

What Does Discover Flight Accident Insurance Cover?

Your Discover credit card includes up to $500,000 in flight accident insurance. The benefit covers you, a domestic partner and any eligible dependent children in the event of an accidental death or bodily injury while you’re on a trip. The loss of life benefit is paid to the beneficiary who you’ve designated in writing and filed with the plan administrator. Or, if you haven’t designated a beneficiary, the benefit will be paid to your first surviving beneficiary in this order: your spouse, your children, your parents, your brothers, and sisters or your estate. Claims must be filed with the plan administrator within 90 days.

Best Barclays Cards With Travel Insurance

A few of Barclays’ credit cards include travel insurance, trip cancellation coverage, and trip delay coverage:

1
Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard®

INTRO APR on Purchases
N/A
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% introductory APR for the first twelve billing cycles following each balance transfer that posts to your account within 45 days of account opening
Regular APR
17.24% to 24.24% Variable±
Annual Fee
$0 first year, then $89
Rewards Program
Barclaycard Arrival Rewards
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2x Miles on Travel, Dining and Car Rental
  • 2x Miles on Gas
  • 2x Miles on Hotels
  • 2x Miles on All Other Purchases
  • 40,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in the first 90 days
  • 5% miles back to use toward your next redemption, everytime you redeem
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

2
Miles & More® World Elite MasterCard®

INTRO APR on Purchases
N/A
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% introductory APR for the first fifteen billing cycles following each balance transfer that posts to your account within 45 days of account opening
Regular APR
17.49% to 26.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$89
Rewards Program
Miles & More
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2x Miles on ticket purchases from Miles & More
  • 1x Miles on Dining
  • 1x Miles on Gas
  • 1x Miles on All Other Purchases
  • 20,000 bonus miles after your first purchase and payment of the annual fee, then 30,000 bonus miles after you make $5,000 in purchases within the first 90 days
  • Up to 15% off Miles & More Hotel & Car Awards
  • Annual Companion Ticket
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
Show More Details
Hide Details

3
AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®

INTRO APR on Purchases
N/A
INTRO apr on Balance Transfer
0% introductory APR for the first fifteen billing cycles following each balance transfer that posts to your account within 45 days of account opening
Regular APR
17.49% to 26.49% Variable±
Annual Fee
$95
Rewards Program
AAdvantage®
Bonuses & Rewards
  • 2x Miles on American Airlines Purchases
  • 1x Miles on Dining
  • 1x Miles on Gas
  • 1x Miles on All Other Purchases
  • 50,000 bonus miles when you make your first purchase in the first 90 days
  • Receive 25% inflight savings on food and beverages
  • Get 10% of your redeemed miles back
  • No Foreign Transaction Fee
Show More Details
Hide Details

What Does Barclay Travel Insurance Cover?

Barclays travel insurance provides medical expense, loss of life coverage and reimbursement for trip cancellation, interruption or delay. Coverage applies when you use one of Barclaycards credit cards to pay for your trip.

Travel Accident Insurance

Barclays provides $250,000 in travel accident insurance which covers you, your spouse, and unmarried dependent children. Your family is insured against accidental loss of life, limb, sight, speech or hearing while you’re a passenger on a carrier that you’ve paid for with your credit card.

Trip Interruption/Cancellation Insurance

Barclaycards credit cards include trip interruption/cancellation insurance which will reimburse you for up to $1,500 towards the cost of a trip that is canceled due to sickness, accident or death. Barclays travel insurance coverage kicks in if your trip is interrupted because of:

  • severe weather
  • a change in military orders
  • a medical quarantine
  • jury duty or subpoena
  • terrorist attack or hijacking
  • an uninhabitable dwelling

Bonus: Trip Delay Insurance

World Elite credit cards also include Trip Delay. You’ll be reimbursed up to $300 when your trip is delayed by six hours or more. So, for example, if you needed to book a hotel because a flight was delayed, your card benefits would reimburse you up to $300 for the hotel stay.

Which Credit Card Includes the Most Travel Insurance?

FIRST PLACE

Barclays

Barclays covers not only accident insurance and trip interruption/cancellation but also includes trip delay insurance. This extensive travel coverage makes Barclays the winner.

SECOND PLACE

American Express

American Express credit cards come with varying levels of coverage and only cover loss of life and dismemberment. The premium credit cards that come with higher coverage amounts also have high annual fees. If you want trip cancellation insurance, you’ll have to purchase a separate policy.

THIRD PLACE

Discover

While Discover cards all come with $500,000 of travel accident insurance, coverage only applies to loss of life, not medical expenses related to dismemberment.