In our recent blog on fall travel planning, we talked about all the reasons you should book your fall air travel now, while airfares are dropping from peak summer highs. But if Autumn scenery is your jam or you are looking to avoid busy airports and want to spend some quality time with friends or loved ones, a road trip may be just the ticket!
The season for an iconic summer road trip may be behind you, but Autumn, with its crisp air, fiery-hued foliage, and stunning sunsets, was made to be experienced out on the open road where you can see, smell, taste, and feel all that the season has to offer. There is something special that happens when you hop in a car or RV and set out for a road trip in the fall. The drive itself becomes the adventure, with spur-of-the-moment stops for collecting leaves, enjoying fresh apple cider and warm donuts, apple picking, and pumpkin everything. Or, maybe you are more of the grab your friends and tailgate your way to see your football team live type, and nothing beats the moment you step inside the stadium for your first game of the season.
Whatever the reason – from apple picking to leaf peeping to tailgating – there is no denying the allure of a fall road trip. And with gas prices easing a bit from the record highs of the summer, a road trip may be a little easier on your wallet right now than it was a month ago.
Road Trip Travel Insurance
Road trip insurance? Yep, it’s a thing! Everyone who drives knows about the importance of auto insurance to help cover costs associated with traffic accidents, car theft, or damage to your car. But did you know that you can get travel insurance for the road, too? Travel insurance is typically discussed in terms of flying or taking a cruise, but a trip cancellation plan can also be used to help protect you and your investment when a road trip is your vacation.
Why Buy Travel Insurance for a Road Trip?
Think about it the same way you would on any other trip. What if something happens that causes you to have to cancel the whole road trip or a portion of it, and you already bought non-refundable tickets to an event along the way, like that first football game of the season, or have a non-refundable vacation package at the end of the trip, like a Disney World vacation package? Trip cancellation insurance could reimburse you if you insured them and the reason for the cancellation is covered, such as a car accident, natural disaster, or inclement weather.
Similarly, if your road trip leads to a perfect cabin that you rented because of the kaleidoscopic view it offers in the fall, and COVID causes you to have to cancel or cut your trip short, trip cancellation insurance can reimburse any non-refundable deposits or fees associated with the rental. Many vacation rental companies no longer allow for COVID cancellations as they did previously, so without trip cancellation insurance, you could be out both the view and your money.
Or, what if you get sick or injured along the way, and your primary healthcare plan doesn’t cover out-of-network providers? Trip cancellation plans include emergency medical benefits that can be used to help you with any unforeseen medical costs incurred during your trip.
Another lesser-known benefit that is built into many of our trip cancellation plans and available as an option on others is Rental Car Damage. So, if you decide to rent your dream car for a road trip and something happens to the car, you can get reimbursed for the cost of the repairs.
Learn more about Road Trip Travel Insurance
Ready to hit the road this fall? Get a Road Trip Travel Insurance quote today!
at 31 Aug 2022
Cruising into Fall and Beyond
While airlines are busy cutting flights to help temper the chaos that was summer travel, cruise lines are adding more sailings and easing up on vaccination and testing requirements. July was a big month for cruise lines, with the CDC ending the COVID-19 Program for Cruise Ships and effectively giving cruise lines back the ability to set their own vaccination and testing guidelines. That led to most major cruise lines dropping testing requirements for vaccinated cruise-goers and some allowing unvaccinated cruise enthusiasts more of an opportunity to join the party at sea.
Below are a few of the most recent vaccination and testing guidelines — current as of this writing, but things are changing fast so be sure to check the cruise line website for the most up-to-date guidelines.
Royal Caribbean started operating under its new protocols as of August 8, with no testing for vaccinated guests on cruises for five days or less. Beginning September 5, they will drop the vaccination requirement entirely for all sailings departing from U.S. home ports, as long as they do not visit Canada or Bermuda.
Carnival, too, is already operating with its new protocols, which means vaccinated guests do not need to be tested on cruises that are five days or less. They now allow a small percentage of unvaccinated guests aboard their ships, to be based on the total number of vaccinated guests who have booked that particular cruise. Unvaccinated guests will still have to take a test before boarding.
