Insurance for my vacation?

Each year my family packs up and heads to Cape May New Jersey for a week of fun with my in-laws, my wife’s brother and sister as well as their families.  Now this is something we have been doing for years and have not really given any thought to insuring.  See your homeowners policy has some coverage for you as does your umbrella policy if you have one.  Also, realistically you cannot insure everything in your life sometimes you just have to live and deal with what may come up.

This year we used a new Realtor who suggested travel insurance.  Now this is something I am slightly familiar with and had purchased several years ago when going on a cruise, more on that in a few words, but did not know much about it.  So since I am the person “in” insurance it became my job to look into the options.  Is it a good idea?  Of course that is up to you, but based on what I read it sure covers a lot of potential things that could happen.  Well what does it cost?  In most cases it is a small percentage of the total cost of your trip.  So;

a lot of coverage + reasonable price + keeping my mother in law happy = our week is now insured

BUT I did not just by the coverage I did some research on the Realtor’s suggestion then called on a friend with a lot of knowledge *when in doubt call on a friend with some knowledge you don’t have*.  Tracy from Tracy’s Cruises who is my go to expert for all things travel, especially cruises, to see who she uses.   Now this gave me two options to compare and really helped with my decision.  So since I wanted to share some more I asked Tracy(my travel expert who you can also hire) three questions about travel insurance, as expected I received some great knowledge to share:

1. Do you always recommend it?

YES!!  I have many discussions with them along the way about WHY it is so necessary and I compare the Cruiseline insurance to another company we offer called Allianz Global.  In nearly ALL cases, AG is MUCH less money and MUCH better coverage.  For example, Cruise Planners special policies with AG include coverage for pre-existing conditions not only of yourself, but of immediate family members as well, AND it covers in case you need to cancel for work-related reasons.

2. Seems like a good “investment” do you buy it when you set up your personal cruises?


3. Any small story to share of it “working”?

I have hundreds!  Here is a quick one:  clients had planned their $6000 Alaska cruisetour for over a year.  At final payment time, they were going to decline the insurance. I was able to convince them that it is a good idea to get the insurance because I have seen so many things happen.  1 week before their trip, the woman’s mother was on a senior bus trip; fell getting off the bus, had bleeding on the brain and was in ICU in VA.  They had to cancel their cruise, and they were able to get a FULL refund.  If they had not gotten the insurance, they would have lost the entire $6000.


Now I am not saying go insure every vacation you go on.  What I am saying is when offered a policy to insure a vacation or anything else;

1. Do some research on your own and compare at least 2 options

2. Find a smart friend and ask them some questions

3. Make a decision and feel good about it either way

Like I said earlier, although you could buy insurance to cover just about everything in life that may not be realistic.  Sometimes you just need to deal with what comes up.  Either way  thanks for reading.  Just some suggestions I wanted to share.

Lessons in business brought to you by death

**Going off topic, will be going a bit personal and not talking much insurance**

So it has been the worst four week stretch in my life.  Started with the sudden death of my older brother followed by four weeks of floundering about.   I am finding that the floundering about, trying to get back to full speed part to be especially annoying and difficult.   Normally there is an article, book or mindset I can apply but none of what I know seems to be working.  Either way, you must keep moving forward.

Since I would prefer you never have to learn or have the experiences that death created for me let me share some with you.

1. Totally think that when at a wake some solid eye contact and a hug/handshake/pat on the shoulder is way better than saying “So sorry…” or “How are you..”  Just like when doing business or closing a sale sometimes saying nothing is best.

2. Despite how many people contact you, write about you, show up to pay their respects, etc there are always more people out there that have no idea who you are.    This is a big world, it is great when the world shrinks for a moment but remember it is a big world, make the most of your little piece of it.

3. It is absolutely true that in times of adversity you will see true character emerge.  Scary to think how many people just float about life completely self absorbed.  Never forget that more times than not you have no idea what is going on in another persons life.  Sometimes by design sometimes because there is no reason to know but that does not excuse you from acting like a decent human being.  ** Thinking of Adam Sandler and Steve Buscemi’s conversation in Billy Madison**

4. Why wait till tomorrow? I have no idea.  There have been some very deep things written towards me and I have also been involved in some very personal conversations.  Despite how positive the messages are they all hurt.  The ones that hurt especially bad are the ones filled with regret of not saying something or meeting him or clearing up some bad feelings.  That sticks with you.  Stop waiting.

5. Having a to do list, goals, a written plan, etc.  was about the only thing that kept working.  When your brain is working or when it is mush a written plan is a huge help.

6. As amazing as it is to see a network/tribe/group of people pay homage to one of their own post-mortem it presents a new challenge.  How can you maximize your network when death or sickness is not involved?  Not sure but I will actively be trying to figure this out.  In the meantime, it means a lot to have good wishes, e-mails, contributions to a memorial, flowers, etc. sent to a family. Actually beyond words at this point BUT I cannot help but wonder how many people said these things to him before he died.  I suppose the other challenge is really appreciating everything while you have it.

7. Yet to find anyone that talked about all my brother owned instead everything is about what he did.  Quite honestly it isn’t much but boy did he have a ton of experiences.  Best I can tell is he plowed whatever he had into living life.  Memories are the best souvenirs.

8. Do whatever you can to fill your “good will” account as much as your bank account.  You have no idea how helpful it has been to have built up  my personal good will account.  I did not do it to be repaid but since I have made many withdrawals in the last month I gotta tell you how glad I am to have a pretty hefty balance available.

Well I suppose I can keep writing but this will do for now.  I would expect to get back to talking insurance soon.  I suppose tip nine is;

A good brain dump feels good.