Travelguard silver insurance purchased too late by our travel agent to cover preexisting conditions

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Sep 8, 2014
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#21
I know you are right. I didn't even notice that part of the story. Yes, misleading is a terrible idea with an insurance company as it is a major crime and like @Promal said- it's not like they won't require you back up your facts. It is very important to put the date as it appears on your backup docs, and sink or swim on that, rather than try to fudge any info. Question, do TA usually take responsibility for arranging the customer's travel insurance or do they give recommendations and encourage the travelled to arrange that on their own?
I cab't speak for any of the other TAs on this forum but I never arrange a clients insurance. I will discuss what seems appropriate for their situation and then hand them or mail them the brochure and let them make the final choice based on their conversation with the insurance company. I am not an insurance agent nor am I an expert on travel insurance, so I don't try to act as such.
 

JVillegirl541

Verified Member
Nov 21, 2014
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#22
I cab't speak for any of the other TAs on this forum but I never arrange a clients insurance. I will discuss what seems appropriate for their situation and then hand them or mail them the brochure and let them make the final choice based on their conversation with the insurance company. I am not an insurance agent nor am I an expert on travel insurance, so I don't try to act as such.
Travel Insurance commissions (small as they are) is a revenue source for many TA's. They offer the coverage and book it. I have bought direct from my TA and have purchased thru an outside vendor. Many offer to do this as an extension of their normal business opporations.
 
Sep 8, 2014
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#23
Travel Insurance commissions (small as they are) is a revenue source for many TA's. They offer the coverage and book it. I have bought direct from my TA and have purchased thru an outside vendor. Many offer to do this as an extension of their normal business opporations.
Actually, the commissions are large for the amount of work involved. The brochures I use have my code number on them so I get credit for the sale regardless, and it is much easier for the client to deal directly with the company, especially if he or she is paying by check.
 
Likes: jsn55
Aug 29, 2015
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#24
Question, do TA usually take responsibility for arranging the customer's travel insurance or do they give recommendations and encourage the travelled to arrange that on their own?
My cruise agent always offers me travel insurance. Her company has a standard package they offer at a fairly reasonable price, and the one they are currently using can be purchased at final payment. She always double checks at final payment to see it I want it or purchased elsewhere.
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
#25
I cab't speak for any of the other TAs on this forum but I never arrange a clients insurance. I will discuss what seems appropriate for their situation and then hand them or mail them the brochure and let them make the final choice based on their conversation with the insurance company. I am not an insurance agent nor am I an expert on travel insurance, so I don't try to act as such.
If my clients opt out on insurance, to protect myself legally, I have them sign or acknowledge that I recommended insurance to them and they opted not to take it. Our clients can never come back to us and say we didn't tell them. If you don't sell them insurance, how do you follow up to cover yourself?
 

Carol Phillips

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Dec 28, 2014
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#26
If my clients opt out on insurance, to protect myself legally, I have them sign or acknowledge that I recommended insurance to them and they opted not to take it. Our clients can never come back to us and say we didn't tell them. If you don't sell them insurance, how do you follow up to cover yourself?
That is the best idea, @Promal ! We did the same thing (the opt-out signed form) and it saved us more than once, when a client claimed they'd never been offered insurance/cancellation protection.
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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#27
Our lawyer told us to do this and it has saved us on a few occasions too when I've been able to email them their acknowledgement. I make sure I sell the insurance. I am not a salesperson either and I tell them to call the insurance company with any specific questions on the policy differences but I do know if they do or don't book because of that form.
 
Oct 7, 2015
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#30
I have been denied my money back. Here is the denial letter. When I emailed Laurie on Feb 12, it was 1:12 PM MST. I forwarded this email to Darlene, the manager.

They are not willing to take responsibility for this. What would be your recommendation? I emailed Darlene and told her I would be pursuing this with upper management, and that I had contacted the Christopher Elliott organization. We will see if I get a response. I am going to print off all emails and documentation to prove my case and send it via registered mail to their corporate office.

