Insurance broker Guarantees and Bonds has brought a new product to the UK market and is seeking travel industry partners having cut ties with Rock Insurance.
The company, which represents Northern and Western Insurance Company (NWIC) in the UK, worked with Rock Insurance and Advantage exclusively up until December.
Nevis-based NWIC entered the UK travel insurance market in 2010 offering supplier failure, airline failure and travel disruption cover through Advantage Travel Centres and Rock Insurance. It stepped in when AmTrust (formerly IGI) pulled out of the market in August 2010.
Guarantees and Bonds director Philip Radley said NWIC was now comfortable with the travel market having seen what the claims levels were like and was tailoring policies that met the specific needs of the travel industry.
The company, which also works with The Travel Network Group and Advantage, has introduced a new umbrella product combining financial supplier failure insurance with cover for force majeure [unforeseen] events, such as strikes, tropical storms, or political unrest in destinations.
It is in talks to work with more smaller brokers but will also to sell its policies through travel companies directly. Radley said less than ten suppliers had failed in the last three years, but claims for force majeure had been much more frequent.
Radley said: “We are trying to create something different from what the rest of the market has to offer. We can bring ideas from other sectors. We want to take a larger share of the market. If a tour operator comes to us with an idea, and it works for us commercially, we’ll look at it.”
Radley is keen to work with smaller agents and operators rather than the big two.
“Smaller agents are more interesting to work with and we can tailor the product for them. We understand that agents and operators can be quite cash poor so we will reimburse their mark-up as well (in the event of a failure).
“With the assistance of Advantage we have changed our policies and made them more user-friendly.”
Radley said agents could expect prices starting from £1 per person for the umbrella cover claiming this was significantly lower than competitors in the supplier failure market which work on much bigger mark-ups.
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