Event Risk Insurance - Are you sure you're covered?
Many corporate event planners often believe erroneously that their travel insurance will foot the bill when a conference or incentive travel programme is compromised or even cancelled because of industrial disputes, adverse weather conditions or worst still the ever-present threat of a terrorist attack.
Unfortunately, travel insurance is woefully inadequate in dealing with such circumstances and often the policy is confined to compensating the individual rather than the corporate entity for the non-materialisation of the service. Hence, the finance department is often left to deal with the budget overspend which can be considerable as costs spiral out of control.
Shaun Casey – BI WORLDWIDE Head of Events stated: “Event Risk Insurance used to be included in most programmes we operated 10 years ago, but for a period of time clients seemed to opt out from buying it. Maybe it was down to the recession or confusion over FCA regulations (Financial Conduct Authority) which meant that we simply stopped selling it for a while. However, even if budgets are tight, it’s a false economy to opt out, particularly when things do actually go wrong and huge amounts of money are suddenly thrown at the problem to ensure that the delegate experience remains positive. Our role is to manage the budget even in times of adversity.
“In previous years, our Event Risk Insurers have settled claims in excess of £2 million for the relocation of conferences scheduled to be held in cities where acts of terrorism had just been committed. Even travel disruption has resulted in a number of claims totalling more than £150,000 due to strikes and bad weather. What’s more, with FCO (Foreign & Commonwealth Office) advisories warning against travel to certain destinations because of health issues, claims in excess of £200,000 have been settled in recent times.”
As a result, Rob Bentley from Hiscox, the specialist Event Risk Insurer, provided a comprehensive refresher course to all BI WORLDWIDE Event Managers on the FCA regulations and the potential operational threats which are insurable. This training was provided as part of BI WORLDWIDE’s comprehensive approach to financial risk management within its global procurement services to corporate clients.
Shaun continues: “Clearly, like your home insurance, you hope that you never have to make a claim, but when you do, you are generally extremely pleased that you took out the cover in the first place!”