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Travel agents notice effect of coronavirus on travel

Posted at 8:33 AM, Feb 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-27 17:36:58-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The spread of coronavirus is affecting travel to certain parts of the world.

Mark Ebbitts, president of Shelton Travel Service, Inc., said his agency is seeing an impact.

"It's not hurting it, but we're not seeing the calls coming for Europe and Asia that we're normally seeing for summertime travel bookings. Asia is a very popular spot to go to and that business is dead," he said.

Ebbitts explained the agency has been getting calls from people asking if they can cancel or change their trip.

"We want to help the clients as much as we can, but yes we have seen cancellations and we've moved those clients to other destinations," he said.

Events that can impact travel plans such as disease outbreaks, labor strikes and storms are closely monitored, according to Ebbitts, who advises travelers to seriously consider travel insurance.

"Agencies offer cancellations for any reason, and that will be a covered reason, because you canceled for any reason. You pay a lot more for that coverage. Typically another 10 to 15 percent from what normal travel insurance would've been. So there are coverages for corona, but you pay a high premium to do that," he said.