Tuesday, September 30, 2014

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What To Do When Severe Weather Threatens Your Vacation

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TWC News: What To Do When Severe Weather Threatens Your Vacation
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Some people lost out on vacations they planned before Sandy and Wednesday's nor'easter. NY1's Valarie D'Elia has some tips for travelers to help you make sure your trips don't turn into nightmares.

Passengers on the Norwegian Gem had their trip extended five days due to Sandy and Wednesday's nor'easter.

"We were supposed to get off," said one passenger. "They gave us five more days free."

However, not all passengers who rode out Sandy onboard the Norwegian Gem thought the idea of nine nights turning into 14 days was a bargain.

"It was terrible. It was no joke," said one passenger.

"The never-ending vacation," said another.

Sandy and the nor’easter proved that travel is at the mercy of Mother Nature.

"It’s a time in a travel experience when it's very nice to have a specialist to ensure you are taken care of," said Mary Kleen, the general manager of Pisa Brothers Travel.

Pisa Brothers Travel in Midtown was remotely staffed during Sandy.

"Our agents worked around the clock to accommodate clients because we have a lot of corporate business and flights were all canceled," Kleen said.

Depending on the trip, travel agents customarily charge a fee for their services. Pisa Brothers customers should expect to pay about $35 when a flight is canceled.

"We do as much as we can of course, electronically, and we’re on hold with everyone else for our clients," said Kleen. "It’s a nice luxury for our clients to have someone do that for them."

Aside from having a travel agent, travelers may want to consider purchasing travel insurance.

"Travel insurance is absolutely critical, whether you are purchasing a single airline ticket or a world cruise," said Kleen.

Insured passengers booked on the Caribbean Princess, which changed course from Bermuda to Boston during Sandy, avoided the situation.

"If you canceled before the cruise, knowing the hurricane was coming, depending on the level of insurance you took, you either got 75 or 100 percent credit towards a future cruise," said Brad Hatry of Pisa Brothers Travel.

Cruise lines usually offer compensation to uninsured passengers for weather-related travel inconvenience as a matter of goodwill, even though they have no obligation to do so.

As is common practice in the travel industry, Travel With Val often receives complimentary travel or reduced "media" rates at hotels, resorts and attractions, including those that may be featured in these reports. Such consideration is not taken in exchange for any express or implied promise or understanding of any nature, particularly regarding the content of these reports. These reports only feature travel providers personally recommended by Valarie D’Elia in the exercise of her independent editorial judgment, and do not represent the endorsement of Time Warner Cable or any third party.
 
 
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