What is the absolute worst thing a visitor could ask? I’ll give you a hint: it will probably put you in a problematic situation that is unpleasant, awkward, uneasy, and morally troubling. Do you have any ideas yet? I have to cancel is usually the last thing that property managers want to hear just before check-in. Can I get my money back?
Even if you have a plan in place for handling cancellations at the last minute, your relationship with the customer and prospects for repeat business will be tested as soon as they learn their payments (not just the deposit!) won’t be refunded.
There are a few options you might think about to keep the relationship from ending. The guest could receive a 25–50% credit toward a future reservation from you, or you could make an exception and receive a full or partial refund of the trip cost. But as you are already aware, both options put a lot of risk on your company’s ability to fill last-minutely canceled reservations. Offering guests travel insurance against trip cancellation and interruption is a better, long-term alternative.
This article should be your reference for the information landlords and managers need to know about providing vacation rental insurance to visitors and preserving their relationships.
Travel insurance benefits for hosts and visitors
If everything goes according to plan, the travel insurance policy won’t be used, and the visitor will enjoy a worry-free vacation. Travel insurance ensures that both guests’ money will be returned and the host will keep their rental payment if something does go wrong and prevents the guest from taking all or part of their trip (for example, death, sickness, injury, jury duty, bad weather, natural disaster, job requirements, etc.).
This resolution is especially significant for people who list their reservations on third-party websites (like Airbnb), which have extenuating circumstances clauses that protect the guest’s right to a refund rather than the host’s right to the reservation fee.
Most companies offer free travel insurance for vacation rental owners, which can help you boost net profits by up to 35% per reservation in addition to safeguarding your relationships with your guests. This is because they profit from selling insurance, so they want to make it as simple and rewarding as possible for you to provide travel insurance to your visitors. When it comes to license requirements, some insurance companies demand that you have a license from your home state while others completely forgo such requirements. It’s a huge advantage if you can locate a business that makes licensing for your rental property simple.
Analyze whether your needs are met by travel insurance.
Examine what travel insurance providers have to offer and see if it complies with your company’s needs when deciding whether or not travel insurance is the best option.
Your payment collection procedure is one of the most significant factors affecting the company’s travel insurance requirements. Offering travel insurance in-path, for instance, makes little sense and is less advantageous than post-sale insurance if you do not accept payment at the point of sale or only charge a 20% deposit. The ideal situation is if you accept the entire payment at this point and then offer travel insurance. It would be wise to think about a post-sale option that would allow you to retarget those guests since many visitors will opt out of insurance during the initial reservation.
What you require in a travel insurance policy will depend on the risks your visitors face. Does the military make purchases from your company? Ensure that your insurance covers both active duty and revoked military leave. Do you reside in a hurricane-prone region? Make sure your policy covers the destination’s hurricane warnings. Frequently do you have elderly visitors? A pre-existing condition waiver should be included in your policy.
Company values alignment
Finding a partner who shares your values is even more significant than choosing a company and policy that satisfy your needs.
Find a partner who can uphold guest relationships if you place a high value on doing so. You should make sure that your travel insurance partner is helpful, considerate, and fair to the guest throughout the purchase and claims processes because your customers will associate any vacation-related experiences with your company.
Locate a forward-thinking insurance provider that can meet your technology needs if your company values technology and a seamless customer experience. While others concentrate on keeping the technology as simple as possible, some very technical businesses can offer support and tools for customized websites, online advertising, and integration with your existing vacation rental website.
Certain providers offer higher affiliate payouts than others if all you’re looking for is the highest return on each policy sold. Ask around for quotes to learn what each insurance provider offers. To determine the total fees awarded, each provider will use a different set of metrics.
You are prepared; please proceed.
Contact the vacation rental travel insurance provider that best suits your needs and values once you’ve determined that offering travel insurance will be a worthwhile addition to your business.
You can simply reach out and ask for more details if you’re still unsure of your readiness. They ought to be able to respond to any queries you may have and offer some basic details about their goods, technologies, and procedures.
By the time you’ve incorporated travel insurance into your reservation process, you’ll be fully equipped to safeguard the client relationships you’ve worked so hard to establish and maintain and perhaps even generate some additional revenue for your company.