Of special note for Carnival, travel insurance is required for unvaccinated guests aged 12 and up for Florida, Texas, South Carolina, and Virgina-based ships, as well as those visiting Bermuda. The insurance policy must name the unvaccinated guest as the policyholder or beneficiary and may be purchased from a travel insurance company of your choosing or through Carnival Vacation Protection (available for purchase until 14 days prior to sailing). Unvaccinated guests without the required proof of insurance will not be permitted to sail and no refund will be provided.
Norwegian Cruise Lines is updating their protocols beginning with September 3 sailings – vaccinated guests won’t need to test regardless of cruise length, and unvaccinated guests 12 and up can board as long as they present a negative test taken within 72 hours of departure. Those aged 11 and younger will not need to be vaccinated or tested.
Princess will begin welcoming vaccinated guests ages five and up sans test on September 6, for voyages departing from the United States, United Kingdom & Europe. Guests who are not fully vaccinated are welcome to cruise but will need to test within three days of departure, and if the cruise includes a Canadian port, an additional medical exemption will be needed.
Viking still requires all guests to be vaccinated. They recommend but do not require a pre-departure COVID test unless one is required by the destination.
Disney Cruise Lines will only require guests 12 and older to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 at the time of sailing for departures from US and Canadian ports, beginning September 2. Guests 11 and younger are not required but are strongly recommended to be fully vaccinated before sailing. All guests will be required to take a pre-departure test.
Virgin Voyages removed their testing requirements for vaccinated sailors in July. It allows up to 10% of unvaccinated sailors on their cruises, as long as 90% of guests are vaccinated, and they are required to have a negative COVID-19 test taken within 24 hours, or at the terminal for a fee of $30 on their embarkation date.
Wave Season Starts...Now!
With all this good news and new-found freedom to make their own rules, cruise lines are feeling both relieved and generous. Those deep discounts typically reserved for wave season – January through March each year – can be found right now. So if you are thinking about booking a cruise for the fall or in 2023, now is the time to take the plunge! Wondering where the best place to take a cruise is? Read about 5 of the top cruise destinations for 2023 and beyond in our latest blog. Once you book that dream cruise, don’t forget to protect yourself and your cruise investment with our award-winning Cruise Travel Insurance.
at 26 Aug 2022
With temperatures on the rise around the world, it feels like Summer is just getting started, but one glance at the calendar tells us that Autumn and all the activities that come with it are right around the corner. Schools are getting ready to go back in session, clothing stores are showcasing all the latest fall looks, and the biggest telltale sign of all: pumpkin spice is taking over everything!
Ready or not, fall is coming, and now is the time to start planning your fall vacation. Whether you are looking to sneak away once the kids are settled back into their school routines, already missing your college student and planning their first trip home during fall break, wanting to take in all the colors of Autumn, or simply looking to enjoy the quiet that traveling off-season offers, late summer is prime time to book fall travel.
And this year, Autumn leaves aren’t the only thing dropping. According to travel app Hopper, domestic airfare will drop around 25% between mid-August and early September and “will remain at or below $300 through late September, before beginning to rise slowly in October and November.” And Forbes reports that international airfares will also drop, though not as drastically – somewhere around 19% less than peak summer prices but still higher than where they were in 2019.
Whether you are traveling domestically or internationally, be sure to book early. Booking your flight four to six weeks ahead will garner the best deals, which means booking now for that mid-September or October trip, or even, dare we say, for your Thanksgiving week travel.
Travelers can expect flight disruptions to continue, so adding trip protection to your travel plans is recommended. A trip cancellation plan can reimburse up to 100% of non-refundable, prepaid trip costs, as long as the trip is canceled for a covered reason. It would be best if you bought a trip cancellation plan as soon as you book your travel to ensure you get maximum coverage, but you can purchase it up until the day before you leave. You would still gain beneficial post-departure coverage, such as trip interruption and travel delay, even if you buy it at the last minute.
For added protection, you can add Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR) to some trip cancellation plans. CFAR will reimburse up to 75% of non-refundable, prepaid trip expenses if the reason for cancellation falls outside of the covered reasons on the base plan. CFAR must be purchased within 21 days of making your first trip deposit, and all non-refundable, prepaid expenses must be insured. It is also worth noting that CFAR can only be used if the trip is canceled two or more days prior to your departure date.
Regardless of how you feel about pumpkin spice and sweater weather, now is the time to book your fall trip. And once you book it, be sure to come back here and get a trip protection quote to help protect your investment should something unforeseen happen that causes you to have to cancel.
at 10 Aug 2022