Michigan Tornado - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

Michigan Tornado: Be Prepared

Michigan Tornado

On average Michigan has 15 tornadoes per year. Tornadoes are known to develop rapidly, with little advanced warning. The average lead time for a Michigan tornado warning is 10 to 15 minutes and winds can reach over 200 mph, which is why Michigan residents are encouraged to prepare and make a plan before a tornado strikes.

Each year during Severe Weather Awareness Week, a statewide tornado drill is held so you can practice your plan.

BE PREPARED:

Terms:

Michigan Tornado Watch: Tornadoes are possible. When there is a Watch, move near enough to a shelter or sturdy building to be able to get inside quickly if there is a Warning or if you see signs of a tornado approaching. Remain alert for approaching storms. Watch the sky and stay tuned to NOAA Weather Radio, commercial radio, or television for information.

Michigan Tornado Warning: A tornado has been sighted or indicated by weather radar. Take shelter immediately.

Supercell: A system producing severe thunderstorms, featuring rotating winds sustained by a prolonged updraft that may result in hail or tornadoes.

Enhanced Fujita (EF) Scale: Rates the strength of tornadoes in the United States and Canada. There are six categories for the EF scale and are in order of increasing intensity. *It is based on wind estimates of a 3-second gust.*

  • EF0: Tornadoes with an estimated wind speed of 65-85 mph and leads to light damage.
  • EF1: Estimated wind speed of 86-110 mph with the potential of moderate damage.
  • EF2: Estimated wind speeds of 111-135 mph with significant damage potential.
  • EF3: Estimated wind speeds of 136-165 mph with severe damage potential.
  • EF4: Estimated wind speeds of 166-200 mph with devastating damage potential.
  • EF5: Estimated wind speeds of over 200 mph with incredible damage potential.

Before a Michigan Tornado:

  • Identify safe rooms built to FEMA criteria or ICC500 storm shelters or other potential protective locations in sturdy buildings near your home, work, and other locations you frequent so you have a plan for where you will go quickly for safety when there is a Warning or an approaching tornado.
  • For schools, malls, and other buildings with long-span roofs or open space plans, or many occupants, ask the building manager to identify the best available refuge. 
  • Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Sign up for your community’s warning system.  The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.  If your community has sirens, become familiar with the warning tone.
  • Listen to NOAA Weather Radio or to commercial radio or television newscasts for the latest information. Meteorologists can predict when conditions might be right for a tornado.  In an emergency, always listen to the instructions given by local emergency management officials.
  • Be alert to changing weather conditions.  Look for approaching storms.
  • Look for the following danger signs:
    • Dark, often greenish sky
    • Large hail
    • A large, dark, low-lying cloud (particularly if rotating)
    • Loud roar, similar to a freight train.
    • If you see approaching storms or any of the danger signs, be prepared to take shelter immediately.

During a Tornado:

  • If you are under a tornado warning, seek shelter immediately!  Most injuries associated with high winds are from flying debris, so remember to protect your head.
  • If you are in school, nursing home, hospital, factory, shopping center, high-rise building then:       
    • Go to a pre-designated area such as a safe room built to FEMA criteria, basement, storm shelter, or the lowest building level. If there is no basement, go to the center of a smaller interior room, such as a closet or hallway, that is away from corners, windows, doors, and outside walls. Put as many walls as possible between you and the outside. Get under a sturdy table and cover your head and neck with your arms and cover your body as best you can e.g., with a heavy coat or blankets, pillows.
    • In a high-rise building, go to a small interior room or hallway on the lowest floor possible.
    • Do not open windows.

After The Tornado

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Insuring Your Home-Based Business - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

Home Business Insurance

Home business insurance: Business property vs. homeowners coverage

Home Business Insurance. The line between homeowners insurance and business property insurance can be blurry if you have a home-based business.

Your homeowners policy may provide some coverage for your business property, but limits are typically low. And it may not be enough if the value of the property is more than a few thousand dollars.

