Trip Insurance

The only time most people give thought to trip insurance is when the travel agent asks if they want it or something comes up right before leaving for vacation that might warrant the need for it.
Experience taught me it’s best to have it.
In August 2004, we had a 7-day trip to Disney planned that we had booked online at a price we could not believe. So trip insurance was the last thing on our minds.
Hurricane Charlie hit Florida the day before we were scheduled to leave and was making its way up the coast. We worried our flight from Philly would be the problem. We awoke early for our 8 a.m. flight and were happy to see just a little rain. We were spared, or so we thought. We arrived at the airport at 5 a.m. Sunday morning and were greeted with a long line of people waiting to check in. We took our place in line and not 5 minutes later an airline employee was walking along the line asking if anyone was headed to Orlando International Airport. That was us!
She went on to tell us that all flights to Orlando were cancelled. Couldn’t tell us why or when they would resume but she guessed in about 3 days or so.
My husband and I just looked at each other. Our daughters looked like they were going to cry. It was then I thought about trip insurance and realized we didn’t have it. I asked my husband if he knew the way to Disney World. He said, “It’s simple, take I-95 and turn at Jacksonville.”
Our options were few: miss half the vacation or drive to Florida.
“Kids, get in the car, we’re driving to Disney,” is what came out of my mouth next. Still in shock and disbelief, we got in the car at 5:30 a.m. and headed south on I-95. We stopped in Virginia to get snacks and pillows for the kids. Meal stops were fast-food only. I called the Wilderness Lodge to let them know our arrival would now be very late that night. The cast member said our room would be waiting and told me to have a magical day. The girls made the best of it and started enjoying the drive. They even made up a song that they would sing whenever we crossed a state line. We all cheered when we drove under the Walt Disney World arch and we arrived at the Wilderness Lodge exactly 18 hours later at 11:30 p.m.
To our surprise (and Disney is famous for its little surprises), we had a room that overlooked Bay Lake instead of the “woods view” we had booked. We were able to watch Wishes fireworks from our balcony. It turned out to be a great trip and one that we always talk and laugh about. And it’s the one we think about just before we say “yes” to trip insurance.

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