When Should You Buy Travel Insurance?

Time is an important factor when purchasing travel insurance. We recommend purchasing travel insurance at the time you book your trip or soon after. This is important because travel insurance policies include time-sensitive provisions which can broaden your coverage if you purchase the insurance in a timely matter.

In fact, if you purchase travel insurance within 21 days of the date you make the initial payment for your trip, your coverage will provide coverage for bankruptcy or insolvency of your travel supplier, include the waiving of the Pre-Existing Conditions Exclusion, and allows you to qualify for the Cancel for Any Reason Benefit if it is included in your plan.

Remember, purchasing your travel insurance within 21 days of booking your trip will allow you to receive broader coverage at the same price if you purchase with final payment.

If you have any questions about these time-sensitive provisions or travel insurance in general, we can help. Leave a comment with your question below, Tweet us, write on our Facebook timeline or call us at 888-885-7233.

5 Reasons to Take a Cruise

1. Travel to multiple destinations | A big advantage to cruising is being able to see multiple destinations in one trip. For example, if you take a Caribbean cruise, you could visit Antigua, Belize, the Bahamas and Puerto Rico all in one cruise. 

2. No planning required | When you take a cruise, your destinations are already picked for you! Make sure to use a travel agent, too, so you get the best deal and have all the important inside information.

3. All-you-can-eat food | Buffet, anyone? Most cruises have food available at all hours of the day and it is included in your ticket price.

4. Variety of activities | Whether you’re looking for your next adventure, interested in exploring the port city, or you just want to relax on the beach, cruise lines offer excursions that can meet traveler’s needs.

5. Easy to find a cruise that fits your budget | With cruises lasting from 3 days to 2 weeks, cruises that offer luxury at every corner to cruises that are more budget-friendly, you can find a cruise that fits your budget.

If you decide to take a cruise for your next vacation and you have questions about protecting your financial investment, we’re here to help. Did you knowtravel insurance can provide coverage if you are delayed, your luggage is lost or you fall ill while on vacation? Call us at 888-885-7233, reach out to us on Facebook or Tweet us. We can’t wait to hear about your upcoming cruise!

 

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Take Better Photos on Vacation

We all want a perfect photo to remember our vacation. Follow these tips for taking a great travel photo and make your memories last a lifetime.

1. Pay attention to the light. According to most photographers, the light is best when the sun is low in the sky. This means try to capture your photos in the first hour or so after the sun rises and the last hour or so before it sets. If you can’t take your photos during that time, don’t worry, you can still get a great photo. Just make sure the light is not directly behind your subject.

2. Communicate. If you’re taking a picture of a person you don’t know, ask for their permission first – especially if you’re in a foreign country. It can also help to get a sense of the person and capture their spirit in your photo.

3. Take in your scenery. Before you start snapping away, take a step back and get a sense for the scenery around you. It will help you get a sense of your surroundings and find the best shot.

4. Go for bright colors. Our eyes are naturally drawn to bright colors, so if the sky is especially bright or the grass is greener than usual, make sure to include that in your photo.

5. Angle the camera down. When taking a picture of people, it’s important that it’s a flattering picture. This especially rings true for selfies. Hold your phone at a 45 degree angle and snap away!

With these tips, you’ll be taking photos like a pro in no time! We want to see your favorite travel photo! Post it on our Facebook page or Tweet it. We can’t wait to see your vacation photos!

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Traveling Abroad: 5 Safety Tips


Do you have an international trip coming up? Are you wondering what you can do to stay safe and follow the cultural norms of the country you’re visiting? Follow these tips to make sure your trip is enjoyable and safe.

1. Stay on a well-lit path. Avoid shortcuts when walking in a new city – especially at night. Stay safe by staying on the main streets and ones that are well-lit.

2. Email a copy of your itinerary. Send a copy of all your travel documents – flights, hotel information, and a copy of your passport to a trusted person at home. This way, they will know exactly where you are and will have a copy in case you need it. In addition, send a quick email when you arrive in your destinations so that they know you made it safely.

