Vacations should be enjoyable and relaxing – an opportunity to get away from life’s everyday stresses. And while Wendy Lanphear did reach this state of vacation zen, the road there was rocky. But – according to her – it would have been much worse if she hadn’t had Manulife travel insurance.
Wendy – a Manulife customer and travel agent, who helps promote our travel coverage options as part of her role with Travel Best Bets, based in British Columbia – is well aware of the benefits insurance can offer vacationers, always purchasing coverage herself before any big trip. But she never thought she would have to make use of the coverage, until a measly one-hour flight delay almost threw off her entire week-long Mexican cruise.
“As a travel agent, I know that when you cruise, you should never book your flight for the same day your ship is departing,” she said. “But there were reasons why I couldn’t fly into (Los Angeles) any earlier – never imagining the ripple effect that would have on my trip.”
Traveling with her sister, Wendy had a bad feeling when their connecting flight in Calgary sat on the tarmac a full hour after its scheduled takeoff.
“That small window of time pushed us back significantly,” she said. “By the time we landed in LA, got our bags and made it to the pier to board the ship, we were told by the crew that we’d missed the final boarding call and there wasn’t anything they could do about it.”
But in that moment – one that would stress out even the calmest person – Wendy was as cool as a cucumber.
“I knew what to do right away, thanks to Manulife,” she said.
Having purchased both our non-medical travel insurance, including coverage for missed travel connections, as well as our COVID-19 Pandemic Travel Plan for medical coverage, felt confident she would be well supported.
“As soon as they turned us away at the pier, I booked us a hotel for 2 nights, as well as flights to Puerto Vallarta that would allow us to join the cruise a couple of days later when the ship arrived at the port,” she explained. “I kept all of my receipts – for the hotel, the additional flights, our Uber rides, and all our meals, knowing they would be important to include with my insurance claim.”
But the missed connection wasn’t the only snag in Wendy’s vacation.
“The day we were to board the ship in Puerto Vallarta, I woke up to my eyes swollen shut,” she said. “Apparently, I had an allergic reaction to the motion sickness patch I put on ahead of the cruise. It was so bad that I didn’t think they were going to let me board the ship. They ended up putting me on intravenous (IV) for the next 4 hours.”
Fortunately, the IV treatment did the trick, and Wendy and her sister enjoyed the rest of their vacation in the sunshine – knowing they could submit the unexpected medical expenses as another claim under her travel coverage.
“It’s funny – I was debating the non-medical coverage; I’m glad I changed my mind,” she said, adding that she always buys medical travel coverage before a vacation. “I always tell my customers that if they have appendix and ears, they need medical travel coverage at the very least. Appendix can burst at any moment – and ear infections are so common. You don’t want to come down with something unexpectedly and wish you had purchased insurance. It can be a costly regret.”
Wendy also praised her Manulife Business Development Manager, DeeDee Sixto, for doing a great job of educating her on the product and coverage options.
“DeeDee – and frankly everyone I’ve worked with at Manulife – has always been thorough and clear on what’s covered and what’s not – which, in turn, makes my job easier when promoting travel insurance to my customers,” she said. “I know their (travel) policies inside and out, and it’s because of the great training I’ve been given by your team.”