Coronavirus concerns in Tampa Bay may impact travel plans, but there are options

Better Call Behnken

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – If you have upcoming travel plans, you may be worried about whether you should keep them and whether you can get money back if you don’t.

Depending on the situation, consumers have received different information from travel businesses and airlines. But what was true just a few days ago may have changed, said Mark Jenkins of AAA.

“Canceling may not be the best idea, you might want to look at possibly just rescheduling,” Jenkins said.

Jenkins said companies are offering incentives that are not typical, especially cruise lines.

“Many are even throwing in extra incentives: free wifi, drink packages, stateroom upgrade, your third or fourth person is free,” Jenkins said.

The Princess Cruises Lines is now pausing all of its cruises for 60 days. This comes after the coronavirus outbreak on two of its ships.

If this affects you, you will be able to rebook for a later date. And get this:

“Let’s say your cruise is worth $1,000, Princess will allow you to transfer to a later date, but they’re also throwing in extra more money on top of that to encourage you to take another cruise, totally free of charge,” Jenkins said.

When it comes to airfare, many airlines are loosening their policies and suspending cancellation and rescheduling fees.

If you’re booking travel now, research your insurance options. Your best bet is a more expensive policy called “cancel for any reason,” but even that option is running out. Some companies are discontinuing the coverage.

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