Preparing for vacation can be quite a task.
But before folks hit the road, stopping to take a few extra precautions
could keep a vacation from costing more than they bargained for.
“You can save quite a bit of money by talking to your insurance agent
before you rent a car,” said Mark Dombrowski of Erie Insurance. “In most cases, whatever coverage and deductibles you have on your own car would apply when you rent a car, providing you are using the car for pleasure and not for business.”
According to Erie Insurance:
* If leaving car at home, park it in the driveway to give the appearance that someone is home. Don’t leave a garage door opener in the car.
* Have a neighbor set out the trash on normal collection days and bring in mail and packages daily. Make sure they place the pile of mail away from windows. If gone for an extended period, arrange to have yard work or snow taken care of.
* If one has an alarm system, make sure it is in working order and set
whenever anyone leaves the house. Use motion detectors on outdoor lighting and timers for indoor lights.
* Turn phone ringers down or off and don’t change the answering machine message to announce being out of town. Check in every few days to listen to messages.
* If staying in a hotel, ask for rooms that open to interior hallways away from outside doors. Look for hotels with electronic key cards,
which are reprogrammed for each new guest. Avoid taking the key card out in public places where it can be stolen.
* Do not keep money or jewelry in checked luggage or in a hotel room. If possible, divide money up among the adults in case one is the victim of a pickpocket. Use travelers’ checks during extended vacations whenever possible.
* Keep jewelry on the body or secured in the hotel safe until needing it.
Standard homeowners insurance policies provide coverage for the theft of personal possessions and damage to the home caused by a break-in. With replacement cost coverage, which is only about 10 percent more than actual cash value coverage; damaged property is replaced without deducting for depreciation.
More information is included in the Summer 2005 issue of InSync, Erie Insurance Group’s free policyholder magazine.
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