Once you’ve found the right partner, there’s a lot that goes into planning a fabulous wedding. From picking a date and saying yes to the perfect dress to selecting the prime location and hand-selecting the guest list, it is often a magical but stressful time for the happy couple. With so many factors at play, brides and grooms-to-be look forward to relaxing with toes in the sand during their tropical post-wedding getaway.
But what if last-minute factors out of your control — like a hurricane — threaten to disrupt your honeymoon? Remember the devastating hurricanes that tore through Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands last summer? Locals were left in unimaginable living conditions and inbound tourism (a huge sector of their economies,) was completely shut down for months.
According to the Weather Channel, 2018 is on track to become the most active hurricane season on record for the Eastern Pacific. To avoid losing money you spend on your trip, Justin Tysdal, a travel insurance expert and CEO of Seven Corners, shares a few tips:
Book your trip early and get travel insurance
Travelers should think about purchasing a travel insurance policy as early as possible, especially if they’re planning to travel to a high-risk destination during hurricane season. Once weather experts name a storm, it is too late to purchase a travel insurance policy that will allow you to cancel or interrupt your upcoming trip because it is classified as a “foreseeable event.” Plan ahead and add a policy to your plans as soon as you book! Think of it as buying homeowners insurance before your house burns down. You can’t wait until your house is on fire to buy insurance for it. Once the risk is known, it’s no longer insurable.
Have a plan, be organized, and thorough
If you and your new spouse are planning to travel near a tropical area during hurricane season, make sure you have a game plan to keep yourself and your trip safe. Call ahead to see if your hotel has a hurricane policy or money-back guarantee and what the terms may be. You should also leave a copy of any important documents (i.e., your passport, driver’s license, flight and hotel information, or insurance policy) with a trusted individual (maybe the mother of the bride) at home. For easy access on-the-go, you may also consider storing them on the cloud or sending them in an email to yourself, just in case you lose the physical copies.
Add a CFAR policy just in case
When purchasing a travel insurance policy, look for the option to add a Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) benefit. It allows you to cancel your trip for absolutely any reason at all and reimburses you for 75% of your nonrefundable trip expenses. Be careful to read the fine print so you use the benefit correctly. Most CFAR options require you to ensure 100 percent of your nonrefundable prepaid trip costs, and you must also cancel your trip at least 2 days before departure.
Travel insurance policies have several other benefits as well, including coverage for medical expenses and missed connections as well as lost baggage, trip interruption, and more. Explore the many benefits of travel insurance and protect the love of your life before your next getaway!
Editor’s note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more pandemic wedding resources here.