Insurance, if not made mandatory for our cars and bikes, would be skipped by some since it feels like an additional burden on cost. When an accident-free year passes, it might make you think what was the point of paying the insurance company. However, it all comes to terms one not-so-fine day when an insurance document becomes necessary in case of a crash. Similar is the case with travel insurance. While it is mandatory for most international travel, a lot of us skip it for domestic travel. But what if it was integrated into the ticket itself? Would it improve traveller safety?
In a recent announcement, Bimaplan (an insurance startup) partnered with intercity travel startup zingbus to integrate travel insurance into the bus ticket. A move that has been made with customer acquisition and retention in mind could go ahead and improve traveller safety.
With this integration, the operational process that zingbus has to undergo for providing insurance services has been simplified. And hence, the benefit shall be passed on to the end customer who can avail of travel insurance simply when they purchase a ticket.
A study published by IntrCity, an intercity bus service, revealed consumer behaviour and travel preferences. Results illustrate that the focus on hygiene and safety has increased exponentially and that Indian travellers are willing to pay more for their additional services.
Some 65% of commuters prioritise travelling with an on-board washroom facility, while 60% prefer GPS tracking enabled buses. Among the factors that influence the choice of mode of travel, hygiene and safety take the top 2 spots, followed by pricing and punctuality as the joint third important factor. Safety, which is one of the top two aspects, can be covered by a good insurance plan.
The insurance company Bimaplan will provide an array of coverage including travel accidental death, permanent total disablement, emergency medical cover, emergency medical evacuation cover, repatriation of mortal remains cover, travel accidental hospitalisation cash (up to seven days), and loss of baggage cover.
These are the many unfortunate incidents that can occur during domestic travel and an insurance cover in the ticket itself will ensure that these are taken care of whether or not the traveller actively goes out looking for insurance before they travel.
Plus, the times are changed. This is rather the right time to introduce something like this since travel insurance is growing popular during the ongoing COVID pandemic. Travel insurance will no longer be seen as an afterthought, but as an essential tool to provide travellers with protection that covers all sorts of uncertainties and ‘what ifs’.
There is a huge potential in this market since intercity buses transport over 3 crore people every day. The outstation bus market, currently valued at $30 billion, is expected to reach $48 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 9.8%.
“In light of the recent boom in intercity travel following the COVID pandemic, it is imperative to secure every journey to minimize the risks such as accidents and loss of baggage involved in travel,” says Vikul Goyal, CEO, Bimaplan.
“The scope of this integrated free insurance cover is to act as a safety net, from the point customer onboards Zingbus till the drop-off. The insurance provides Personal Accidental cover & Baggage loss cover, among others,” Prashant Kumar, CEO & Co-Founder of zingbus, said.