When Covid-19 hit early last year and most travel ground to halt worldwide, would-be vacationers scrambled to get refunds from hotels, airlines, cruise lines and other travel suppliers — or to file travel insurance claims for canceled trips.
They often hit a wall on both fronts. Suppliers struggled, or sometimes stonewalled, with refunds — making those without insurance wish they’d bought some. Meanwhile, the “insured” often discovered the plans they’d purchased didn’t cover Covid-related travel or medical expenses.
“People were trying to get their money back, trying to navigate through credits versus refunds, and put in travel insurance claims,” said James Ferrara, co-founder and president of the Delray Beach, Florida-based InteleTravel network of some 60,000 home-based travel advisors. “They were also looking at travel insurance for their next [trip] and making sure that insurance would cover another occurrence of a pandemic because this all caught a lot of people by surprise — including the insurance industry.”