WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - You've saved for months to take a trip but a hurricane can quickly wipe out all your plans.
During hurricane season, travel agents recommend adding travel insurance to your vacation budget.
Like most insurance products, travel insurance comes in a variety of price and coverage levels. On the lower end, you may opt for severe weather coverage. On the high end, coverage can extend to just about anything. Having a bad hair day and don't feel like seeing the Mediterranean? You're covered.
At Four Seasons Travel Group in Wilmington, Liz Coughlin recommends her clients buy insurance at the same time they put down a tour deposit or book flights. The travel insurance company will want to see the difference between when you bought your trip and when you insured it to validate your planning and see that you've made a good faith effort to commit to the purchases you've made.
Coughlin considers how much the total trip costs and what's going on in her clients' lives. Booking an international flight eight months from now needs to account for the hiccups we could all face between now and take off.
Plans that offer to cover in the event of a hurricane typically include precise literature about the timing of both the storm and the date you bought your policy. Once the storm is named, all bets are off. You cannot have a trip in place, check the radar, and then go buy full insurance.
Coughlin says that generally, the better (and often more expensive) the policy is, the easier it is to file a claim.
The claims process will ask for documentation of every receipt and itinerary involved in your trip.
Getting your refund can take several weeks. If you have to appeal the decision, you may be looking at several months. In most cases, the time is well invested to get back thousands of dollars as opposed to a total loss because of mother nature's unpredictability.