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AIG Travel Insurance Plan, Deluxe

Discussion in 'Insurance' started by Joni Geiser, May 18, 2017.

  1. Joni Geiser

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    Booked a Western Mediterranean trip with Star Clipper and due to the expense of trip, we purchased AIG Travel Guard through Star Clipper. We boarded our plane in Phila. and just sat there. Airline said Air Traffic Control wouldn't let us into New York, JKF. By the time we got to NY, plane to Nice had left and a later one was full. AIG is only reimbursing for "missed connection" - we don't fit the criteria for "interrupted travel". Seems very unfair to only get $2000. back on a $10,000. trip. Are there better policies out there. If not, why purchase insurance when a trip could be ruined, on no part of your own, and be barely reimbursed? Thanks!
     
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  2. VoR61

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    There are many "flavors" of travel insurance, which I why I recommend purchasing through a broker who handles many different insurers. They know what questions to ask you in order to determine the best policy for your needs. Here are some of the coverages I always highlight:
    • Basic policies, or "lite" as they are often labeled. These offer limited coverage for trip cancellation, trip interruption, and travel delays. But too often they fail to meet the needs of travelers due to their restricted coverages.
    • Basic policies (or "lite" as they are often labeled). These offer limited coverage for trip cancellation, trip interruption, and travel delays. But too often they fail to meet the needs of travelers due to their restricted coverages. Comprehensive policies can cover one or more of the following:
    • Cruise Cancellation. One of the gotchas we see here occurs when a cruise is cancelled. The cruise line will reimburse for their portion, but you are left with airfare portion you purchased separately. Ask about this coverage if your non-refundable airfare is a concern.
    • Cancel for Any Reason. The other cancellation coverages are conditional, where this one is not. However, it only covers 50-75% of your non-refundable costs. Highly recommended.
    • Emergency Evacuation. Another critical option. Costs will be in the tens-of-thousands if not hundreds-of-thousands if a medical emergency occurs (typically during a cruise). Happened to my father-in-law, and was quite expensive.
    • Primary Medical. A lesser-though-of option, but one that places the insurer first in line for claims. This eliminates the need to file with your own insurance and wait for claims to be accepted/denied. The one time we bought this, it was an extra $50.
    • Pre-existing Medical Waiver. Essential coverage if you and a co-insured have any medical conditions for which you've been treated in the past two years or the treatment is ongoing. Travel insurance policies will often decline coverage for an issue you think is not "pre-existing". Additional cost for this is usually minimal.
    • Hospital of Choice. Can be important if you have a medical condition that is being treated at a specific hospital (or if you simply have a strong preference for one).
    • Employment Layoff. Not part of a standard policy. Being without an income is hard enough without a fail-safe for trip costs.
    • Financial Default. Important when a travel provider has stopped business operations due to financial reasons. Unless you paid for the service through the cruise line or other third party, you would lose your pre-paid expenses.
    Be aware that no single policy will cover every possible reason for cancellation at 100% ...
     
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    Last edited: May 18, 2017
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  3. Joni Geiser

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    Thank you. It's pretty clear that our AIG Travel Guard policy did not cover much for "missed connection", even if the delay was due to air traffic control. Lost a lot of money....
     
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  4. VoR61

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    And I am genuinely sorry for that. The only coverage I know of for a missed connection is Cancel for Any Reason. But a better and cheaper solution going forward is to arrive at the departure city (for cruises) the day before. For a one night hotel stay, you have "breathing room" for missed/late plane connections.

    We see many of these here that could have been avoided by that approach, I always do that myself, and also I arrive at the port as soon they allow so I don't miss check-in. There's simply too much at risk.

    Kudos to you, however, for purchasing Travel Insurance. We see many cases here where a traveler does not even consider it, and a few who won't pay even a few hundred to protect multiple thousands in non-refundable costs.
     
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  5. Luc Terje

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    Were you able to join the Star Clipper at a later port ?
     
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  6. jsn55

    Staff Member Advocate

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    Joni, this just doesn't sound right. Did your connection turn into an interruption? Did you abort the cruise?

    I think we need some more details, there may be avenues for you to try if we know exactly what happened. That is a LOT of money! If you would compile a list of events and post it, we can have a look at your issue.
     
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  7. Christina H

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    Vor61, I am not sure if For any Reason would have helped these travelers. When I looked into that type of policy it demanded cancellation 48 hours before departure. These poor passengers already started.

    Jone Geiser jsn55 is correct, more details would help. I am hoping someone that the claim person is making a mistake because this is a lot of money

    Did you ever make the cruise?

    Were you taking Delta? If so did they try and put you on a partner airline like Air France? Delta can give some unreasonably optimistic connection times at JFK when one books on their website -- less than 2 hours.
     
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  8. VoR61

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    Yes, you are correct about the 48 hours. I was speaking in general terms - some Trip Cancellation coverages might cover this scenario, but it's hard to find from what I read.
     
