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Travel insurance for windsurfing trip to Maui

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Created by bhc > 9 months ago, 11 Sep 2016
bhc
VIC, 103 posts
11 Sep 2016 9:38PM
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Any advice for travel insurance from recent travellers, especially to Maui?

Any gotchas about the items covered e.g. windsurfing accidents, hospital and medical expenses, excess for rental car insurance, credit card and travel document loss or theft, etc.

Will be in Maui between 1-8 Oct if anybody is planning to be there and interested in catching up.

Mastbender
1856 posts
12 Sep 2016 2:36AM
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You can insure anything and everything except the weather, the wind, and the surf.
When I go to the islands, I insure nothing that my basic individual insurance (health and auto) doesn't cover anyway for two reasons.
1) As mentioned above, check you own insurance first, you are probably covered for the most common things already, you might be surprised.
2) If I can't afford repaying damage to whatever, or replace whatever I lost when I go, that's beyond my basic coverage, then I can't afford the trip in the first place.

One thing I always tell myself in regards to extra insurance, "the large print giveth, and the small print taketh away".
But that's just me, I'll throw caution to the wind,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, pun intended.

The two biggest hazards on Maui, thievery (keep the car locked w/o any valuables visual by looking in the windows), and coral.
My extra insurance is a small box of bandages.

Magic Ride
719 posts
12 Sep 2016 2:41AM
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Where is the best place to rent gear in Maui? How much per day do they charge for gear per person?

Mastbender
1856 posts
12 Sep 2016 4:40AM
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I've always liked Hi-Tech, but there are several good ones. Rent by day, multi-days, week(s), or whatever, they are very flexible.
For current prices you'll have to call, but call several of them, I haven't been in at least 8 years, but have been about a dozen times.

We used to rent a house at Sprecks for a week or more, we'd call Hi-Tech, tell them what we wanted, and which house we were renting, before flying over there. When we would arrive at the house, always late in the afternoon, the equipment would be waiting there for us in the back yard. We wouldn't even bother unpacking everything, just change out of our travel clothes, rig up, and head out for a session before dinner.
How cool is that? Delivery service, High-Tech would even come out in their store van and pick everything up at the end of our last day. We'd always fly back home on the red eye.
I'm willing to bet they still do that, but you have to know what you'll want/need before hand, and being a repeat customer helps a lot.

P.S. we always took our own harnesses, but that's it, harnesses are more personal than the equipment.

Magic Ride
719 posts
12 Sep 2016 5:29AM
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Wow!!! That is amazing service, I am hesitant to ask, if there is an extra charge for the delivery of gear?

Magic Ride
719 posts
12 Sep 2016 5:59AM
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Just went on Hi Tech's website and it looks good, prices are very reasonable at $60/day.

Thanks Mastbender.

SWPK
NSW, 7 posts
12 Sep 2016 12:34PM
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On the rental question....

Go to Second Wind, they are by far the best on the Island. We've pretty much rented from all of the providers over the years and SW were hands down best service, best equipment and cheapest.

Second choice would be Kanaha Kai. But just go to Second Wind.

This year the Hi-Tech stuff looked a little worn and pricey.

At the end of the day wherever you go, you'll have a blast.



MikeyS
VIC, 1419 posts
12 Sep 2016 5:44PM
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I won't give you advice, but I can tell you my experience. Was in Maui in Oct last year for 10 days.

I took out the max level of hospital and medical cover (no brainer for the US). On the last day, with only about two hours of sailing time before I had to return my hired gear from Adventure Sports (who were great and would recommend) had a bad landing, foot didn't come out of the back strap and crushed my foot. (Turns out I had broken my navicular bone, but that's another story). Knew it was badly damaged but managed to sail back in and limp the excruciating 100 metres back and forth 15 times across soft sand to the car packing up the gear. Friggin painful, but really didn't want to go through the crap of a hospital visit and all the bullsh that goes with making a claim, paying upfront and hoping to get a refund from the insurer later, yadda yadda. Had made a claim before for my daughter when she dislocated her shoulder when in Bali (that's my girl , like father like daughter). At least on that occasion I was able to do all the liaison with the insurer and medical centre on her behalf. Medical costs in Bali in a brand new hospital were actually pretty modest, but we know that wouldn't be the case in the US. Went with CoverMore, who were actually pretty good on the Bali claim. So my moral of my story is, get top health cover, great if you're unconscious, but of comparable pain to your injury if you're not.

