Cruises

Travel Insurance | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Africa, Australia, Cruises, Europe, New Zealand, Travel, on 8 March 2019, by , 0 Comments

Think about the last time you rented a car.

Did you take the optional insurance?

Do you see that insurance as a good investment or a waste of money? It seems like a good percentage of travelers say no to this optional upgrade for a variety of reasons.

The most common reasons are that they believe themselves to be a “good driver” and that they have car insurance at home that will cover them in a rental car… or that the credit card they used to pay for the rental offers additional coverage as well.

I don’t have strong opinions on rental car insurance, but when it comes to travel insurance, I’m always ready to hop up on my soapbox and let my clients know what I think!

I, like any travel professional worth their salt, recommend travel insurance to each and every one of my clients. Unfortunately, most travelers don’t understand what the policy covers and when they really should be spending the extra money to purchase travel insurance.

“We know we aren’t going to cancel so we don’t need cancellation insurance.”

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard a client speak those words, I’d be jet setting the world and probably writing this from a luxury villa on the beach in the Bora Bora!

Let me be clear, travel insurance is so much more than cancellation insurance! In fact, as a travel professional, it’s my opinion that the “cancellation” part of your policy is one of the least important things to consider!

While there are simple cancellation insurance policies available, true travel insurance covers so many things that you probably aren’t even thinking of when you book your vacation. Things like travel delays, lost luggage, lost or stolen valuables, medical emergencies (for a member of your travel party or a loved one at home), dental emergencies, evacuations, lost travel documents, and more.

“We have health insurance coverage so we’ll be fine.”

That’s another comment I hear often, and while that may be true if you are traveling within the US, more than likely it isn’t going to help for international travel.

It is highly unlikely that your regular health insurance will cover anything at all if you are outside of the US. (Your passport even states taht Medicare will not cover you outside of the United States.) Check your policy carefully before you decide to rely on it for international travel. Even if it provides some coverage, you will probably be required to pay for any treatment or medication out of pocket and then file for reimbursement when you return. A good travel insurance policy will usually allow the doctor or hospital to bill them directly up to your coverage limitations.

There are certain situations where I believe travel insurance should be considered a must. I feel so strongly about this that I ask my clients in these situations to sign a waiver if they choose to decline to purchase a travel insurance policy.

  • International travel – A medical or dental emergency abroad can be financially devastating. Many hospitals will collect your passport at admission and will not return it until your bill has been paid. Do you have the financial resources to handle a medical emergency should one arise?
  • Cruises – While there is a doctor on board every cruise ship, the ship’s infirmary can only handle simple things. Should you have a medical emergency, you would need to be evacuated off of the ship by helicopter. Onboard a cruise ship, a medical emergency can be something as simple as a broken ankle. The cost of evacuation from the ship is typically in the tens of thousands of dollars… and it won’t be covered by your health insurance even if you are evacuated to a US port. (See article: Couple says cruise ship abandoned them in Mexico during medial emergency)
  • You, a travel companion or someone at home has a chronic medical condition – Travel insurance will cover cancellation for illness or injury of a member of your travel party or a family member at home. The decision to stay home and lose potentially thousands of dollars in nonrefundable fees can make an already stressful situation even worse. Better to be able to get those fees reimbursed and plan your travel for a better time. (NOTE: make sure to check your travel insurance policy for any pre-existing condition terms. There are policies available that waive these clauses if purchased within a specified time frame after booking).

A client of ours had declined travel insurance then broke his leg shortly after making final payment. He decided to go on his river cruise. The ship’s crew had to help him on and off the ship because he was in a full let cast. One crew member asked him why he hadn’t cancelled. His answer, I didn’t buy travel inurance and would have had to forfeit the money I paid, so here I am. 

Travel is an investment. You’ve likely saved for your vacation for quite some time. Be sure you are making a smart decision in how you want to protect that investment! Take the time to review and discuss your travel insurance needs before each trip. What are your thoughts on travel insurance? Please comment below.

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Scenic Eclipse | Ingenious Travel

Posted in All-Inclusive, Cruises, Luxury, on 24 August 2018, by , 0 Comments

Many people dream of a luxury vacation experience, but few people indulge in them. I’m not talking a first class vacation either. I mean beyond first class. Think celebrity status – white glove service, the kind of experience that makes you feel like the VIP you truly are. Enter the Scenic Eclipse yacht cruise vacation. This is the elite status getaway people salivate over, and you can have it for yourself.

Limited Guests, Unlimited Luxury

The trouble with many ocean cruise liners, even luxury ones, is that there are far too many guests on board. No matter how many staff there are, it’s easy to feel like you are just another number on those ships.

