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Cast away to warmer days

Some of us just aren’t winter people and that’s okay - especially if you have the ability to head somewhere where winter actually feels like summer! If you’re planning to take a break from what’s sure to be another long, Canadian winter, there are a few things to plan and consider before you cast off to a sandy paradise.

Home Heating Conditions

If you’re planning a vacation, you should probably call up your closest friends and let them know. Not to invite them, but to make sure that someone you trust will check up on your home while you’re away. Some insurers will exclude cases if the home was not monitored regularly in your absence.

Keep your house extra safe by turning the water off at the main source and draining all of the pipes and domestic water containers, like your water heater or water dispenser. Requirements vary depending on the insurance company, so it is always best to check with your broker before you leave to see how this can affect you.

Increasing Liability Limits

Do you have sufficient liability limits? The U.S. is a more litigious country than Canada, which means that judgement and settlement amounts are often much higher in the U.S.. Accordingly, you have a higher likelihood of being sued in the U.S. and being found liable for damages that exceed the standard coverage limits provided in your Canadian auto insurance policy; not to mention, your policy limits are in Canadian funds. Increasing your liability coverage is often surprisingly affordable and can save you a lot of headaches down the road.

Travelling with Your Personal Vehicle

Road trip! Are you one of the lucky ones who relocates to a warmer climate for the majority of the winter? There are specific rules that dictate how long Canadians can stay in another country, and quite often, individuals exceed this period. It’s important to remember that insurance companies will often look at having your vehicle out of province for longer than six months as an insurance policy violation and you may be risking your insurance coverage.

Vehicle Rental

If your plan is to rent a car while away, an endorsement can be added to your insurance policy to cover the insurance on the rental. The endorsement is restricted to Canada and the U.S. only and has conditions on the length of time, who can drive, and the value of the rental. To be sure that you’re covered, give your broker a call!

Preparing your Boat for Winter

Many boat policies exclude damage caused by freezing unless there is proof that the boat was properly winterized. In addition, the policy most likely has a Lay-up Warranty that indicates the period of time the boat is required to be laid up and out of commission. Making sure that your policy accurately reflects the period of time your boat will be laid up is as important as winterizing an engine if a loss occurs to your boat during the Lay-up Period.

Social Media

We know that you just can’t wait to share photos of your adorable AirBnB, landscape photos of palm trees and sunsets, or selfies with your favourite person, but it’s important to remember that sharing your trip on social media could be risky. By letting people know that you’re on vacation, you’re - unfortunately - letting dastardly thieves know that your home is prime for plundering. The best time to share your ‘time of a lifetime’ is when you have safely returned home.