Home business insurance can help protect everything you need to run your company with much higher limits than those provided by homeowners insurance. And it offers additional protection homeowners insurance doesn’t have.

What does homeowners insurance cover?

Homeowners insurance is meant to protect your home and personal possessions.

If your house burns down in a fire or a tree comes crashing through your roof, the insurance company will help you cover costs to repair or replace your personal belongings and the physical structure of your home.

But most homeowners insurance policies only cover business property up to $2,500. So if that same tree comes crashing through your roof and destroys the equipment you use in your business, your insurer will reimburse you up to the policy’s limit for business property.

If you only need a laptop and some basic office supplies, that might be enough. 

You might need business insurance if you have more than $2,500 in business equipment at your home

If you have special business equipment, office furniture, or inventory stored in your home, you probably need more coverage than what your homeowners insurance can provide.

For example, let’s say you’re a photographer and you have a studio in an extra bedroom or garage at your home. The tree destroys your camera, lighting, backdrops, props, and other equipment. If you don’t have commercial property insurance, your homeowners insurance is unlikely to reimburse you for everything you lost.

If the limit isn’t high enough to cover all the property that was damaged, you’ll have to pay the difference to replace your equipment so that you can get back to work.

If you keep business supplies somewhere other than your home, such as in your car or a storage unit, the coverage limits in a homeowners insurance policy are typically even lower.


What does commercial property insurance cover?

Commercial property insurance helps protect all the things you need to do business. Plus, it covers things homeowners insurance doesn’t. Here are three types of coverage commercial property insurance offers that can help protect your home-based business: 

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2021 Business Insurance Trends - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

2021 Business Insurance Trends

Business Insurance Trends and Predictions for 2021 and the Impact on Your Business

BUSINESS INSURANCE

Here are a few business insurance trends that are likely to dominate in 2021, along with tips on how to position your business for growth. For small businesses across America, 2020 has been one of the most challenging years in history. Despite the coronavirus pandemic, small business owners have been resilient, pivoting and adapting their business models to navigate continually changing conditions. With the new year on the horizon, there are potential new opportunities to take advantage of and ways to adapt to challenges you may face.

1. Hard market conditions are ahead.

Due to the hit that the economy has taken in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, business owners must prepare for hard market conditions in 2021: this will include higher premiums. Insurance companies will likely be erring on the side of caution, introducing new coverage limits and adding new terms and conditions to policies to ensure they aren’t hit too hard by any potential further waves of Covid-19.

Although higher premiums may be in the forecast, insurance companies will no doubt double down on their efforts to add value and ensure that customers don’t look for other options when premiums rise.

2. Data-driven business insurance trends may deliver lower premiums for some.

Over time, Big Data and sophisticated models will allow insurance companies to lead with risk-based pricing at an increasingly granular level. The emergence of new risks will create new underwriting and portfolio risk management techniques as well. Data-enabled processes will minimize friction and streamline the customer insurance journey, from request for coverage to claim.

In the long run, this pricing strategy will save insurance companies money and ensure that pricing is fair. As a result, low-risk customers will enjoy lower premiums, and only truly high-risk customers will be required to pay steeper rates.

3. Value propositions will become a big part of the business insurance landscape.

Since higher insurance premiums are in the forecast, insurance companies will need to come up with creative ways to retain existing clients and earn the business of new clients. To stay competitive,  insurance companies will likely bring new value propositions to the market to gain that competitive edge. This is likely to take the form of more flexible insurance offerings, including usage-based solutions.

4. More businesses will lean on captive insurance.

In 2021, business owners will continue to face pressure to reduce insurance premiums or at least battle against the rising prices. As a result, many business owners will be considering alternative insurance options such as captives.

Captives and similar alternatives have been an effective and financially beneficial way for small businesses to mitigate risk for decades, and that’s no different in the age of COVID. Captives will take a leading role in 2021 renewals and give business owners a stronger hand when it comes to negotiations with insurers. They will be at the core of companies’ risk transfer and risk management strategies.

