Business travel can take you or your staff to the furthest corners of the planet; giving exposure to different cultures, underdeveloped countries, and to hostile environments. There are lots of solutions on the market to protect travellers, but is there a one size fits all service?
The answer to that would be a resounding “no”
Travel insurance is a must because no-one wants to be out of pocket if things go wrong. Whether it is lost baggage, expensive medical treatment, or a liability claim, travel insurance will reimburse you for insured losses, but who is going to guide you through the process of resolving a more serious issue? Assistance companies, medical or security, will provide advice, and often outsource practical help to third-party agents, so it is not always easy to know how reliable that will be in the event of an incident. But if you are unable to help yourself, the Government has to help, doesn’t it?
Time for another resounding “no”
Nationals have no legal right to consular assistance from their government. Any assistance is provided at their discretion. In the UK, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) received more than 400,000 consular enquiries in 2014 but provided personal assistance in just 17,058 cases. That left a lot of people disappointed and probably feeling very isolated. Consular assistance can be needed for something as simple as a lost passport, but there are many more serious scenarios happening every day, such as immigration arrests, victims of crime, or acts of terrorism or deaths abroad. If your government can’t or won’t help you, is there anyone else you can rely on?
Yes! Yes! Yes!
It is a testament to the times we live in, that ensuring we have access to dedicated consular assistance is now as much of a travel necessity as buying cover for medical expenses. Until now, there has been no provision to purchase cover for such eventualities and travellers were reliant on their government or seeking emergency assistance privately at the time of an incident, at significant expense; leaving themselves vulnerable to deception from unscrupulous and unqualified ‘experts’. The first and only company to provide dedicated consular assistance across the world, Consularcare, has bridged that gap, ensuring no-one needs to feel isolated in the event of an incident abroad again. Because our founders, and our staff, are former diplomats, we have the diplomatic contacts, expertise and experience to provide real-time practical advice and assistance, via telephone, through an in-country agent, or by flying someone out to help in person.