Last updated: 04:41 PM ET, Sun February 14 2016

Zika Brings More Business for Some Industries

Features & Advice | Amy Coyne Bredeson | February 14, 2016

Zika Brings More Business for Some Industries

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

Thanks to the Zika virus, business has picked up considerably for certain industries.

Travel insurance and pest control companies are two such trades that have seen a lot more business since the outbreak of the virus, according to The Washington Post

Although Zika usually only causes mild symptoms, it has been linked to microcephaly, a condition that causes developmental delays and small heads in babies who are exposed in utero. Because of this, authorities have advised pregnant women to stay away from areas that have been affected by the condition.

READ MORE: White House Requests $1.8 Billion to Combat Zika Virus

The virus has been found in Africa, Southeast Asia, the Pacific Islands and the Americas, The Washington Post said.

Travel insurance companies, such as Jim Grace’s InsureMyTrip in Rhode Island, are selling more policies that allow people to cancel their trips for any reason, the Post reported.

Grace told the Post that his sales on this type of policy have increased between 15 and 20 percent since last year because people are so unsure about traveling to regions affected by the virus.

READ MORE: How Travel is Reacting to Zika Virus

“As long as it’s at least 48 hours before you have to depart, you can say, ‘I’m not going,’” he said.

Because Texas is so close to Mexico, where there have been reports of Zika, pest control companies in the state have already begun spraying, the Post said. They usually don’t spray until April.

Darryl Nevins of the Mosquito Joe franchise in Houston told the Post that he’s getting 15 calls a day, which is not at all the norm for this time of year.

“It’s not just residential customers, what we primarily had in the past,” Nevins told the Post. “Schools, day care, commercial customers with a park nearby are calling and asking, ‘What do we do to protect outdoor seating?’”


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