Living with credit

Eyjafjallajokull eruption and emergency preparation

Emily Crone

Unless you’ve been in a coma for the past week, you know that a volcanic explosion in Iceland on April 14 rocked Europe. Flights were grounded for nearly a week in more than 20 countries, leaving countless travelers across the globe stranded, many of whom had to sleep on cots at airports and live on a diet of airport food while running up their credit cards.

Emily's list: Eyjafjallajokull edition

Those with travel insurance fared better than those without, but it was a pickle for everyone. Some countries resorted to sending boats to various countries to retrieve some of their citizens and military personnel. People missed weddings, funerals, birthdays, vacations, work and more.

The volcano also crippled the airline industry. The companies lost millions of dollars each day the flights were grounded, and have faced a logistical nightmare trying to sort through the backlog of travelers while trying to maintain regular operations.

How does this apply to those of us not directly affected the volcano whose name nobody can pronounce? This is a prime example of how life is full of surprises. While we can just cruise through life and hope that things just go as planned, they rarely do.

Times like these prove why it’s so important to have a hefty emergency fund set aside. It helps to have a credit card with a large amount of available credit in case you get in a bind. It’s also always smart to carry some cash in case electricity goes out and your credit cards can’t be processed. I recommend you spend a few minutes thinking about how prepared you are for an emergency.


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  • Stephan

    when i first started reading this post i had no idea where it was going regarding personal finance. But you make a great point, surprises can pop up at any time, both good and bad. It is important to plan for the bad ones, and an emergency fund is a perfect example of this. also, its always better to overfund your emergency fund than underfund it. Just a tip