East Hartford, CT (Vocus/PRWEB) - Travelers from small American cities from Jackson, Tennessee, to Tupelo, Mississippi, to Alpena, Michigan, and Mason City, Iowa, now face the common experience of seeing local airline service, once considered "essential," disappear under the axe of looming government budget cuts. Dozens of secondary airport locations face service eliminations as Congress puts the $200 million Essential Air Service Program (EAS), which grew since 1978 to subsidize flights from more than 150 small cities, on the federal budget chopping block. Anticipating cuts, Delta Air Lines already listed 24 small cities it aims to eliminate if subsidies disappear as expected, and AirTran announced plans to cut four regional cities next year after it merges with Southwest Airlines. Many small cities are already seeing far fewer flights as airlines react to weaker passenger demand by reducing operations at secondary hubs that feed the cities.
Travel Insured International®, the leading independently-owned travel insurer, sees an increasing need for passengers living in small cities affected by airline service cuts to remember travel insurance. The need for Trip Cancellation and Trip Delay coverage, especially, increases for trips that begin with long drives or rides to airports farther from home. For cities losing service to EAS subsidy cuts, the resulting trip from home to the next nearest airport can mean 75 miles or more.
Coverage to Consider When the Airport is Distant
There are several ways that one of Travel Insured's Worldwide Trip Protector plans can provide coverage for travelers with longer journeys from home to the airport:
- Trip delays due to canceled flights or weather disruptions that require overnight hotel and meal expenses near the airport – especially valuable when far from home – can be reimbursed under Travel Insured's Trip Delay coverage.
- A prepaid, non-refundable airport hotel accommodation included in the overall cost of the insured trip for the night prior to flight departure can be protected under Trip Cancellation if the insured must cancel the trip for a covered reason.
- A prepaid, non-refundable airport transfer service included in the overall cost of the insured trip may be protected under Trip Cancellation if the insured must cancel the trip for a covered reason.
- Travelers with a short overall trip itinerary can consider Travel Insured's Worldwide Trip Protector or Worldwide Trip Protector Gold plan. The plans include possible Trip Cancellation coverage if a covered Trip Delay reason causes the insured's delayed arrival on the trip to mean a loss of 50 percent or more of the scheduled trip duration. Covered Trip Delay reasons include any delay of a common carrier, including for bad weather; any delay by a traffic accident whether the insured is directly or indirectly involved; or a delay due to lost or stolen passports, travel documents or money, quarantine, hijacking, unannounced strike or a natural disaster.
- Insured travelers or their traveling companion driving or riding as a passenger and going directly to the airport to board their flight can be protected under Trip Cancellation coverage if they are directly involved in a traffic accident documented by a police report while en route to their departure.
- Insured travelers or their traveling companion driving or riding as a passenger and going directly to the airport to board their flight can be protected under Trip Delay coverage when they are delayed for six or 12 hours, depending on their selected insurance plan, due to being directly or indirectly involved in a traffic accident while en route to their departure.
Traveling long distance to an airport departure, whether in one's own car or a passenger transfer service, is undoubtedly an added travel hassle, especially when travelers' local airport service has been cut by the economy. But the peace of mind from having travel insurance coverage from home to airport, as well as during the trip, will make the anticipated enjoyment of the travel destination worth the journey.