Spring Breakers Beware!

Cheap beer, wild parties, loud music and sunburns — most of us have vague recollections from our youth of spring break travels or at least an opinion of the stereotypical hedonistic happenings publicized on television and in bad movies.  This time of year reminds many of us of the fun we had (or at least should have had), the life lessons we learned and the brain cells we lost.  Spring break is a much hallowed tradition started in a bygone era when American college students flocked south for a week of warmer weather and relatively harmless beachside shenanigans, blowing off steam brought on by the tribulations of mid-term examinations.  Now our children and grandchildren are embarking upon these same journeys without a firm grasp of the hazards that might lie ahead.  Today is a different world.  The alcohol is just as prevalent, but now the drugs are stronger and the legal and cultural ramifications are harsher.

In addition to the familiar Florida and Gulf Coast U.S. hotspots, many kids are venturing south of the border to exotic ports of call where the legal drinking age is 18 and the civic regulations and safety standards are less than one would hope.  Off-road motor vehicle recreation is a common practice at many Mexican spring break locales, and with the prevalence of alcohol, accidents and injuries are increasingly reported.  Operator negligence is also to blame for many incidents in (diving), on (boating) and above (parasailing) the water.  The actions of intoxicated and carefree spring breakers can be detrimental to themselves.  However, there are other dangers lurking in Mexico.

As kids let loose, they let their guards down, making them perfect targets for criminals.  Over the last two decades, Mexico has become a breeding ground for illegal drug traffickers and the extreme violence that accompanies their business.  Much of the country has become a paradise lost.  Tourist destinations like Cancun, Mazatlan and Acapulco have all been in the news recently regarding kidnappings and drug cartel brutality.  Anyone traveling to Mexico needs to be informed, well aware of their surroundings and protected with sufficient insurances.

Petersen International offers a variety of protection plans for Americans traveling outside the United States for spring break.  The USAway International Major Medical Plan provides inexpensive, short term medical insurance with comprehensive benefits including emergency medical evacuation back to the U.S. Accidental Death & Dismemberment insurance and Kidnap & Ransom insurance are also important products to many families with children traveling abroad.  Kidnappings for ransom have become efficient sources of income for Mexican organized crime outfits, and Petersen International has a policy that employs both monetary benefits and a crisis response team to properly manage the safe return of someone kidnapped in a foreign country.

Spring break travel may be fraught with hazards, but Petersen International Underwriters has the tools to protect and reassure your clients during this fun and exciting time of year.  Call us today for immediate quotes and expedited policy issue.  We can have insurance in your clients’ hands tomorrow.