Some vacations just aren’t planned. When you’re faced with a death in the family or a terminally ill family member, throwing together travel plans at the last minute can be exceedingly difficult, especially if the relative lives far away or in a different country. However, there are some things that can help you get peace of mind when figuring out how to get to your relative. From getting an emergency passport to booking an airline ticket, there are ways to effectively create a plan that can get you to your loved one in no time.
If your loved one lives far enough away that you have to fly, you might be able to get a bereavement fare, also called a compassionate fare. This rate is reserved especially for those traveling in order to attend a family funeral or in the case of imminent death. While these rates may not always be the lowest, they are notably close, and are actually great discounts when compared to other last-minute plane ticket purchases. These fares range from anywhere between 10% and 75%, with the average hitting around 50%.
There are some drawbacks with these fares, however. While some airlines may give you the discount before purchasing your ticket when you provide the right documentation, many will only offer a rebate after you return from your trip. This refund must be submitted no more than 90 days after the flight. Bereavement rates for international travel are harder to acquire. Because these circumstances may be harder to verify, a refund can only be issued after the trip with the death certificate. International travel also poses another problem: if it takes more than one airline to get to your location, you will have to apply for bereavement fares individually for each one.
If you need to go overseas in order to meet with your loved one, make sure you have a valid passport, as these are still needed for international travel. A one day passport renewal is available if your passport is either missing, damaged, expired.
The information you will need to provide in order to obtain your bereavement fare needs to be presented either in person or over the phone to the airline. The requirements varies by airline, but there are some major details that are usually always required. These details include the name of your loved one, your relationship, the name, address, and phone number of the hospital or funeral home, date of the service, and the name and phone number of the physician. If your airline only offers discounts after the trip, be sure to also have a copy of the death certificate. This information is simply used to verify your qualification for a bereavement fare.
Everyone faces emergencies, and luckily, there are some programs that can help you through them. Especially if your relative is overseas, getting yourself there can be stressful. However, emergency passports and bereavement fares facilitate your trip. During such a sad time, the last thing you want to deal with is planning a trip. One day passport renewals and last minute plane tickets are available for those who are faced with death and wish to be with their loved one.