The Scenic Eclipse is a luxury yacht that limits the guest count to less than 230 people for an almost 1:1 staff-to-guest ratio, promising an exclusive vacation with one of a kind service you won’t get anywhere else. That is, anywhere else short of booking a private yacht with your own staff where you are the only guest.

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Cruising | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Cruises, Travel, on 15 June 2018, by , 0 Comments

Want to know the number one mistake travelers make when going on a cruise? That is aside from not hiring a travel agent? It’s over packing! You need less than you think you do while you’re on board. With this in mind below you’ll find things you simply should not pack for your next cruise:

Avoid bringing more outfits than the number of days on the ship. Only bring enough clothes for the duration of the trip. There’s no sense in bringing two weeks worth of clothes if you are going on a week long vacation. Speaking of too many clothes…

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Adventures by Disney | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Cruises, Europe, Family Travel, River Cruising, Travel, on 27 April 2018, by , 0 Comments

We’ve been getting pretty excited learning all about the upcoming cruises by Adventures by Disney. They have certainly taken the idea of luxury of river cruising and given it the kind of upgrade any Disney star including Mickey himself would approve of. Today, we’re exploring the Rhine River itinerary Adventures by Disney is offering. We think you’ll find yourself wanting to hop aboard this exciting cruise vacation after you read more about it.

Overview:

You’ll travel to six destinations in four countries on this 8-day/7-night Adventures by Disney Rhine River cruise vacation. Your trip will begin in Basel, Switzerland and end in Amsterdam, The Netherlands with plenty of exciting experiences along the way.

  • Cruise departure: You’ll fly into Basel Airport where you’ll be transported to Basel, Switzerland – the city the cruise will depart from. Be sure to ask Ingenious Travel about early arrival activities and accommodations, attractions and dining reservations should you decide you would like to explore Switzerland before your cruise.
  • On-board cruise experience: You’ll enjoy 8 days and 7 nights aboard either the AmaKristina or the AmaMora river cruise boat (depending on when your cruise travel dates take place). Both boats feature spacious staterooms, a heated pool, a massage and hair salon, a gift shop and a specialty coffee station.  
  • Cruise arrival: On day 8 your cruise boat will arrive in Amsterdam, The Netherlands and you can either depart same day from Amsterdam Airport Schipol, or stick around another day or two to explore The Netherlands. Again, be sure to ask Ingenious Travel about late departure activities and accommodations, attractions and dining reservations should you decide you would like to explore The Netherlands before your flight home.
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MSC Cruises | Ingenious Travel

Posted in Cruises, Europe, Family Travel, on 9 February 2018, by , 0 Comments

One of the most frequent concerns for cruise goers is what to expect when traveling with a cruise line they’ve not yet cruised with before. With that in mind, I thought it might be a good idea to do a spotlight on some of my favorite cruise lines, and I am starting with MSC Cruise Line. Continue reading to learn more about MSC Cruises.

About MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises is considered to be the leader in Mediterranean cruises, but they also have voyages in to Northern Europe, the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean, North America, South America and South Africa. MSC Cruises is the world’s largest privately-owned cruise line. Their fleet is comprised of 12 ships that cruise year-round in the Mediterranean and Caribbean, and seasonally in other locations.

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Posted in Adventure Travel, Cruises, Theme Vacations, Travel, Uncategorized, Unique Getaways, on 13 May 2016, by , 0 Comments

Antarctic Photography | Ingenious TravelAntarctica might not be the first place you think of when you consider a photography expedition. However, we’re betting that by the time you’ve read through this post, you will be ready to don your warm clothes for an exciting trek through one of the most beautiful places in the world to snap a pic or two, or 1,000! Here’s a simple guide to what you need to know for an exciting photography expedition through Antarctica:

The first thing you’ll need to know is what to bring, where to stay and when to go. Regardless of the time of year you go, you’ll end up wanting to carry warm clothes. We recommend layered clothes so that you can bundle up or down where needed. Believe it or not, you should plan as far in advance as possible. Even Antarctica’s hotels sell out and the best rooms always go first. Know your budget as soon as possible so that you can plan accordingly as well. It might go without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway- know the expected weather conditions you will experience while visiting so that you’ll know just how many layers to bring with you.

Insider’s Tip: Everything we mentioned in the last paragraph are just a few reasons you will want to work with Ingenious Travel while preparing for your getaway! You’ll want advocates on your side working on your behalf ensuring you’ll have the best and safest trip possible.

