Biz Traveler

In Case Of Emergency

Delayed airplane flights, bad weather and getting lost are all to be expected while traveling. But travelers must also consider the unexpected: What if an employee traveling overseas loses her passport, becomes seriously ill or is injured? What if you're a victim of a violent crime while traveling domestically? To minimize or even avoid these problems, consider developing a travel security plan for your business.

According to Kipley Schultz, a travel security trainer and consultant in Altoona, Wisconsin, entrepreneurs rarely consider travel safety issues that can harm a business. "For a really small business, if something were to happen to the owner or an important employee while overseas, it could destroy the business," says Schultz. A travel security plan can lessen employee downtime, ease travel worries and more.

Some travel security plans are simple one-page documents with contact information in case of an emergency. Others are entire booklets, often part of existing company travel policies, detailing emergency contact information and insurance coverage and offering various travel tips.

If your employees frequently go abroad, Schultz recommends purchasing medical insurance that covers overseas emergencies or contains an "evacuation plan" to remove employees from a country without adequate medical care. Employees should also keep photocopies of important documents with them while traveling.

Finally, review your travel security plan at least once a year to ensure it contains the most up-to-date information, and encourage employees to re-read it yearly so they're familiar with company procedures.

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This article was originally published in the February 1996 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Biz Traveler.

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