Canadians look forward to their annual vacations and regardless of the type of trip planned, there are some common items travellers always remember to bring with them.
According to a recent RBC Insurance survey, the top item travellers would never leave home without is their passport (75%), followed by electronics (53%) and their medication (49%). Alarmingly, more than half of travellers (55%) would leave home without their travel insurance.
As travellers get older, they are more likely to bring travel insurance when leaving home; whereas only 26% of young adults (age 18-34) list travel insurance as one of the items they’d definitely pack when travelling. Instead, young travellers are more likely to remember to bring items such as their electronic devices (69%) and medication (38%).
“This time of the year Canadians across the country are planning for that much-needed break from Canada’s weather,” said Anita Mukherjee, head of Travel, RBC Insurance. “When deciding what to pack, it’s not surprising that our passport tops the list of items travellers would never leave home without. However, what’s alarming is that Canadians are more focused on their electronic devices, such as a cell phone and laptop, than travel insurance.”
What kind of travellers are Canadians?
Nearly half of Canadians like to play-it-by-ear while on vacation. The rest represent a wide variety of styles:
- ‘Play-it-by-Ear Pilgrims’ (44%) plan on where they’re going, but after that they see where the journey takes them.
- ‘Timid Trekkers’ (18%) don’t stray far from their comfort zone while on vacation.
- ‘Scheduled Sightseers’ (13%) plan every minute of vacation so it fits within a tightly packed schedule.
- ‘Armchair Adventurers’ (13%) are happy to sit back and relax, and leave the adventures to others.
- ‘Risk-Taking Rovers’ (11%) fear being bored, so they seek adventure at every turn.
Leaving home without travel insurance is dependent on the type of traveller that you are. ‘Scheduled Sightseers’ (50%) are most likely to never leave home without travel insurance, just ahead of ‘Timid Trekkers’ (49%), ‘Play-it-by-Ear Pilgrims’ (47%) and ‘Risk-Taking Rovers’ (42%). ‘Armchair Adventurers’ (32%) are least likely to pack travel insurance before leaving home.
Four in 10 (43%) Canadian travellers have experienced at least one unwanted travelling scenario while on vacation, with 16% finding themselves in the lost luggage office and 15% having to make a stop at a local hospital or doctor’s office.
“The results show that no matter what kind of traveller you are, certain situations cannot be avoided,” added Mukherjee. “It’s often difficult to plan for unexpected circumstances while on vacation. Travel insurance is there to protect you against emergencies or unforeseen events; so it’s important for Canadians to realize the value in having travel insurance and purchase appropriate coverage before leaving home.”
RBC offers the following tips for Canadian travellers:
- Keep a photocopy of your passport, insurance policy and all other important documents in a safe place that is separate from the originals.
- Provide family and friends with a copy of your itinerary. It will help reduce their worries and provide assistance if you get lost or delayed. You should also leave a contact number so they can get a hold of you in case of emergency.
- Purchase travel insurance and ensure you understand what your policy does and does not cover.
- Label luggage by putting your name and contact information on the inside and outside of the bag.