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Thread: Travel Agencies Are They Robbing You?

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    scratchycat's Avatar
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    Travel Agencies Are They Robbing You?

    Okay, this might not be the place to put this but when I get ripped off, I get very angry. I have been ripped off and I am angry, did I just repeat myself?? Well this story just started but you would think I should know better, who in their right mind would purchase airline tickets through a company called CheapOair?? Me. I always try to save money and go for CHEAP. Well, the tickets were not cheap but the company and their fake insurance company certainly are playing us buying customers as pawns in their not so cheap scam.

    My brother was not in good health and I wanted to see him while he was still living. I booked in advance to get a better rate and took insurance just in case. Forget the insurance. Death is a preexisting condition. Did you know that? Of course you do, we all do. It is preexisting from the day we are born. Think of this the next time you buy worthless airline travel insurance. I would hate to think of what a survivor would have to go through to claim a refund for a passenger who dies before they board an airline.

    I have filed several complaints, done all my followup after trying to cancel the flight after I was notified of my brother's death. No such luck, I had gone beyond the 24-hr. limit - go to Travelex insurance company. No, CheapO did not cover that, it was a preexisting condition, death of a loved one - not covered, you knew he was sick. We are so happy he died because now we can double our pleasure by reselling those tickets to another sucker and make more money. We are happy. We simply do not care about you, we have your money, so just go away.
    Well, I am not happy!

    570 Cheapoair Complaints and reviews from real people you trust @ Pissed Consumer

    I want to let the world know about these companies and how they are ripping off others daily by the hour. Total Complaints 571 Claimed losses $179,527 on this one website.

    Where are the people who are supposed to protect customers against companies who rip off people?
    Don't get ripped off!! Stay informed!

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    ribshaw's Avatar
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    Re: Travel Agencies Are They Robbing You?

    Scractcy sorry to hear this.

    Did a little digging and it looks like the travel insurance industry is full of pitfalls. One thing I found buried in the last article was the mention of credit cards having some benefits protecting travelers. This may be something to check and see what their cancellation policies are.


    How to file a travel insurance claim and what to do if you’re turned down

    Commentary • By Christopher Elliott on Friday, April 8th, 2011

    Editor’s note: This the last in a series of posts about travel insurance sponsored by Access America. Here’s part one, part two, part three and part four.

    First, the good news: Nine out of ten travel insurance claims are honored according to the US Travel Insurance Association. So if you’re thinking of filing a claim on your policy, it will probably be honored.

    Now the bad news: If you’re among the 10 percent who have been rejected, you could face a long and ultimately unsuccessful struggle to have your claim paid.

    You don’t want to end up there.

    How to avoid it? Make sure your initial claim does everything it should.

    Call your insurance company before you file a claim. Ask what it needs from you, and if there are any restrictions in your policy that might make a claim unsuccessful (for example, some policies that cover medical problems require that you seek treatment within 24 hours of an incident).

    Read your policy. You should have done this before buying the insurance. Now you have to read the fine print with an eye toward answering this question: Will my claim be honored?

    Keep all receipts. In fact, you’ll want to retain every scrap of paperwork that could even remotely relate to a claim. Don’t throw anything away. Ask for everything in writing – bills, invoices, receipts, hotel folios. You can never have enough documentation.

    Get the cause of delay in writing, if possible. A lot of claims are rejected because travelers can’t prove a cause of delay. So if you’re held up, be certain to document the cause, preferably in writing. Finding out the reason long after your trip can be difficult – if not impossible.

    Filing and waiting

    Your travel insurance company will tell you how to file a claim. Claims typically take between two and four weeks to process, but some complicated claims that require more extensive research by an adjuster can take longer. Expect to receive a form acknowledgment of your claim, with a final decision within roughly a month, but no more than two months.

    If you’ve waited longer than six weeks, contact your travel insurance company to find out about the status of your claim. You may need to refile. (It’s rare for paperwork to get lost, but it can happen.)

    A good portion of the inquiries about travel insurance that I get involve the sometimes lengthy wait for a claim to be processed. There are two main reasons for a delay: First, a large natural disaster that triggers thousands of claims. And second, a special circumstance that requires additional research on the part of the adjuster, or requires you to send additional information.

