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Anybody makes a back up plan when preparing to travel in case everything goes wrong? . ie cancelled flights, bad weather, unable to get to the dock in time etc..

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Yes , our Backup Plan for all of those concerns , is Insurance , that is it .

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Posted (edited)

Not really. We try to be proactive. Fly in a day or two before the cruise, plan activities that will get us back to the ship in time,..etc...

 

We do purchase travel insurance, so if something still goes wrong despite our best efforts, or there were a medical emergency, injury..etc... we'd be covered.

Edited by tak81288

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An annual travel insurance policy takes care of potential crises.  We travel enough so even if a bucket list vacation has some hiccups or worse, we can always book another to cover any missed experiences or ports.

 

BTW, when I lived in NY, I flew into cruises out of MIA or FLL perhaps 35 - 40 times the morning of the cruise with nary a delay.  Some things happen so infrequently, that while I still adhere to the "Be Prepared" motto of my boy scout days, I don't worry about them.

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We fly in a day or two early. Not as concerned with the trip home as we are retired so no rush to work.  🙂

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11 minutes ago, paul929207 said:

We fly in a day or two early. Not as concerned with the trip home as we are retired so no rush to work.  🙂

^ this

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We fly in at least a day or two before sailing day - but that's for international flights.

Whether you should do the same depends on the circumstances of the flight, such as short or long flight, internal or international, direct or indirect, frequency of alternative flights, prevailing weather (particularly snow & ice) in your home town / airport) and the general reliability record.

And flying in a day or two ahead gives you the chance to explore the departure port/town.

 

Insurance for sure.

Check what it covers, and the terms (eg flight cancellation probably yes, flight delay probably yes but probably no if you've allowed no margin for a minor delay, delayed car journey to the airport probably no).

 

We always have a Plan B at ports-of-call unless we take a rare ship's excursion. So we're very wary of DIY by public ferry (unless we know folk on ship's excursions are on the same ferry) because there's no Plan B unless we want a very long swim.:classic_wink:

And if Plan A includes a number of  places, if possible we start with the furthest from the ship & work our way back.

 

In all cases, allowing a decent margin (wiggle-room) for unexpected delays.

Something to be prepared for, not something to worry and fret about.

 

JB :classic_smile:

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You have to find your happy place. We get insurance  (have had to use it a couple of times over the years), arrive a day early, plan excursions that end well before we need to be back on the ship, and since we are still working we take the first day home off from work. Funny, we have had issues on our flights to our trip, but never have needed that extra day at home for travel issues. It sure is nice to have that extra to help you get reacquainted with reality.

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Posted (edited)

Always.  We are spontaneous travelers who typically travel 8 weeks at a time, twice per year.     We will book a few days in advance, then go from there.   Sometimes one way air, more often open jaw that book ends our trip.  We always have a backup plan in mind.  It could be anything from a transportation delay or our desire to stay longer or take advantage of a last minute offer.  We sometimes grab last minute cruises in the middle of a land trip.  Happened on two of our last  four or five  land trips. 

 

Anything can happen when traveling.   We are flexible and we adapt...not that there is usually any choice!   It is just one reason why we travel with carry on only-no checked bags.  Such a great change from years of structured business travel.

Edited by iancal

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Posted (edited)

We almost always have a Plan B and sometimes a Plan C and Plan D. We like to be flexible so we can quickly change our plans. Most of the time the change voluntary but sometimes it's 'just in case' something bad happens. Several years ago we did a short Pacific coast cruise from Vancouver to L.A. as part a a bigger California coast driving tour. Due to work commitments we couldn't fly from Toronto to Vancouver until the morning of the cruise. We got to the dock with plenty of time to spare but we had a Plan B just in case.

 

Edited by DirtyDawg

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Plan B for late flights -- Arrive a couple of days early

Plan B for Weather -- bring a rain jacket, a full-Kindle and sea-sickness patches

Plan B for being late to the dock -- planning excursions carefully, traveling with our passports and the high-limit emergency card.

 

Plan B for everything else -- duct tape.

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Yes, we're planners, especially as we get older and stress seems to be harder to handle.   As others have said, fly in at least a day early and always have insurance.   If we're traveling in particularly stressful conditions, such as a very short connection time in an airport, we make sure to have airline phone numbers, as well as the number for our favorite hotel chains, on our phone contact lists.   Cross pack in case one suitcase doesn't make it   We carry a list of passport numbers, critical names and phone numbers (family, travel agent, credit card companies, insurance, doctors) on a small old-fashioned piece of paper - keep it separate from your phone, just in case the phone is lost or stolen.  Other 'Plan B' little things:   spouse carries different credit cards than I do; a little cash tucked away; prescription meds in our carry-ons; dollar store rain jacket packets; duct tape.

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4 hours ago, allanna said:

Anybody makes a back up plan when preparing to travel in case everything goes wrong? . ie cancelled flights, bad weather, unable to get to the dock in time etc..

Of course, travel insurance (w/PEC waiver).

 

That said, and with the understanding that almost all of our cruise travel involves intercontinental flights, here are our "issue buffers."

 

Preference for Star Alliance member airlines and connecting airports serviced by them. (This includes a list of alternative flights in case there's a need for ticket reassignment).

 

Connecting airport layover (international) never less than 3 hours (for all the obvious reasons).

