Event cancellation insurance is getting tricky, rapid testing may be the answer to getting back to live and it's The Weeknd

It’s tricky 💵

Communicable disease cover, generally offered as an extension to basic cancellation coverage, was (until now) a largely overlooked addition to a policy and usually only purchased by the very risk averse, larger promoters with more resources or by mistake. Now that event organizers have experienced first-hand the effects of not having this type of cover, it’s an extension most would willingly shell out some cash for BUT insurance providers are not providing Communicable Disease (COVID) cover due to the current level of risk.

So what’s the solution? Reinsurance.

Event professionals and insurance providers alike are urging the UK government to establish a fund that would pay out if an event were cancelled due to COVID. This would allow event organizers to begin planning with the assurance that if something goes horribly wrong (again) they won’t be left destitute (again).

The German government approved such a fund earlier this week amounting to €2.5 billion to cover cancellations as a result of COVID that occur in the second half of 2021.  In addition, there is also an initiative to provide support to socially distanced cultural events that would otherwise be financially inviable. With other countries sure to follow, this is great news for the industry, event professionals and those of us that just miss attending live events.

Important note: Organizers will still need to obtain event cancellation coverage in order to have access to this funding should it be needed.

Rapid Testing = The New Normal ⏱️

Several festivals have already announced their return for 2021. Planning takes time and money and with the current news about vaccine approvals and possible government funding in the event of COVID related cancellations, there’s no time like the present.

Due to assistance from the Cultural Recovery Fund and support from the community, Noisily, a UK dance music festival, is expected to return on the 8-11 of July next year. The goal is to host “a full-capacity, Covid-safe event, with testing at the gate”, which seems unimaginable these days but with the vaccines slowly rolling out and rapid testing becoming even more rapid...maybe a 4,500 person gathering isn’t so far-fetched. The £156,000 from the recovery fund paired with £115,000 raised by the “Save Noisily” fundraising campaign will allow the festival to pay its production staff without tapping into the money from ticket sales.

Albania’s Unum Festival also plans to return and will take place from 3-7 of June, a full month before Noisily. The open air festival that only began in 2019 plans to offer rapid tests on site so that after a short 10-15 minute wait, attendees will be able to experience the festival in the manner it was intended. This approach was approved by the government and Albania is the first country to support testing for these types of events.

Let’s talk football (the American variety) 🏈

The 2020 NFL season is coming to a close and the culmination of this year’s fan-less stadiums, postponed games and relocated teams known as the Super Bowl is slated to take place on February 7 of next year. The most exciting part of the game for some, the Halftime Show, always boasts incredible talent, impressive pyrotechnics and usually a surprise or two. This year should be no different as The Weeknd will take the stage to entertain people around the world. What will be different is that the halftime show may not take place in the same stadium as the game.

The game itself will be played at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa and is expected to allow fans to attend at 20% of normal capacity. With the halftime show possibly taking place at an alternative location, it would reduce the risk of COVID spread from players and fans to production staff and performers (and vice versa). This would mean the show could go on with the intended display; however, should it be decided that the show will indeed take place in the same stadium, we would be likely to see a scaled down version of the usually over-the-top spectacle. Either way, we don’t expect The Weeknd to disappoint.