In the second video in our expat benefits quick tips series, our Vice President of International Benefits, Tyler Ogilvie, discusses another important global benefits employee category – frequent travellers. Although this definition has some nuance, it is still important to understand.

A frequent traveller is someone whose work requires them to leave their home country for less than 180 days in a 365-day period. Additionally, travel is common (2 or more trips per year) and may involve countries with more challenging access to medical care.

The definition here is a little vague as “frequent” can be relative to each business or traveller. The concept of access to medical care is also relative – it can vary significantly within one country!

What Support does a Frequent Traveller Need

Many domestic benefits programs in Canada include some level of emergency out-of-country care. This coverage is often provided/managed through a third party which can create some unique challenges when claims are made. In Penmore’s opinion, this coverage is adequate for quick trips from Canada to the US or Western Europe. However, we recommend specialty products if travel is frequent, or employees are going to higher-risk countries.

The specialty products meant for frequent business travellers have benefits that make them especially suitable for frequent travellers, including:

  • Created by expat insurance carriers – This offers access to their tried and tested service, support, and provider networks.
  • Integrated travel assistance and evacuation coverage. This doesn’t stop at medical evacuations; coverage includes expert support in the case of crime, natural disasters, terrorist attacks, riots, kidnappings, and more.
  • Umbrella coverage – no individual enrollment means it is simple to administer, and additional travellers do not require special permission.
  • Coverage for acute medical issues – Your medical issue does not need to be an “emergency.”
  • Can include personal travel in conjunction with business travel.
  • No pre-existing condition limitations.

Frequent travellers are much more likely to encounter situations requiring a more sophisticated level of support. In many cases, they should be viewed as having risk profiles more like an expat than an employee going to a weekend conference in Chicago and should have insurance to match.

If you have any questions about frequent travellers or any global benefits, please reach out to our VP of International Benefits, Tyler Ogilvie. If you are an individual looking for coverage, produce a quote for yourself and purchase quality coverage with our trusted partners at Cigna Global.

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