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The Ultimate RV Insurance Guide - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

The Ultimate RV Insurance Guide

The Ultimate RV Insurance Guide

One of the first things a person must consider after purchasing an RV is RV insurance. That said, camper insurance can be a bit confusing and overwhelming. Often, this means an RV owner ends up with insufficient coverage or the wrong type of insurance altogether. This is something that can backfire terribly in the long run.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all there is to know about motorhome insurance, know that you are not alone. In fact, there are so many people looking for information on this very topic that we’ve decided to put together a guide to make things as clear-cut as possible.

What is RV Insurance?

We’ll start at the very beginning by talking a bit about what RV insurance is. As you might imagine, motorhome or travel trailer insurance is a lot like auto insurance (or even homeowners insurance) in a lot of ways.

Essentially, this insurance protects you and your RV should something go wrong while you’re out camping, or when the rig is in storage. That said, there are some key differences between RV insurance and auto insurance or homeowners insurance. Most of these involve the items and events that are covered.

Is this Insurance Required?

You may be wondering if you really need camper insurance at all. The answer? It depends.

The owners of motorhomes of all shapes and sizes must, at the very least, hold liability insurance in order to drive their motorhomes legally. Of course, if you have a loan out on your motorhome, you will probably need to carry much more than just liability insurance—and honestly, this is what we recommend anyway.

If you have a towable RV and you own it outright, you are not legally required to hold any kind of travel trailer insurance policy. However, if you are paying off a loan on the trailer, the lender will likely require you to keep a certain level of insurance until the loan is paid off in full.

It’s also important to note that some campgrounds require campers to have insurance on their RVs. If this is the case, they will request to see valid proof of insurance before allowing you to stay.

Even if you don’t have a loan on your trailer and don’t visit campgrounds that require every camper to have insurance, we still highly recommend holding an insurance policy. Depending on the policy you choose, your insurance could protect you should a person be injured by your trailer. It will also protect your investment should something happen to the camper.

Types of RV Insurance

There are many different types of insurance coverage for RVers. There are policies for motorhomes, which usually include the things you might see on a car policy—bodily injury and property damage liability, uninsured motorist, personal injury protection, and so on.

Motorhome policies may be liability only, or they may include collision and comprehensive insurance, so be sure you know what you’re getting before you purchase anything.

Additionally, there is insurance specifically for travel trailers and fifth wheels. These policies can also be full coverage policies or liability only. However, they will not include coverages that involve on-the-road incidents, as these things should be covered by the insurance you carry on your tow vehicle

Finally, we must mention full-time RV insurance. These policies protect those who live in their RVs full-time by covering the possessions in their RV and helping them find a place to stay should their RV be totaled.

As you might’ve guessed, full-time RV insurance is more expensive than typical RV insurance, so you will want to be prepared to pay a pretty penny for such coverage.

What Does the Insurance Include?

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Tips To Cut Car Insurance Costs - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

Tips to cut Car Insurance Costs

15 Tips and Ideas for Cutting Car Insurance Costs

By GLENN CURTIS  Updated Apr 16, 2021

Car insurance is necessary to protect you financially when behind the wheel. Whether you just have basic liability insurance or you have full auto coverage, it’s important to ensure that you’re getting the best deal possible. Wondering how to lower car insurance?

Here are 15 strategies for saving on car insurance costs.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

One of the ways to lower car insurance is through a discount bulk rate for insuring several vehicles and drivers at once.

Lower car insurance rates may also be available if you have other insurance policies with the same company.

Maintaining a safe driving record is key to getting lower car insurance rates.

How Much Does Car Insurance Cost?

Car insurance costs are different for every driver, depending on the state they live in, their choice of insurance company, and the type of coverage they have. But when trying to save money on car insurance, it helps to know what the typical driver pays.

On average, the typical person spent $1,190 on car insurance in 2018, based on the latest figures available from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)1. According to the NAIC data, car insurance premiums rose 30% between 2014 and 2018, despite the number of insured vehicles only rising by 7%1.

