Monday, November 23, 2020

It was all about insurance during the latest United Motorcoach Association’s Town Hall, a weekly Zoom meeting that takes places every Thursday at 2 PM ET. The panelists includes Tim Delaney of Lancer Insurance, Tim O’Bryan of Service Insurance Agency, and Michelle Wiltgen of National Interstate Insurance Company.

As companies are seeing some signs of life in their markets, many insurance companies are allowing daily rates for insurance coverage so that cash-strapped operators can complete their tours as needed without having to reinstate the full policy. Several UMA members chimed in to share their recent bookings, although trips are still down across the board as states struggle to reopen.

UMA Virtual Summit

The panel also commented that they are seeing numerous claims for COVID liability in the other industries they insure. They warned operators that duty of care based on CDC and local health department guidelines is going to be critical to protect their companies—but more so, that their teams are following these policies to the letter. Communicating these guidelines to customers beforehand, detailing cleaning and sanitation procedures, and insisting that all (drivers and passengers alike) wear masks in accordance with local guidance is all vitally important to keeping everyone as safe as possible.

With renewal season in full swing, some UMA members expressed their frustration with higher policy rates and difficulty in predicting workers’ comp insurance moving forward. Wiltgen noted that commercial lability was operating at a loss for about a decade prior to COVID, and urged operators to keep good communication with their broker so that they can help them with the best options for their current business status.

Beyond insurance, President & CEO Larry Killingsworth and VP & COO Ken Presley fielded questions about the upcoming UMA Virtual Summit, which is scheduled for June 17-19.

The sessions will take place in three-hour blocks beginning at 1 p.m. ET each day. The program was designed to provide a combination of expert presentations, panel discussions, and breakout sessions. To ensure that operators are staying motivated and on the right track through the phases of recovery, there will be follow-up meetings four, eight, and 12 weeks after the Summit.

Among the speakers are Bruce Heinrich and James Blain of PAX Training, who also spoke at the 2020 CD/NLA Show in Las Vegas this past February, as well as UMA Town Hall frequent contributor Jim McCann of Spader Business Management.

The Virtual Summit is $99 per individual for members ($169 for non-members). To encourage teams to participate, UMA members can register a team of up to five people from the same company for $199. Those who register will also receive complementary access to LinkedIn Learning, a cache of more than 15,000 online classes on a variety of business topics. UMA has helped to map some relevant courses that operators might find useful. More information can be found at uma.org/summit. 

Presley also provided an update on the latest plans for federal assistance to small businesses, including the proposed Prioritized Paycheck Protection Program, also known as the P4 Loan. Although it has Democratic support in the Senate, it’s still in the early stages. UMA is also lobbying for operators to take advantage of the PPP a second time, as there is still about $120B left in the program and travel is going to be slower to recover.

The June 11 meeting can be viewed here. The next weekly call is scheduled for June 25.

Visit uma.org for more information.

[06.16.20]