Travelers need to pack patience, flexibility, insurance | Columnists

DAYDREAM ACHIEVER

Zac Wilson is a Certified Travel Consultant, ASTA Verified Travel Advisor, CLIA Master Cruise Counselor and owner of Daydream Vacations Travel Agency in Granbury. www.DaydreamVacations.com

The top three items on my packing list are patience, flexibility, and travel insurance. The internet blogs are full of packing lists for your next vacation.

Beach vacationers remind you to pack a backup swimsuit, extra sunscreen, and a good book. Cruisers say you should bring a battery-operated night light, a cube with socket for more plug-ins and magnetic wall hooks. Amusement park adventurers demand comfortable hiking boots, a battery charger for your iPhone and a mini backpack that can be easily stowed away while riding.

BE PREPARED WHEN TRAVELING

But recent events in the travel world show us that we need to be prepared for delays, changes and cancellations. Airlines had lately delayed many flights, changed schedules or canceled them. Cruise lines had last minute itineraries, a ship change and some were canceled altogether.

COVID policy continues to change regularly with the U.S. government and CDC, and international travelers should stay informed about the rules for the country they are visiting.

PATIENCE REQUIRED

While the travel experience may contain some challenges, with the right preparation, you can overcome them. First, you have to be patient. Please note that your travel plans will encounter delays or a schedule change.

Patience will help you handle the situation with grace and communicate politely with those who are trying to help you. Remember that even after a long delay at the airport, you will arrive at your destination and enjoy your vacation.

GO WITH THE FLOW

Then it is important to be flexible. Cruiseline ticket contracts reserve the right to change the itinerary if necessary.

In the past, it was more common to change an itinerary to avoid the path of a hurricane or similar hazard. Now, an itinerary may fluctuate due to changing COVID protocols or an outbreak in that port community.

For example, a cruise recently changed its stops because CDC rules required 95% of all passengers to be vaccinated, but the port of call updated their policy and demanded 100%.

Your hotel may need to change the location of your room. The airline may need to change planes for your flight, which will change your seat selection. I had a client who saw his all-inclusive resort turn into a room-only hotel at the last minute. We had to find another resort for them.

Either way, patience and flexibility will help you enjoy your holiday.

GET THE INSURANCE

Travel insurance is highly recommended. While travel insurance has always been advisable, I dare say it should now be mandatory; just buy it. On its own, COVID is the number one reason to buy protection.

Most trips are non-refundable the closer you get to your departure date. If you test positive and can’t go, you’ll need insurance. International travelers must test before boarding the plane to the US. If you test positive, you must be quarantined in that foreign country until you test negative.

The right insurance will help you with the costs of your health needs and extended hotel stay. If you get sick while traveling and need to see a doctor in a country that doesn’t accept your regular health insurance, travel insurance can help. Your travel advisor can recommend a good travel insurance policy.

Zac@DaydreamVacations.com | 817-559-7150

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