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Advanced Reservations on Vacation – Protecting Prepaid Trip Costs

Advanced Reservations on Vacation – Protecting Prepaid Trip Costs for Vacations
Posted: 03/01/202310,102 Views

While many of us enjoy spontaneity on our vacations, over-tourism and the remaining effects of the COVID-19 pandemic is making it less possible at many of the world’s top tourist attractions. From museums like the Louvre in Paris, to US national parks and monuments, and even Machu Picchu, it’s no longer possible to simply show up and expect to be allowed in. An increasing number of tourist hotspots have made reservations a requirement, and many have capped the number of daily visitors they allow. 

Requiring advanced reservations for an attraction allows authorities to control the amount of foot traffic it receives on a given day, thus reducing overcrowding, protecting sensitive areas, and improving the experience for all visitors.

For most tourists, this is a good thing. After all, you probably aren’t traveling halfway across the world to miss out on a region’s most popular attraction, so it only makes sense to book your reservation ahead of time and put it on your itinerary. However, what happens if you need to cancel a prepaid vacation?

Trip Cancellation Insurance Can Cover Prepaid, Nonrefundable Reservations

The main component of a travel insurance plan is trip cancellation coverage. If you have no choice but to cancel your trip for a reason that’s covered by the policy, you can be reimbursed for the prepaid, nonrefundable portion of your travel costs, up to the covered amount. This can include your prepaid reservations to attractions, if they will not offer a refund if you need to cancel them. 

However, cancelling a trip involves a lot more than just tickets to a museum or historical site. Certain expenses, such as airfare and hotels, make up the bulk of your travel costs, and they often aren’t refundable either. Once again, travel insurance can help by reimbursing you for eligible costs due to cancellation for a covered reason.

With most travel insurance plans, covered reasons for trip cancellation will include things such as personal or family illness, injury or death, natural disasters, severe weather, or similar scenarios that prevent you from traveling. The exact covered reasons for cancellation can vary by plan, so be sure to read the certificate wording prior to purchase.

Cancelling Your Trip for Any Reason

Of course, sometimes you may want to cancel your trip for a reason that isn’t covered by a standard travel insurance plan. For instance, say your pet suddenly needs to go to the emergency vet, or the relationship with the person you were planning to travel with has ended. In some cases, you might just change your mind and decide you don’t want to go. 

While these and similar reasons aren’t typically covered by regular trip cancellation insurance, you can still recoup a portion of your costs if you have cancel for any reason (CFAR) travel insurance

With CFAR coverage, you can cancel your trip for reasons not covered by standard travel insurance, and usually receive 50% to 75% of your eligible costs back, though the exact amount will vary depending upon the penalty percentage of the plan. 

In order to utilize cancel for any reason travel insurance, you must purchase the insurance within a specified duration of paying your initial trip deposit, and insure the entirety of your prepaid trip costs; not just the nonrefundable portion. And if you do decide to cancel, it must be at least 48 hours in advance. Of course, if any covered reason pops up prior to your trip, you can still cancel your trip as normal and get your eligible prepaid, nonrefundable trip expenses back utilizing the standard trip cancellation benefit. 

As always, details can vary by plan, so be sure to do your research before purchasing, and contact us if you have any questions.

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