Data from AAA put the average cost of car insurance for new vehicles in 2020 slightly higher, at $1,202 annually2. The numbers are fairly close together, suggesting that as you budget for a new car purchase you may need to include $100 or so per month for auto insurance.

NOTE

While some things that affect car insurance rates–such as your driving history–are within your control others, costs may also be affected by things like state regulations and state accident rates

.

How to Save on Car Insurance Costs

There are a number of strategies you may use to save on car insurance. Once you know how much is car insurance for you, you can put some or all of these tactics to work.

1. Take Advantage of Multi-Car Discounts

If you obtain a quote from an auto insurance company to insure a single vehicle, you might end up with a higher quote per vehicle than if you inquired about insuring several drivers or vehicles with that company. Insurance companies will offer what amounts to a bulk rate because they want your business. Under some circumstances, they are willing to give you a deal if it means you’ll bring in more of it.

Ask your insurance agent to see if you qualify. Generally speaking, multiple drivers must live at the same residence and be related by blood or by marriage. Two unrelated people may also be able to obtain a discount; however, they usually must jointly own the vehicle.

If one of your drivers is a teen, you can expect to pay more to insure them. However, if your child’s grades are a B average or above or if they rank in the top 20% of the class, you may be able to get a good student discount on the coverage, which generally lasts until your child turns 25. These discounts can range from as little as 1% to as much as 39%, so be sure to show proof to your insurance agent that your teen is a good student.

Incidentally, some companies may also provide an auto insurance discount if you maintain other policies with the firm, such as homeowners insurance. Allstate, for example, offers a 10% car insurance discount and a 25% homeowners insurance discount when you bundle them together, so check to see if such discounts are available and applicable.3

2. Pay Attention on the Road

In other words, be a safe driver. This should go without saying, but in today’s age of increasing in-car distractions, this bears mentioning as much as possible. The more mindful you are, the more accidents or moving violations you’ll be able to avoid—events that raise your insurance rates. Travelers offers safe driver discounts of between 10% and 23%, depending on your driving record.4

For those unaware, points are typically assessed to a driver for moving violations, and more points can lead to higher insurance premiums (all else being equal).

3. Take a Defensive Driving Course

Sometimes insurance companies will provide a discount for those who complete an approved defensive driving course. Drivers may also be able to reduce the number of points they have on their licenses by taking a defensive driving, accident prevention, or other course.

Make sure to ask your agent/insurance company about this discount before you sign up for a class. After all, it’s important that the effort being expended and the cost of the course translates into a big enough insurance savings. It’s also important that the driver sign up for an accredited course. Every state has its own rules about accredited defensive driving courses.

4. Shop Around for Better Car Insurance Rates

If your policy is about to renew and the annual premium has gone up markedly, consider shopping around and obtaining quotes from competing companies. Also, every year or two it probably makes sense to obtain quotes from other companies, just in case there is a lower rate out there.

Remember, cheap doesn’t always mean good, and going with the lower-priced company isn’t always the wisest decision. That’s because the insurer’s creditworthiness should also be considered. After all, what good is a policy if the company doesn’t have the wherewithal to pay an insurance claim?

To run a check on a particular insurer, consider checking out a site that rates the financial strength of insurance companies. The financial strength of your insurance company is important, but what your contract covers is also important, so make sure you understand it. Insure.com’s site bases its insurance company ratings on data assembled by Standard and Poor’s.6

In general, the fewer miles you drive your car per year, the lower your insurance rate is likely to be, so always ask about a company’s mileage thresholds.

5. Use Mass Transit

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How Big Data Drives Insurance Innovation - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

How Big Data Drives Insurance Innovation and Better Experiences

How big data drives insurance innovation and better experiences

As advanced technologies continue to fuel disruptive changes in many industries today, insurers are intent on leveraging the benefits of big data, also known as data analytics, to help improve everything from customer service to underwriting.

Here are three areas where the value of data analytics and technology is already fueling insurance innovation and better customer experiences.

