My experience with travel insurance has been far from a pleasant one. For years I held the mindset that it was unnecessary to insure my travels within the United States but international trips cost far too much not to “protect.” I have mentioned in previous blogs that I lost my mom two years ago to bilateral breast cancer. During the fall before her passing in May, her doctor granted her permission to travel on a family vacation that I was planning to Montego Bay, Jamaica. I booked the family excursion for July and because I do not know how to sit still I jumped on the Industrial Organizational psychology’s annual conference that was being hosted in Maui, Hawaii, that trip was scheduled for May. I trusted my Hawaii travels to Delta Airlines and my Jamaica travels to U.S Airways. Both airlines utilize Allianz Global Assistance for their insurance needs and in return, I entrusted my travels for not only myself but for my parents as well.
Around March, I began to see a decline in my mother’s health, as the cancer continued to spread to her brain. The first week of May my mother was placed in hospice care. On May 23rd I watched her take her last breath as EMS attempted CPR on her lifeless body. I canceled both the psychology conference and family vacation. I filled the mandatory claims and even though there was a 10 day processing period I knew I would not have an issue receiving a refund because what is a more legit reason to cancel a flight then the death of a PARENT. I received word from Delta that Allianz would provide me with a $723.80 credit. However, my claim was denied for U.S. Airways. If you missed something, U.S. Airways was the flight I was taking to Jamaica with my MOTHER and father. Yes, the individual who was supposed to fly was now deceased and the money would not be refunded.
When I sought answers for Allianz and U.S. Airways they informed me that EVERY TIME you sign up for insurance, running in the background was software that provides a preexisting condition clause randomly. On the Jamaica flight, I was provided with the clause, despite my mother’s doctor giving her permission to fly and her conditioning taking a turn for the worse. It all became irrelevant because when I booked the flight she was fighting cancer. I cried my eyes out to U.S. Airways and to Allianz because if I had known about the clause I would not have purchased the insurance. I would have taken my chances and counted my losses like an adult. My mother was in and out of remission for nine years prior to her death, and by using Allianz’s logic she wouldn’t have been allowed to travel throughout those years due to her condition.
Sometimes it only takes one reason not to use a company. In my case, I will longer utilize Allianz or any other travel insurance company. My mindset is clear, I have lost a parent and my trip wasn’t truly protected in all regards. The worst has already occurred. Travel insurance to buy or not to buy, the choice is yours but you couldn’t pay me to use travel insurance.