Tourism consultant claims insurance companies hurting island

A noted international marketing consultant, who has done decades of work with The Bahamas’ Ministry of Tourism and local Grand Bahama hotel properties, says the insurance companies on Grand Bahama are hurting the local tourism industry.

According to the expert, hotel rooms were already limited on Grand Bahama and properties that experienced severe damages as a result of Hurricane Matthew, back in October of last year, are still fighting to settle insurance claims.

“It seems these prominent insurance companies on island have collected millions of dollars from clients over the years and now do not care enough to pay or cannot afford to pay claims,” the consultant maintained.

Both scenarios, if the case, are tragic according to the consultant.

“It seems grossly unfair that after months, hotel, commercial and private property owners are still in limbo awaiting settlements,” the consultant alleged.

“How can it be that insurance companies collect big bucks in premiums over these many years and now clients need them to recover after Matthew's blow, they are seemingly hiding behind foreign adjusters.

“It maybe that the government by way of the Ministry of Tourism look into these unfortunate delayed settlements that threatens the livelihood of Bahamians and expose the insurance agencies on Grand Bahama.” The consultant went on to say hotel owners should be commended for trying to keep their doors partially open and trying to save jobs.

He believes return visitors, after this long setback, will find other destinations and this would hurt the island’s tourism industry and obviously the economy.

“We cannot discount the apparent harm insurance companies are doing to the island as a whole when home, restaurant and other business owners cannot get settlement payments in a timely manner to recover. These insurers who are seemingly in over their heads and have gone broke should be exposed, taken to court and put out of what remains an essential business and service,” maintained the consultant.

This daily continues to get complaints from insurance customers still fighting claims or receiving unsatisfactory settlements. Calls to a number of the insurers since October have gone unanswered.

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