Cruise Travel Insurance - Why you must purchase
Trip Insurance for your next Cruise Tour
July 7th, 2006
Many travelers do not purchase cancellation and emergency medical
coverage when they book their travel. Their usual excuse is that they
will travel no matter what happens or that they are already covered by
their credit cards.
As the owner of Cruise Holidays of Vancouver and AlaskaCruiseExperts.com,
one of the largest cruise-only agencies in Canada, I have seen many of
our guests purchase this coverage (sometimes grudgingly!) and then
coming back to us with relief that they did buy the coverage as
something had gone wrong before or during their vacation.
Several of our guests do not purchase this important coverage as they
feel that they have spent enough on their vacation and do not want to
over extend their budgets. At the same time those same guests will
purchase collision damage coverage to protect their investment on their
new automobile in case of an accident. Why will they not then extend
that train of thought and purchase cancellation and excess medical
coverage to protect their hard earned vacation? A seven night cruise
for two to the Caribbean in a balcony cabin with airfare from your home
city could set you back over $5,000. Why would you not protect this
You may or may not get into an automobile accident and you may or may
not get ill and have to cancel your cruise. However, for only 5 to 8
percent of your vacation investment, you can protect your vacation
dollars from unexpected illness, death of an immediate Family member,
certain types of job loss and even natural disasters to your home (think
Katrina!) by purchasing cancellation and trip interruption coverage.
Unless you are willing to write off your vacation investment, a premium
of about $125 per person is not much to pay for the peace of mind this
coverage brings to you.
We have seen our clients take ill onboard cruise ships and have to be
disembarked in foreign ports of call. Emergency evacuation by private
plane or helicopter can cost over $10,000 per event. Medical fees in
some countries like the US can cost over a hundred thousand dollars if
the illness is serious and the treatment is lengthy. For a few dollars
per day, you can protect yourself from this potential financial
catastrophe by purchasing a good emergency medical policy.
When a guest takes ill and is disembarked in a foreign county, the last
thing on their mind should be the worry of paying for their hospital
bill and if they are admitted to a high quality care facility. With a
good medical policy in place, all it takes is a phone call to the 24
hour emergency hot line maintained by all the best insurers and their
personnel will oversee your recovery and pay your bills and then assist
you with your flight back home. All for a few dollars a day!
Many of our clients also advise us that they are covered for
cancellation, trip interruption and even emergency medical coverage on
their credit cards. What they do not know is that most credit card
companies are slowly withdrawing these once common privileges and not
widely advertising the fact. Coverage could also be limited to a fixed
amount that is less than the actual vacation cost. Many credit card
coverage policies are only applicable if the entire cost of the vacation
is paid by that card. Travelers should call their credit card providers
for all the details before assuming that they have full coverage.
My advice to all travelers is to purchase cancellation and emergency
medical protection from a reputable insurer. Ask your travel agent for
recommendations and read the terms of policies of each insurer as they
do vary between insurers. Saving that extra $200 on that dream vacation
could be a false saving should you take ill!
Tawnya Sutherland and Denis Lim
Denis Lim is the President of Cruise Holidays of Vancouver and Alaska
http://www.alaskacruiseexperts.com , a cruise-only agency based in
Vancouver, B.C., the preferred port of departure for Alaska Cruises.
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