Insuring a Good Time: Travel Protection Can Save Bundles

The ABC News Fixer helps a vacationer straighten out a flight credit kerfuffle.

THE ABC NEWS FIXER— -- Dear ABC News Fixer: I was diagnosed last October with a massive pulmonary embolism. My family and I were scheduled to leave on a vacation to Mexico the next month. I was unable to fly due to my condition. Fortunately, I had bought trip insurance through Travelocity and got a flight credit.

Their error should not keep me from getting what we already paid for. The credit is $1,430.67. Help!

- Jennifer Carney, Winthrop, Mass.

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Dear Jennifer: It’s no fun to miss a fun trip due to illness – and it’s really no fun when you’re out 1400 bucks to boot! You told us the trip to Jamaica was supposed to be a celebration after finally getting the all-clear from your doctor to travel.

You told the ABC News Fixer that the agent had you cancel the trip you had already booked; then he was going to re-book it and apply the credit. Something got messed up, though, because although you got a new trip itinerary, you didn’t get the credit.

You said you called five different customer service reps, trying to straighten this out. One was sympathetic and said you should be able to get your money back, but the refund never came.

We asked Travelocity spokesman Keith Nowak if he could find someone there to investigate. He got the company’s resolution team to go through all the calls and figure out where the mistake occurred.

“In the investigation, they determined where the ball got dropped during one of the interactions with Ms. Carney – and were able to get everything untangled from there,” he told us.

The company quickly processed a refund of $1,430.67, along with a $40 credit that had been promised on one of the earlier calls. They also apologized for the inconvenience.

You were lucky you had purchased trip protection. If you can find a good travel policy, it’s a smart move, especially if the trip was expensive and there’s chance you might need to cancel.

As you found out, we never know when we’ll get sick and can’t travel.

Here are a few more travel insurance tips:

- Be sure to read the policy carefully so you know exactly what’s covered. For example, some policies won’t cover pre-existing medical conditions that cause you to miss a trip.

- You can get policies for all kinds of travel nightmares such as trip cancellation or interruption, medical issues, emergency evacuations and lost luggage. Many policies cover all of these areas.

- Shop around. Prices for comprehensive travel insurance packages can vary widely, anywhere from 5 to 12 percent of the cost of the trip.

-The ABC News Fixer