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Rhumb Line, Vol 2 Issue 5 -- New at www.great-lakes-sailing.com
June 09, 2014
a course that keeps a constant bearing
The Rhumb Line for Great Lakes Sailing is clear: to provide a comprehensive listing of ports around the Great Lakes basin and articles that cover a broad range of topics of interest to sailors.
The purpose of Rhumb Line is to keep you up-to-date with new additions to Great Lakes Sailing in a brief, easy-to-scan and concise manner. I value not only your interest but also your time.
May 2014 New at Great Lakes Sailing
1. Six new Port Reviews have been added.
2. Following questions on Health Insurance from both Canadian and American readers, I have made some remarks below on this vital subject for cruisers.
3. Never mind pirates of the Caribbean! The Great Lakes can boast of its own pirate.
4. Updated information about water levels on each of the Great Lakes.
1. New Ports
(a). Oakville, ON is a pretty city east of Toronto and a very welcoming port for visiting sailors. This is a prosperous city with a well-cared-for waterfront and harbour. Lots to do for visiting sailors. Click here to visit Oakville, ON
(b). Bolles Harbor, MI (known then as Frenchtown) was the scene of intense and bloody fighting in the War of 1812. The Battle of Frenchtown is also called the Raisin River Massacre and today is the site of a National Battlefield park. Today, Bolles Harbor is a quiet harbor of refuge at the west end of Lake Erie.
Click here to visit Bolles Harbor, MI
(c). Algonac MI is the motorboat capital of the world. Original home to Chris-Craft, recreational power boating was virtually invented here. Click here to visit Algonac, MI
(d). Sailing into Fayette MI is like sailing back through time. This well-preserved village dating back to 1867 has been completely abandoned for nearly a century. On a soft summer's night, maybe that creaking really is the sound of a long-forgotten schooner's rigging. Click here to visit Fayette, MI
(e). By the beginning of the 20th century, New Buffalo, MI, located near the southern tip of Lake Michigan, was becoming as an excellent holiday and vacation destination. Today, tourism is the foundation for the village's economic success. Of interest to sailors, New Buffalo has over 950 slips in its harbor! Click here to visit New Buffalo, MI
(f) A very important commercial harbor on the upper Great Lakes, Escanaba MI can even boast its own pirate! (more about that below). There are excellent facilities for sailors who seek out a cruising adventure in Green Bay. Click here to visit Escanaba, MI
2. Travel Health Insurance
I am not a licensed insurance agent or broker. The following comments are designed to shed some light on the topic. They are presented strictly for informational and educational use only. Always, always confirm information with experts, licensed professionals or authorities. Information changes as legislation changes and companies alter products and policies.
Several recent articles in the media have focused on the pitfalls found in most (all?) travel insurance policies. In each case, the travellers thought they were covered, only to discover that the insurance carrier refused to pay the claims based on some obscure technicality. In one case, a claim was denied because a traveller had mistakenly entered her trip cost as $1,090 vs the correct $1,092.50! Now I am not a cynic by any means, but when I hear the protestations of banks and insurance companies all assuring their clients that the client's welfare is their first and only concern, I could be forgiven for rolling my eyes.
As an indication of the importance that you, the sailors who read this site, place on travel health insurance, it is the number 1 content page visited each month on Great Lakes Sailing. Month after month, thousands of readers visit that page – because it is an area of real concern.
I hope that you go back and review that page.
(Travel Health Insurance)
There are some advocacy organizations that can also provide information such as AARP in the United States (www.aarp.org) CARP (www.carp.ca) ) and Canadian Snowbirds Association (www.snowbirds.org)
Some points to keep in mind as you explore options are:
a) Where is the insurance company located? You want a company regulated in Canada or the United States.
b) See if you can get a waiver of pre-existing conditions – it will cost more but could eliminate the risk of claims being declined for pre-existing conditions.
c) ANY 'promises' or 'guarantees' must be in writing. If an agent says ' x is covered', ask him/her to show you where. Believe me, if its not in writing, it simply doesn't exist.
d) What costs will the insurer pay up front and which costs must you pay for yourself and then seek reimbursement.
It can seem like a lot of work but when the decline rate for health insurance claims runs from 15% to 21%, it is well worth the time invested.
Thanks for reading Rhumb Line. Your opinions, thoughts and comments do matter. If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to contact me here at Rhumb Line or at Great Lakes Sailing
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