The airline industry has taken a hit, as so many others around the world, during the coronavirus crisis. Lockdowns and fears of the pandemic have kept billions of people at home, putting many in the travel industry at risk of financial disaster. Many companies are taking creative and often desperate measures to stay alive. Emirates Airlines has taken it a step further than most by offering peace of mind to those who fear flying will get them infected.
Those who contract COVID-19 on flights with the Dubai-based airline will have their medical expenses paid along with two weeks of quarantine expenses. And if a passenger succumbs to the disease, Emirates will even pay for the funeral.
A story in Forbes verified this after oddly detailing the ins and outs of the insurance industry:
The goal is to grab the attention of consumers who would rather not think about, or even care about, insurance, certainly not at age 25 or 30. Therefore, there is this enormous overlap on the advertising, making brands indistinguishable. And the zany humor, or the irrelevant celebrities, make the ads trivial. That is why the insurance companies have to advertise – all the time. They must buy share of mind to engage.
Contrast that consumer indifference with Emirates Airlines’ foray into the insurance industry, offering COVID-19 insurance. Airlines are trying all sorts of things – from leaving middle seats empty, to requiring everyone to wear masks, to health checks at terminals – in order to instill confidence in passengers who may be leery of air travel amid the global pandemic.
Emirates’ insurance for travelers stipulates that if one of its passengers is diagnosed with COVID-19 during their journey, the Dubai-based airline will cover their medical expenses, up to €150,000 (about $176,000). It will pay €100 ($118) per day for quarantine costs – such as a hotel room – for up to two weeks.
And if the worst happens, Emirates will offer €1,500 (about $1,765) for a passenger’s funeral. The insurance is automatic with ticketing, effective immediately, and carries no fees for travelers.
It’s an interesting idea. It delivers share of mind on steroids. It demonstrates the integrity of the brand to the public, and it shows they have empathy for their customers and understand the current environment.
Coronavirus panic has forced many businesses and individuals to make tough choices. Emirates Airlines chose to go with the narrative that if you get sick or even die from COVID-19, we’ve got you covered. Maybe it will work. Maybe it’s insane. In 2020, it’s far from the strangest thing that’s happened.
It’s hard to make this headline not sound like something from The Onion or Babylon Bee. Coronavirus desperation is spreading faster than the disease. Would you feel better about flying knowing your burial expenses would be covered?
COVID-19 may take down an indepentent news outlet
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