Be Prepared - Protect Your Travels with Travel Insurance
Travel Insurance has never been more important or helpful than in a world with COVID-19. Purchasing appropriate and adequate travel insurance will protect your travel investment and decrease stress if you are not able to travel as planned.
COVID -19 has changed the travel insurance landscape significantly, but there ARE insurance providers who are now covering medical issues, cancellations, and interruptions to travel that are COVID-19 related. That said, finding the right coverage and purchasing at the right time does take some careful planning and pouring through the fine print, but never fear we are here to help!
$50 per person credit for Being a Prepared Traveller
As our thank you to you for being prepared and taking the time to purchase travel insurance, we will offer you a $50 per person credit towards your tour cost if you provide evidence of a valid Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) Insurance policy that will cover your tour costs if you were unable to join your tour.Read More
We recognize that travel has changed as a result of COVID-19 and we want to assure you we are here to help you have a safe and wonderful experience. We will work with you to help you find appropriate travel insurance providers to give you peace of mind and to protect your adventure and hard-earned vacation dollars.
We are a small family-run company and really appreciate your understanding that we incur many expenses in preparing for these tours and our terms and conditions and cancellation policy reflect this. We are happy to provide any paperwork needed for your insurance claim if you are unable to join us and you seek to reclaim any retained travel or tour costs.
The $50 per person credit towards your tour cost will be applied to the final payment. Only Cancel for Any Reason policies qualify for the credit. See below for a list of insurance providers or call our office for more details.
Please note, this insurance needs to be purchased immediately after reserving your tour to be valid; again, we are happy to help you sort out the details.
*While not insurance experts, here is what we have learned through our research:
Cancel For Any Reason Insurance (CFAR)
In this environment with so many unknowns and for the greatest peace of mind, we highly recommend purchasing insurance known as Cancel For Any Reason Insurance (CFAR). CFAR policies vary by provider, but the general idea is that as the name implies you can cancel for any reason and receive a partial to full refund depending on the policy, specific circumstances, and date of your cancellation.
Things to know about Cancel For Any Reason Insurance (CFAR)
- CFAR has to be purchased shortly after paying for ANY portion of your travel/tour. The exact window for purchase varies from 72 hours to 20 days after payment has been made, depending on the provider.
- CFAR will cover 100% of your non-refundable expenses when canceling for reasons covered as part of typical cancellation insurance i.e. you or an immediate family member break a leg and can no longer travel.
- When canceling for a reason that is not covered by standard cancellation insurance i.e using the Cancel for Any Reason clause- only a portion of your non-refundable expenses will be covered, often 75- 80%. Examples of reasons for cancellation, in this case, could be canceled because of no longer having the desire to travel, or your dog is sick or any other reason not covered by standard cancellation insurance, etc.
- CFAR policies have different amounts of coverage based on when you cancel your trip. The closer you get to your tour departure the amount of coverage/refund you would be eligible for changes.
- CFAR policies are sold with coverage for cancellations but also usually include trip interruption and medical coverage which can be helpful once you have started your journey.
BEFORE YOU PURCHASE ANY PORTION OF YOUR TRAVEL/ADVENTURE
- Use our handy insurance selector or give us a call and we would be happy to direct you to insurance companies that can help you find the right policy for you and your needs.
- Read through the fine print of the policy and ensure that you, and your specific circumstances and those of your travel companions will have appropriate and adequate coverage. Double-check wording regarding pre-existing conditions, activities covered, the maximum duration of travel, total amounts covered, etc. FYI: to receive the $50 per person credit from Spirit of the West for purchasing travel insurance, it has to be a Cancel for Any Reason policy.
IF YOU HAVE TO CANCEL YOUR TOUR/TRAVEL
- We recommend giving us a call before you reach out to your travel insurance provider and we will help ensure that you have everything you need for them.
- It is really helpful to read through your policy to understand what is covered when it is covered and why before starting your claim.
Top Tips and What We Have Learned Researching Travel Insurance
- Which policy you can purchase depends on where you live, by country, but also by province/state/region
- When you purchase your insurance there can NOT be a warning issued to not travel to your destination (the exact level of warning varies by policy). If a warning is issued after you purchase your insurance you should be able to trigger your cancellation, interruption, or CFAR coverage.
- On your date of departure, there also can NOT be a warning against travel and or traveling to your destination.
- You can’t buy CFAR insurance without medical, cancellation, and or interruption coverage, it always comes as part of a package or as an add-on to these ‘comprehensive’ type policies.
- Spend some time determining which expenses you need coverage for and which wouldn’t be covered by travel insurance because they are refundable or you would be offered a future use credit. This helps you get the right coverage for your expenses while keeping the cost of the insurance reasonable.
- If you are still planning your travel and unsure of your total expenses you would like to ensure, you set up a CFAR policy as soon as you make any payments on any of your travel expenses and then can call your insurance provider to add additional coverage as you add additional elements to your travel plans/expenses.
- Some policies cover your travel companions and if something happens to them, but be sure that the coverages offered will indeed work for you all. Sometimes the amounts are too low to really provide adequate coverage ie max payouts wouldn’t get your family of 4 home if you needed a flight change etc. If travelling with a group it is advantageous for you to purchase individual policies for each adult or couples versus one policy for a large group as many insurance coverage/values are per policy and not per individual. If travelling as a family with dependant children, then family rates may apply making one policy more economical – an insurance agent can help you sort out the details.
Do I really need to purchase travel insurance? I never have purchased it before…
The simple answer is YES! Travel insurance has become an incredible tool for having peace of mind when travelling in a world with COVID – 19 and the associated travel restrictions, border closures, and many other uncertainties. Having the right insurance helps you to focus on trip planning, having fun, and enjoying versus worrying about the ‘what if’s’. While canceling or unexpected changes to your travel would be no fun, it is much less stressful when you aren’t worried about losing all your hard-earned dollars.
Ready to get your free quote for insurance?
If you are from Canada:Read More
Cancel for Any Reason (CFAR) policy for Canadians travelling within Canada can be purchased from Manulife Canada by calling 1-888-220-5212 and giving the Spirit of the West agent code of WESTADV and asking for the Manulife Premium Protection Plan.
If you are a US Resident:Read More
US Residents (with exception of New York State Residents)
- Many companies offer CFAR but not all policies are created equal
- Our top recommendations for coverage and cost:
- Seven Corners – Round Trip Elite (75% CFAR) or Round Trip Choice (75% CFAR)
- Crum & Forster – Worldwide Trip Protector Plus (75% CFAR)
- Trawick International – Voyager (75 % CFAR)
- John Hancock – Gold (75 % CFAR) or Silver (75% CFAR)
To get quotes from all of these companies we recommend using Aardvark Travel Insurance Brokers:
Compare Travel Insurance! Start Comparing Now At AardvarkCompare.com!
If you are from outside Canada/US:Read More
We highly recommend purchasing a Cancel for Any Reason policy offered by your local insurance provider. We are currently working on researching options for Residents of other countries from around the world and will post updates on this page as soon as possible.