After a lifetime of dreaming, a man and his wife finally set sail for Russia. The highly-anticipated trans-oceanic cruise had been years in the making. The couple boarded the ship, intending to enjoy the cruise, spend an additional two weeks in Russia, then fly home. It was his dream.
Unfortunately, fate had other plans. Only one day into the cruise, the man suffered a major heart attack and passed away onboard.
Losing your partner is one of the most traumatic experiences in a person’s life. But not only did his wife find herself unexpectedly widowed, she was alone and far from home. To complicate matters, she had no idea how to get her husband’s body back to Washington State – or if she could even afford to do so.
Fortunately, the couple had pre-planned and pre-paid their funeral expenses long ago with additional travel coverage. “I got a panicked call from his wife,” recalls Gary Graveline, manager of Sticklin Funeral Chapel in Centralia. “I said, ‘Don’t worry. You’re absolutely covered. There will be steps but we’ll help you get through it.’”
The company took care of everything – including all the red tape. They helped the woman fly home early and covered the cost. They also paid for her husband’s embalming and the requisite casket to bring him home. “The travel policy had a low up-front cost,” Graveline says. “They really got their money’s worth.”
Thanks to pre-planning, everything was taken care of. “When she got home, the services were all paid for because they’d pre-planned,” Graveline says. “When I saw her a month later, she said, ‘That was the smartest thing you ever recommended to us.’”
Pre-planning and pre-paying for end-of-life funeral expenses gives you peace of mind. It also saves you money. When you pre-pay, the rate is locked in for life. It never goes up and is honored at Sticklin Funeral Chapel and their sister homes nationwide. Considering how prices increase over time, it’s an extremely wise investment. And with the added travel coverage, you can roam worry-free.
“It’s good for life,” Graveline says. “Pay once and it’s a done deal. I get a lot of retirees who get the travel coverage because they’re ready to start traveling. That way, they don’t have to worry about it.”
Adult children can choose to pre-pay for their parents’ funeral expenses, granting everyone peace of mind. It saves the family money in the long run and gives them the opportunity to plan memorials together, rather than guessing what their parents would have liked later on. It can be a wonderful bonding experience.
“With pre-planning, the kids don’t have to worry about it,” Graveline says. “And they get to have those conversations – ‘Do you want cremation? Do you want to be buried? Do you want a service? Who do you want to attend?’”
Graveline encourages everyone to plan some sort of memorial, which offers peace and closure to surviving friends and family. “Everybody grieves,” he says. “There’s an emotional chord struck, even if it’s just a casual relationship.”
The travel insurance add-on is especially valuable – and much better than purchasing individual insurance policies for each trip. “If you buy regular travel insurance, it’s only good for that trip,” Graveline says. “It’s a one-time use.”
Travel coverage helps you and your spouse enjoy the ride. Knowing their parents are covered helps adult children relax as their folks venture out into the world. “We see a lot of people who say, ‘Mom and dad are way too active for their age; we don’t know where they’re going to be and what’s going to happen,’” Graveline says.
But with their permission, adult children can give their parents – and themselves – the gift of full coverage. After all, there’s nothing better than peace of mind.