  • AI-based underwriting
    Artificial intelligence (AI) is accelerating the technology revolution currently underway in insurance. In fact, according to one forecast, the transformative effect of AI and machine learning on the insurance process just can’t be overstated. As AI continues to evolve, the report concludes, it’s likely to shift insurance from the perspective of “detect and repair” to “predict and prevent.” In our connected world of big data and digital devices, for example, insurers already are leveraging usage-based information to better understand customer risks and coverage needs. This predictive data is inspiring new products, more tailored underwriting, and real-time service delivery. Consider a manufacturing facility where information from wearable-equipped employees and fleet telematics is connected to an actuarial database. Using AI algorithms, an insurer could calculate the business’s risk based on employees’ and vehicles’ activities, as well as the probability and severity of potential events. The benefits of a data-driven approach help both customers and insurers by:
    • Encouraging safety;
    • Delivering more accurate risk assessments and underwriting;
    • Helping to reduce claims costs; and
    • Changing the customer-insurer relationship from reactive to proactive.

The bottom line? When first-hand data informs the insurance situation, the benefits can include better risk identification and underwriting evaluation and more tailored solutions

Proactive policy management via big data automation

Technology is also creating easier access to more reliable data and speedier evaluation of risk.

Liberty Mutual Insurance and its technology partners are harnessing this power of big data to more accurately identify account opportunities and develop proactive coverage solutions for customers. Through its latest relationship with Intellect SEEC, for example, thousands of third-party data sources – like court filings, industry data, and government records, – are analyzed and packaged into actionable information so underwriters can more quickly identify, underwrite, and service potential accounts. The result is a win-win for brokers and customers, providing:

An enhanced ability to understand each potential customer’s insurance service and product needs,

An ongoing window into an account to identify new needs, which can help to customize coverage options and solutions to meet changing risks.

With these deeper insights, Liberty Mutual can more quickly understand current and potential customer needs and create product solutions that help customers better manage their exposures. 

  • Smart contracts powered by blockchain
    As blockchain technology continues to matu

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How to Get the Best Fuel Economy - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

How to Get the Best Fuel Economy

Try our test-based tips to save at the pump, and see which myths we bust

How you drive can significantly affect your fuel economy. That’s the key finding of CR’s fuel-economy tests. Even when fuel prices are very low, you can still save serious money by making small changes to your driving style and habits.

CR has gathered its best test-based tips and techniques for getting the most gas mileage from your car to help ease the pain at the pump.

The FAQ below addresses common questions we receive and dispels some fuel-economy myths.  

What’s the Best Way to Cut Fuel Costs?

Slow down. In our tests, we’ve found that driving faster on the highway can really take a bite out of a car’s fuel efficiency.

We measured gas mileage while driving at a steady 55, 65, and 75 mph in a Nissan Altima and Toyota RAV4. Reducing speed from 65 mph to 55 mph improved fuel economy by 6 mpg in the Altima and 8 mpg in the RAV4. 

The penalty of cruising at 75 mph, rather than 65 mph, was almost 7 mpg in the Altima and 6 mpg in the RAV4. 

These findings are similar to what we have recorded in the past, once again proving that higher speeds exact a toll on fuel consumption. 

Another way to look at it: Speeding up from 55 to 75 mph is like moving from a compact car to a large SUV. Beyond fuel concerns, speeding is, of course, a safety risk as well.

Avoid hard acceleration and braking whenever possible. In our tests, frequent bursts of acceleration and braking reduced an older Toyota Camry’s mileage by 2 to 3 mpg. Once up to speed on the highway, maintain a steady pace.

The harder you accelerate, the more fuel you use. Unnecessary braking wastes the fuel you used to get up to speed. Drive smoothly and anticipate the movement of traffic. Once up to speed, maintain a steady pace. Smooth acceleration, cornering, and braking also extend the life of the engine, transmission, brakes, and tires.

What’s the Impact of Carrying Stuff on the Roof?