3. Do your homework. It is important to learn about your destination. Learn about the general culture, rules, laws and people to avoid any faux pas or legal trouble. It is also smart to familiarize yourself with any current safety concerns. The U.S. Department of State’s list of  current travel warnings is a great resource to do just that.

4. Keep your friends close and money closer. It can be tempting, but don’t split up from your friends while abroad. It’s also important to keep your money close to you – either in a hidden arm wallet or something that can not easily be pulled out of a purse or backpack.

5. Protect yourself, your belongings and your travel arrangements with travel insurance. Your health insurance may provide no or little coverage once you leave the United States. If you or your travel companions have any medical issues, you want to make sure you are covered. Medical Emergency Evacuation is also important when traveling abroad. Should you or your travel companions need to be flown back to the United States for medical attention, you do not want that cost to be your responsibility. Let travel insurance take care of that.

Tell us – what’s the best tip you’ve ever gotten for staying safe while traveling abroad? Leave a comment with your tip below.

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Benefits of Travel Insurance

You’ve heard it before — protect your vacation with travel insurance. But what does that protection mean for you and your travels?

  • Our Cancel for ANY Reason benefit.  This benefit allows you to cancel your trip for any reason not otherwise covered by the policy. You can be reimbursed for 75% of the unused, non-refundable prepaid expenses for travel arrangements paid for the trip. Just make sure to complete the following tasks:1. Pay the premium within 21 days of the date the initial deposit or payment for the trip is received.2. Insure the full cost of all travel arrangements that are subject to cancellation penalties or restrictions the full cost of all Travel Arrangements that are subject to cancellation penalties or restrictions by the Travel Supplier.

    3. Cancel the trip 2 days or more before the scheduled trip departure date.

  • No worries about the weather. With several, recent winter storms, coverage for inclement weather is at the top of all of our minds. Our travel insurance plans provide that coverage if your flight is delayed or cancelled.
  • Your luggage is protected, too. If your luggage is lost, stolen or damaged while traveling, travel insurance can help. Your homeowner’s policy may cover only a portion of the total loss due to coinsurance and deductible requirements, so additional coverage is important.
  • Even more benefits.We’re also happy to provide the following benefits that our travelers:1. Coverage against pre-existing medical conditions
    2. Hospital of choice for an emergency medical evacuation
    3. You’ll receive 24-hour concierge services
    4. Coverage against terrorist attacks
    5. Coverage if your travel provider files bankruptcy or defaults
    5. Highest coverage limits in the industry

To learn more about how travel insurance can provide coverage on your next vacation, click here. If you have questions, we’re always here to help – leave a comment below, call us at 1-888-885-7233 or chat with us on Facebook or Twitter. We look forward to hearing from you!

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6 Hotel Safety Tips

Are you concerned about safety on your next vacation? Wondering what you can do to prevent theft? While most hotels are safe and secure, it is important to be mindful of your surroundings and take the proper steps to protect yourself.

Here are 6 quick tips to keep you safe before and during your travels:

1. Do your homework before you book your hotel room. You want to make sure your hotel is located in a safe area and takes the proper security measures. In addition to looking at rates and amenities, it’s important to ask key questions. For example, is the hotel in an upscale neighborhood or business district? Is there a police station nearby? Do they have a doorman or security guard? Is their front desk staffed 24 hours a day? These are questions that hotel should be happy to answer.

2. Don’t take a room on the ground floor. These rooms are more likely to be burglarized. This is especially important if the doors and windows of the room are open to the outside.

3. Keep your door locked at all time. This may sound like a “gimme”, but stay diligent about locking the door behind you. It’s also important to lock the deadbolt.

4. When entering or leaving the hotel at night, make sure to use the front entrance. The front entrance is usually the most well-lit and usually under surveillance.

5. Don’t leave valuables in your car. If you must leave items in your car, cover them with a blanket or put them in your trunk.

6. Include travel insurance in your vacations plans. Unfortunately, we can’t Travel insurance can provide protection if your belongings are lost, damaged or stolen. To find out everything that travel insurance covers, click here.

