Our 2012 Holiday Travel Tips

If you are heading home for Thanksgiving or ringing in the New Year somewhere special, the last thing you are probably thinking is, ‘am I insured for that?’ Wherever your travels take you, these tips will keep you safe and saving.

Homeowners’ Away from Home: Travel Insurance can cover any number of things, from flight cancellations to lost or stolen luggage, but you may be surprised to learn you could already be covered. Homeowner and renter’s insurance do not necessarily stop at your doorstep, so call your agent to see if your belongings are covered away from home.

Keep Your Goods Good and Safe: Wherever you’re headed these holidays, your trunk’s likely loaded with gifts and pastime goods. Whether wrapped up or worn in, your golf clubs, gadgets and tablets are probably not protected by your auto insurance policy. If you tend to travel with high ticket items, ask your agent about adding a layer of protection. For example, Safeco Insurance offers personal property coverage through its Optimum Package.

Protection for the Unexpected: If you’re driving home these holidays, remember, accidents spike over the holidays. To play it safe, look into Emergency Expense Coverage, which pays transportation, meals and lodging expenses if you crash away from home.

Avoid Overpaying and Under-Protecting: You may cringe at rental car fees, but the big dig is temporary insurance, which tacks 50%* onto your tab. Here’s where you can save. Standard auto insurance often extends liability/collision protection to rentals, so you can cut costs and keep your coverage.

Partners, Promos and Perks: Last minute travel is a surefire way to overpay. Get free alerts from Airfarewatchdog.com and the jump on limited promotions from SmarterTravel.com, like flyer deals, rental car pre-pay discounts, and how to score free upgrades. Book through partners like credit cards and travel sites to save on flights and hotels. Always search for promo codes, and utilize loyalty programs. They are easy to join and promise perks ranging from discounts to expedited processing.

World-wide Rental Car Coverage: While it’s true your car insurance may offer protection for car rentals state-to-state, it is unlikely that your coverage will extend country-to-country. Some insurance companies, however, offer wider protection to their preferred customers.

In summary, save the surprises and the spending for the holiday, and get the best travel deals you can before you go. Take advantage of companies that compare deals for you, such as Answer Financial which staffs hundreds of licensed agents to give you an apples-to-apples understanding of the insurance choices, prices and coverages available to you.

Finally, make sure you know which coverages you have and which you actually need, to make sure you’re protected without overspending. If you are unsure get your questions answered here or call our agents at 1-800-993-5057.


*Figures derived from identical quotes from three top rental car companies. Quotes assumed a one week compact car rental at the Los Angeles International Airport locations for each company, with payment due upon arrival.

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