Denial is below:
Re: Cancellation of Regent Seven Seas Cruise June 17, 2015 Booking # 1981754


Dear Mr. and Mrs. Robinson,

First let me say how sorry I am that you became ill and had to cancel your vacation. In reviewing the conversations and documentation submitted by you and Laurie White, I see there was a sequence of events and possible misunderstandings leading up to the purchase of your travel insurance.

It appears to me, with your statement in the letter you sent, you were aware that preexisting conditions insurance coverage must be purchased within 15 days of the initial deposit payment in order to be valid. Our records show you gave Laurie your credit card on the 2nd of February and she called it in to the cruise line the same day. On February 5th Laurie sent you a quote for Allianz Insurance, our recommended travel insurance company, which you approved. Laurie purchased that insurance on February 9th and forwarded the confirmation to you. At this time you were fully covered for preexisting conditions. On February 10th you contacted Laurie and cancelled the insurance.

After apparently researching other options for travel insurance you contacted Laurie and asked her to contact TravelGuard Insurance for a quote; which she sent to you. On February 12th you then sent her a request for the Silver insurance, however when you sent this email to Laurie, late that evening, she was out of the office on vacation until February 18th, as stated in her out of office message. She had also advised you she would be on vacation. During this time or any time up to that point you certainly had the option to contact TravelGuard Insurance Co. directly, as you had done previously, or our office to purchase the insurance to assure you would be covered for what you felt was needed.

On February 18th upon her return, after seeing your email requesting the Silver insurance, Laurie followed up with you and since you had not yet purchased the insurance, you then asked Laurie to purchase this policy that day, February 18th . This date was one day late for qualifying for preexisting conditions.

Given that you were aware of the restrictions in regards to preexisting conditions and since Laurie acted under your direction in purchasing this alternate insurance on February 18th, we feel she complied with your request therefore, we are not in the position to offer compensation in this matter.


Sincerely,




Darlene Criner

General Manager




TravelStore – A Signature Agency

Formerly Sterling Travel


4980 Verdugo Way
Camarillo CA 93012
(805) 437-4201-direct

(805) 987-3425-general
(800) 777-6540-toll free
[email protected]
 
Aug 29, 2015
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#31
Hi TobyR,
Did you receive an email from her before she left saying she would purchase the insurance for you, or did you receive an out of office reply? Did her out of office reply say the date she would return?
Since you had spoken directly to the insurer, did they offer you the opportunity to purchase the insurance directly?
 
Oct 7, 2015
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#32
On Thursday, Feb 12, I emailed Laurie and told her I had just spoken with Travelguard. I asked her to look into the Silver plan, which covered pre-existing conditions. I sent the email at 1:19 PM to her. Darlene above stated in her email that I contacted Laurie later in the evening and she was already out of the office on vacation. I did not hear back from Laurie until Feb. 18th. I did not email or call her after that email, so I never got an out of office message. I had already received an email from her letting me know she was going to be on vacation and would be back on the 18th. When I talked with Travelguard, I said that I was working with a travel agent and wanted her to get the commission. They did not offer me to purchase it directly from them. My assumption is that they didn't because I was working with a travel agent and wanted her to get the commission. They emailed me a quote for the Silver coverage. I'll go back thru my emails to see if I still have it. I probably don't, but I'll check. She had purchased the Allianz insurance earlier for us, which we cancelled because it was too expensive. I got an email from her on the 18th stating she was back in the office and would look into the silver for us. I don't think I was mistaken in thinking she would purchase the insurance for us.
 
Aug 28, 2015
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#34
@TobyR I agree with @LaurieB that this situation does seem more complicated. It seems you were aware of the 15 day requirement and spent a lot of time considering the various policies available. You also knew your agent would be back after the 15 days. I was wondering if there was a reason you didn't contact the Darlene, etc at travelstore to finalize the purchase? I understand why you didn't contact your agent while she was away, but there were other agency resources for you. Also, it does seem your agent had secured another policy. How much more expensive was it? I am trying to understand why you let the deadline pass without action, especially since you were also in contact with the insurance company. Could you explain a bit more about that few days?
 