I hired a car but after a lot of thought and research, decided not to take any excess for car insurance. I knew if I had a stack it would be expensive, but decided that my risk was acceptably low. Makes you drive really carefully! But I found the drivers in Maui to be really good, polite and chilled. Complete opposite of Melbourne. So I was prepared to accept that risk.

Some kinda weird dudes around, especially in secluded carparks near Sprecks, so take obvious precautions.

You'll have a ball.

bhc
VIC, 103 posts
13 Sep 2016 1:21PM
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Thank you for sharing your experience. Was thinking along the same lines for the car insurance as that is a rip off.

Re hospital cover, I think it is definitely worth having it to limit the risk ..then it is a different matter whether the physical pain justifies the process pain.

Just out of interest, were you wearing booties when you had your accident? Assessing the risk of getting stuck in the footstraps vs cuts from coral.

bhc
VIC, 103 posts
13 Sep 2016 1:30PM
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Thank you Mastbender. I think your advice is more relevant for US residents. Checked my current coverage and the scary items such as hospital, third party damage etc that have somewhat low probability but can potentially take you to bankruptcy - I know I am overdramatising it :) are not covered..that means a travel insurance that covers windsurfing accidents appears to be sensible.

MikeyS
VIC, 1419 posts
13 Sep 2016 2:05PM
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Select to expand quote
bhc said..

Just out of interest, were you wearing booties when you had your accident? Assessing the risk of getting stuck in the footstraps vs cuts from coral.


No, not wearing booties- no need. The reef at Sprecks has a good layer of soft growth over the coral/rock. Still, the warning was "We don't flail in Maui", so don't kick like crazy when waterstarting. The only coral seen on the north shore was a band of broken and surf-rounded coral on shore in the first few metres. A bit uncomfortable to walk over carrying your gear, but hardly justifying booties. More exposed rock and coral on the Kihei (south) side, but still not enough to justify booties.

My accident was just a bad landing where the board skewed off to one side when it landed on a wave coming at an angle to the wave I'd just jumped. Further it skewed, the tighter the footstrap crushed. Watch out for the angled waves. They've claimed a few suckers.

TimB
WA, 239 posts
13 Sep 2016 2:04PM
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Please be aware that the Third Party Liability Insurance provided by Australian Windsurfing Association (AWA) to all states and affiliated clubs DOES NOT extend to Canada and the USA. You are covered for the rest of the world and sailing 24/7 either free sailing or in a comp sanctioned by AWA.

Could have something to do with the USA being one of the most litigious societies in the world.

SWPK
NSW, 7 posts
13 Sep 2016 4:12PM
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I would take booties but not wear them.

If you do happen to cut your foot on the reef the peace of mind you get from wearing booties from thereon in is worth the hassle.

Nothing worse than hitting an already open reef cut on a rock or more reef. Or the fear of doing so, as no matter how much you strap / protect the cut it always comes off in the water.

No matter how careful I am, I always end up with cut feet.

Another top tip is as soon as you get there get a tube of Neosporin from Mana foods in Paia ($12). If you get a reef cut, clean it up and drop this on 2x a day, it's magic (Matt Pritchard gave us this one).

I'd always take the insurance on a rental vehicle, yes it doubles / triples the price, but all insurance is a waste of money until you need it and I've heard horror stories in Maui.......

Take or buy a padlock key box and lock the car key in there whilst in the water.

Also, I've got great deals on brand new large SUV's etc from the website below;

www.discounthawaiicarrental.com/index.shtml

If you want a van then Kimo's has been good previously.


Magic Ride
719 posts
13 Sep 2016 3:59PM
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I never go out without booties. There is always something to cut my feet on where I sail, and due to these booties, I have never had any cuts on my feet yet. I buy those low profile trapeze Gill boots at West Marine. They are very comfy, flexy and durable and fit great in the footstraps.

stehsegler
WA, 2954 posts
13 Sep 2016 4:48PM
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RE travel insurance. Whatever you do make sure you get premium cover health insurance!