 

Pre-cruise arrival at least two nights prior to international embarkations (for all the obvious reasons).

 

Preference for pre/post cruise consortium hotels (Bonvoy [Marriott et al.]; IHG [Intercontinental] (again, in case accommodation problems arise and reassignment is needed). 

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We try to be proactive to minimize the need for a plan B.

We have an annual travel insurance policy.  If an accident or illness happens while we are traveling, we have good coverage.
 

We always fly in the day before the cruise.  I think people who fly often and never have travel delays are extremely lucky people.  If I was that lucky, I would play the lotto.  Sadly, I have experienced enough delays and cancellations that I won't risk missing a cruise that I have been planning for 6 months or more.  That's not ok to me.  I REALLY love my cruises.  I would have missed at least one of my cruises if I had flown in the day of the cruise.

We always choose excursions that allow us to be back on the ship at least two hours before the all on board time.

We carry all of our luggage on the plane, so there's no risk of the airline losing our luggage. 

So far, that has worked for us and really helps us have a relaxing vacation.  If our cruise is cancelled because of a hurricane or something, we would figure it out.  Since the odds of that happening are very slim, we don't worry about it.

 

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I'm a more spontaneous traveler, even on a cruise.   The more spontaneous, the less need for an alternate plan.   

Now, that said, I'm not an ignorant traveler.  I make sure I do know my alternatives for the big things:

1. flight delayed/cancelled - aware of alternatives for those, knowledgeable about how to find and get protected on other flights (a good reason to fly on airlines with alliances instead of ones like Southwest, Spirit, Norwegian, etc,)

2.  hotels - always engage ahead of time to be sure my reservation is there at the hotel.  If something unforeseen happens, I have options to ask for a walk at brand hotels of my group (Hyatt, Starriott, IHG) and know my rights for a walk.

3. missing the ship - know in advance what I would have to do - port agent, passport, train/flight to next port...

4. missed port: no biggie since I don't do excursions so I'm not out money.  I can spend the day on the ship reading, listening to music, napping...

 

 

 

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Do I make redundant bookings for travel or accommodations? No.

Am I prepared to shift gears at a moment's notice should events conspire against me? Yes.

Do I always have travel insurance? Oh hell yes.

 

This is more than enough back-up planning for me.

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I always have a back up plan.  First and foremost--Never leave home without over the minimum six months left on the passport.  Close runner up--insurance.  Next is a couple of credit cards with six figures in available credit.  After that it's having (and knowing) the alternatives--trains are on strike, rent a car, take a cab, fly, take a bus, etc.  Accommodation is a disaster--check into a different one.  Sauce and cheese slide off pizza into lap while wearing light colored pants--go buy a new pair.  

Remember Mr. Mom?  220, 221, whatever it takes.  That's my motto.

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Half way through a trip my spouse cracked several vertebrae while in Kuala Lumpur.  Our next stop was Australia for a cruise plus some independent touring , then New Zealand for several weeks of driving. 

 

We changed two weeks of touring by car in NZ and a week of doing the same in Oz to a very last minute 21 day Aus/NZ cruise.  Later, instead of flying directly home we stopped in Hawaii to break up the flight.  

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Thanks for all the helpful advice.

 

Yes insurance is needed, I agree, but it does not take away that hollow feeling in the pit of your stomach when things go pear shaped.

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12 minutes ago, allanna said:

Thanks for all the helpful advice.

 

Yes insurance is needed, I agree, but it does not take away that hollow feeling in the pit of your stomach when things go pear shaped.

 

Understandable. Experience and I believe more importantly, your attitude play a large part of it as well.

 

17 hours ago, slidergirl said:

1. flight delayed/cancelled - aware of alternatives for those, knowledgeable about how to find and get protected on other flights (a good reason to fly on airlines with alliances instead of ones like Southwest, Spirit, Norwegian, etc,)

 

In addition to the above, I will add that on the smaller airlines they often only have one or two flights a day from an airport. So if there is an issue, you might have to wait a day or so to hopefully catch another flight.

 

A tip like so many, that I learned here on CC.

 

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Thanks Mike981,

I agree that if you think positive then positive things will happen.

 

Where we live we are lucky to get 3 flights a week to our destination,,,,,,, never mind 3 a day!!!!!

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The last *complete* back-up plan for a cruise was also the last time we flew in on the same day as embarcation. I had the cruiseline's help desk phone number and that of a "taxi" company to take us over land from Santiago to Puerto Montt. When our plane (LAX to Lima to Santiago) was delayed by HOURS, I did use the cruiseline's number to find out the last shuttle to Valparaiso port. We caught it, barely, and that was stressful enough not to do such close connections again!

 

We also now have the Chase Reserve card for travel delays and an annual GeoBlue medical plan after many years of self insurance.

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No, I don't have a backup plan other than good insurance and good planning in the first place. Last month, my first flight on my way to Vancouver was delayed--to such an extent that I knew I would miss my next flight. I spent over an hour on the phone with the airline and the big online travel agency that booked my flights. The problem was that I was using different airlines, so that first airline's rep said she didn't have the authority to make the switch herself. Fortunately I found a great gate agent who was able to make the changes I needed to get me to Vancouver. I actually arrived an hour earlier than scheduled. I was flying in a day ahead just in case anything went wrong. There were several people who joined the cruise in Juneau because they had flight problems.

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