What are the top things someone to do during your tour? Just a few of the exciting things you can enjoy on your trip include:

  1. Swim in Antarctica at the Deception Bay – Deception Bay is an amazing place with a caldera volcano offering a prime site for swimming in Antarctica. Swimming in frigid temperatures? YES! Just don’t go into deeper waters. Stick to where it’s warm and safe.
  2. Take a Zodiac Cruise in the Antarctica – A zodiac is a small boat that carries roughly 10 to 12 people. During your journey, you will see icebergs on a close up view while enjoying seeing many different seal types including leopard seals. This is one of those times your camera is highly recommended. Bonus points to you if you have one that is waterproof so that should any splashing occur your lens is protected.
  3. Send a post card right from the southernmost point – Port Lockroy hosts the southernmost post office still existing in the world. Send a postcard home and/or to family from there for the most unique of souvenirs. One word of caution, though. It could take up to 12 months before it arrives to it’s intended destination. Seeing this area along with the chance to send post from the place will be an amazing experience to say the least.
  4. Get Up Close and Personal With Penguins – This is Antarctica’s most popular tourist attraction and will definitely make for some fabulous photo opps! You’ll see thousands of penguins and get to walk among the massive colonies of them while taking your photos.

Other things you’ll want to photography include the natural beauty of the Lemaire Channel, the whales, the seals and even the birds. You might even want to do some kayaking and camping during your vacation. Want to learn more about all that Antarctica has to offer? Call Ingenious Travel today!

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Posted in Caribbean, Cruises, River Cruising, Travel, Uncategorized, on 29 January 2016, by , 0 Comments

Ocean Cruise River Cruise | Ingenious Travel

 

For those of you who have become quite the well-seasoned ocean cruisers, you may have heard that ocean exploration isn’t the only option out there. Whether you are growing tired of the massive crowds that come along with ocean cruising or you simply want to switch things up a bit for your future cruise adventure, here are some of the main differences of both to help you make some decisions…

No Waves vs. Many Waves

If you have ever had to deal with sea sickness, then you may know exactly why this is such a big difference. Nothing is worse than having your entire vacation ruined by the bumpiness that seems to not sit so well with your stomach. With river cruises, the chances of this are slim to none, making your stomach happier and your trip possibly much more enjoyable. For those of you who never suffer from sea sickness, then this may be irrelevant but still nice to know.

Seeing & Touching Land Everyday vs. Every Other Day

For river cruises, you are able to see land every single day you are on board in addition to actually in port and stepping on land every single day as well. This is unlike ocean cruises as you may go an entire day without even seeing a speck of land. If you don’t mind staring out into the wide open ocean and seeing nothing but blue all around you, then ocean cruises may be great for you! However, if you prefer quite the opposite and enjoy being in port every day, then river cruises might just be your cup of tea.

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Posted in Cruises, General Travel Information, Gift Ideas, Golf, Music, River Cruising, Theme Vacations, Uncategorized, on 4 December 2015, by , 0 Comments

Theme River Cruises | Ingenious TravelWhether you have been on a themed river cruise before or are contemplating on heading out on your very first one, you should know that there are plenty of great options out there to choose from. If you are debating what types are available or which one would best suite your preferences, consider the following…

Christmas Theme

Make this Christmas the most special one yet by heading out on a Christmas themed river cruise through some of the best parts of Europe. Imagine cruising through France, Germany or Austria and stopping off at each inviting town to explore the many Christmas markets. This seems to be a favorite amongst those who want to spend the holidays in a unique and unforgettable way.

Food & Wine Theme

For lovers of both food and wine, this would be the absolute best choice and guaranteed to have you enjoying some of the best of both worlds for up to two weeks on board a fantastic vessel. Some of the most popular regions to explore are France and Italy although there are some options throughout the US as well that take you through wine countries of the Lower Mississippi River.

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Posted in Cruises, Family Travel, General Travel Information, Travel Tips, Uncategorized, on 17 October 2014, by , 1 Comments

7 Ways to Stay Healthy While TravelingMany people travel over the holiday season. As this is also known as the season for colds and flu, it’s important to be proactive when encountering germs. Here are seven tips to help you stay healthy while traveling this holiday season.

1. Wash Your Hands
The most important step we can take in staying healthy is keeping your hands clean and keeping them away from your eyes, nose, and mouth. You touch dozens of germy surfaces every day, when you travel, multiply that by 1,000. If you aren’t sure you will have access to soap and water, carry antibacterial wipes and/or hand sanitizer. Wiping down surfaces before using them can also help in reducing the number of germs you come in contact with.

2. Drink Plenty of Water
Flying can be dehydrating due to the altitude change and dry air. You’ve heard it, drink a minimum of 64 oz. of water a day; however you need more when flying. Many people also like to celebrate the beginning of their trip with a glass of wine or cocktail when flying. Wait until you’re on the ground to indulge as alcohol (and caffeine) is also dehydrating and can cause jet lag.

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