Guests staying at any of Accor’s 5,000 hotels worldwide can benefit from specialist medical support thanks to a tie-up with insurance provider AXA. Olivia Palamountain reports

In preparation for a post Covid-19 rebound, Accor has joined forces with AXA Partners (AXA’s assistance services, travel insurance and credit protection arm) to offer guests an enhanced level of care.

From July 2020, Accor guests have been able to benefit from AXA’s “medical solutions”, which includes free access to medical tele-consultations.

Guests will be able to take advantage of AXA’s medical network of tens of thousands of vetted medical professionals, while Accor hotels are now poised to make relevant referrals (eg language, speciality, etc…) to their guests.

For non-urgent medical needs during a stay – feeling unwell, forgot a prescription or need medical advice – guests need only contact the reception desk to let the team know they would like to consult a medical professional.

Reception will give you the option of a free telephone consultation or access to a selection of AXA-certified healthcare providers for a face-to-face consultation.

Sébastien Bazin, chairman and CEO of Accor, says: “Welcoming, safeguarding and taking care of others is at the very heart of what we do and who we are as hoteliers. This distinctive partnership with AXA which we have been working on for several months makes even more sense in today’s context.

“In an increasingly complex environment, our 300,000 team members on the ground will be able to assist our guests and ensure their safety during their stays, turning our hotels into shelters”

This unique medical service has been designed to complement Accor’s global recovery plan, alongside health and prevention protocols that the group has implemented through its ALLSAFE cleanliness label in anticipation of the progressive reopening of its hotels across the different regions.

For AXA, this partnership is an opportunity “to strengthen its payer to partner strategy”, which aims to provide innovative services to its customers, most notably in the health sector, a growth area in its Ambition 2020 plan.

“AXA’s ambition is to move from a payer to a partner with its customers, notably by providing them with innovative solutions in health. This is why AXA has become over the last year a world leader in telemedicine solutions.

“Partnering with Accor, a worldwide leader in hospitality, is a unique opportunity to enlarge people’s access to our healthcare expertise and solutions. As we are facing an unprecedented health crisis with Covid-19, this ambition has never been more relevant”, says Thomas Buberl, CEO of AXA.

Earlier in the year, Montage Hotels also announced that it was offering free virtual healthcare to guests via a partnership with One Medical.

In an interesting twist, destinations have also started to introduce Covid-19-specific travel insurance to help tourists if the virus impacts their holiday while they are away. Globetrender has the latest here.

Jamaica has gone one further to launch “Jamaica Cares“, an “end-to-end” travel insurance plan that provides visitors with emergency medical and crisis response services. The catch? Purchase is compulsory.

In a bid to boost customer confidence and increase bookings, airlines such as Finnair and Virgin Atlantic are also pioneering free Covid-19 travel insurance for all bookings. As ever, make sure you read the small print.

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