What is a Travel Risk Assessment?

A Travel Risk Assessment should be part of your duty-of-care efforts for your employees and cover all forms of risk a traveler might face at a given destination. The primary goal of a risk assessment is to provide information about the threats travelers might face, such as theft and violent crime.

Travel security isn’t limited to “high-threat” areas.  Domestic travel presents risks as well, which is why it is important to evaluate your travel plans for potential safety issues and emergencies.

The information you obtain from a Travel Risk Assessment can be used to refine your overall risk mitigation efforts and policies. Additionally, the insights you gain can be used to effectively communicate risk to your travelers and provide a platform to discuss any concerns they may have.

The top risks for business travelers in 2019

According to Christopherson Business Travel, the current top risks include:

  1. Natural disasters and extreme weather: In 2018, the U.S. faced devastating hurricanes and wildfires. Earthquakes and typhoons also shook countries across the globe. While many areas are still recovering, tumultuous weather and extreme storms are expected to continue at the same rate in 2019.
  2. Epidemics and re-emerging diseases: It is easy to forget about growing diseases like Zika, Ebola, and other infectious diseases found in other countries. Before traveling, be sure to research the diseases found in your destination area and prepare accordingly.
  3. Terrorism and attacks in low-risk destinations: Places that were once considered a low-threat, such as the UK and areas in Europe, are seeing increased rates of terrorist attacks. This is anticipated to continue in 2019.
  4. Increasing traveler volumes and the rise of global mobility: With lower airline fares and a better economy in the U.S., more people are traveling locally, as well as abroad. This rise in masses has had its hand in increasing other risks, like illness, traffic, and overcrowding.
  5. Political unrest: Shifts in power, like a new political party in office, can sometimes lead to political unrest and protests. It is important to be aware of the cultural and political energy in any area you plan a trip.

In addition to this list above, kidnapping is also a real danger that is often overlooked by leisure and business travelers alike.  In early April of 2019, Kimberly Sue Endicott of Costa Mesa, California, was kidnapped for ransom in Uganda. According to Ugandan police and a government spokesman, Endicott and her guide were ambushed by four gunmen during an evening game drive in Queen Elizabeth National Park—a protected area near the border of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Endicott and her guide were subsequently released and found in Congo after ransom was paid, but her kidnappers managed to escape.

Given these risks, it is surprising that a survey from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) found that 46% of UK and USA business travelers work for a firm with no clear travel security policies, and 22% reported that they would have no idea who to contact in the event of an emergency abroad.

How GRA Maven can help

GRA Maven provides full-spectrum Travel Risk Assessments for high-profile individuals, families, or companies. These assessments will analyze the overall landscape, crime rates, locations, travel methods, lodging, and specific threats to clients. Assessments can also include emergency extraction plans, as well as security experts that can facilitate extraction in person.

Our team of experts are committed to ensuring you are secure and supported during your next trip.

Contact us today for more information on our services.