I spend two nights at Maui Memorial on separate occasions (same holiday). I went through the emergency department twice and had a full emergency checkup inluding CT scans, angiogram, mri ... The ordeal cost well over US$30,000 . Not including the two ambulance rides. That was another US$850 each. Travel insurance guarantored for the lot but then dragged payment out for nearly a year. It got to the point were a US dept collection agency tracked me down in Australia threating all sorts of things. I called the insurance and basically told them if they didn't pay the outstanding bills within 3 business days I'd take them to court. Apparently the bill was paid that day.

The insurance was through my CBA platinum credit card and was underwritten by Zurich Insurance. Support during the hostpital stay from the insurance end was good thought and was apparently handled by their international emergency response team. It was only once the claim was handed on to the Australian sub that things got messy.

RE rental car insurance. Beware that a lot of travel insurance policies that cover rental car excess only kick in if you took out full insurance cover from the rental car agency. I found that one out the hard way when I recently rented a car in Italy. 10 minutes before dropping the car off at the airport some ididot scratched the side of the car while parked in front of the hotel. It probably would have taken about 30 minutes of elbow grease to polish out the scratch but I had a flight to catch. The rental car company charged a blanked $550 for the demage. I thought no problem I'll claim it on the travel insurance. Not so apparently. They informed me that they only pay for the portion of the excess that's not covered by the high possible insurance cover the rental car company offers. The catch... 99% of all rental companies offer a premium cover that reduces the insurance excess to $0. So in effect the travel insurance company is advertising an option that will never actually kickin.

In Maui just go with one of the many "rent a wreck" type companies. The cars are not the greatest but they generally don't care if you put a scratch in. Companies like Budget and Avis usually have a "size of hand" rule. ie any dent or scatch bigger then the size of your hand are considered a damage you have to pay for regardless of wether you are at fault or not.

Magic Ride
719 posts
14 Sep 2016 12:50AM
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I may book my gear at High-Tech only because it seems like they are the only ones that have Naish boards available for rent. I like Naish boards, haa can ya tell.. But was curious how far away Second Wind is from High-Tech?

SWPK
NSW, 7 posts
14 Sep 2016 10:11AM
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Second Wind is down the road towards Kanaha on the opposite side next to the Naish store. Easy park out front for loading up and unloading.

I would spend a morning (can't sail until 11am anyway) visiting High Tech, Second Wind & Kanaha Kai (it's part of the fun of going to Maui).

I will be very surprised if you go with High Tech after doing that.

For instance without even talking with them Hi Tech is $123US more expensive for 7 days of rental than Kanaha Kai (Kanaha Kai's rental fleet is newer).

Another thing to remember is that if you go to sail at Kanaha and decide you want a smaller / larger sail or board it's a 10min round trip to Kanaha Kai, Hi Tech will take 30mins, Second Wind 20mins.

Cheapest and most convenient to Kanaha beach is Kanaha Kai, best service and equipment is Second Wind.

I'm not saying there's anything wrong with Hi Tech, it's one of the best stores in Maui and the guys there are great. If you rent from there you'll have just as good a time.

All I'm saying is that the service, equipment & cost of Second Wind stood out from all the others I've used, by far.

Kanaha Kai were also a standout.

Don't worry about using a Naish board over there. I use it as an opportunity to try totally different equipment and usually prefer it.

Magic Ride
719 posts
14 Sep 2016 10:29AM
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I will only be in Maui for 5 days and 2 of those days are travel days, so I am only planning to rent gear for 1 day, 2 days max. Should I book my gear in advance before I leave, or would there be enough gear available to rent if I visit the shops when I'm their and rent the day I want to windsurf? I just don't want the left over gear that nobody want if the shops have rented everything that's decent.

SWPK
NSW, 7 posts
14 Sep 2016 2:45PM
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Send them an email asking what they have in their fleet to suit you i.e. board type & size.

Book it in, they may give you a discount if you pay up front but if it's only for 3 days I'd just pay on arrival.

Ask them if they can hold the board of your choice for you (you may need to pay up front to guarantee this) although they usually have a few of the same size.

Don't worry about sails as they'll advise and sort you out on the day.


Magic Ride
719 posts
14 Sep 2016 1:19PM
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This sounds great. I also saw Maui Windsurf Company in the area as well. Are they any good?



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"Travel insurance for windsurfing trip to Maui" started by bhc