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  9. kenish

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    @Joni Geiser - As others requested, did you make it onto the cruise? Was it at the originating port, or did you have to catch up to the ship at a different port? Please provide us with a brief summary of the expenses you incurred. Also, most trip insurance policies require you to contact the insurance company's travel desk as soon as something goes wrong. It's in their best interest and yours to get you on-track as quickly as possible. Did you contact them?
     
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  10. Joni Geiser

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  11. JVillegirl541

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    Hello @Joni Geiser your message is blank! Just push reply and help us to help you!
     
    #11
  12. Joni Geiser

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    Thank you so much for your interest and concern. On May 12, we had a 4:55 flight from Philadelphia to JFK, NY. We were stuck on the tarmac in Philadelphia for several hours and didn't arrive in NY until 8:30. Our flight to Nice was scheduled for 8:06, so we did not make the connection. Delta attempted to put us on a flight from NY to Nice with a stopover in London, but it was full. As a result, we missed the Royal Clipper's departure and lost out on our vacation plans. I contacted Star Clipper's emergency number, and the man I spoke with expressed his sympathy and indicated he would let Star Clipper know we wouldn't be arriving. Nothing was ever said about possibly meeting at another port. Delta gave us flights back to Philadelphia for the next morning at 9AM. I thought our AIG travel insurance would cover us, but I did not contact them until the next day, May 13, when we arrived home. According to AIG, our misfortunes are not listed under the criteria for "Trip Interruption" which refunds 150% of trip cost. Rather, our problem falls under "Missed Connection" which only provides $1,000. per traveler. I contacted Star Clipper to see if they would cancel our return flight and perhaps we could recoup that money. Our agent replied "Delta CNXLD all :( There will be no refunds :(" I don't know which was worse, her lack of sympathy or use of emojis. I am really heart-sick over this. My husband and I are not experienced travelers, so perhaps some of the consequences are our fault..... This was supposed to be a "Trip of a Lifetime" to celebrate my retirement and my husband's 75th birthday.....
     
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  13. Joni Geiser

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    Thank you! I posted details below in response to JVillegirl541. Our total booking for the flights and cruise through Star Clipper was $10,266.00.
     
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  14. kenish

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    @Joni Geiser Thank you for filling in the blanks. I'm sorry to hear about the unhappy ending on a "milestone" birthday, and the amount of money involved. FYI for future reference, whenever travel is time-critical such as a cruise sailing, graduation, wedding, etc. we always recommend flying the day prior. This isn't victim-blaming, just pragmatic advice.

    You mentioned you contacted Star Clipper, and it also sounds like you purchased your flights through them. Can you confirm where you purchased the flights? This is a crucial detail.

    When I purchase trip insurance, it always includes "Important- Read This" instructions on what you MUST do if your travel is interrupted. It states you must contact their Help desk immediately to help get you on-track and open a potential claim. It also advises claims may not be valid if you don't do this. Does your policy materials include this type of instructions?

    The comment about the return flights on Delta is correct. If you cancel or no-show for a flight, all following flights on the same ticket are cancelled as well. However that should be covered as part of a claim.

    Let us know these further details so we can advise how to proceed and who to contact.
     
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  15. JVillegirl541

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    OMG this is horrible! First you have actually Filled a writen claim or did you simply speak with someone on the phone? The Customer Service agent on the phone does not have the authority to deny your claim. Any Denial Must be in Writing!
     
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  16. Joni Geiser

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    We purchased our flights through Star Clipper. I have reviewed or Travel Insurance Plan and I don't see anything specific about the time frame required when contacting the company. I went directly to their web site the next day when we returned and filed the claim electronically. I filed it as "Trip Interruption" but again, in reviewing the contract, this only applies in cases of sickness, injury, death, inclement weather, strikes, hijacking, jury duty or call to military service. The adjuster called me to confirm details. He was apologetic but said he was bound by the contract. He said he would call Delta again to see if, in any way, weather was involved. He called me back and said no, it was not weather related, and although, it seemed unfair, AIG could only reimburse us $2,000. for "Missed Connection".
     
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  17. Joni Geiser

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    I filed the claim electronically and the determination was provided using the same format. The adjuster did call me personally but that was to clarify information.
     
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  18. JVillegirl541

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    If you booked your trip with a credit card you may have Travel Insurance benefits thru that card. Many of my cards have these benefits so be sure and call your credit card company about what benefits you may have?

    who did you purchase this Travel Insurance coverage thru?
     
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  19. Joni Geiser

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    I put $3,186. on Mastercard and paid $7,080. by check. The travel insurance was offered to us by Star Clipper. When we received our Guest Invoice, information regarding "AIG Travel Guard was printed on the invoice. Because of the cost of the trip, we thought we should purchase the insurance.
     
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  20. VoR61

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    I don't know if this is it, but when I searched for AIG Travel Guard Deluxe I found this:

    http://www.travelguard.com/uploaded...cruisesandtours/Content/AF_008842_P1_1112.pdf

    In this document under Missed Connections it says:

    Reimbursement if Inclement Weather or Common Carrier causes can-cellation or a delay of regularly scheduled airline flights for three or more hours to your point of departure.​

    Again, if this is the right link and you were delayed by 3 or more hours, seems to me you should be reimbursed in full.
     
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