    Most claims are denied because of a pre-existing medical condition. As I mentioned in an earlier section, you should try to find a policy that covers pre-existing conditions. Also, make sure the policy covers your traveling companion and be sure your companion’s family members are included in the definition of “family.” Some policies don’t.

    A rejection isn’t the insurance company’s final word. It only means that based on the information it has in your claim, it isn’t going to honor it. A brief, polite, written appeal with any new information that you believe is relevant to your case is the first step in getting the company to reverse its decision.

    Appeals are taken seriously by most insurance companies, and are typically reviewed by several adjusters at a more senior level. Their goal is to make sure nothing was overlooked by the first adjuster. This process can take as long as the initial claim, so stay patient. In my experience, however, appeals are answered faster than the first claim.

    More than half of appeals are successful. But roughly 4 in 10 are not – the “no” is a final answer – and you’re left with another decision: Do you accept their decision or take your appeal to the next level?

    Often, a hard look at your claim by an independent third party will reveal that you don’t have a case. (I’m sometimes that person.) Maybe the event you’re making a claim for isn’t a covered reason, or maybe you don’t have the receipt to back your claim. But now is a good time to take another look at your claim and appeal and to decide whether it’s worth going on.

    A small percentage of those cases should be appealed, and here’s how:

    Send a brief, polite email to your insurance agent or travel agent, notifying one of them of your rejection. Agents often can and do act as intermediaries when something goes wrong with a policy. Remember, they took a commission on your policy, and they have to be licensed to sell the policy, so they have some skin in the game.

    Contact your state insurance commissioner. Your insurance commissioner may be able to help if your claim was rejected without cause. Here’s how to find your insurance commissioner. Many travelers have reported that their claims were honored simply by copying the state insurance commissioner on their appeal.

    Contact your Better Business Bureau. You’ll want to include your agent and insurance company in your report. The BBB is known to investigate claims of this nature, but it has little sway over the final outcome of your appeal.

    Take the agent or your insurance company to small claims court. You don’t need an attorney to go to small claims court, but there’s a limit on the claim amount. So be sure to do some homework before filing a complaint. Typically, this is your last resort. If your agent or insurance company prevails in small claims court, you are normally out of options.

    How to file a travel insurance claim and what to do if you

    ==============================================

    Do you need travel insurance?
    Maybe, if there are gaps in your auto, health, life, or homeowners policies. But buy wisely.
    Consumer Reports Money Adviser: July 2012

    Whether you use a travel agent or book your vacation online, you can expect to face the pitch for travel insurance. Given all the perils that could sideline your trip—natural disasters, political upheavals, medical emergencies—does travel insurance make financial sense?
    Overlapping coverage

    Almost $2 billion in travel insurance is sold each year for several what ifs: You need to cancel a trip because of illness, the death of a relative, or bad weather; your belongings are lost or stolen; your traveling companion dies; or you need emergency medical care. Premiums depend on the age of the travelers, the type of coverage, and the trip’s cost. For a standard policy you’ll pay about 5 to 7 percent of the cost of the trip, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Tour operators, cruise-line reps, and travel agents sell two-thirds of the travel policies, and they collect commission on them.

    But coverage may be unnecessary if you already have protection through homeowners, auto, life, or health insurance. Credit-card benefits and consumer-protection laws also may help. Bob Hunter, director of insurance at the Consumer Federation of America, says travel insurance is often not worth the price. “Don’t buy insurance that covers small, manageable losses or only a slice of risk,” he says.

    For example, losing some of your belongings won’t break you financially, so keep a close eye on your valuables and be ready to accept losing less-valuable stuff. Still losing sleep? Narrow in on what you’re worried about, and see if your insurance or credit cards cover you. Then be flexible. “If you’re worried about dying in a plane crash,” Hunter says, “you should get term life insurance rather than flight insurance, because you might die in a car crash.”

