9 Feb 2021

It's time for a little good news, isn't it?

Sometimes, it seems, the thorns of life predominate. Nonetheless, bright spots can be found and, even in harsh settings, flowers will bloom. Both happy yellow flowers in these photos were blossoming in rocky, arid spots. When I came across them while hiking in Cuba, they made me smile. I hope that viewing them has the same effect on you!

Beyond flowers and photos, words of cheer and good news are vital for keeping our spirits up these days, in my opinion. I haven't had much good news regarding travel to share with you lately, which is why I haven't sent any recent emails. Now, however, I do have a small bit of positive information!

Sunwing has announced that travel voucher validity will be extended until Sept. 30, 2026 – well beyond the original expiry of June 20, 2022 – and it will be done automatically. You and I do not need to do anything, if we already have future travel credit on file with Sunwing due to pandemic cancellations of non-refundable bookings, as many of us do. This should alleviate stress and pressure regarding the need to use a voucher before you may feel comfortable or safe to travel. And, remember, you are not locked into going with me to Marea del Portillo on a specific date; the vouchers can be used for any of Sunwing's all-inclusive packages (not just in Cuba) whenever you wish, as long as it's booked before Sept. 30, 2026.

Some people have expressed concern that Sunwing could go under before vouchers can be used. Personally, I don't believe that will happen. But, if Sunwing went bankrupt or was sold, you and your money (as well as mine!) would be protected. Ontario has very strong legislation in place regarding the travel industry, and both Sunwing and the agency I'm affiliated with (P&G Travel) are registered members of TICO (Travel Industry Council of Ontario), as required by law. Even if you don't live in Ontario, you're covered because your travel package was sold here. For more information about TICO, click here.

Although some companies have transferable vouchers, Sunwing does not... at least, not yet! I don't have any insider information on that but I very much hope it will happen. I'm just putting the idea out there, you could say! Of course, it could be something Sunwing executives are already pondering. We'll have to wait and see, just as we must wait and see when it will be possible to travel to lovely Marea del Portillo, Cuba, where a piece of my heart resides.

I'm going to conclude this rather long email with another heart-related item – an early Valentine's Day greeting combined with a reminder that you can travel to Cuba via my mind, if you haven't already! I've been getting some nice feedback from people who've read my novel, Cuban Kisses, and felt transported to my favorite part of Cuba! The sequel, Cuban Wishes, will be out soon. The publisher says it can now be ordered via the Ripple Press website. If you only ordered the first book (not the two-book package) and now want the second, you should be able to order it at a discounted price (approx. $5 off) until the end of February. If you have any questions, click their "Contact Us" button in the upper right corner.

Keep smiling,

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