Daydreaming of our next vacation is something most people enjoy. What’s much less enjoyable, however, are the unplanned, tricky situations that often occur while we’re traveling. A beloved relative might fall ill, causing us to need to change plans. Or we might arrive at the airport, only to discover we’ve been bumped from our flight.
If these situations have ever happened to you, you’re not alone. Although difficult travel situations are often unplanned, there are still some things you can do to prepare for them ahead of time.
Even the most independent travelers might still benefit from working with a travel agent. Travel agents are great for helping plan cruises and international travel. Best of all, they rarely charge for their services and are sometimes able to get better deals thanks to their deals with travel wholesalers.
Airlines reserve the right to overbook flights or switch your seats, even if you’ve already paid for a flight or seat reservation. Luckily, you do have some rights. For instance, if you paid for an Economy Plus seat and are bumped to an Economy seat instead, you should be refunded your seat fare by the airline. If the airline doesn’t automatically issue (or even offer) you a refund, be sure to contact them directly.
Traveling with Pets
If you want to bring your beloved fur baby on your vacation but your pet has issues flying with you, you might want to start by gradually getting him or her comfortable with being in a pet carrier. Eventually, move on to getting your pet used to the motions of traveling by car. It is important to start this process well in advance of your flight. Sedation is also an option, but many pet owners prefer to avoid this if possible. Check out more travel tips for pet parents here.
If you ultimately decide to leave your beloved dog at home during your trip, be sure to hire a trusted pet sitter while you’re gone. A good pet sitter can ease your mind by making sure your dog is properly taken care of while you’re away.
Avoiding a Robbery
Between 75% to 80% of robbers admit to checking Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and other social networks to find their robbery targets. Even worse, insurance companies may deny claims if they discover that an upcoming trip or a big vacation had been posted on Facebook or other social networks prior to the breakin. Try to avoid posting about your vacation on social media. Make sure you have homeowners or renters insurance. And contact local authorities at once if you suspect a breakin. Be sure to adequately secure your home before you leave and, if possible, try to have a trusted friend or relative house sit for you while you’re away.
Handling Home Damage While You’re Gone
I’ll never forget the time I was on a beach vacation in Florida and I received a troubling phone call. A tornado had touched down on my street back home and was destroying my neighbors’ houses. I immediately dreaded the worst, with no way of knowing whether or not the tornado had missed my home.
I felt helpless to protect my home from several states away. Luckily, the tornado missed my house that day – but other families have not been as lucky. For this reason, you should proactively protect your home (and your wallet) from potential damages. There’s something to be said for anticipating unplanned disasters and taking steps to (hopefully) prevent them ahead of time. This might include purchasing insurance plans, having “before” photographs of your home, and insulating your home to protect it from winds and other damages.
Travel, like life itself, is not 100% controllable and there are no guarantees. Unexpected events sometimes happen while we’re traveling or vacationing. However, there are often things you can do to proactively plan for the unexpected – and to protect yourself when faced with a difficult situation. With help from the tips in this article, you’ll be better equipped to confidently plan for your next trip. Good luck and safe travels!