Popular Spring Break Destinations That Might Surprise You

Tips Spring Breakers Should Know About Travel Insurance

A record breaking 1.2 billion tourists travelled abroad in 2015, and 191 million of them arrived in the Americas. That’s about a 5% increase year over year according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in its latest World Tourism Barometer.

With more travelers come longer airport lines and more tourists, making it increasingly difficult to find peace and solitude while on vacation. It can be even more challenging to find a quiet vacation destination when traveling during a holiday.

Spring Break for students typically occurs the first two weeks in March and some traditional destinations include Cancun, South Beach and Lake Havasu. For travelers looking to vacation during the popular Spring Break timeframe but want to avoid crowds, there are alternatives. Here are a few suggestions.

·      Destin - In lieu of Panama City, South Beach or Ft. Lauderdale, try Destin located in Florida’s Panhandle. With its white sand beaches and emerald green waters, Destin offers plenty of activities (golf, water parks, fishing, shopping and dining) to keep vacationers entertained, but in a more remote setting.

·      Tulum – Looking for a Mexican destination that’s not Cancun or Cabo San Lucas? Try Tulum situated an hour drive south of Playa del Carmen and about a half an hour south of Akumal. White sandy beaches, jungles and Mayan ruins are a few of the attractions this quiet, serene setting offers vacationers.

·      Treasure Beach – Located on Jamaica’s South Coast, Treasure Beach is six miles long and provides a mix of private coves, coral or black sand beaches and rocky shores. In addition to beach activities (swimming, snorkeling and relaxing), it’s also common to see local fisherman displaying their catch of the day.

While some travelers seek alternative destinations, there are still many who will gravitate toward popular Spring Break hot spots. This includes college students looking to experience Spring Break at its fullest.

“For many college-age students, this may be the first time they’ve traveled to a destination without their parents,” said Bob Chambers, travel insurance expert and vice president of operations at CSA Travel Protection. “It’s natural for parents to worry about their kids, and having travel insurance can give valuable peace of mind to both the students and their parents.”

So why buy travel insurance? Chambers added that, “Unfortunate things can happen to anyone while traveling, and even people in their 20s could become injured or ill, lose their passport or luggage, or face travel disruptions from weather events, flight delays, or other unforeseeable events.”

When asked about what travel insurance does and doesn’t cover, Chambers advised, “Policies vary in the coverages and benefits they offer, and the specific events or ‘perils’ covered. Typically, policies cover sickness and injury, weather disruptions, aircraft mechanical problems and terrorist events, to name a few. Also, most policies exclude losses due to drug or alcohol use, and many plans could exclude claims due to high-risk activities such as parasailing, bungee jumping, etc. It’s important to read the policy carefully and understand what is and is not covered.”

“In addition to the valuable insurance coverages, all travel insurance policies include 24-hour assistance services. These services can be invaluable for any traveler, but especially for students traveling on their own. Assistance services can provide help with situations such as making alternate travel arrangements, finding a local doctor, or replacing a lost passport,” Chambers concluded.

Whether college students, families or individuals are traveling during the popular Spring Break time frame, they should not only consider travel insurance from a reputable source, such as CSA Travel Protection, but also prepare for a busier travel experience. The UNWTO predicts worldwide travel will continue to grow in 2016 with Asia, the Pacific and the Americas leading the way. Planning for these scenarios before departing can reduce stress and make for a much more relaxing vacation.

With winter a fleeting memory and the mercury beginning to rise above freezing, March is a beautiful time of year to enjoy the outdoors. For vacationers who are lucky enough to have weeks or a few precious days off, Spring Break is the perfect time to pause, celebrate and refresh.