Buy life cover ‘on de­mand’ via your phone

San­lam has launched an ac­ci­dent in­sur­ance prod­uct de­signed to ap­peal to the smart­phone gen­er­a­tion, writes

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE -

In the same way that tra­di­tional taxi drivers have been knocked side­ways by the phe­nom­e­non that is Uber, es­tab­lished fi­nan­cial ser­vices com­pa­nies are hav­ing to adapt quickly to com­pete with on­line dis­rupters spawned by the in­ter­net rev­o­lu­tion. One of South Africa’s ma­jor life as­sur­ers, San­lam, has recog­nised this fact and has launched some­thing that, for the lo­cal in­dus­try, is ground­break­ing: lim­ited- term ac­ci­den­tal in­jury and death cover on de­mand via an app.

It’s called Go Cover. You down­load the Go Cover app to your smart­phone or tablet and reg­is­ter with San­lam. You nom­i­nate a ben­e­fi­ciary, and an ad­di­tional con­tact per­son, if you wish. Once reg­is­tered, you can buy cover for ac­ci­den­tal in­jury or death, when you need it, for up to a month.

Jack Kruger, the head of de­sign at San­lam, says you can buy cover of between R100 000 and R1 mil­lion for 24 hours, or for up to 30 days, for as lit­tle as R10. The cover can be ac­ti­vated im­me­di­ately, or at a pre­cise fu­ture date and time within 30 days. For ex­am­ple, you can buy 14 days of cover now and set it to take ef­fect in a week.

Kruger says the de­sign of the app is based on ob­ser­va­tions of how the dig­i­tal era has trans­formed the way peo­ple buy. “We iden­ti­fied the un­bundling of ser­vices, a move to­wards mi­cro-ser­vices, and ser­vices avail­able on de­mand as ma­jor trends be­hind con­tem­po­rary dig­i­tal busi­ness mod­els such as Airbnb and Uber. Peo­ple want quick, easy-to-un­der­stand, af­ford­able and con­ve­nient prod­ucts, and this is what we want to of­fer them with Go Cover,” he says.

To keep things sim­ple, San­lam of­fers only three lev­els of cover. For a 24-hour pe­riod, a pre­mium of R10 buys you cover of up to R100 000, R20 for up to R500 000, or R30 for up to R1 mil­lion. The daily rate de­creases as the pe­riod of the cover in­creases.

The prod­uct cov­ers death or in­jury re­sult­ing from an ac­ci­dent (or a trau­matic event such as a shoot­ing or stab­bing that re­quires sur­gi­cal in­ter­ven­tion un­der gen­eral anaes­thetic), not from nat­u­ral causes such as ill­ness. It pays out a lump sum when you meet the claim cri­te­ria for over 30 types of in­juries, and, de­pend­ing on the sever­ity of the in­jury, this may be less than or equal to the max­i­mum amount. For ex­am­ple, if you are cov­ered for R100 000 and suf­fer mul­ti­ple rib frac­tures, re­sult­ing in ar­ti­fi­cial ven­ti­la­tion in an in­ten­sive care unit, you will re­ceive R50 000. For se­vere head in­juries, para­ple­gia, loss of sight, coma or death, the full amount will be paid.

There are no ex­clu­sions re­lated to your age, but, like most poli­cies, it will not pay out if you are in­volved in crim­i­nal ac­tiv­i­ties or drink-driv­ing, or if an in­jury is self-in­flicted. The death cover for chil­dren un­der 12 is re­stricted, al­though they re­ceive full in­jury cover.

Kruger says Go Cover will suit peo­ple who don’t want to buy per­ma­nent ac­ci­dent cover with monthly pre­mi­ums, but still re­quire it from time to time, or it can be used to boost your ex­ist­ing life cover. For ex­am­ple, you may want it when par­tic­i­pat­ing in ac­tiv­i­ties such as paraglid­ing or moun­tain-bik­ing, or to pro­tect your fam­ily against the risks of trav­el­ling by road when you go on hol­i­day. It is also suit­able for peo­ple who re­quire a de­gree of work­place pro­tec­tion – ei­ther for them­selves or their em­ploy­ees, he says.

Go Cover can be bought by any­one in South Africa, in­clud­ing for­eign tourists vis­it­ing the coun­try. It also cov­ers South Africans trav­el­ling abroad.

Kruger says you should not re­gard the prod­uct as a sub­sti­tute for com­pre­hen­sive life cover or med­i­cal scheme mem­ber­ship. “Go Cover is more of a com­ple­men­tary in­sur­ance, and it pays out over and above any other in­sur­ance you might have. It can be very handy if you par­tic­i­pate in haz­ardous ac­tiv­i­ties that are ex­cluded in your longterm in­sur­ance. It can also be used as a form of travel in­sur­ance by peo­ple trav­el­ling by road or by air.”

The app is avail­able on the Google Play Store and the Ap­ple App Store, or via the Go Cover web­site. As a spe­cial of­fer, you will re­ceive your first seven days of cover up to R100 000 free, by re­deem­ing the voucher code “San­lam” on the app. Learn more by vis­it­ing www.san­lam.co.za/go­cover

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