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TTAND Agent Julie Gillen is Proof Travel Insurance Works



Most people leave a little piece of their heart in Jordan, TTAND agent Julie Gillen left a little more.

Gillen and her agent partner and husband Sean were attending TTAND’s 10th Anniversary in Jordan last week, when she started to feel ill at Wadi Rum during lunch. With scorching temperatures in the mid-40s, medical staff assumed it was heat related and Gillen was taken to hospital by ambulance and given IV fluids.  Feeling better later that evening she was released but woke up in the middle of the night with horrendous abdomen pain and returned to hospital in Aqaba, by ambulance again.

More tests revealed Gillen was in need of an emergency appendectomy.

“Thankfully, we had purchased the Manulife “Premium Protection Plan”, the BEST plan which you can only get through a travel agent,” Gillen wrote in a Facebook post.

“Manulife’s Premium Protection Plan covers everything from medical, to rebooking flights, extended stay and is one of the only travel insurance companies that recognizes pets as family members, so extended kennel costs are covered.”

We’ve been keeping in close touch with the Gillens throughout the ordeal; some of you may remember we covered their underwater wedding in St. Lucia five years ago. It’s led to a solid friendship, which made the whole ordeal hit a little closer to home.

Julie isn’t clear to fly home until Friday, but Manulife has her covered. Her extended hotel stay in Agaba and Amman, organized by G Adventures’ David Green is covered under the Premium Protection Plan.  The plan also covered her upgrade to Business Class to make the 12-and-a-half-hour journey home more comfortable.

It’s worth noting that both Sean and Julie have their own insurance through their other work, but that wouldn’t have covered all of this; that’s something clients often think too.

“I am overwhelmed with gratitude to all those who assisted me especially my husband, Sean, who fortunately was here with me. The staff at Mövenpick Hotel Aqaba, Osama our medic, Dr. Nassar, David Green from G Adventures, Flemming Friisdahl and the Travel Agent Next door staff have all been incredible.”

When we spoke to Julie Tuesday morning, she was feeling much better though a little teary about the whole ordeal.

“Everybody went above and beyond to help me and I’m so grateful,” she said choking back tears.

“The hotel doctor has come back to check on me and knew everyone at the hospital.  But I’m especially grateful for David Green who took over coordinating all our extended arrangements and made sure we were comfortable. I am happy Sean was here with me on the extended stay, but Flemming said if he hadn’t been, I wouldn’t have been left alone. Everyone right down to the Movenpick staff who came to bring me breakfast in a different area where I was because of more comfortable chairs.

I have clients reaching out to me now after reading my Facebook post who are rethinking their decision to not purchase the Premium Protection Plan.

Do not assume you are covered. Take a moment to check your existing policy or reach out to a Travel Agent and ask for the PPP policy.”

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