Extreme Travel Is Inspiring New Types of Insurance

Traditional travel insurance won’t swoop in with paramedics, even though it typically covers the cost of an emergency. Dan Richards, the chief executive of Global Rescue, told DealBook that he wanted to fill that gap when he founded the emergency travel management company in 2004. For a $360 annual fee, it provides members with evacuation services. Upgrades, including one that promises “military special operations veterans” will retrieve you from dangerous locations like war zones, can raise the fee to about $1,800. Similarly, Medjet, a medical evacuation service, sells annual memberships, and companies like AirMed International, SkyMed and others offer emergency extractions.

Travel insurance is going to space. With companies like Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic selling tickets for trips, the market for space tourism is expected to grow to about $3 billion by 2030, according to estimates from UBS. The space travel insurance market is still small, but Lloyd’s of London, which insures space businesses, began underwriting space travel insurance in 2021, and last year the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency and Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance said they would jointly develop space insurance offerings.

Taxpayers will end up footing the bill for some rescues. The cost of search and rescue typically falls on state and local agencies, Ms. Hastings said. About a half-dozen states have laws that allow agencies to charge a rescue recipient, though few do, and there is no cost to those rescued by the federal park services, for example. Last year, lawmakers from Hawaii and Utah introduced legislation to allocate federal funds to help states pay for search and rescue operations, a burden that the drafters said disproportionately fell on less populous places, but the bill failed to gain traction.

The search for the submersible this week most likely cost millions of dollars. The Coast Guard, which led the rescue effort, has jurisdiction over search and rescue in navigable waters in the United States and beyond. “But that’s just the definition of their mission,” Ms. Hastings argues. “We don’t encourage charging for search and rescue because we want people to seek help regardless of socioeconomic status.”

Mr. Richards said a client of Global Rescue had signed up for the Titan trip this week, but withdrew his deposit because of safety concerns. Though his team would have worked with international rescuers if the customer had followed through with his plans, the company would not have had the requisite deep sea capabilities. There are some journeys where risk can’t really be mitigated yet, he said, adding, “If there’s an emergency in space, no one will be able to necessarily reach people.” — Ephrat Livni

Source link

Related Posts

U.S. Leading Soft Landing for Global Economy

The world is starting 2024 on an optimistic economic note, as inflation fades globally and growth remains more resilient than many forecasters had expected. Yet one country…

Job Market Starts 2024 With a Bang

The United States produced an unexpectedly sizable batch of jobs last month, a boon for American workers that shows the labor market retains remarkable strength after three…

6 Reasons That It’s Hard to Get Your Wegovy and Other Weight-Loss Prescriptions

About 3.8 million people in the United States — four times the number two years ago — are now taking the most popular weight-loss drugs, according to…

Sean Wang Lives His ‘Fairy Tale’ at Sundance

“I feel like I’m in a fairy tale,” Sean Wang said to the sold-out crowd gathered at the Ray Theater in Park City, Utah, last month for…

Meta’s Stock Surges After Jump in Profits

Meta’s stock price soared on Friday, adding hundreds of billions of dollars to the market value of the social media giant that owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp….

He’s Lost His Marriage, His Followers and His Lamborghini

With its streamlined curves and glow-in-the-dark sound system, the silver Lamborghini Huracán Performante was the stuff of teenage fantasy: $350,000 of aerodynamic metals and lightweight upholstery, packed…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *