A very unfortunate and sad story is in the news this week concerning a family who found out, very unexpectedly, that their 5-year-old has a serious cancer type that required surgery. The issue in the news is, they’ve paid for and were scheduled to leave on a cruise vacation a few months after their son’s unexpected, life changing Cancer diagnosis and now cannot go as the little boy is still recovering from surgery. The cruiseline would not refund the parent’s money as per the stated contract indicated they would NOT do, for any reason. There is also some type of “she-said, he-didn’t say”, back and forth differing recollections of their initial cancellation discussion as to whether the cruiseline offered to reschedule their cruise in lieu of a refund. At this point, it’s irrelevant.
Now, as heartbreaking as this story is, folks need to understand; the main reason for Insurance coverage is because crap happens in this life to many people! It often times hits very unexpectedly as in this family’s case and at varying degrees of severity. I have no idea what this family must be going through, am very sorry this has happened to them and can only offer my Prayers for their son’s recovery and better health.
Most, Travel Professionals like myself understand the Cruiselines’ choice to not break the contract guidelines while many others, especially the general public who naturally, being compassionate for this innocent child who has been afflicted with a disease and feeling sympathy for his family are choosing to fuel a fire against the cruiseline for Performance of Contract.
Horrible things happen to good people each and everyday all over this world. Adults as well as children are diagnosed with heartbreaking illnesses, unexpected accidents and deaths occur daily. People lose their jobs or other sources of income and, #LifeHappens to people who are planning to #Travel too. This is one of the reasons why Cruiselines and other Travel Retailers have these “Non-Refundable” contracts in place. Unfortunately, there are TOO MANY people/families dealing with horrible #LifeHappened issues and if businesses start making exceptions to reschedule trips &/or refund money to one family, they would have to refund money to all who are dealing with hardships.
I am a huge advocate for Life Insurance and Travel Insurance so my point here is to, once again, spotlight the importance of investing in an insurance coverage plan. When you are offered the opportunity to protect yourself and your family financially, in this case, a Cruise Vacation investment, with Travel Insurance coverage and decide not to take it, you can’t then complain when #Crap happens to you and you can’t get your money back. A contract is in place and agreed upon, whether one chooses to read it or not, which clearly states, NO REFUNDS for cancellations, “For Any Reason”, PERIOD!
When a potential traveler declines insurance coverage, what they are effectively stating is that they are already financially prepared for whatever may happen, however horrific, including losing all of the money they have invested into their upcoming trip should an unexpected event happen. If that’s not your truth then you need to include Insurance in your Travel budget.
Please think about that the next time you #Plan2Travel. No one has immunity from life happenings so be sure to include Travel Insurance on your next booking.
Tina Little-Coltrane, Owner/Travel Consultant: TLC Travels’ Tours & Cruises!
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Update:… and the news outlets continue to fuel this situation:—> Read all about it here!