Likes: Grant Ritchie
Aug 28, 2015
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#35
I guess a more precise question would be, was your agent aware, or should she have been aware, that an action needed to be taken in her absence? maybe you have some emails that could help there.
 
Sep 1, 2015
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#36
Travelstore's timeline of events turns things around 180 degrees. (LW doesn't seem to dispute Travelstore's timeline). It sounds like the agent was very proactive, then LW worked independently and altered the arrangements the agent had set up, then failed to proactively follow up when the agent was out of town.

@Toby, why are we hearing for the first time that insurance *was* purchased in a timely manner? You claimed the agent failed to do that from the outset (early Feb). Why did it take Travelstore to set the facts straight?

I emailed Laurie and told her I had just spoken with Travelguard.
Did you tell Laurie plainly that you *cancelled* the policy? Or, did you instruct Laurie to cancel it? In my mind, you took over the responsiblility to be insured by the deadline when you started working independently.
 
Aug 29, 2015
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#37
@TobyR , based on this latest information, I'm also concerned as to why you did not make certain the insurance was purchased in the required amount of time.
It sounds like your agent offered you insurance at the start, which you initially accepted, then decided the insurance was too expensive and sought out other travel insurance. Since the agent had to check for more information, it was not the policy she was used to selling, so she did not have all the info. I'm guessing the initial policy was the standard one for that agency.
I believe, with the given info, you might need to accept responsibility for this one. You were aware you had a limited amount of time to purchase insurance to have your medical conditions covered. You also were aware of the date you made the deposit on the trip. You were also notified that your agent was going to be gone.

Once the policy was purchased, you had the opportunity to see that the deposit date and insurance purchase dates did not reflect the initial quote, and that you were outside the pre-existing conditions date, since you already knew you had only 15 days to purchase.
At that time, you had the opportunity to either accept or reject the policy with the dates provided, and if you were outside the window, you had the opportunity to upgrade to a gold plan or to go with an insurance that allowed you to purchase at final payment. Those would have been more expensive, but they would have covered the pre-existing conditions.
This is an instance where the consumer, yourself, was involved in the research and needed to be proactive in making certain everything was completed in a timely manner.
I'm very sorry you have had this experience, and I hope your health has recovered since your missed cruise and that you'll be able to cruise at a later date.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
18,927
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www.promalvacations.com
#38
Wow, now this is a totally different story. Why did you cancel the initial insurance you purchased?
By witholding this information from us in your initial contact here, we now have a totally different view of what happened and now I can't blame the agent- you bear most of the responsibility because you had a policy, canceled it and didn't notify the agent in a timely manner if the agency's letter is correct.
Knowing she was going on vacation, you should have picked up the phone and called her to make sure she got your message. You may have gotten someone else in the office. And you could have purchased the insurance directly as well.
I wish you had given us this story from the beginning because now I don't think the agent did anything wrong. And I see that some of the others who tried to help you feel the same way.
 

JVillegirl541

Verified Member
Nov 21, 2014
3,722
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#39
Sadly this story is the total opposite of what was initially presented. A Regent cruise for 2 can easily run $15,000 or more.
Had I found myself inadvertently uninsured I would have cancelled (ate the small fee) and rebooked in order to be properly insured. Regent will not make this customer whole as they sell Travel Insurance for this very reason.
 

Carol Phillips

Moderator
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Dec 28, 2014
1,250
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#40
If indeed the timeline provided by the travel agency is correct, the situation isn't the same as initially stated by @TobyR .

It just seems odd to me that Toby, who admittedly "keeps everything", gave a shortened or different version of events in her initial letter to us.


I'd like to ask if the agency's statement is correct .... can you please advise, Toby?
 
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