At highway speeds, more than 50 percent of engine power goes to overcoming aerodynamic drag. Don’t add to that by carrying unneeded things on the roof. We did fuel economy tests at highway speed on a Nissan Altima and Toyota RAV4 with a roof rack, tail-hitch rack, and a roof-top box.

Carrying two mountain bikes on the roof had the biggest impact. The Altima lost 13 mpg, going from 46 mpg down to 33. The RAV4 lost 7 mpg, dropping to 32 mpg from 39 mpg.

There’s even a loss when driving with the empty roof rack installed: The Altima dropped 5 mpg and the Toyota lost 2 mpg.

The Nissan lost 12 mpg with the bikes on the hitch-mounted rack, while the RAV4 was down only 5 mpg. The bikes stuck out to the sides of the sedan, which created extra drag. They were mostly hidden behind the wider, boxier RAV4’s bodywork.

The roof-top box resulted in a 9 mpg decrease for the Altima, and a 5 mpg drop for the RAV4.

Overall, the aerodynamic drag doesn’t hurt the more boxy RAV4 as much as the sleeker Altima. 

Going across town, this may not be a concern. But on a multistate family road trip, a carrier or rack on the roof would have a real impact on fuel costs. And it could create some annoying wind noise. 

Use AC or Open Windows?

The harder the AC system has to work, the worse the impact on fuel economy. When we measured the fuel-economy difference in a  2008 Ford Focus, Honda  Accord, and Subaru Forester, we found that fuel use with the  AC running went up with higher outside temperatures.  

At 55° F, there were negligible differences. But when we measured again on days when the temperature was in the low 70s and high 80s, we got fewer miles per gallon with the AC on.

In general, expect a drop from 1 to 4 mpg with the air conditioning running. The effect of opening the windows at 65 mph was not measurable. In any case, the AC helps dehumidify the cabin, which can contribute to keeping the driver alert and safe. We think that’s a worthwhile trade-off.

How Far Can You Go When the Low-Fuel Warning Light Comes On?

There is no set rule, but most cars have a reserve of between 1 and 2 gallons of gas when the light goes on, or enough to travel about 40 to 50 miles or so at a moderate speed.

To maximize those last couple of gallons, we suggest slowing down and maintaining a steady pace. Because you never know what challenges life will serve up, including traffic, don’t rely on the light as your cue to fill up. 

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Hello 2021 NBA Season - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

Hello 2020-21 NBA Season!

Things you need to know about the 2020-21 NBA season

Here are some common questions and answers about the format, rules, scheduling, structure, and health protocols of the 2020-21 NBA season.

The NBA and the National Basketball Players Association announced on Nov. 9 that they’ve struck a deal on rules for the 2020-21 NBA season, which will start on Dec. 22. On November 10, the NBA’s Board of Governors approved the amended Collective Bargaining Agreement for 2020-21 by a unanimous vote, allowing the 2020-21 season to begin. The NBA announced the 2020-21 season structure and format, including a playoff Play-In Tournament on Nov. 17.

In anticipation of the new NBA season, here are some common questions and answers about the 2020-21 NBA season.


Q: When does the 2020-21 NBA season begin and end?

Dec. 22 is the start date. The end of the 2020-21 season is tentatively scheduled for May 16.

Q: When did training camps open? When was the preseason?

Individual player workouts ran from Dec. 1-5 with Media “Week” taking place during the same time frame. Group player workouts went from Dec. 6-10 and the preseason ran from Dec. 11-19. In the preseason, each team played a minimum of two and a maximum of four games as part of the NBA’s 49-game preseason schedule. The game schedule for the 2020 preseason is available here.

Q: How many games will each team play in the 2020-21 NBA season

Each team will play 72 regular-season games, which is 10 games fewer than in a typical, 82-game NBA season.

Q: What does the 2020-21 schedule look like?

The schedule will be released in two segments, with the First Half of the schedule coming around the start of training camp and the Second Half of the schedule coming out during the latter part of the First Half. For now, the plan is for each team to play three games against each intraconference opponent (42 total), and two against each interconference opponent (30 games).

Q: How will the Play-In Tournament be structured?

