BY MICCA VANVIELD
I’ve been fortunate enough to be involved in my field of business for a very long time. The beauty about what I do is that my days are never the same. Like many others, I get the opportunity to interact with the most amazing people on a daily basis and because of that I will always do what I do. Sometimes those interactions aren’t the most positive as they may contain situations where I could have helped. I have an obligation to make sure that my clients have full disclosure. Including the not so pretty part of the vacation where you talk about what could happen. It’s a part of the dream that needs to be addressed because of the level of stress that would be lifted if you ever have to face an unfortunate situation after you’ve booked a vacation or while you’re on your trip.
In 2008, I took a vacation with my children. My youngest was eight months old and I was really excited about my trip. My motto is “if you can’t afford the protection you can’t afford the trip”. I live by this with every trip that I take so I made sure we were properly prepared for the unexpected before taking off. He ended up getting sick while we were on vacation and thank goodness I was prepared. The objective of this article is not to sell any particular protection, but to educate you on its importance. Travel protection in its entirety comes in many forms. If you take a look at every type of protection that’s available it could be overwhelming. The key is to trust an expert to ensure that you are assessing your exact need prior to taking off.
The following are areas to consider when it comes to travel as to why you may need protection:
- Emergency Medical – do you currently have medical coverage for the destination you are visiting? What will a visit to the doctor or a stay in the hospital cost you out of pocket?
- Emergency Dental – in the event that you had a terrible accident where you needed dental care, do you currently have coverage to seek emergency dental care out of the country?
- Emergency Evacuation – how would you get home if you were in a destination and for whatever reason you had to evacuate?
- Trip Cancellation – can you currently get your money back if you have a situation arise and you can no longer take your trip?
- Baggage loss/ delay – do you have a plan in place to replace the items you are traveling with even if they were missing just for a few hours?
These are just a few points to consider when it comes to travel protection. I can never forget the feeling I had when I travelled with my family and my son got sick. When the nurse told me that his oxygen level was low and he needed to be taken to a hospital right away, my stress level elevated immediately. I was in a foreign country and unfamiliar with the medical standards. I had a second thought to call my insurance company and they took care of all the arrangements. From making sure that I had a ride to get to the nearest hospital, taking a description of my son’s condition over the phone, contacting the hospital to prepare them for my son’s arrival and reassuring me that my costs would be covered. This was definitely a relief because as a parent my only concern was that my child was being attended to, not how much it would cost me to get prompt and accurate care.
Trip protection should always be considered when you are budgeting for your vacation. You should always make sure that you are prepared for the unexpected, even if it’s from the time of booking up to the day you return home. At a minimal cost of sometimes cents per day, the peace of mind and reduced stress that you will gain is more than worth it.