It's The Time of Year for Holiday Travel

Oct 16, 2017

The warmer weather is cooling off and holiday sales are heating up! Bracing yourself for the rush of flight and hotel bookings around the holidays? Yes, it’s the most wonderful time of the year … for travel plans.

As we begin to approach the holiday rush, travel plans are top of mind for most people. Studies show that people are more likely to wait until the last possible minute to book travel plans, but there are lots of benefits for booking early! Try to reach out to your clients who like to travel around the holiday season and encourage them to protect their trip purchase with travel insurance.

Here’s what you can expect as the holiday season draws near …

When are your clients ready to book?
Clients holding off until the last minute to book holiday travel? That’s no surprise. According to the 2015 Travel survey data by Adara, half of American travelers hold out for last minute sales for holiday season travel.

In 2016, AAA said an estimated 103 million people planned to travel for the holidays, as more Americans hit the road or take to the skies. Per the® 2016 holiday survey, 72 percent of Americans planned to travel at least once between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.

Where are your clients looking to book?
Home for the holidays? Doubtful! During the holiday season, people travel far and wide. Orbitz revealed in a recent poll that most people prefer a destination type holiday, with a true vacation feel to their trip. This group is typically looking to relax on a beach or go skiing.  

Destination considerations
Cancun has been a popular destination in recent years. If you have clients traveling to Mexico for the holidays, remind them that USDOS (U.S. Department of State) issues official travel alerts or warnings for U.S. travelers to highlight potential international dangers, and Mexico is one of many nations on their list. On August 22, 2017, the U.S. Department of State  issued a travel warning for certain parts of Mexico, due to the activities of criminal organizations in those areas. Make sure your clients are aware of travel warnings when they consider destination options.

In light of the devastation in the Caribbean due to the hurricanes in 2017, it is also important for your clients to know where it is safe to travel for the holidays. Remind your clients to contact any cruise lines or hotels in the Caribbean to confirm if they are operational for the holidays. For example, on several islands, hotels and resorts are closed for repairs until 2018, and cruise lines have changed their schedules.

However, many Caribbean locations have recovered and are ready for travelers, according to a recent update from AAA. Visit here to see AAA’s list of Caribbean destinations that are officially open for business. Likewise, the Florida Keys have reopened ahead of schedule. And note also that AAA recommends consumers consider purchasing travel insurance for travel during hurricane season (June 1 – November 30).   

How travel insurance benefits your clients
According to UStiA, one in six Americans has had their travel affected by medical conditions, natural disasters, or mechanical or travel carrier problems, and most trip protection plans provide protection for these types of problems.

Seven Corners offers three trip protection products for trips 90 days or less — RoundTrip Economy, Roundtrip Choice, and RoundTrip Elite. They cover trip costs, medical expenses and belongings with these benefits: 

  • Trip Cancellation — Covers non-refundable, prepaid trip cost if your clients are unable to take their trip due to a covered reason.
  • Trip Interruption — Covers the non-refundable, unused portion of the prepaid trip cost and the additional cost to return home or rejoin the trip due to a covered reason.
  • Missed Connection — Pays additional transportation costs for your clients to join their cruise or tour if they miss their connection due to a delay of 3 or more hours. This benefit also covers accommodations, meals, and non-refundable trip payments for the unused portion of the cruise or tour. (Separate coverage reasons apply.)
  • Trip Delay — Reimburses from $100 to $300 per day for additional transportation, meals, accommodations & non-refundable, unused prepaid expenses if delayed a stated number of hours en route to/from the trip. (Separate coverage reasons apply.)
  • Lost, Stolen or Damaged Baggage
  • Baggage Delay
  • Emergency Accident & Sickness Medical Expenses  
  • Emergency Medical Evacuation/Repatriation

All three plans offer similar benefits but differ in benefit levels and options and can accommodate your clients, no matter what their travel needs are. Above and beyond your client base, you probably have friends, family, neighbors, and members of your community who will be traveling for the holidays and may benefit from travel insurance — the perfect Christmas gift.

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