By Cat Zuniga
No one can predict the unexpected. But you sure can prepare for it.
I’ve seen too many scenarios with family members on their deathbed and clients about to depart to all-inclusives in the Caribbean, where they’re begging me to get them their money back or reschedule their trip at no additional cost. These scenarios are absolutely unfortunate, because we do our best, but even our hands are tied at some point.
Here are the top 10 reasons why travel protection is recommended and every traveler should have it.
A lot can happen before a trip. That look after you’ve booked your dream vacation, that look of pure elation, can quickly fade when an unexpected emergency (such as a child’s illness, parent’s surgery, or a work emergency) forces you to cancel your dream vacation. All the time, money, and thought put into the planning and execution of this trip goes down in a scenario like this, and it end in heartbreak. With the right travel insurance, you may not need to pay for a vacation you’re unable to take.
Travelers need their stuff. Arriving at a destination without your luggage is an awful way to start a vacation, and you deserve better! Travel insurance can help reimburse you for the replacement of essential items if bags are delayed, damaged, or stolen. Being able to buy a fresh set of clothing, pajamas, shoes, and toiletries goes a long way toward replacing that feeling of disappointment with a feeling that everything is going to be okay, so you can enjoy your first day of your vacation even if your luggage hasn’t arrived.
What’s really in your wallet? When something goes wrong on a trip, travelers who paid on a credit card can dispute the charges or get some reimbursement for some items they bought with that card … and that’s about it. Credit cards weren’t designed to protect vacations. The free coverage that such cards may or may not include is typically never as extensive as a separate travel-insurance plan.
Sick happens. The only thing worse than having the flu is having the flu on vacation. No one would voluntarily leave their own bed to be sick in a hotel room. Travel insurance can help you get the medical care you need, so you can get back to enjoying your trip!
Our passports recommend it. Many U.S. health-insurance policies, including Medicare, won’t cover their customers while they’re overseas. (A reminder to check your health plan before leaving the country.) Travel insurance could save you a fortune in medical bills if you have an emergency while on vacation. Think it can’t happen? Consider this: If you have an accident or become seriously ill, and are unable to fly via normal airline service, specialized medical-evacuation services from a far-flung destination to the U.S. can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Just one medevac flight could break your future retirement account or drain a homeowner’s equity line of credit. Medevac firms also typically won’t arrange transport without upfront payment. The right travel-insurance plan can help prevent a financial crisis and will help get you the medical care and emergency transportation you need.
Lost or forgotten medication? You want to be healthy and happy on your vacation. Having travel insurance means that you can tap into the insurer’s travel-assistance services to easily locate a pharmacy and purchase the medicine you need.
You can’t control the economy. When times get tough, companies can file for bankruptcy without notice. History proves this can happen, even to highly popular, veteran travel companies that seem solid. Travel insurance can pay back prepaid expenses if a cruise line, airline, or tour operator goes out of business. This means you won’t be left high and dry if the people hosting your scuba-diving trip, multi-week tour, all-inclusive beach stay, or cruise go under.
No one likes getting nickel-and-dimed. Unexpected costs can break a vacation budget, but they don’t have to. If a flight is delayed, travel insurance can help reimburse clients for the extra expenses they incur — including rebooking fees, meals, and accommodations.
Delay protection. No one likes delays, especially when you have a schedule to adhere to or a time frame to work within. Some travel-insurance companies will not only cover the costs of these delays, but will pay you for them!
Cash is king. A refund isn’t really a refund unless you can spend it anywhere you want on whatever you want. It’s too bad that when something goes wrong, airlines and cruise lines usually only issue credit vouchers with lots of stipulations. Travel insurance, on the other hand, can get you your money back. It’s the best way to protect your valuable investment, and assure that even if this vacation doesn’t go as planned, you’ll soon be planning another one with the help of your valuable travel agent (yet another shameless plug!).
Now, I don’t claim to be an expert in travel insurance. In fact, I would never want anyone to assume I am one. However, in the nine years of being in this business, I have learned a thing or two, and seen a lot more. I strongly suggest speaking with a specialist. We are big fans of Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection, and encourage you to use your travel expert to help you cover your next vacation so you can have satisfaction guaranteed and peace of mind for you travel investment!
Cat Zuniga is an award-winning travel specialist. She specializes in tropical vacations for families, groups, destination weddings, and honeymooners. Visit her today at http://www.TarverdiTravel.com.