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On-demand insurance for ‘weekend warriors’

Sanlam reports rapid uptake of SA’s first ‘pay-as-you-go’ accident cover.

Insurance group Sanlam has reported a ‘rapid’ uptake of Go Cover, South Africa’s app-based, first on-demand accident cover product, which was launched in November 2016.

The product, created by a team of around 12 people in three months, offers adrenaline junkies, holiday makers and seasonal workers cover of up to R1 million for 24 hours or 30 days at a cost of between R10 and R30.

“It’s the most rapid uptake I’ve ever seen. People are very curious, the industry is very curious and we’re very pleased with the interest,” said Jack Kruger, head of design at Sanlam.

He said the team of “weekend warriors” behind Go Cover, developed a product that they themselves wanted to use for peace of mind while participating in extreme activities.

Go Cover draws from contemporary digital business models such as Uber and AirBnB, in that it requires a one-time registration, is quick, easy to understand and puts the customer in control. But Kruger said that it is not meant to compete with existing offers nor disrupt the market.

“We want to expand the market and not necessarily compete with existing players or products. The rate of life insurance penetration in South Africa is 11%-14% and there are already well-established players competing in that market,” Kruger said.

He said Go Cover compliments Sanlam’s existing offerings and pays over and above medical aid in the event of accidental death or injury.

Covering accidental death and injury is considered a “low hanging fruit” in that for the purposes of this product, it requires no blood tests, does not exclude any age groups or activities.

“We tried to make the list [of injuries covered] as inclusive as we could. The accidental injuries list covers everyday things and isn’t too specific. But we’ve had to be careful in not covering relatively minor things as we don’t want to encourage people to hurt themselves,” he said.

Accident cover of up to R100 000 starts at R10 per day for 24 hours, with cover for up to R500 000 starting at R20 per day and cover for up to R1 million at R30 per day. Go cover offers a gradual decrease in daily rates for policies that run between 24 hours and 30 days as it allows the insurer to spread its risk.

Claimants can expect to be paid out within 48 hours of submitting the necessary documents, said Kruger.

The insurer is currently working on facilitating group cover through the app and is looking into tailoring packages for different activities such that the accidental injuries covered align more closely with those that may occur.

It is also planning to make use of its “direct link” with Santam to craft a pay-as-you go travel insurance offering.

For now, South Africans can use Go Cover anywhere in the world while foreigners are only covered in South Africa.

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I’ve used it when I went on a day long road trip. Was easy to use the app and will use it again in the future. I like the concept.

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