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Common Exclusions - When Travel Insurance Will Not Cover You!
Travel insurance is a must have when you’re on holidays, but there will be some circumstances when you will not be covered by your insurance policy. While the specific travel insurance cover you choose will ultimately determine what you are (or aren’t) covered for, there are some well known circumstances that will usually prevent you from being able to make a claim. All travel insurance policies have specific exclusions so it's common-sense to take the time to read the policy wording carefully.
1. Leaving Your Belongings Unattended
Most policies will cover you for loss or theft of your belongings and valuables, but not if you leave them unattended or in an unsecure location or with someone you don’t know.
What you can do: Keep your belongings with you at all times or ensure they are locked away in a secure safe. In order to make a claim, you will need an official police report outlining the incident and the items stolen.
2. Claiming Against an Unapproved Medical Condition
If you have a pre-existing medical condition or if you are waiting for test results/treatment for a medical problem and you don’t tell your provider, your travel insurance may be automatically void for any claims you make relating to those medical needs. In most cases, you may also not be covered if you travel against medical advice or if you travel in order to seek medical treatment.
What you can do: Be honest and upfront when you purchase your policy about your pre-existing (or potential) medical conditions.
3. Engaging in Reckless Activities/Behaviour
Indulging in reckless activities, such as excessive drinking or taking recreational drugs, can lead to a rejection of any insurance claim, whether related to medical, baggage, liability or anything else.
What you can do: Be aware of the situations in which any reckless behaviour could exclude your eligibility for a claim and consider how this will impact the decisions you make while on holiday.
4. Participating in High Risk Sports & Activities
Travel insurance will not cover you if try to make a claim resulting from a sport or activity that isn’t covered by your policy. This can apply to cover for injuries and illness (medical), as well as equipment loss/damage and any personal financial losses.
What you can do: Make sure that each sport or activity you will be engaging in is covered by your insurance policy; if it’s not, enquire about upgrading to ensure you are appropriately covered.
5. Travelling Against Government Advice
If you decide to travel to a specific region despite advice or warnings from the Australian government, your travel insurance provider will not cover you for that destination.
What you can do: Pay attention to government warnings via www.smartraveller.gov.au and be wary of travelling to destinations that involve high risk or serious personal dangers.
6. Ignoring Road & Driving Rules
Hiring a car can be common on any trip, but things like driving on non-tarmac/cement roads, driving under the influence or letting an unauthorised person drive the car can all render your travel insurance null and void. In most cases, you’ll also have to take out Collision Damage and Third Party insurance through the rental company to ensure your travel insurance cover stays active.
What you can do: Pay close attention to the rules or limits set out by both your travel insurance policy and your rental company; if any of these rules are broken at the time of an incident, you won’t be covered. Make sure you read your Product Disclosure Statement carefully for a list of full terms and conditions.
7. Changing Your Mind
Unfortunately, very few travel insurance polices will approve your claims if you simply change your mind about travelling or if other circumstances, like failing to get a passport or visa in time, affect your travel plans.
If you are still unsure about certain circumstances under which you will not be covered by your travel insurance, you should read your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) or contact our customer service agents before you buy to understand your options.