LONDON, 31 July 2020: The World Travel & Tourism Council unveiled its Insurance Guidelines this week to rebuild global consumer confidence to help encourage the return of travelling.
The guidelines are designed to drive the return of safe,
healthy and responsible travel and ensure the insurance sector is fit for
purpose to operate for travellers in the ‘new normal’ of the Covid-19 world.
These new guidelines were compiled based on input from
leading companies, many of which have partnered with trusted experts in public
health and governments to support safe, healthy, and responsible travels.
The guidelines aim to promote consistent standards across
all relevant functions with an increased focus on health and safety, in line
with what travellers need and expect.
They provide practical insights and guidelines around insurance
for the Travel & Tourism private sector to equip them with the knowledge of
risks, what insurance coverage they need to look for, and how to attain
appropriate coverage for their needs.
WTTC president and CEO, Gloria Guevara said: “Insurance is vital for travellers to have peace of mind and confidence to travel and it is now more important than ever to create confidence for consumers travelling in the ‘new normal’ of Covid-19.
“We have worked closely with key players across the travel
insurance industry to make recommendations to ensure individual travellers,
groups and organisations can feel safe and confident enough to travel, sure in
the knowledge, they have the protection they need.
“The measures outlined in our Insurance Guidelines should
help guide travel insurers to create products which contain every contingency
needed offer reassurance to enable travel to recommence to those countries
which have relaxed their border controls and travel restrictions.”
MSH Ingle International Travel Navigator and Novus Health
CEO, Robin Ingle said: “The survival and growth of travel and tourism are
important in many ways, particularly for the global economy and for promoting
cross-cultural understanding transcending borders.
“The Covid-19 global pandemic has made governments, travellers, and the Travel & Tourism industry across the world experience how deeply integrated and interdependent we are on each other.
“Insurance protects and supports the operations of these
stakeholders and thus plays a key part in the successful transition of the
industry into the ‘new normal’. WTTC and its insurance, risk management and
travel assistance members have worked closely to develop guidelines and an FAQ
to address insurance-related issues and considerations.
“These guidelines will be an evolving document, and we will
be on hand to answer questions to help guide and assist the industry toward a
Aon Affinity Travel Practice president Beth Godlin, and
member of the WTTC Task Force said: “The current global pandemic has
directly affected companies in this industry who in turn have developed ways
that these products can support the industry and travellers as we return to
WTTC divided the new guidance into four pillars, including
operational and staff preparedness; ensuring a safe experience; rebuilding
trust and confidence; innovation; and implementing enabling policies.
All organisations provide risk management plans, including
how they aim to combat Covid-19, to insurers.
Organisations make sure their plans are thorough, practical,
and simple to follow.
All staff are informed of protective measures being taken,
which include insurance products that will cover them.
Insurers provide audits and plug gaps in and source the
right partners and providers to ensure appropriate coverage.
Insurers to create blanket insurance and crisis management
coverage to give comfort to customers.
Ensure there is enhanced awareness of the terms and
conditions, restrictions, and coverage limits of insurance products/policies.
Insurers to provide a minimum base of mandatory coverage for
risks posed by Covid-19.
Educate travellers who are unfamiliar with the risk they
could be exposed to and what coverage to look for when booking travel.
WTTC recently unveiled its Safe Travels protocols for
hospitality, outdoor retail, airports, airlines, tour operators, convention
centres, meetings and events, which were widely endorsed and supported by top
CEOs and business leaders globally.
Backed by the United Nations World Tourism Organization
(UNWTO), the new protocols recognise businesses and governments worldwide which
have adopted them to rebuild confidence among consumers, encourage the return
of ‘Safe Travels’ and enable the travel and tourism sector to reopen for
According to WTTC’s 2020 Economic Impact Report, during
2019, travel and tourism was responsible for one in 10 jobs (330 million
total), making a 10.3% contribution to global GDP and generating one in four of
all new jobs.