Your compensation for helping loyal clients find travel insurance will vary widely. So do yourself a favour and develop a triage or priority system to keep your work in line with your pay.
Small sales to healthy, young travellers should be handled quickly and efficiently. That will leave more time for clients who are more at risk, spend long periods away from home, cross the Canada-US border frequently, or book expensive trips to exotic places.
Yet, even the cheapest travel policy and puniest sales commission could result in disappointment, resentment, or worse: An accusation of professional negligence. So proceed with caution.
“Sometimes it’s better to inform the client that a condition may not be covered rather than to say that it might be,” warns Patrick Chiasson, Broker Services Manager, Ingle International. “You can put yourself at risk if you promise more than you deliver.”
Ask clients to commit to reading travel policies
The most important strategy will be to have clients commit—in writing—to reading the policy you recommend and, if necessary, consult with their doctor and pharmacist. Have them agree to read it in time to ask questions, get a refund, rearrange plans, or search for other coverage if necessary.
This will help protect you professionally, and save you time questioning the client and delivering a warning message each time you’re trying to make a sale. It will also spare you from awkward questions about medical and mental health history, and habits like drinking, drugs, sex with strangers, as well as the usual, like whether they will partake in risky activities like bungee jumping or parasailing.
Friendly questions will highlight consumer needs
Questions regarding destination, mode of transit, accommodation, and travel companions will give you clues on whether to suggest more than medical coverage, and propose some supplementary reading.
The Ingle International blog contains numerous stories and a wealth of information about travel and insurance issues appropriate to different types of travellers. This regularly updated information hub could answer many of your clients’ potential questions, and highlight things to consider when choosing coverage.
Consider including links to appropriate stories in emails to clients. See, for example, The Concerned Snowbird Series, featuring 73-year-old hockey goalie and frequent traveller Robert Woodcock. The stories in this series not only deal with the concerns of elderly travellers, but also provide an example of how Ingle staff has helped relieve fears about having a claim denied.
Tap into Ingle resources to help your clients
You, too, may turn to Ingle’s call centre for help when you deal with clients who may need a particular policy, or have detailed questions about contract language and exclusions.
For example, some policies will cover a client who engages in extreme sports, while most will not. There are also polices that will cover a person with a medical condition such as diabetes, or someone who has had a recent change in health.
Ingle’s Chairman Robin Ingle, whose parents began marketing travel insurance in 1946, has assembled a large team of insurance experts who are fluent in multiple languages. He has also earned the trust of consumers by dispensing common-sense advice to the media and policyholder groups over the past quarter century.
So count on him and his team to make your life easier, with reasonable compensation for the time you spend educating and protecting your clients.