This week we will discuss the third and fourth reasons for buying travel insurance.|
3. Supplier Default Coverage
4. Baggage Delay, Loss, or Theft
These reasons are a little more cut and dry than the other topics, so I will strive to keep this article short and sweet.
Remember the Thomas Cook default that occurred a few weeks ago? Thomas Cook was a UK-based company that was a hybrid of tour operator, travel agency, and airline. When they ceased their operations suddenly, they left tourists stranded all over the world. Those who had travel insurance were reimbursed for their changes in travel plans caused by the Thomas Cook shut down. Many European citizens are protected from being stranded by shutdowns, but no such laws exist in the United States. Earlier this year, WOW Airlines ceased operations suddenly and again, Americans were left stranded since our laws afford no protections to travelers affected by shutdowns The only way to protect yourself in this situation is to buy travel insurance.
My baggage has been delayed multiple times over the years. Thus, this is a situation with which I can easily relate. The airlines often pay something for delayed luggage after so much time has passed, but the rules vary between airlines and there are dollar limits. Imagine only being given $50 to recreate the outfits your family has coordinated for your family photoshoot during your first few days. You can not even buy a shirt and skirt for this amount in the heart of Rome. Having travel insurance covers you quickly and ensures an easier claim process.
Read More: Having Professional Photos Taken On Vacation
The same goes for baggage loss. Can you imagine never receiving your bags during your trip? This happened to a fellow travel advisor who told me that her bags showed up at her home the day after she returned from her trip. The airlines did not paid her anything, but her travel insurance reimbursed her for a new suitcase, clothing, shoes, and toiletries.
I remember the one time I saw a man robbed in front of my eyes on a bus in Prague. However, I did not realize he was being robbed. All I saw was his reaction when he realized it had happened. Nothing out of the ordinary occurred, he just suddenly did not have his wallet and there were men running from the bus. It is amazing how swiftly a skilled thief works.
I am a member of many Facebook groups about travel. I recently saw this post on one such group:
“A very sad but unfortunately common event in Pisa last night… car was broken into and all luggage, laptops, passports, cameras, electronics, diamond earrings, new Gucci purchase etc.. stolen. Parked in a paid lot, well lit, security cameras, close to the sidewalk, everything was locked in the trunk and out of site. Gone for one hour for a picture of the tower and a quick gelato! “
Unfortunately, she did not have travel insurance.
A travel advisor told me a happier version of the above story. Her client was pickpocketed in Paris. His $450 Ferragamo wallet was stolen. He had a receipt for it as he had just bought it and voila! They paid the claim.
I can not imagine the headache and expense of having your passport stolen, but luckily, I have travel insurance so cancellation or interruption expenses are covered, as is the cost to replace a passport up to a certain amount.
As you can see, there are SO MANY reasons to buy travel insurance. It is such a small expense to cover you from massive potential expenses. For my clients who decline travel insurance, I have created a form for them to sign acknowledging all the bad things that can happen while traveling and confirming that they are choosing not to purchase it. I never want to hear a client say, but you did not tell me the risks.
Hopefully, I will never need to file a claim with my travel insurance, but just knowing it is there takes a weight off my shoulders, especially as a parent who travels with my children. There is nothing I would not do to protect them. I would never recommend a client do something that I would not do myself, and I assure you, I will always buy travel insurance.