September 26, 2001
The folding of Renaissance Cruises is another blow for travel insurers this month -- particularly those whose policies cover passengers should a tour operator or cruise line cease operating. According to CSA, which does provide this coverage, Renaissance customers who paid by credit card should immediately contact their credit card company, then also request a claim form from their insurers. Those who paid by check or cash, a method of payment we never, ever recommend unless you take out travel insurance, should immediately file a claim with their insurance operator. And those passengers whose trips were interrupted mid-cruise and who need assistance -- though Renaissance has pledged to return all passengers to their original airports -- should utilize their insurers’ emergency hotline numbers. Typically exempt from any kind of coverage should a company halt operations is that which is purchased through the cruise line itself. Also, unusually, Renaissance passengers are not covered by the Federal Maritime Commission -- often a source of last resort for passengers who paid by cash or check and have purchased no insurance policy coverage for business failure. The FMC requires cruise lines that call at American ports to post a bond but none of Renaissance’s ten ships qualify.