BOISE – According to new research by AAA, more than half of all Americans are planning to take at least one vacation before the end of next year, with many looking to buy travel insurance in order to protect themselves from the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19.

“Travel rebounded in a big way this summer, and it’s clear from our research that some people are already dreaming of getting together with family and friends well into next year,” says AAA Idaho spokesman Matthew Conde.  “Even so, recent history has taught us all to be better prepared for the unexpected.  Travel insurance is an appropriate way to hedge your bets.”

In AAA’s recent survey, nearly a third of U.S. travelers say that they are more likely to buy travel insurance specifically due to the pandemic, with the ability to cancel a trip and get a refund rated as the most important reason for doing so.  AAA encourages the public to consider travel insurance policies that include a “cancel for any reason” component, which offers the flexibility needed to plan a future trip with confidence.

“There are many tiers and levels of travel insurance that have been tailored to just about every need and budget,” Conde said.  “Sharing your plans with a professional travel agent will help you find the arrangements and insurance that best suit your needs.”

While travel insurance policies haven’t typically covered epidemics and pandemics in the past, some providers have now introduced plans that do.  Choosing the right policy can help protect travelers in a variety of ways, such as trip cancellations and interruptions, change fees, delays, lost or damaged luggage, and more.

About 19 percent of those who plan to travel will take a vacation outside the United States.  AAA reminds travelers that some international destinations may require visitors to carry travel insurance to help cover any unexpected medical bills that may be incurred during their stay.