Whilst business travel can certainly have its glamorous side, business travel insurance sounds far less exciting. But surely one insurance policy is the same as another, and why on earth would you need a dedicated business travel insurance anyway? Travel insurance specialists Essential Travel gave us their lowdown on ten things you need to think about when buying business travel insurance.
1. Your ordinary travel insurance may not be enough
If you are relying on your ordinary travel insurance policy to cover you for business, beware! Many policies won’t cover equipment such as your company laptop, iPhone, Kindle, hired sound equipment and company credit card or even cash. Dedicated business insurance will give you more cover, especially for these types of items.
2. Don’t buy on price alone
It’s important not to just buy on price alone, as many of the cheapest policies not only have large excesses but also many exclusions and, if you come to claiming on your policy, may find that it you cannot claim!
3. Think about how much you travel
You may find that a business travel add on for a particular journey is enough if you only travel once in a blue moon, however, iIf you travel more often, you may want to purchase an Annual Multi Trip policy and add on extra business cover to cover you for a number of trips.
A joint insurance policy with you and your partner, or a family policy, with business insurance as an add on might make more sense, especially if you travel a lot. You can still travel independently to each other and still make use of the policy.
Do also think about the value of the goods you will be taking (including the cost of your cases etc) and buy insurance that will cover you for the corresponding amount.
4. If you are only a quick short haul trip
If you are only travelling with hand luggage consider purchasing a hand-luggage only policy which is often cheaper than standard insurance.
5. Buy your insurance at the right time
Most people leave booking their travel insurance policy until the last minute. But if you book your insurance after an airline strike is announced, adverse weather disrupts flights, your holiday provider goes bust, any strike, political riot, natural disaster or a no-travel warning is issued for a particular destination, you will not be covered by most policies purchased after the announcement was made public.
6. Make sure you keep within the requirements of your insurance
Following your insurer’s conditions means that it will make it easier to claim, should you have to:
- Never leave your luggage or business equipment unattended and make use of the hotel safe.
- If you are going somewhere exotic that requires you to get vaccinations or take preventative medication before you arrive, make sure you have done so. Ask your travel agent if you aren’t sure or check the NHS’s list of worldwide travel vaccinations http://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/1072.aspx?CategoryID=67&SubCategoryID=152 ). Aside from getting very sick, which is never good, you are likely to be liable for all costs if you have failed to get the required jabs or meds before leaving.
- If you are considering not declaring a medical condition because it may cost you extra on your premium, be careful. If you get sick and it has anything to do with an illness you failed to declare, you will have to pay all your medical bills on your own. However, some insurers, including Essential Travel, will let you declare and illness but choose not to add the extra medical protection. So you are covered medically as long as it has nothing to do with the condition.
7. Research before you go
If you are flying anywhere remotely unstable, keep an eye on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office website (http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/) as insurance policies are likely to be void if you enter a war zone.
8. Take necessary steps to protect yourself
Use suitcase locks, and implement the combination codes to create another barrier for thieves
Keep all valuables and documents with you at all time, or use the hotel safe while you are there. Photocopy essential documents and keep another copy handy.
Be most vigilant on long business trips when you are tired and more likely to misplace a laptop bag
9. Report to the Police
If the worst happens you and something is stolen you must contact the Police as soon as possible as you will need to file a Police report to be able to make your claim. When it comes to claiming, Having receipts for the items you are claiming for will make it a much smoother process.
10. Don’t be tempted to travel without it
Even if you are thinking of taking a risk on your luggage or laptop, what you really cannot risk is your health. If you are involved in accident or need medical care for any reason, this type of care can run up thousands in hospital bills. Having travel insurance means that you don’t have to worry about paying for this and can concentrate on getting well.
You can read more about Essential Travel’s business insurance at http://www.essentialtravel.co.uk/travelinsurance/business-trip-travel-insurance.asp