Named Storms and the Impact on Travel Protection

The Atlantic Hurricane Season is a lingering threat to summer and fall vacations every year. TripAssure previously discussed how travel protection can be a value when a storm impacts your trip in the Travel Protection Guide for Hurricane Season 2017. One of the first considerations from that guide is to be aware of named storms, as this will impact coverage on newly purchased plans.


How Storms Are Named

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is responsible for naming storms. A tropical depression (winds up to 39mph) is identified by a number, and it is only named if it grows to tropical storm (39mph to 73mph) or hurricane (exceeding 73mph) strength. The naming process for storms involves choosing a name for each letter in the alphabet, omitting some of the more challenging Scrabble letters: Q, U, X, Y, and Z. The list of names are determined each year before the season begins.


Why Named Storms Matter

This naming process is important with travel protection because this determines when a storm is considered foreseeable. More simply, once a storm is named, it is too late to purchase a new plan to cover that named storm. You may still purchase travel protection for your trip, but losses caused by an already named storm would not be eligible for benefits.

This is one of the reasons it is always a good idea to purchase a travel protection plan soon after the initial trip deposit date. Learn about the others in our post 5 Reasons to Book Travel Protection Early.


Named Storms of 2016

Looking back to Hurricane Season 2016, there were a total of 15 named storm systems:

  1. Hurricane Alex
  2. Tropical Storm Bonnie
  3. Tropical Storm Colin
  4. Tropical Storm Danielle
  5. Hurricane Earl
  6. Tropical Storm Fiona
  7. Hurricane Gaston
  8. Hurricane Hermine
  9. Tropical Storm Ian
  10. Tropical Storm Julia
  11. Tropical Storm Karl
  12. Tropical Storm Lisa
  13. Hurricane Matthew
  14. Hurricane Nicole
  15. Hurricane Otto

The average number of named storms per year is just under 12, according to the Atlantic Hurricane Database information provided by NOAA. This makes last year’s activity higher than normal, but not far above average. The most ever recorded were 28 in 2005 and the fewest were 4 in 1983.


Named Storms of 2017 (so far)

For Hurricane Season 2017, NOAA has forecast a likely above normal Atlantic Hurricane Season. They predict a 70% chance of 11 to 17 named storms. Five storms have been named so far in 2017:

  1. Tropical Storm Arlene – April 20,2017
  2. Tropical Storm Bret – June 19, 2017
  3. Tropical Storm Cindy – June 20, 2017
  4. Tropical Storm Don – July 15, 2017
  5. Tropical Storm Emily – July 30, 2017


Next Storm Names for 2017

Here is the list of names to be used for any future storms in the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season:

  • Franklin
  • Gert
  • Harvey
  • Irma
  • Jose
  • Katia
  • Lee
  • Maria
  • Nate
  • Ophelia
  • Philippe
  • Rina
  • Sean
  • Tammy
  • Vince
  • Whitney


This information is meant to be a summary of travel protection and named storms. For specific details, always refer to the plan documents. Please contact TripAssure with any questions and we will be delighted to help.