The Play-In Tournament, which will take place after the regular season and before the first round of the playoffs, will include the teams with the seventh-highest through the tenth-highest winning percentages in each conference. For further information on the Play-In Tournament, click here.

Q: What are the Key Dates for the 2020-21 NBA season?

• Dec. 1-5: Individual player workouts and Media “Week”
• Dec. 6-10: Group player workouts begin• Dec. 11-19: Preseason games
• Dec. 22 – March 4: First Half of regular season
 March 5-9: All-Star break
 March 10-May 16: Second Half of regular season
 March 25: NBA Trade Deadline
 May 13-15: Class of 2020 Hall of Fame Enshrinement
 May 18-21: Play-In Tournament
 May 22-July 22: 2021 NBA Playoffs

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Revenge Travel Will Be All The Rage Over The Next Few Years - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

‘Revenge Travel’ Will Be All The Rage Over The Next Few Years

‘Revenge Travel’ Will Be All The Rage Over The Next Few Years

With the vaccine rollout picking up pace, Americans are starting to feel more cautiously optimistic about the prospect of traveling again, and it’s called Revenge Travel.

Those in the travel industry are hoping for a surge in bookings in the coming months and years. A sense of wanderlust has been building, after all ― it’s only natural that we’ll want to explore new places after so much time at home. Many are calling this phenomenon “revenge travel.”

But what exactly does “revenge travel” mean and how might it manifest? HuffPost asked travel experts to share their thoughts about “revenge travel” and the future of Americans’ vacation plans.

What is ‘revenge travel’?

“While the term may sound silly, ‘revenge travel’ refers to the idea that there will be a huge increase in travel as it becomes safer and things open back up,” said Eric Jones, co-founder of The Vacationer travel journal and planning guide. “Many Americans and those around the world had their vacations altered or outright canceled last year, so they are all looking to satisfy their travel itch at the same time. The term is also retribution against COVID-19 and how it is losing its power to control our lives, including canceling travel plans.”

If vaccination rates continue to increase and case counts decline, many travel experts predict many Americans will book more trips than they did before the coronavirus era to make up for lost time and to reconnect with friends and family.

“After being confined for a year, ‘revenge travel’ is essentially a slingshot back into the world. It’s a visceral response to pent-up travel demand,” said Mike Kennedy, co-founder of the travel marketplace KOALA.

“While ‘revenge travel’ is the hot new term, it explains exactly what travelers have been saying since the pandemic started,” noted Konrad Waliszewski, co-founder and CEO of the travel app Tripscout. “We are no longer going to take for granted that there will always be a flight tomorrow and an open border waiting to greet us. We will make up for the lost time and experiences with a vengeance.”

Experts are expecting a boom.

“After all the trauma, frustrations, and sacrifices made by so many people throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the sudden surge in vaccinations across the country is trailblazing a sense of urgency, and impatience, to travel once again,” Fyall said.

He noted that there’s already a boom in travel bookings, as people are eager to spend the miles, points, and vouchers that have accumulated and gone unused over the past year.

“We’re already seeing a surge in ‘revenge travel,’ as the vaccine becomes more widely distributed and as people become more comfortable with traveling,” said Carolyne Doyon, president, and CEO of Club Med North America and the Caribbean. “Since the end of 2020, we were seeing a large increase in family reunion bookings for the 2021–2022 holiday season, with a 17% increase compared to the 2019 holiday season. This shows us that families are really looking forward to reconnecting after so much time spent apart and coming together for the holidays, as so many plans were canceled in 2020.”

Jones noted that the TSA has been screening over 1 million passengers most days since mid-February, an uptick from the general pandemic lows.

“Additionally, the TSA is looking to hire over 6,000 screening officers for the anticipated summer rush,” he added. ”The Vacationer’s recent survey also supports the idea of travel picking up. After being largely confined to their homes for an entire year, Americans are ready to experience new places, food, and activities again as it is finally becoming safe to do so.”

People will want relaxation and time outdoors.

