Coordinated pandemic prevention needed for travel freedom

Additional assurances are required in such times to get corporate travellers moving again

Resuming international business travel safely will depend on when destinations can unite to provide an assurance of epidemic prevention, and whether insurance companies can develop a new product to provide ample coverage in the event of Covid-19.

Speaking at IT&CM China’s International Safe Travel Insurance Cooperation knowledge session last week, Alicia Yao Hong, vice president, China Business Event Industry Committee, underscored the need for a unified standard of procedures especially on food, accommodation, transport, shopping and entertainment to provide business travellers with a peace of mind.

Additional assurances are required in such times to get corporate travellers moving again

She also cited the importance of having an insurance product designed for corporates, as well as one for leisure travellers, that can provide ample information and 24/7 support considering that the World Health Organization has stated that the pandemic may be around for decades.

Maria Rosa Azolina, managing director of Italy-based Private Incentive Milano, relayed an example of how the European Union (EU) has developed an EU Digital Covid Certificate that will soon be made available to all its member states. This digital proof will state if an individual had been vaccinated against Covid-19, received a negative test result, or had recovered from a Covid-19 infection.

Azolina added that in Europe, travellers are also able to purchase travel insurance policies from tour operators for as little as nine euros (US$10.70). Most hotels provide insurance coverage for guests who fall sick in their hotel or have their bookings cancelled at the last minute due to Covid-19.

Christine Yang, head of marketing and communication, Greater China, International SOS, added that in order to build a traveller’s confidence, a reliable and adaptable app for health and medical services as well as security risk management is also necessary.

She urged destinations to adopt solutions such as the ICC AOKpass, an app that allows passengers to carry a secure record of their Covid-19 test results obtained from a partner laboratory, in order to quicken the reopening of borders.

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