Share economy: friend or foe?

Updated: Mar 5, 2018

The travel share economy, including services like Uber and Airbnb, has quite literally taken off around the world. However, research from International SOS reveals that:

  • 75% of organisations lack policies or procedures for using these services

  • 40% of people do not know whether their organisations consider services to be 'safe'

The International SOS research also provides organisations with clear guidance on the benefits, risks and legal considerations of incorporating share economy services into an organisation's business travel policies, and how best to do so within a travel risk management framework.


Share economy is easy to use, fast and cost effective. But it's also very new and sits outside of traditional travel policies and procedures.

There are 3 main baskets of issues clients ask about:

  1. Transportation

  2. Accommodation

  3. Legal

Listen to regional security manager Sam Davies' podcast here to learn more.


A one-size-fits-all share economy policy is unlikely to meet duty of care obligations organisations owe their business travellers.

Managers should review travel policies for local and international travel and determine if amendments are needed to enable or restrict the use of accommodation or ride-sharing services. A mature policy could also acknowledge the differences in traveller profile and resulting vulnerability of those categories.

Companies should consider the following factors when determining whether the use of shared transport is appropriate when abroad:

  • Security standards - Are the security standards appropriate to the risks in the destination?

  • Vetting the staff - Are there formal background checks for the provider?

  • Reputation - Is the provider considered reputable in the region?

  • Suitability - Is the provider suitable for all travellers and genders?

Read our full whitepaper on share economy for business travel here.


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