Tell us, what steps do you take to stay safe while traveling? Leave a comment below, write on our Facebook page or Tweet us to share your suggestions with other travelers.

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Valentine’s Day Getaways

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Upgrade from the typical box of chocolates and red roses to a romantic getaway for you and your loved one.

Whether you enjoy getting lost in a big city or the great outdoors, there’s a place for you and yours to escape for the weekend. Sweep your loved one off their feet with a surprise vacation to one of these domestic destinations:

1. Napa Valley, California

Wine aficionados and beginners alike will appreciate California’s wine country. With picturesque views, relaxing resorts and delicious wines, Valentine’s Day travelers will not be disappointed. Stay at Bardesseno for a truly luxurious getaway.

2. New York City, New York

A trip to the Big Apple can be exciting for Valentine’s Day. You and yours can ice skate at Rockefeller Center, take a carriage ride through Central Park or visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art to celebrate the holiday.

3. Cape Cod, Massachusetts

Cape Cod is a favorite romantic weekend destination for Easterners. They flock to the city outside of Boston for its laid-back atmosphere and fresh seafood. Find out what the East Coast is buzzing about by making a weekend trip to Cape Cod.

4. Sedona, Arizona

If you travel just north of Phoenix, you’ll see the Red Rocks of Sedona. The city is home to some world-class resorts such as L’Auberge and Amara. This location is perfect if you want to kick back, relax and enjoy the company of your loved one.

5. Chicago, Illinois

This Midwest city offers great food and exciting activities. During the week of February 11, the city will celebrate Chicago Theatre Week. More than 100 productions featuring the city’s greatest talent will be showed at participating theaters. This year, area hotels will be offering a Chicago Theatre Week package that includes a hotel room and pair of tickets to a production.

Tell us – which of these sound like the perfect getaway for you and your loved one? Leave a comment below, write on our Facebook page or Tweet us. We look forward to hearing about your travel plans!

And don’t forget … to make sure your vacation is stress-free, add travel insurance to your plans. The travel insurance will protect you against illness, flight delays, cancellations, lost luggage and much more.

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8 Travel Trends Predicted for 2014

2014 is here! Although the countdown to midnight is behind us, we’re counting down the top 8 travel trends for the new year.

1. Domestic flight prices will drop (insert cheering here!). According to the American Express Global Business Travel Forecast 2014, “North American airfares are expected to decline in 2014 as a result of heightened competition from low cost carriers, challenging unemployment levels and corporate travel policies becoming more stringent in regard to business class travel.” Stable oil prices will also help keep costs down. Don’t hold your breath though. The pending consolidation of major U.S. airlines may offset these declines.

2. Brazil’s World Cup will cause a buzz with travelers. According to Brazil’s tourist board, the country is expecting approximately 10 million visitors for the World Cup – more than twice their normal amount of visitors. Why will this sporting event draw so many visitors? Soccer is growing in popularity in the United States and this World Cup will be the first global soccer championship held in South America in almost 40 years.

3. Multi-generational travel will grow. The family groups that started the trend have impressed their remaining kin with their Facebook postings and now everyone wants to join in the party. Watch for family reunions to reach upward toward 100 in the coming year; just be sure you’re booking every member of the clan, grab the whole piece of that pie.

4. Fewer European cruises will be available. According to Fodor’s, European ports will be much sleepier as soon as the summer season of 2014. Carnival, Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean and Regent Seven Seas have either reduced their number of ships or pulled out of Europe all together. Fodor’s sites dwindling passengers rates as the reason cruise lines made the tough decision.

5. Travelers will share even more on social media. While this trend probably doesn’t surprise you, more travelers are turning to sites like Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter to not only plan their vacations, but to share their adventures and get tips from other travelers.

6. Free Wi-Fi will be more readily available. In 2013, you saw Wi-Fi offered in several hotels and airplanes. That number will continue to grow this year, with more airports, hotels and airlines offering free Wi-Fi to their customers.

