When someone travels for business, anything could happen. This idea serves as the basis for business travel insurance. Misplaced luggage; a cancelled flight; getting sick from food or drink. All of these are very possible realities, which is why business travel insurance is so important. Rarely is choosing not to travel for business an option. Whether it’s an industry-specific conference, trade show, a “get to know you” excursion to a favored supplier, face-time with a valued international customer, or as is the case with some seasoned business travelers, fitting one of your favorite vacation destinations into business agenda, national and international travel is simply part of the deal.
Whether it’s your first or fifteenth time traveling for business, supporting yourself during your travels by adding protection is sure to make you feel at ease. And, whatever the situation, it’s a good idea to explore business travel insurance, as a way to protect yourself and your belongings. Here’s a quick look at the pros and cons of this type of insurance, and the various policies that are out there.
The benefits of travel insurance for business
The biggest advantage to purchasing this insurance is likely the peace of mind it brings. As Business World Travel notes, it’s nice knowing that “even if something terrible happens during your trip, there will be a way to make it okay and that peace of mind is priceless.” The top priority is “to keep your mind on your trip without worrying about everything else that may happen.”
Business travel insurance helps protect you from the following:
- Sudden cancellation of a planned trip
- Personal and business items lost-in-transit
- Getting sick or hurt during travel
- Not being able to get to a competent medical facility
- In the event of kidnap, ransom and extortion
All of these situations are possible during travel. It’s at least worth considering the purchase of some protection against them.
The downside of business travel insurance
Due to the wide range of unforeseen possible problems, business travel insurance isn’t cheap. Business Travel World estimates that it “can cost between 4%-12% of your total trip cost.” So, you should carefully weigh the pros and cons before making a decision. Make sure you read the policy’s fine print, too. Cancellations occur for a variety of reasons. This may be surprising, especially if you’ve only glanced over the document you’ve signed, rather than study it thoroughly.
As Allianz Global Assistance notes, the point of travel insurance is safeguarding travelers “against sudden and unforeseen events–not threats that are already on the horizon when the insurance is purchased.” So, for example, if you’re traveling to a region where there was a big storm, or has one on the way, “your plan won’t provide coverage for claims related to that event.”
Business travel insurance can be complex and detailed. Having the right type of coverage might be beneficial. With any given policy, however, it’s important to closely examine what’s offered and what isn’t.
Types of coverage
Speaking of coverage, here’s a quick look at the types of insurance you can buy:
- Baggage delay coverage
- Baggage coverage for lost, damaged, or stolen items
- Travel delay coverage
- Travel medical and dental coverage
- Emergency medical evacuation/repatriation coverage
- Trip cancellation insurance
- Kidnap and ransom insurance
Yet another option is corporate travel insurance. According to Insubuy, an online insurance marketplace, “an employer can purchase corporate travel insurance, which allows a set number of days to be banked for all traveling employees.” This arrangement eases concerns if a company’s employees often travel for business. It’s “usually cheaper than individual travel insurance and may provide the same price for all employees, irrespective of age.”
Every business is different. Particular needs for insurance coverage varies. Unfortunately, bad things can happen during business travel. It’s worth considering business travel insurance prior to making a costly–but hopefully productive–journey inside the U.S. or around the globe. If something bad occurs, you’ll be glad you took precautions to protect yourself.