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Let's say I was going to fly into Albuquerque, NM for the 2022 Albuquerque Balloon Festival and that the balloon festival was cancelled. At that point there'd be no reason to take the trip.

If I had bought the tickets for the balloon festival myself and paid for the hotel rooms myself would I get my money back? I mean, in theory, there's more to do in Albuquerque then just the balloon festival and I could see the insurance company arguing that just because the balloon festival was cancelled it doesn't necessarily follow that my trip had to be cancelled.

Alternatively, let's say I was going to do the balloon festival with a tour company, like https://sportsandentertainmenttravel.com/event/balloon-fiesta/ or whatever and that the tour company cancelled. Would that make it it harder or easier to get my money back?

I suppose this would ultimately depend on the carrier but maybe it doesn't? Maybe all carriers can be reasonably assumed to behave in the same way for stuff like this?

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    Travel insurance policies are super specific about what exactly they cover, they're generally quite particular about enforcing the policy language exactly as written, and even different policies from the same insurer can have different coverages. So you'd really need to look specifically at the policy language. That said, I wouldn't usually expect this to be covered by most policies except for rather expensive "Cancel For Any Reason" insurance. Dec 26, 2021 at 5:28
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    @ZachLipton that seems like a fairly complete answer
    – mlc
    Dec 26, 2021 at 7:51
  • Just to add another twist. While the festival itself may not be cancelled, the weather conditions on the day may preclude the flying of the balloons (this did happen for some days of the the 2021 festival). So I'm sure that tour company has language deep in its contract that says something like "you may see the balloons flying" which would preclude you making a claim against them. And those prices .. ouch. And FYI the Taos ballon festival is more intimate, as is I suspect the Gallup/Red Rock balloon festival
    – Peter M
    Dec 26, 2021 at 14:30

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This is not answerable without knowing the specific language used in each reservation and insurance policy to address issues of cancellation, as well as issues of impossibility or impracticability of performance.

That means assessing the actual words that appear in the terms and conditions of every actual provider — and there may be more than one provider — and then applying those words to what actually happened. This list of providers is not exhaustive:

  • the tour company that sells the excursion

  • the airline that will operate the flight (the "operating carrier")

  • the airline that sold the ticket (the "ticketing carrier")

  • the online travel agency or tour or travel aggregator that sold the ticket

  • the insurance company

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