700 Edge Street
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547

Auto Accidents On Vacation

That was not in the travel brochure!

So much collision damage…so far from home!

Simon and Sarah Martin have been traveling to the Emerald Coast here in the Florida Panhandle from their home in Ottawa, Canada for nearly four decades. Each year Simon carefully packs their car under Sarah’s guidance and time-tested checklists before heading south for several months in search of a more agreeable climate.

The Martins are soon joined by tens of thousands of other visitors that flood into Navarre, Mary Esther, Fort Walton Beach, Destin, Miramar Beach, Sandestin, Santa Rosa Beach, Rosemary Beach and other Florida cities and seaside communities that stretch along highways 98 and 30A. Almost all are looking for the same thing…to escape the realities of harsh northern winters.

After settling in, this pair of Destin Snowbirds set out to explore the community once again and soon find themselves sharing the roadways and parking lots with a multitude of other visitors to the area. With this many drivers unfamiliar with the area it is but a matter of time until some of them meet by accident and not in a good way.

A lesson from our Snowbirds…find an auto body repair shop that you can trust and stick with them!

Alfred Rosenberg, a new member of the Snowbird crowd, will swear to this day that he did not see the left turn signal of the Martin’s 2012 Chrysler 300. Alfred was amazed to find Simon Martin so matter-of-fact about the auto accident.

“This is not our first southern vacation auto accident since coming to the Fort Walton Beach/Destin area forty years ago” Simon calmly stated.

“I’ll call my Insurance Company immediately and see where they want me to take our cars for repairs!” Alfred said excitedly.

“If it is all the same to you, then we’ll just exchange driver’s information as Sarah and I have already found a dependable body shop in Fort Walton Beach. We know that it is our right to have our vehicle repaired where we want and not where the insurance company pushes us to.” Simon said quietly to Alfred.

Finding himself confused, Alfred asked Simon to explain further and this is what he learned standing in that shopping outlet parking lot…

How to find a professional auto body repair shop while far from home

  1. Have your insurance company refer to you someone within their “network of repair shops”. This may or may not be your best option as many insurance companies choose collision and auto body repair shop based on financial concessions given from the shop in exchange for referrals. However, if you choose a “network shop” to repair your crash damages and you have an issue once you return home, then you can often go to another local “network shop” for assistance.