    If you’ll be traveling overseas, your health insurance might not provide coverage should you need to see a doctor or be evacuated to a hospital, the insurance institute says. Medicare generally doesn’t cover health-care expenses outside the U.S., although some Medigap policies do. So you might want to consider a medical travel-insurance policy.
    How to buy

    Instead of buying a policy through a travel agent or booking site, go to an online broker such as InsureMyTrip.com, which sells coverage from 21 carriers, including CSA Travel Protection, MedJet Assist, and Travelex. Before you buy, talk to a sales rep at the insurer, get a sample copy of the policy, ask if your specific concerns are covered, and make the agent point to the words in the fine print that prove coverage. For medical policies, be sure to ask about coverage for pre-existing conditions.

    Don’t buy travel insurance from a tour operator or cruise line because the coverage might be worthless if the company goes bankrupt, advises the American Society of Travel Agents. Hunter says it’s not a good idea to buy it from a travel agent, because he or she might be hawking a policy that pays the highest sales commission rather than the best one for you

    Travel Insurance | How to Buy Travel Insurance - Consumer Reports

    ==============================================

    https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports...elex-insurance

    9 Steps To Avoid Getting Scammed On Travel Insurance - Business Insider

    Top 5 Forewarnings of Traveler Insurance Scams | TravelInsurance.org

    The Travel Insurance Scam: Read this Post Before You Book Your Next Trip - View from the Wing - View from the Wing
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    Re: Travel Agencies Are They Robbing You?

    Thanks Ribshaw. Flight insurance is absolutely no good if you have to cancel for some reason and death is not one of them. I won't need the airlines when I get my own wings. I tried to follow all their procedures and did read the policy but no where did it state about death being a preexisting condition. Oh well, just needed to vent a bit but please folks when you purchase airline tickets, use them or lose them.

    Oh, I did follow through with the cc deal, will see what happens there since the actual billing date made it within the 24 hr. time period.
    Don't get ripped off!! Stay informed!

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    Re: Travel Agencies Are They Robbing You?

    Quote Originally Posted by scratchycat View Post
    Thanks Ribshaw. Flight insurance is absolutely no good if you have to cancel for some reason and death is not one of them. I won't need the airlines when I get my own wings. I tried to follow all their procedures and did read the policy but no where did it state about death being a preexisting condition. Oh well, just needed to vent a bit but please folks when you purchase airline tickets, use them or lose them.

    Oh, I did follow through with the cc deal, will see what happens there since the actual billing date made it within the 24 hr. time period.
    Best of luck, if there is not a specific exclusion it may be worth trying to file an appeal with the company to the highest level. Maybe simultaneously file a compliant with the state insurance commissioner both in your state and in the state the company does business. Heck, change the header and do the same with the Attorney General in each state.
    "It's virtually impossible to violate rules ... but it's impossible for a violation to go undetected, certainly not for a considerable period of time." Bernie Madoff
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    Re: Travel Agencies Are They Robbing You?

    Thanks again Ribshaw. Several people have told me to call my congress person. It does seem to me there should be some kind of regulations on these airlines, travel agencies and their insurance companies to help protect consumers. As it goes now, they have all the rights and consumers bite the bullet. I did some further digging on CheapOair and the Travelex. Seems there are a lot of complaints out there about these companies and it may hold true for all travel agencies, I have just not taken time to do the DD as is needed here. My 'state of mind and heart' is not much into it.

    http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/directory/cheapoair

    At least one person must have dug a little further and gave this report last May:

    Cheapoair is FRAUD running by few people who show themselves big!. Ruben Yogender Rana from chargeback is A FRAUD. They are just RIP-OFF. RUBEN YOGENDER RANA from CHEAPOAIR IS FRAUD AND UNETHICAL!

    Ripoff Report | Cheapoair Complaint Review NY, Select State/Province: 1055395

    I don't know, a representative contacted me through one report and it sounds so much like the others we have reported on, a generic message that goes such as.... please send your 8 digit number so we can check into this,etc. - how many times have we heard this from CS reps?

    It would be nice to recover a portion of this loss but I am pretty much writing it off as a 'lesson learned' and not repeat. My flight was scheduled for March 6th and there is no way I am up to doing any long distance traveling at present. Unless, of course, God decides to go ahead and give me my permanent wings as I have been told in not so nice ways by people who just like to hurt others.
    Don't get ripped off!! Stay informed!

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