Protecting against the financial burn this summer

Protecting against the financial burn this summer

For the first time in over two years, images of sandy beaches, bustling art towns, and exotic lunches on picturesque Mediterranean verandas are more than a mere fantasy world or an adventure riddled with much peril and precariousness. As Covid concerns wane across the continent, this Summer, holidaying abroad is back on the cards for many sun-starved Brits.

It’s perhaps unsurprising then, that nearly half of the country expressed an eagerness to travel more in the latest Visit Britain Consumer Sentiment Tracker report, with 44% of UK adults saying they plan to spend at least a one-night overseas trip in the next 12 months.

Hand in hand with UK consumers’ booming enthusiasm to plan holidays abroad, naturally come many financial benefits reverberating far and wide across the entire industry. In April, for example, spending on hotels, resorts and accommodation grew by nearly 17% compared to three years ago, the highest growth since September last year, while the international travel sector had its best month since before the onset of Covid-19.

Importantly, these figures show that international travel is back not only for a brief stint – or as many commentators put it, a “short-lived revenge phase” – but it’s instead here to stay; the latest Barclaycard report found that consumers are determined to make travelling an integral part of their lives post-pandemic, with 20% of UK adults saying they intend to take three or more additional overseas trips this year compared to last year.

Yet, while consumer appetite for international travel has certainly been palpable, the industry should also brace for the headwinds, beyond Covid-19, that 2022 is already presenting.

Many consumers are likely to be feeling the squeeze of the cost-of-living crisis – indeed, “rising cost of living” and “personal finances” were cited as the top two barriers for travelling abroad in the Visit Britain research. For those who are travelling, steering clear of anything potentially resulting in unexpected expenses will undoubtedly be a top priority.

If the travel industry truly wants to maintain the positive momentum it has gained in the past couple of months then, it must be ready to pre-empt and alleviate these concerns, supporting consumers with meaningful, practical reassurance.

At Blink Parametric (A CPP Group Company), we’ve made it our core mission to minimise consumer anxiety and provide support to travellers in their moment of distress. That’s why, following the success of our flight-disruption solution Flight Delay, we launched Smart Luggage last year, the world’s first parametric lost luggage product in partnership with travel insurer Just Travel Cover. This cutting-edge technology offers airline passengers “real-time”, automated financial support when their checked luggage is unlocatable – preventing them from being left out of pocket.

The invaluable peace of mind that Smart Luggage has given to many distressed travellers hasn’t gone unnoticed. To a Gold policy holder with Just Travel Cover – whose travel to Iceland started with a lost suitcase at the arrival airport – Smart Luggage automated pay-outs meant that she experienced in her words “a little moment of calm when everything else was going wrong”.

“I used Smart Luggage and received an initial £50 to help purchase essential items for the night – she explained – there was absolutely no possibility of communicating with the airline about our missing baggage. Their solution was to “file a claim online”. 48 hours later there was still no sign of my luggage, and Smart Luggage, having tracked the process, declared it lost and paid another £500 straight into my bank account, as promised. This was without a doubt the easiest process during a traumatic saga”.

By offering instant support, we’re not only making sure consumers aren’t left out of pocket at a time when disposable income might not be in abundance, but also facilitating growth and offering diversification for travel brands and insurers, as they re-enter a market where the competition is fiercer than before and their customers are looking for real-time support if the worst should happen.

Find out more about Blink Parametric and our award-winning travel products here.   

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