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The Cost of Increased Flight Delays & Cancellations: How Travel Insurance Can Help

This year, the increase in flight delays and cancellations around the world has caused a more chaotic experience for many travelers.

By Megan Grubbs | Oct 28, 2022, 09:57 AM

This year, the increase in flight delays and cancellations around the world has caused a more chaotic experience for many travelers. According to airline tracking service FlightAware, in the United States alone, there have been about 146,000 flights cancelled between January and August 2022, about 11% higher than pre-pandemic numbers in 2019. Flight delays have also become more common with nearly 1.3 million delays between January and August 2022.

Why the Increase in Delays & Cancellations?

After two years of uncertainty, many travelers who cancelled trips or stayed home during the COVID-19 pandemic have since been booking their long overdue vacations as countries around the world are once again accepting international visitors. With this increase in demand, thousands of additional flights were scheduled by major airlines, which then resulted in a major staffing shortage to service these flights. In recent months, while many airlines have hired additional staff, including pilots, flight attendants, and mechanics, this has created new obstacles such as training more or larger groups, which takes time to bring the new workers up to speed with the pre-pandemic teams.

 

Staffing shortages aren’t the only reason behind these cancellations and delays, though. Other factors include air traffic congestion, COVID-19 outbreaks, and the ever-present inclement weather. In the U.S., air traffic control is responsible for safe plane departure and arrival, so if there are too many scheduled flights, it can be difficult to get planes out on time or get them into the air at all. Staff members and pilots who contract COVID-19 will need to miss work for several days, which could also result in a delay or cancellation of their scheduled flight. And when it comes to weather delays or cancellations, no one has control over mother nature.

What Should You Do When Planning Your Next Trip?

If you're on the receiving end of a flight delay or cancellation, it can come with increased travel costs, stress, and potentially missing scheduled activities on your trip. While many airlines will work hard to "make right" these unexpected hiccups, not every company has the same policies in place to protect consumers' investments. The U.S. Department of Transportation recently launched a customer service dashboard that helps travelers see what kinds of guarantees, refunds, or compensation the major domestic airlines offer if a flight is delayed or cancelled due to controllable circumstances. This gives travelers the opportunity to compare commitments offered by each airline.

 

While this dashboard can help flyers decide which airline to choose, and which airlines guarantee certain refunds/compensation for delays and cancellations. The airlines don’t cover your trip and the things that you miss if your trip is delayed or cancelled. If your flight is delayed or cancelled, any non-refundable activities or events will not be covered by your airline. This is where IMG comes in.

 

IMG’s iTravelInsured plans provide varying levels of coverage for trip cancellation, baggage delay, trip interruption, accident and sickness medical benefits, and many other travel-related events and expenses. All plans cover up to 100% of prepaid non-refundable insured trip costs and provide some trip delay benefit (see plans for details). These plans were designed to protect you from financial losses resulting from many mishaps that may happen before or during your trip, including several situations where your airline may not provide assistance. Travel insurance can help you navigate the uncertainty around flight status confidence and ease your mind while embarking on your next trip.

 

This advertisement contains highlights of the iTravelInsured series of plans, which include travel insurance coverages underwritten by United States Fire Insurance Company under form series T7000 et.al, T210 et. al. and TP-401 et. al. The Crum & Forster group of companies is rated A (Excellent) by AM Best 2022. C&F and Crum & Forster are registered trademarks of United States Fire Insurance Company. The plans also contain non‑insurance Travel Assistance Services provided by IMG. Coverages may vary and not all coverage is available in all jurisdictions. Insurance coverages are subject to the terms, limitations and exclusions in the plan, including an exclusion for pre-existing conditions. In most states, your travel retailer is not a licensed insurance producer/agent, and is not qualified or authorized to answer technical questions about the terms, benefits, exclusions, and conditions of the insurance offered or to evaluate the adequacy of your existing insurance coverage. Your travel retailer may be compensated for the purchase of a plan and may provide general information about the plans offered, including a description of the coverage and price. The purchase of travel insurance is not required in order to purchase any other product or service from your travel retailer. CA DOI toll free number: 800-927-4357. The cost of your plan is for the entire plan, which consists of both insurance and non-insurance components. Individuals looking to obtain additional information regarding the features and pricing of each travel plan component, please contact International Medical Group®, Inc., 2960 North Meridian Street, Ste.300 Indianapolis, IN 46208 USA, +1.317.655.4500. CA Non-Resident Producer License No. 0F17093

 

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