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No Pets or Cars Left Behind: Travel Insurance for Return of Pets & Vehicles

Posted on November 18, 2014 | More posts by 


You’re a savvy traveller, so you know travel insurance will cover you for medical emergencies. Did you know that the same travel insurance also covers the return of your car or pet? Return of vehicle and return of pet while travelling are little known, but handy benefits that our insurance covers.
More travellers are vacationing with pets than ever before. Why leave the little furball at home when tourist destinations and hotels make it easy to bring along your furry friend? Here’s a little known fact about travel insurance: if you’re in an accident outside your home province, your emergency medical travel insurance will make sure Fido gets home safely. Here’s how it works: if you have an emergency while travelling and your doctor confirms you are unable to continue driving on your trip or drive back home, your emergency medical travel insurance will cover the safe return of your pet or car.
We can’t speak for other insurance providers, but here’s what our Emergency Medical Insurance covers:

Return of accompanying dog or cat

If you’re in a travel emergency and air-lifted back to your home province, we’ll cover up to $300 to return your cat or dog (sorry, pet lizards and hamsters!) This includes travelling with show dogs too.
Here’s a tip for pet travel outside of Canada:
  • Have an emergency contact name for a family member or friend close by as an emergency dog/cat-sitter. This way, your pet won’t be left in strangers’ hands if you’re ill or injured and can’t care for them.
pet travel canada

Return of vehicle (or vehicle repatriation, in insurance-speak)

If you’re in a travel emergency and air-lifted back to your home province, or if your doctor determines you can’t continue on your trip by driving, emergency travel insurance will cover the return of your vehicle. This applies to any vehicle on the trip that you own: cars, motorbikes, trucks, RVs and campers, but not commercial vehicles, or if you’re driving in a vehicle owned by your friend or a family member.
In the event of an accident or illness, our Claims Assistance team often helps travellers get in touch with family members or travel companions to return their vehicle. If you don’t know anyone in the area, we hire a professional, bonded driver to return your vehicle to you as soon as possible.
The Return of Vehicle benefit is good to have if you’re travelling alone, or if your travel companion is unable to drive your car back for you. The latter is often the case if you’re travelling with a child or an elderly family member who doesn’t have their license. We cover up to $4,000 for your vehicle to be returned to your home province, or in the case of a rental vehicle, the return of the rental car to the nearest rental agency.

Our tips for a smooth return of vehicle:

  • Make a list of all major items packed in the car. The professional driver contracted to drive your vehicle across the border has to present a list to customs officers, and the list will speed up the crossing.
  • Keep a copy of your car insurance papers in your vehicle. The driver will need this information too.
  • Don’t send your vehicle back with firearms, tobacco and alcohol, currency, etc. Read Sarah’s post for more information on what you (or your driver) can take back over the border.

As the holiday shopping season approaches, so does one of the busiest border crossing seasons of the year. Check out more tips on How To Travel With Pets and How To Road Trip Like a Pro.

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