Delays, Cancellations, and Trip Insurance
Airline staffing is rising, but unlikely to smooth out airline labor problems that caused so many flight cancellations this summer by the holidays. We asked Travel Edge Advisor Rommel Benedicto and Carib Compass Travel & Wellness Advisor Tracey McGoughy for their best advice in dealing with flight cancellations and delays.
Benedicto recommended ditching the go-it-alone route and using a travel agent to book your travels.
“Always coordinate with your Travel Advisor (this is one of the many benefits of working with one instead of booking on your own) as soon as you learn about the interruption,” Benedicto said. “Travel Advisors receive the same notification as you do, and they can do the legwork behind the scenes — eliminating the need for you to line up at the airline ticket counter at the airport.”
McGoughy emphasized the importance of contingency planning.
“My advice is before you leave for your trip, develop a plan B and possible plan C for getting to your destination and purchase travel insurance,” McGoughy said. “Historically, travelers have seen it as an optional add-on to their trip, but it’s really not anymore. Everyone should be purchasing travel insurance to protect their trip, especially if they’re planning to fly. This is especially true if the flight is just part of your full trip itinerary. For example, if you’re flying to a port to board a cruise ship or if this flight connects to another flight, a flight delay or cancellation can have a ripple effect on the rest of your travel plans.”
Flights get delayed for a myriad of reasons. The chance of the weather being the culprit increases during the wintertime, McGoughy emphasized.
“If the delay or cancellation is because of weather, the airlines have no obligation to offer any form of compensation for unexpected expenses travelers may incur,” Mcgoughy said. “Travel insurance may reimburse you for those expenses.”
It can be worth purchasing a more comprehensive trip or flight insurance policy to better protect against potential travel problems. AXA Travel Insurance offers tiered plans covering everything from flight cancellations and lost baggage to sports equipment rentals.