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Home > Reviews > Building a Travel Risk Management Program

Building a Travel Risk Management Program

Author Charles Brossman

ISBN No 9780128019382

Review date 19/06/2019

No of pages 222

Publisher Butterworth-Heinemann (Elsevier)

Publisher URL

Year of publication 29/07/2016


Building a Travel Risk Management Program: Traveller Safety and Duty of Care for Any Organization, by Charles Brossman. Published 2016 by Butterworth-Heinemann

Our Review


£ 26.34 (ebook)

Blood clots when you sit too long on an aeroplane; sexual harassment, kidnap for ransom - travel can be risky, whether for work or pleasure, or (an ugly word) bleisure, that mix of work and leisure, when you stay on at a venue or city after you have done your business. Where legally does the employer stand on duty of care to that employee?

These are all topics covered by Charles Brossman in a book ‘Building a Travel Risk Management Program’. As that spelling suggests, and some of the law discussed, the author is American, but whereas in many security management (and other) books it can be disappointing for the non-US reader to be given North American cases and examples, that’s not such a problem here, because of the very nature of travel. The travel managers in a company, and security managers, aren’t necessarily or typically equipped to do travel risk management, he suggests. Having set out what can be a dizzying set of risks - natural disaster, mugging and pick-pocketing, hate crime, illness - the author goes on to ‘assessing your current approach to travel risk management’ and what to tell the traveller, and who should tell him (the travel agent? the employer - and who there?).

The book goes on to crisis response - for a start, what defines a crisis (is it the same for the traveller on the spot where there’s civil unrest, and the employer safe at base?!). In about a dozen pages Brossman goes through kidnap and ransom (and how to respond). Dotted through the book are boxed case studies which for example raise the question of the difference between traditional hotels and taxis and new online services such as Uber and airbnb. How confident can you be about that person whose car or home you are entering? It may be more or less trustworthy than the local hotels or taxis - but which? The author closes with what he admits is an ‘unpleasant topic’ - the financial value that a company or government may put on a human life. Should a firm have a limit on the number of people it allows on any single flight, in case of a crash? How can you show a return on investment on travel risk management. How to insure travellers? Is it enough to track your travellers? Who’s in charge - security, or travel booking staff? Do you outsource?

Whether you are a physical security person, or a specialist in business travel, this book is a concise and wise place to turn. Brossman neither wants travellers to be more cautious than they have to be, nor wants them to suffer because they fail to do simple things to avoid predictable issues (do you need insect spray somewhere tropical; if you are taking a long flight, do you need to wear medical compression stockings - properly fitted?). And while the author does cover the extremes that a traveller can face, he’s wise to the reality that what is most likely to afflict the traveller is something like an upset stomach - and if you don’t speak the local language, you could find that harder to treat than when at home. In a word, never assume. Or rather; assume at your peril.