Welcome to the Jungle!

Christ the Redeemer - Rio de JaneiroThe most beautiful of destinations can also be the most dangerous.  A couple of months back, I discussed the ongoing issues plaguing the country of Brazil and its attempt to successfully host the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.  There were numerous reports of political corruption, skyrocketing crime, dangerous pollution levels and Zika virus outbreaks.  The Brazilian government had a lot of work ahead to make their country hospitable to the rest of the world.

Well, time has almost run out.  The Rio Games commence on Friday of this week, and still, the preparations are rife with problems.  Parts of the Olympic Village that house the athletes’ quarters remain uninhabitable to some of the visiting teams with unresolved plumbing and electrical issues.  Several athletes have reported being robbed during their short time in Rio, and tests show that water pollution remains rampant throughout the venue.   

Also in the last couple of weeks, serious concerns regarding kidnappings have come to light after the details of several high-profile incidents reached international news outlets.  For years, Brazil has been at the forefront of the kidnapping-for-ransom epidemic.  The country is infamous for leading the world in “express kidnappings” (short-term, forceful detentions for quick payouts and ATM robberies).

The government has done little to hinder the activities of criminals.  Police and military corruption as well as vast economic and social gaps have all added to the problems brewing in that beautiful part of South America.  Victims of kidnappings have few resources to turn to in time of need.  The best and only reliable solution for most visitors is Kidnap & Ransom (K&R) insurance.

K&R is available to American tourists and employees of U.S. corporations during their travels overseas to known hotspots like Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, and throughout Africa and the Middle East.  Aside from armed security or a military escort, K&R is the best protection money can buy.

In addition to ransom reimbursements and other advantageous financial benefits, a K&R policy provides unlimited access to a highly-trained crisis response team that is imbedded and familiar with the location where an insured person becomes abducted.  Crisis team personnel are situated across the globe and maintain proper connections and local knowledge in order to negotiate the safe return of a victim.  They know in which countries and circumstances to work with local law enforcement and when not to.  K&R crisis response teams are important in protecting the lives of Americans traveling or working outside the United States.

K&R policies are effective, affordable and essential for tourists and companies with an international footprint.  Petersen International has developed a robust K&R platform with a crisis response team that holds an impeccable safety and return record.  To learn more about Kidnap & Ransom insurance as well as our exceedingly inexpensive rates for the Rio Olympics, contact us at (800)345-8816 or at piu@piu.org.