I originally came to Cape Town, South Africa, for the first time in 2006 and then returned in 2015. Coming from Philadelphia in Pennsylvania, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Honestly a lot of Americans just aren’t very well educated in the affairs of the African continent. I can’t tell you how many of my countrymen refer to Africa as a “country” ! Anyway, ignorance set aside, I myself, was not sure exactly what was in store for me. Would there be lions roaming the outskirts of the city ? Was there electricity available everywhere ? I had pretty much resigned myself to the fact that Internet access would be almost impossible. I have to laugh at myself when I reflect on how ignorant I was at the time.
Cape Town International Airport was recently awarded the prestigious award for best airport on the continent and is extremely sophisticated. On arriving and proceeding through the immigration formalities at the airport, I knew my conceptions of what to expect were totally incorrect. Driving into the city, I saw no lions, no zebra or elephants. My taxi driver was friendly and very knowledgeable of the city, pointing out landmarks and interesting things to see along our drive from the airport to the hotel.The Twelve Apostles Hotel was breathtaking. An award winning 5 star hotel, recently voted the fourth best hotel in Africa, set against the backdrop of the Twelve Apostles mountain range. Boasting over 70 rooms and suites this boutique hotel is perched in a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Overlooking the pristine Atlantic Ocean, where incidentally, I did watch whales later on, while sipping a glass of Cape wine, the Twelve Apostles is truly a luxury 5-star hotel. I checked into my Superior sea-facing room, put my bags down and freshened up. Then I tested the internet connection. Blazing fast fibre optic internet, what a relief. The room was scented with the aroma of freshly cut indigenous flowers and just oozed style and comfort. Then I realized it had been more than 8 hours since my last meal on the flight over from Philadelphia, so I decided to investigate the hotel’s culinary offerings.
I entered the Leopard Bar, the African sun, was burning a fiery orange, sank slowly in the afternoon sky over the Atlantic. I had decided to try out the “Tea by the Sea” on the recommendation of the concierge. I settled into a comfy reclining lounger and awaited my afternoon snack. Oh my word, what a spread! Finger sandwiches, Chocolate brownies and Cream scones along with all the rest of the goodies that make up the “Tea by the Sea” platter. I got stuck in, enjoying a refreshing cup of Earl Grey tea.
Contented after my meal and feeling comfortably lazy, I gazed out at the Atlantic, sky on fire, excited about what delights the morning had in store for me.
Travel Insurance can seem to be, just more money, another expense. Can you really take the risk of leaving this out of your travel package? You are going to be far from home in another country, you want to be able to focus on the relaxing and adventure. Who knows what could happen. Taking out Travel Insurance can put your mind at rest, if the something does happen, you are covered. Here are a few more reasons to take out travel insurance.
Getting injured or suffering from illness on a trip
This is not what you want to happen on your holiday trip, but in an emergency or if you need to go and see a doctor, insurance plays a vital role in helping you out. Having to get medical care overseas can cost a pretty penny; average costs may range from a couple of thousand pounds and up. Travel insurance is particularly important in cases where you may be planning an overland tour in Africa or Safari because of the risks involved.
Standing to collect you luggage at the airport, travellers might have the unlucky experience in never seeing their goods again. This is made worse if you have to be somewhere for a wedding or a very important meeting. Luckily the insurance covers lost, stolen or damaged goods. You will be reimbursed for new clothes or items you lost.
Cancellation of flights
You are standing at the airport, excited to be going home for Christmas. You are all ready to board the plane when they announce that the flight has been cancelled due to poor weather conditions. In this case the travel insurance can help to fund a new flight to return home or will pay for your stay in a hotel.
If for some reason you are on holiday and you are borrowing a car from a local friend you met, when you accidentally crash into the vendor cart on the corner. What a mess and a big problem if you are the driver. Personal liability insurance can help with this scenario, the insurance covers any property damaged or if you caused any injury in the accident.
Left without a passport or credit cards
You are having so much fun at the beach, but when you get back to your hotel room you can’t find your purse or passport. Having no travel documents or money, could turn into a holiday nightmare. This is where insurance is a life line; insurance companies will be able to pay the replacement costs of a new passport or credit card. This can also include having to get into contact with the consulate or the bank and ensuring the documents or credit card is delivered safely to you.
What are some things that aren’t covered?
Unfortunately if you are over the age of 65 and you have some sort of medical conditions, most travel insurance companies will not cover you. When it comes to health issues in general it is always best to be honest when initially filling out your insurance form. If something does occur and you left this out, your policy may be invalid. If you are planning on going on safari or any other kind of adventure tourism, be sure to check with your insurance provider that you have adequate cover.
Taking on an adventure holiday, participating in some really dangerous activities? In this instance the standard insurance cover will not be good enough and you may have to get extra cover.
Cover for travel insurance can vary so it is important for you to fully understand and read your policy before signing. There are a few other events that can be covered in extreme cases:
- A terrorist attack: before your departure an incident occurs in the country you are travelling to and the airports have been closed. It is definitely not wise to travel now, but can you get your ticket refunded?
- The company you are flying has just declared bankruptcy. How will you get your money back?
In all these cases if you decide to take out travel insurance you can be confident and happy, knowing you are protected traveling to your destination. Don’t become a statistic make sure you are prepared and ready to enjoy yourself with no worries.