Chubb Unveils New Travel Accident Policy

December 21, 2004

To help business and leisure travelers manage life-threatening situations, the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies has launched Signature Passport. This travel accident program offers some of the broadest coverage available and is expected to appeal to Chubb’s most affluent customers who travel frequently.

“Signature Passport is a significant offering that should be well received by our Signature customers,” said Luis Granados, vice president, Chubb & Son, and worldwide Signature manager, Chubb Personal Insurance. “These customers have complex insurance and service needs that are best addressed when an agent or broker works with financial advisers to create an integrated personal risk management program, as opposed to simply buying insurance in a piecemeal fashion. Many of these customers frequently travel on business or on family vacations – and increasingly on high adventure trips to exotic locations. Some even travel to and from multiple homes around the world.”

Currently available in Illinois, Texas and California, the Signature Passport policy is expected to be launched in additional states during 2005. It costs $365 per year, regardless of travel frequency, destination or number of covered family travelers.

“Increased travel to more exotic locations such as Asia and South America puts travelers at greater risk of illness, accidental injury or some other type of unfortunate event,” said Granados. “Travelers need to consider how they would handle a medical emergency such as a fractured pelvis in a foreign country, where language barriers and limited access to advanced medical facilities may create a perilous situation.”

A key Signature Passport policy feature is up to $250,000 in coverage for emergency medical transportation to the nearest advanced medical facility. Emergency transportation services and other related services will be provided by MEDEX, a leading travel assistance provider that coordinates emergency medical transportation and communication of critical travel-related information worldwide. In 2003, MEDEX fielded some 30,000 calls for help from travelers in 191 countries.

“Signature Passport offers business and leisure travelers insurance protection that far exceeds typical travel insurance offered through the Internet and credit card companies. For example, credit card companies frequently only provide coordination of emergency medical transportation; they may not pay for the transportation. Evacuation by air ambulance can cost more than $100,000,” said Granados. “In addition, Chubb’s policy will help pay for a variety of associated services from transporting a loved one to the location where the insured is hospitalized to locating translation services, securing legal assistance and providing minors with escort and repatriation.

“The services are easy to use and apply to every trip an insured takes during the annual policy period,” added Granados. “With Signature Passport, the customer never needs to notify Chubb or fill out cumbersome paperwork prior to traveling. In case of a covered emergency, the traveler only needs to call MEDEX 24/7 via one of its toll-free telephone numbers or collect from anywhere in the world and help will be on the way.”

Other policy highlights include:

• Excess medical expense. This coverage pays up to $50,000 — with no deductible — or medical costs incurred as a result of an accident and due to illness if the insured is traveling outside the United States at the time of medical treatment. Many health insurance companies often take weeks or months to reimburse medical providers for covered services. MEDEX, on the other hand, will pay the medical provider “on the spot” — which is critical in countries such as Mexico, where payment in full for all medical services is required before the patient can be discharged. Unlike other travel accident policies, Signature Passport will pay for complications during early pregnancy and emergency room costs even if the person is not admitted at the time for treatment.
• Felonious assault. If the insured accidentally dies or sustains certain injuries as the result of a felonious assault, the policy pays an additional $25,000. This coverage is not usually offered by credit card companies.
• Accidental death and dismemberment. This coverage provides protection for travel that takes place on chartered or other aircraft not owned or leased by the insured; private, chartered or commercial watercraft; and common carriers (plane, train, taxi or bus). Credit card companies typically only offer this coverage for common carriers. Insurance benefits for the insured and their spouse are covered up to $100,000 per person and up to $10,000 per child.
• Trip Delay. If the insured’s trip is delayed 12 or more hours in any place due to inclement weather, hijacking, a natural disaster or a terrorist act, the policy will pay a maximum of $500 a day per covered person for up to three days for the cost of food and temporary lodging until travel becomes possible.

“Everyone needs to be concerned when traveling abroad, but affluent individuals tend to travel more frequently and to more exotic locations,” said Granados. According to the 2004 American Express Platinum Luxury Survey, 68% of the affluent have taken at least one personal trip in the last 12 months, and two-thirds of that group takes an average of six personal trips a year. The 2004 Virtuoso LuxeReport survey notes that 42% of affluent travelers seek active or adventure-type vacations. Seventeen percent of affluent travelers felt the hottest adventure travel activity is an African safari.

“With the trend to take more trips to exotic locations and participate in more adventurous activities, affluent travelers need to seriously consider the health and safety risks they face while abroad. Chubb’s Signature Passport is there to help travelers should a trip go awry due to illness, injury or an unfortunate situation,” said Granados.

Additional information on Chubb’s personal insurance offerings can be found at www.chubb.com/personal.

Topics Medical Professional Liability Chubb

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