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Travel Insurance takes the stress out of winter travel

Winter weather can wreak havoc with business and leisure travel plans. The US Travel Insurance Association

Winter weather can wreak havoc with business and leisure travel plans. The US Travel Insurance Association advises that an ounce of prevention can be worth the proverbial pound of cure. Pack emergency contact information, extra medication and spare clothing in your carry-on bag in case of unforeseen events, like weather delays. And make sure you buy travel insurance that has coverage for weather-related incidents.

Below are a few examples of how travel insurance can save you money, deliver much-needed assistance and provide peace of mind during the winter:

  1. Your flight is delayed overnight due to snow and you need a hotel room

  2. According to the US Department of Transportation, airlines are not required to provide accommodations or compensation due to weather delays. In fact, each airline has its own policy that varies depending on the situation. A safer bet is comprehensive travel insurance that provides trip delay coverage. These policies reimburse for hotel stays and other expenses, due to cancelled or delayed flights. Plus, they offer emergency travel assistance to find you a hotel room and re-book your flight.

  3. Your return trip is interrupted because of bad weather at home. You have to spend an extra night at your destination but the hotel is full

  4. Without travel insurance, you may be out of luck. Trip interruption due to weather is usually covered by most travel insurance policies. The 24-hour hotline will find accommodations, notify your family and friends, and make alternate transportation plans. You may also qualify for reimbursement of expenses during your delay.

  5. You have to cancel your tour or cruise because your home has been flooded and is now uninhabitable

  6. If your home becomes uninhabitable, most travel insurance policies reimburse for nonrefundable air fares and hotel stays, as well as cruise and tour package payments. They will help notify hotels, cruise lines, tour operators, airlines and others in your travel party, as well as assist you in rescheduling your arrangements and collecting refunds.

  7. You are injured after falling on an icy street in a foreign city where medical care is not considered top-notch

  8. Many Americans don’t realize that their standard healthcare policies may not cover illness, accidents or evacuation needs that are outside their state of residence. In case of an accident or illness while traveling, travel insurance medical policies cover doctor or dental visits and necessary medical evacuation. The emergency hotline will locate the closest pre-screened medical facilities and expedite admissions, transfers of records, and necessary fees. Assistance personnel will ensure that medical instructions are transmitted to the medical staff at your destination.

  9. You are scheduled to go on vacation but a blizzard causes the airport at the destination to close. You want to reschedule to go at a later date

  10. While airlines will usually reschedule you on the next available flight, they are not required to compensate for inconveniences, provide refunds or even allow rescheduling. In severe weather, tour operators and airlines may consent to limited rescheduling, but don’t usually provide a refund – leaving you with penalties and nonrefundable deposits. If you paid with a credit card, you may be eligible for a refund for non-delivered services.

    Comprehensive travel policies have provisions for canceling if your airport has a complete cessation of services for a given length of time. Plus, travel insurance providers often have assistance services that will act as your ombudsmen to help expedite refunds and recover nonrefundable penalties.