Mackay Insurance Blog
The Reason You'll Need to Invest in Secure Special Event Insurance
It is exciting to watch our world open back up following the pandemic. Now, finally, we are seeing local special events happen again.
Are you making plans to host a special event? Do you have a private special event such as a wedding or birthday celebration? Is your business planning a grand reopening? Is your charity planning a nonprofit fundraiser?
Whether your event is local or virtual, you need to be sure your investment is protected by carrying special event insurance. Learn what type of insurance you need for your event and be sure it’s a flawless success!
Perils & Pitfalls of Virtual Versus Local Special Events
During the last year and a half, we have gotten very used to hosting and attending virtual events for personal and professional purposes. After all, what other option have we had?
But now we have options again. And this requires a consideration of the different risks that accompany these different types of special events. Let's take a look.
Risks of Virtual Special Events
In some ways, virtual special events carry quite similar risks to in-person events. For example, virtual special events can still be cancelled or postponed.
Typically this happens due to a speaker no-show or last-minute cancellation or transmission problems due to technology.
And in other ways, virtual special events actually carry a higher risk than local events do.
An example is the risk of cyber hacking that causes event disruption, such as the "Zoom bombing" that ruined many virtual meetings (and made international news headlines) during the early days of the pandemic.
Virtual events are also unusually vulnerable to other cybercrime activities, such as data leaks and identity theft.
Another thing to consider is whether your virtual event will include the participation of sponsors. Many corporate sponsors require proof of special event liability insurance (at a minimum) before they will sign on to sponsor an event.
Risks of In-Person Special Events.
As you can see, some of the risks of virtual events are the same as live local special events.
For example, there is still the risk of a speaker no-show or last-minute cancellation. There can still be the risk of technology malfunction that leads to event failure.
But there are other risks specific to local events, including the risk of cancellation due to bad weather or damage to the event venue.
There is always a risk that a guest, vendor, volunteer, performer or contract worker will get injured during your event. This risk escalates if you plan to have live music or any types of interactive events or games.
And if your menu includes liquor, your liability may extend to what happens even after your guests leave the premises. Special care is required here to avoid being held liable for any drunk driving accident that may occur after your event ends.
And sponsors will likely require proof of event insurance before signing on to participate.
Risks of Hybrid Special Events.
Hybrid special events include both a virtual and a local component.
An example might be a streaming virtual event from a live event location site. Often this is done with sporting events, conferences and many private events such as weddings and graduation ceremonies.
If you are hosting a hybrid special event, you will want to think through the risks for both components - virtual and local - and be sure you are carrying adequate special event insurance to protect your investment.
What If You Don't Know What Special Event Insurance You Need?
If you are reading through this blog post and thinking, "But I don't even know what kind of special event insurance I need”, don’t worry.
Every day, individuals and businesses begin planning an event for the first time. This learning curve is a necessary part of making sure your investment in your special event pays off for you!
So where should you start if you aren't sure what type and level of special event insurance you need?
1. Get your event details down on paper.
The first step is definitely to write down all the details of your special event.
- What is your event date?
- When will the actual special event start and end?
- When will setup and teardown for your special event start and end?
- What is the schedule of events?
- Will you have sponsors involved?
- Will you have volunteers at your event?
- Will you have performers or vendors at your event?
- Will your event include sports or interactive activities or games?
- Will liquor be served?
- Is your event local, virtual or hybrid?
- Will your event include or cater to minors?
- Will you rent a space for your event or host at your own space?
2. Schedule a call with your Mackay Insurance broker.
Special event insurance represents a mere fraction of the investment of time, money and sweat equity you are pouring into your special event.
Once you have all of the details of your special event down on paper, it is time to sit down with your Mackay insurance broker and have a conversation about how to protect your investment.
Here, our shared goal will be to identify the exact components your special event insurance package must include.
This way, you will not end up paying for coverage that doesn't apply to your event. And you will not end up going into your special event with coverage omissions that could leave you vulnerable to lawsuits.
Contact Mackay Insurance for Your Belleville and Napanee Ontario Special Event Insurance Needs
Here at Mackay Insurance, our friendly and experienced brokers are delighted to help you plan a successful, memorable and profitable virtual, hybrid or local special event!