St. Pete Beach, FL August 15, 2007 — With the naming of Tropical Storm Dean, Squaremouth, a leading online travel insurance comparison site, announced today that travelers who have not already purchased travel insurance should think carefully before buying a policy that may not cover what they are hoping to insure. According to Squaremouth.com’s CEO Chris Harvey, “travelers cannot make a claim for losses related to Tropical Storm Dean or any storm if it was named before they purchased insurance.”
A named event clause exists within most policies to protect the insurance companies by stopping people claiming if they purchased insurance knowing something bad may happen, Harvey explains. “As soon as a tropical depression becomes a tropical storm and gets a name, insurance companies will not provide coverage.”
Most travelers assume they are covered in the event of a mandatory evacuation, he adds. “While this is true of some policies, you may be surprised to find that this coverage is not provided for most of the products on the market.”
The term “mandatory evacuation” is not mentioned in most insurance certificates. Where it is listed, it relates to non-weather evacuation. Harvey advises instead to look for the following terms:
o Complete cessation of your Common Carrier services for 24 hours
o Complete cessation of your travel supplier services for 24 hours
o Accommodation at destination rendered uninhabitable
Harvey explains the differences between these three terms that are outlined on squaremouth.com. Complete cessation of your Common Carrier usually means the airport closing for a number of hours before a claim is valid. If your accommodation is under a mandatory evacuation order and the airport stays open you cannot make a claim. If you are driving, you may not be covered because you do not have a Common Carrier that has ceased services.
Complete cessation of travel supplier is the term to look for, Harvey states. This usually means the accommodation has to be unavailable for a number of hours in order to claim. In this instance, you would be able to claim for a mandatory evacuation because your travel suppler can no longer provide you with accommodation. However, this coverage is only available if the accommodation is provided by a company licensed to provide that service which most hotels or property managers would be.
Accommodations at a destination rendered uninhabitable means your hotel or condo for example, either experienced flooding or is damaged so much you cannot continue to stay there. “We assume you will have been evacuated long before this happens anyway so in most cases, you will be back to cessation terms,” Harvey says.
Tropical Storm Dean is the fourth named storm of the season, which forecasters expect to be busier than average. Federal government forecasters last week revised predictions and reported that up to nine hurricanes and possibly 16 tropical storms are projected to form. The National Hurricane Center also describes August as the start of the busiest months for hurricane season, which started on June 1st and continues through November.
Harvey advises if a traveler has vacation plans to consider purchasing travel insurance, especially if traveling to hurricane prone areas. To learn which policies might fit their needs best at-a-glance, visit: squaremouth.com.
Detailed information on the hurricane benefits for all policies can be found at http://www.squaremouth.com/travel-insurance/information/travel-insurance-hurricane-weather-benefit.html ]
Full policy wording related to hurricane insurance clauses can be found at http://www.squaremouth.com/travel-insurance/information/travel-insurance-hurricane-weather-benefit-information.html
Squaremouth.com is a Web site that specializes in comparing all the major travel insurance plans. The site has unique research capabilities as well as providing instant quotes, coverage and immediate purchase confirmation.
Founded in 2001, Squaremouth.com helps travelers easily and instantly compare all the major travel insurance plans. To ensure customer satisfaction, all carriers are handpicked based on an internal rating system and also ratings from insurance industry watchdog AM Best. Only companies that meet Squaremouth’s strict requirements make it into the system. Along with its unique research capabilities and zero complaint guarantee, the site provides instant quotes, immediate purchase and instant confirmation. Visit squaremouth.com for more information.
Jennifer Thomas, APR
On Behalf of Squaremouth
jennifer @ fsrventures.com (239) 573-0088
Toll Free (800) 240-0369
Direct Line (727) 490-5802