The Perils of Travel - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Perils of Travel

With all of the publicized highseas horrors that have stricken the Carnival cruise line recently, I thought it time to discuss your avenues of redress if something goes wrong.

What people don’t realize is that when booking a cruise or vacation, the tiny little writing is there for a reason. Most of the fine print is there to help the provider of the travel experience and protect them from liability in case of a disaster.

In fact, Canada is a signatory to many international conventions that limit and prohibit lawsuits. These conventions also limit your recovery in any claim. So if you are stranded on a boat somewhere, you may be able to sue for a limited amount.

The other issue with these contracts is you often agree to arbitrate or sue in the jurisdiction chosen by the travel provider. So, for example with cruises you often agree to only sue in Florida and agree to apply only the law of that state.

While you cannot stop your government from being a party to these treaties and will not be successful in altering the terms of the Carnival terms of agreement, I suggest something else. Get insurance! Make sure you have travel disruption, medical and any other coverage that will help if something happens to you and your family while travelling.

Travel insurance is often cheap and can come in handy. For instance, I paid just over $200 on my last trip. My son had to see a doctor it cost me $350 and I was reimbursed in full. Clearly this was a good deal.

My advice is better be safe than sorry. Having good insurance definitely helps.

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