Q: Can I Get a Refund if I Had to Cancel My Travel Plans Due to Hurricane Matthew?
A: If you’ve had travel plans disrupted over the past few days due to Hurricane Matthew, then you may be wondering what expenses if any you are able to recoup on your Walt Disney World vacation package.
Though the bad news is that you vacation was not able to go ahead as planned, the good news is that once a Hurricane Warning is issued for the Orlando area, Disney’s highly flexible refund policy kicks in.
Disney issued a FAQ on its website this week outlining the Hurricane Matthew procedures that would be taking place. Walt Disney World has been faced with park closures, evacuations of certain sections of resorts as well as cancelled flights, anyone that hindered by these plans is eligible for either a refund on their book or the ability to reschedule their holiday at a later time. This would apply to any guests that booked under a Walt Disney World Travel Company Magic Your Way package or a Walt Disney World Resort stay.
I’ve been working with clients over the past few days trying to get issues refunded. Here’s the scoop on how you should go about asking for a refund on your package:
- If staying on property but cutting your vacation short, you are advised to check in with Guest Services at the front desk of your resort to initiate these refunds. I have had clients that followed this procedure have their refunds for hotels and tickets issued on the spot.
- If you aren’t at Disney yet then you are advised to contact Disney directly at 407.939.5277 or get in touch with your travel agent to assist you.
- If you are trying to cancel flights and these where purchased as part of your Disney package then as of last night you are able to contact the airlines directly to have this refund initiated. In the past it has been mandatory to cancel this through WDTC, however they have changed this due to the influx of calls. However, just a heads up that the airline doesn’t refund you the customer, they refund Disney directly who then my refund you. A Cast Member I spoke to earlier today said these refunds may take up to 4 weeks to be processed due to the sheer volume they are dealing with right now.
Guests thinking about heading down to Orlando in the days head, are asked to monitor weather conditions carefully. Hurricane Matthew has already resulted in the full closure of Walt Disney World, something that’s only happened 4 times since it opened in 1971. It is also responsible for the deaths of at least 400 people in Haiti and the danger it poses should not be taken lightly.
If in doubt about whether or not to carry out your travel plans, please exercise caution and get in touch with Disney or your travel agent to find what options you have and how your vacation will be impacted by cancellations and closures.
Be safe out there!
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