A Vacationer’s Guide to Hurricane Season
Most of the time when we plan a family vacation, we do so months in advance. And, typically, family vacations are in the summer – working around the school calendar. Which, as you may or may not realize puts your family vacation to Orlando, the beach or Caribbean smack in the middle of Hurricane Season!
We typically aren’t thinking about Hurricane Season when we book our holiday, but there are a few things we can do to prepare for it. But first, let’s take a look at what/when Hurricane Season is.
Hurricane season ~ When and What
The Atlantic Hurricane Season runs from June 1 – November 30. This will include everything on the Atlantic Coast, the Bahamas, Bermuda, the Caribbean, etc. So, if you are planning a trip anywhere near the East Coast for the Summer, you should probably be aware of this!
There are also Pacific and Indian Ocean hurricane, typhoon and cyclone seasons. Dates are similar, but check if you are going into those areas.
What to do before vacation
- Buy vacation/trip insurance! It’s cheap and worth the money. Read through the details before purchasing. But, it should cover any natural disasters and medical expenses (along with a lot of other things).
- Prior to your trip, take a look at the weather maps. Hurricanes don’t just pop up, there’s a couple of week lag time if one is even a possibility. So, check it out and see if any are in the making.
- Check with your hotel, cruise line, or resort to see what their policy is regarding hurricanes. Some hotels have their policy outlined on their website. They may not offer any type of compensation or re-booking options if your reservation was booked through a third party (ie., Expedia, TripAdvisor, etc.). So, know before you go!
What to Do If on Vacation
Typically, if you’re on vacation during a hurricane, you will either be advised to hunker down or evacuate. Which ever way you are advised, do it! If you are told to evacuate – do it! If you are told you can stay and you choose to, then be prepared! Typically, anything other than a category 1 storm will be evacuated. It is very good policy to follow the recommended guidelines. If you are going to evacuate, check with your insurance and see if you can re-book to another vacation rental further inland. That way you can potentially finish out your vacation in safety!
If you are staying in a vacation rental and choose to stay during the hurricane, you need to take the same precautions as any other local would. You will need to have water and food on hand for up to several days worth of time. Chances are, you will probably lose power for at least a little while.
Here’s a few Tips:
Check out what resources you have on hand!
Do you have a gas oven or grill so you can cook if the power is out? If the grill is a charcoal grill, make sure you have some coals to cook with. Is there a generator on property? If so, know how to use it and that it has fuel!
Start making and saving ice!
Put ice in large Ziploc bags and put in the freezer. Chances are, power will only be out a matter of hours up to a couple of days. But, depending on how long your power is out, you’ll need this ice! If you have food in the freezer, either plan to use it up or pack ice around it. When the power goes out, move the frozen food to a good cooler with lots of ice on top. And, most importantly, keep it closed!!
Take an inventory!
Figure out what you have on hand. Take an inventory of what food you have in the freezer/fridge so you don’t have to open the doors very often!
Fill up bathtubs and pitchers with water!
You will need water for cooking, drinking and cleaning. The experts recommend one gallon of water per person per day. That can add up to a lot of water. So, fill up containers that you have on hand already before you head out to buy water.
Make sure you have plenty of food on hand!
You’ll want food that doesn’t require refrigeration. Go for peanut butter sandwiches, soup, pretzels and chips. Fruit like apples, oranges, peaches that don’t need refrigeration are great too.
Make sure your technology is charged up ahead of time
And, if you have a power bank, make sure that is charged up too!
Since you are in a rental, check for flashlights and batteries before you head out to buy some. They should have some around!
Save the technology as entertainment!
Stick to board games, cards, coloring as a source of entertainment for as long as it will last. You’ll want your technology to keep up with the news, so don’t waste your charge on games and movies until the danger is past!
Surviving Hurricane Season
So, if you are planning on vacationing during hurricane season, take some precautions and prepare yourself! Before you leave, check the Hurricane Center and make sure your vacation spot is in the clear! Also, buy Insurance for your Vacation! It’s one of the easiest and cheapest ways to guard against losing your vacation money if something happens. And, lastly, if you do happen to be on vacation and in the path of a hurricane, check out my tips for making it more safe and comfortable!
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