7. Vacation rental homes will compete with traditional hotels. Sites like airbnb and VRBO offer travelers the opportunity to stay in spare rooms, apartments or even rent an entire home. This option can often save you money and offers the comforts of your own home.

8. Airlines in China and Singapore will have the largest price increases. According to Carlson Wagonlit Travel’s 2014 Travel Price Forecast, Asia Pacific carriers will continue to align with the three global alliances (EVA Air, Garuda Indonesia and SriLankan Airlines) in the new year, causing prices to increase.

It’s your turn to tell us – what are your travel-related predictions for 2014? Leave a comment below, share your thoughts with us on Facebook or Tweet us. We look forward to hearing your predictions and seeing if they come true!

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Destinations for Solo Travelers

Ireland: Explore miles of rolling green hills, dramatic coastal cliffs, and mingle with the friendly locals and enjoy a lively pub culture while touring through Dublin and the Irish countryside. Travelers can take it easy while hopping from one pub and bed & breakfast to another, or rent a car and enjoy a tranquil coastal drive. The country’s rich history and rural charm — and of course, beautiful historic castles and churches — will put you in a relaxed frame of mind.

Costa Rica: With some of the highest national rankings for happiness and safety in the world, Costa Rica is the perfect setting for a peaceful getaway that combines adventure travel and relaxation. If you’re looking for relaxation, you’ll have plenty of beaches to choose from – the country has dozens of Pacific beaches.

Stockholm, Sweden: Although Stockholm is definitely on the pricier side, the Swedish capital is one of the best cities in Europe for solo travelers. The city is safe and friendly for travelers who are looking to explore a European city. Also, if you get lost, most Swedes speak English and will be happy to help you find your way.

New Zealand: If you’re looking to really get away, experience a new culture, and tour through some of the most breathtaking natural landscapes in the world, plan a trip trekking across New Zealand. Like the other destinations on this list, New Zealand people are really friendly and willing to help visitors to their country.

Now it’s your turn to tell us. Where would you like to travel solo? No matter where you decide to go, make sure travel insurance is part of your vacation plans. With medical coverage, flight delay coverage, lost luggage coverage and much more, it can make a difference in your vacation.

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Top 5 Labor Day Weekend Events

Labor Day Weekend is here! If you’re still looking for activities to fill your holiday weekend, we’ve got you covered. From hot air balloons festivals to historical walking tours, here are five events that will keep you busy this holiday weekend.

  1. Washington D.C.: On Sunday, Sept. 1, enjoy a free concert by the National Symphony Orchestra at 8 p.m. local time. The National Symphony Orchestra performs a free Labor Day Concert on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol each year, the Sunday before Labor Day. This year’s theme is Americana with works by John Williams, Mark Isham and other composers with the Wild West as the theme.
  2. Pine Mountain, Georgia: On Sunday, Sept. 1, the Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival will fill the skies in Pine Mountain. If the Hot Air Balloon Festival doesn’t do it for you, there’s also a classic car show, disc dog demonstrations, a pyrotechnic skydiving demonstration, and a 5K Race event. See the entire schedule of events here.

  3. Kansas City, Missouri: From Aug. 30 through Sept. 1, Kansas City celebrates Irish Fest. Irish music will be played on seven stages, and there are also workshops, exhibits and food throughout the festival. This year you’ll also be able to visit the Tourism Ireland Virtual Café, where you’ll be able to chat directly with someone in Ireland.
  4. New York City: Spend Monday, Sept. 2, getting some exercise and education at the same time. At the Labor Day Historical Walking Tour, you’ll learn about immigrant and labor history as you explore downtown NYC.
  5. San Fransisco: On Monday, Sept. 2, the Golden Gate Park Band will present a concert in Golden Gate Park. The concert will begin at 1:00pm. Special Labor Day Concert with great American and Patriotic music featuring Hall Goff, Trombone soloist along with music by Sousa, Jenkins, Victor Herbert and more!

Share your suggestion for a Labor Day Weekend activity by leaving a comment below, writing on our Facebook page or Tweeting us. We look forward to hearing from you!