Unexpected issues can arise on business trips. If you or your employees regularly travel for meetings, special events, or other business-related tasks, travel insurance may be a worthwhile investment. Read on for a guide about what this type of insurance covers and how it benefits businesses.
What Exactly is Business Travel Insurance?
Business travel insurance is one of the most important types of business insurance for frequent travelers. There are numerous plan types available, so coverage varies. However, it generally covers unexpected issues that arise during trips.
How Does Travel Insurance for Businesses Work?
Corporate travelers often incur unexpected expenses like medical care, evacuation, or lost or damaged belongings. Travel insurance covers many of these costs to keep expenses predictable for businesses. Typically business travel insurance can be purchased when booking a trip or a few weeks before leaving. However, some providers offer annual policies for those who travel frequently.
Why Business Travelers Should Take Out Travel Insurance
Many business travelers incur unexpected costs during trips. Here are some ways travel business insurance benefits users:
- Reduce financial losses: Even just one serious issue that arises during a trip may lead to major expenses for a business. Insurance may reduce the overall costs for a company by avoiding the need to cover things like medical evacuations or lost equipment.
- Keep costs predictable: Though travel insurance for business does increase the cost of each trip, it is paid upfront and at a rate that is easy to budget for. This makes planning business expenses easier throughout the year, rather than waiting for unexpected travel issues to arise.
- Maintain flexibility: Many business travel insurance plans include cancellation coverage. This may allow your business to reschedule trips if something else comes up that is more beneficial.
- Improve travel safety: Many plan details also cover medical care or evacuation. This can improve the health and safety of your team while traveling.
- Provide peace of mind: Even if nothing serious does arise, knowing that you have coverage provided can reduce stress and make business travelers more comfortable.
What is Covered by Small Business Travel Insurance?
Insurance for business travelers can vary by plan and provider. However, there are several main categories that are often included.
Trip cancellations that are made within the allotted time period and for a covered reason may be refunded with this type of coverage. For example, if the event you were traveling for gets canceled, you shouldn’t have to worry about covering the fare.
Medical expenses can really add up, especially during travel. If you or a team member requires emergency medical care or emergency medical evacuation during a trip, this type of coverage should kick in, especially in areas that aren’t covered by traditional medical insurance.
Disruptions like flight cancellations or lost luggage can require extra hotel stays or purchases. Your insurance plan may cover these additional costs, as long as they result from uncontrollable issues like canceled flights.
If you’re traveling with expensive business equipment, loss or damage may be covered by business traveler’s insurance. For example, if the samples you’re bringing to a trade show are lost by the airline, travel insurance may pay to replace them.
If business travelers need to be evacuated due to an extreme weather event, terror attack, or another uncontrollable issue, many plans cover getting to a safe location.
What is Not Covered by a Business Travel Insurance Plan?
Plans vary, but here are common expenses that are generally not included in business traveler’s insurance:
- Pre-existing medical conditions
- Disasters or pandemics that were known before booking
- Missed flights
- Flights purchased with loyalty points
How Much Does Business Travel Insurance Cost?
The cost of business travel insurance plans varies based on the cost and location of each trip, but many fall around 5 percent of the total trip cost. Certain destinations where medical care or evacuation cost extra may come with added costs, and businesses traveling with expensive equipment may also pay more for policies.
How to Choose the Best Business Trip Travel Insurance
The best business travel insurance varies based on your company’s needs and budget. However, here’s a guide to help you get the most relevant coverage.
- Consider the type of travel: Domestic and international travel come with different concerns. For example, you may be more concerned about medical coverage for international trips if your medical insurance doesn’t cover care overseas.
- Add up the number of business trips: If you take multiple trips each year, consider annual travel insurance to avoid paying separately for each trip.
- Weigh your biggest concerns: If you’re on a tight budget, you may have to choose between coverage for flight delays or lost equipment. Consider what’s most likely to occur or what would cost your company more.
- Look at coverage limits: Policies have maximum limits on what they’ll reimburse for each category. If you travel with expensive equipment, make sure your policy will actually pay the full amount if it is lost or damaged.
- Look for 24-hour assistance services: If your provider has an administrative office that is always available to answer questions, you may be more likely to get the coverage you need quickly.
How to Get Travel Insurance for Your Business
If you’re ready to get insurance coverage for your next business trip, here’s how:
- Book your trip: Most travel insurance is booked for a specific trip. And the cost is calculated based on the arrangements. If you’re looking for annual travel insurance, skip this step.
- Find a provider: Your business insurer may offer travel insurance, so check with them first. Other major travel insurance providers include Allianz Travel Insurance products, Generali Global Assistance, Nationwide, and The Hartford.
- Consider coverage options: These providers may offer different types of plans for various expenses like emergency evacuation or trip interruption, so consider your biggest concerns when selecting a plan.
- Compare quotes: You may also compare providers or plans based on your budget. Tools like TravelInsurance.com make it easy to compare rates.
Does Travel Insurance Cover Going out of Business?
If an airline, accommodation, or tour company goes out of business after you’ve booked with them, the cost may be covered by travel insurance. However, the business must be a covered supplier through your insurance company.
When Should you Buy Business Travel Insurance?
Purchase business travel insurance as soon as possible after booking a trip. This ensures that changes or cancellations are covered — you cannot get reimbursed if you purchase travel insurance after these changes are made. In most cases, buying insurance at least two weeks before a trip is sufficient.
This article, “What is Business Travel Insurance?” was first published on Small Business Trends