Travelers Are More Worried About Losing Their Luggage Than COVID-19

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  • Lost luggage can put a damper on a trip.
  • The right credit card could offer financial protection from lost or delayed luggage.
  • If you can fit everything you need in a carry-on bag, you can avoid the worries of checking luggage altogether. 

It's a valid concern.

Many people spent most of 2020 and 2021 staying close to home as the pandemic raged. But these days, the demand for travel is much higher. Unfortunately, travel costs are also much higher. 

Now, it's one thing to be paying a premium to travel when you're apt to get great customer service. But airlines today seem to be falling down in the customer service department. 

Not only have flight delays and cancellations ramped up, but many travelers today are grappling with issues like having their bags delayed or lost completely. And in a recent survey by Faye, a travel insurance company, travelers are more afraid of losing their luggage in the course of a trip than contracting COVID-19. 

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If you're concerned about losing your luggage on your next vacation, you should know that travel insurance could help alleviate that concern. But you may not need travel insurance for that purpose if you book your trip with the right credit card.

How much protection does your credit card offer?

If you've ever had a bag of yours get lost or delayed when traveling, you know what a damper that can put on your trip. And it could end up costing you money. 

In many cases, your airline is required to compensate you when your luggage is mishandled in any way. But it's good to have a nice amount of coverage from your credit card, too, in case your airline's compensation falls short. 

A good bet is to use a travel rewards credit card whenever you're taking a flight. Not only might one of these cards offer money-saving perks like free checked baggage, but you might also be entitled to superior coverage if something happens to one of your bags en route to your destination.

Of course, the amount of coverage you get will hinge on your credit card's specific policy. Your credit card might give you a daily allowance for each day your baggage is delayed. For example, you might get up to $100 a day in such an incident, which would allow you to go out and purchase the items you need without having to incur out-of-pocket costs. 

Similarly, you might get a lump sum payment if your luggage is lost permanently. Again, compensation varies by card. But it's worth seeing what protection your credit cards offer you. And if you're not happy with what you see, it could pay to apply for a travel rewards card, which is more likely to offer higher compensation for a common travel issue like lost luggage.

Avoid the hassle in the first place

If you're taking a week-long trip, then it may be impossible to avoid a scenario where you have to check a bag. But otherwise, you may want to take the idea of lost luggage out of the equation by making sure your belongings are all able to fit into a carry-on bag. That way, you won't have to stress about missing clothing or shoes.

That said, if you can't fit everything you need into a carry-on, make sure not to check anything important that can't easily be replaced, like medications. Those should stay with you at all times, because if you get to your destination without the pills you need, you could end up in quite a dire situation.

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