How to Prepare for a Long Term Vacation
After the excitement of planning our first long term vacation wore off, the realization that we would need to perform “double” of our “adult duties” prior to leaving set in. We have never been gone for more than 14 days. Prior vacation planning consisted of paying a few extra bills, and worrying about any other issues when we got back. After doing a little internet research, and contacting our insurance company and utilities, we learned a few important tips when planning to leave on an extended vacation.
- If you are going to be gone longer than 30 days many auto insurance companies will allow you to put your car in “storage.” If your car will remain parked in your garage, or possibly in a covered parking garage, the company will note this and decrease your monthly bill accordingly. We saved almost $200 off our car insurance by notifying the insurance company of non-use during the time we will be gone.
- On the flip side, some home insurance carriers will decrease your theft/damage coverage if no one will be “living” in your house for longer than 30 days. Make sure to check your property insurance coverage and make appropriate arrangements for a friend or professional house sitter to watch your home if necessary for insurance purposes.
- Call your credit card company and inform them of your travel plans to ensure your card will not be blocked for “unusual activity.” This is also a good time to verify car rental or travel insurance that may be included with your card. Some credit cards will not insure car rentals longer than 15 days. Renting a new car after 15 days (signing a new contract), or switching to a different credit card that includes insurance after 15 days is a possible way around this issue. Verify all options with your Credit Card company.
- Contact your health insurance carrier and verify coverage at your destination(s). Some health insurance plans provide lower coverage world wide and some have no coverage outside of their home area. It is important to know your coverage ahead of time and purchase supplemental travel insurance if necessary. Especially if you are traveling with children. Many travel medical insurance plans include trip insurance and will insure children for no additional cost (with the purchase of an adult plan). Check your plan details for pre-existing condition coverage waivers and ensure your planned travel activities are covered.
The United States Postal Service will hold mail for up to 30 days and deliver it to your house on a specified date. If longer than 30 days, they will bundle and ship mail to a pre-arranged location on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Preparing for a long term vacation is a little more stressful than we had imagined. But hopefully, our research and hard work will pay off to ensure a care free travel experience!Downloadable/Printable Long Term Travel Preparation Check List:
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