“We’re seeing the biggest excitement for post-pandemic revenge travel initially to the sun and sand destinations,” Waliszewski said. “Everyone has had a hard year, so while they’re craving new cultures and adventures, they want to give themselves a much-needed break first. They want to sit on a beach and give a cold cheer to the people they missed most during the pandemic.”

Time on the beach is consistent with another travel trend prediction: continued interest in outdoor adventures due to their safety.

“People are most excited to revenge travel to places where they can spend a lot of time outdoors without a mask,” Jones said. “This includes beaches, places with a lot of hiking such as national and state parks, and camping destinations. COVID-19 is thought to spread far less outside compared to indoors, so a beach vacation or camping trip still allows for adequate social distancing. While it is thought that the COVID-19 vaccines also prevent infection and spreading to others, some people still like the added security that the outdoors provide.” There are some promising early data that suggest COVID-19 vaccines can reduce transmission of the coronavirus, but research is still ongoing.

They will play it safe with their initial destinations.

“Most of the revenge travel in the next few months will likely take place in the United States,” Jones said. “Of the limited number of foreign countries that are permitting United States citizens, many of them have COVID-19 testing requirements that can be quite extensive.”

Alan Fyall, the interim chair for the tourism, events, and attractions department at the University of Central Florida’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management, believes the focus will still be on driving destinations like state and national parks and coastlines. However, he added, “The desire to visit friends and relatives will drive traffic to all destinations as families and loved ones reconnect.”

Even those who are interested in going beyond the continental U.S. will probably play it safe.

“For American travelers, the deep desire to get away combined with the looming uncertainty is causing a surge in planning trips to destinations like Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands,” Waliszewski said. “People want to go as far away as they can get without actually leaving the country.”

Kennedy echoed this sentiment, predicting that people yearning for true international travel will likely turn to Mexico and the Caribbean.

“It reconciles that sense of wanderlust we’re all feeling without taking too much risk. Flights that aren’t much longer ― or in some cases shorter ― than domestic flights,” he said.

Travelers may feel more inclined to splurge.

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Want More Energy In The Morning - Shield Insurance Agency Blog

Want More Energy In The Morning?

Want More Energy In The Morning? Try This Easy Science-Backed Method.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could magically turn yourself into a morning person? This doesn’t have to be just a dream: A group of sleep researchers developed a method that could very well transform the way you feel during the wee hours of the morning — or at least help you get more energy and feel a little less sluggish in the a.m.

The science-backed process ― called the RISE-UP method ― was created a few years ago, but it’s especially helpful now. The pandemic has made sleep inertia — the transitional state between sleep and wake, marked by grogginess, impaired performance, and a desire to return to sleep — more common, said sleep researcher Kate Kaplan, a clinical instructor at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Adjusting your morning habits using the technique may help reverse some of those effects.

“I think we’re living in very unique times from a sleep perspective,” she said, adding that as our schedules are drifting later, our sleep inertia might be getting stronger. Commuting to school or work, the acts of packing lunch and getting dressed — these are all helpful for “decreasing sleep inertia and helping reset our biological rhythm,” Kaplan explained. Those routines have been cut short or annihilated for many of us, so it makes sense that we’re feeling more tired than we did in pre-pandemic days.

Kaplan and her colleagues devised the RISE-UP method in 2018 to help people get up in the morning. After rounds of research and testing, they ultimately developed the strategy to combat sleep inertia. With the new (slower) pace of our work-from-home mornings, the technique may prove to be more useful than ever. The RISE-UP method consists of six principles that can help minimize the experience of sleepiness. Here’s what each letter stands for:

  1. R – Resist the urge to hit the snooze button
  2. I – Increase your activity for the first hour
  3. S – Shower (or wash your face and hands with cold water)
  4. E – Expose yourself to sunlight
  5. U – Upbeat music
  6. P – Phone a friend

Every principle of the RISE-UP method is a bit more nuanced than it is prescriptive, so let’s go through all six individually.

R: Resist the urge to hit the snooze button

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