For a lot of us, phone insurance of one sort or another is a must-have. If your phone gets stolen or lost, or even if you bust the screen (and you will) getting a replacement at a fraction of the cost is easier on the pockets than just buying another phone or parts outright, and hey, who doesn't like easier, right?

Verizon offers a pretty good "phone insurance" program with their Total Mobile Protection. You might be able to find insurance cheaper somewhere else but generally, we hear Verizon does a good job getting you back up and running quickly and are reasonable when it comes to claims. In other words, you can do a lot worse and we think Total Mobile Protection is a good option for Verizon customers who want that safety net.

Starting January 25, there are a few small changes you need to know about.

  • Nationwide cracked screen repair: A tech will come to you in over 170 U.S. cities, you'll have another 300 authorized repair centers, or you can have repairs done by mail with a quick turnaround. Going without your phone is the worst and more options is always better. Nice.
  • Reimbursement for international cracked screen repair: Get your busted screen fixed when you need it if you're traveling outside the country, then file a claim for reimbursement. Again — less downtime.
  • $29 deductible for cracked screen repairs: Save money on repairs and you'll have some cash to buy a case or screen protector to keep it from happening the next time.
  • Total Mobile Protection goes up to $13 per month (from $11) for new customers on January 25.
  • Total Mobile Protection goes up to $13 per month (from $11) for existing customers on March 6.

Of course, there are terms and conditions you'll have to follow about which phones are covered and the fees. You'll find those listed here and you can chat up a Verizon rep over the phone or through web chat if you have other questions. And you should, because you need to know what's up and how you're covered before you need to file a claim. This stuff is complicated, not just because of Verizon's rules but because there are all sorts of consumer laws that vary from state to state. Let someone who is an expert help you suss it all out.

Verizon buyer's guide: Everything you need to know

Nobody likes seeing insurance premiums go up, whether they be on your phone or your car or yourself, even when it's only two bucks difference. But we really like these new changes for screen repair options, and if you only use it once it has more than paid for itself. You owe it to yourself to at least have a look at your options if you don't have any type of coverage, and should definitely check out the changes if you're a current customer.