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Travel Insurance Checklist - Tips on Choosing the Right Cover
Getting the most out of your travel insurance is all about having the right policy to begin with, but it can be a little overwhelming trying to determine which level of cover is right for you. We have put together some tips that may be useful when determining your travel insurance cover:
Destinations: Are all my destinations covered?
This is easy to determine if you’re going on a single-destination holiday (e.g. Paris), but if you are travelling to multiple destinations, ensure they are all covered. Your destinations should include anywhere you choose to stop over (even for just one night) or any places that you might visit as part of a cruise trip or tour.
Medical: Do I have the right level of medical cover?
It is important that you understand how much coverage you have and under what circumstances the medical cover applies. If you’ve got a pre-existing medical condition, you’ll also need to confirm that this doesn’t exclude you from the cover you want to buy. You should also gain a clear idea of what excesses you will be required to pay before your medical cover kicks in.
Read more about cover for pre-existing medical conditions here
Personal Belongings: How much of my baggage & belongings are covered?
Most travel insurance policies will provide some level of cover for your personal belongings. The key lies in knowing how much you are covered for – e.g. $500 or $5,000 – and if this enough to protect all of your baggage and belongings. If not, you may want to change your policy or consider upgrading for specific items.
Valuables: Am I taking any valuables with me?
You should never assume that any valuables will be automatically covered by your insurance policy. Common items like passports, phones, laptops, cameras, tablets, sunglasses and jewellery are often excluded from cover, particularly when it comes to the lower-level/basic policies. Make sure you read the Product Disclosure Statement to gain an understanding of whether your valuables are protected and under what circumstances you can make a claim.
Sports & Activities: If I’m injured (or fall ill) while partaking in certain activities, will my insurance cover me?
Certain activities, like motorcycling or white water rafting, mean there is a higher risk that you could become injured while on holiday. Hence, you should check whether your policy covers you for the specific activities you will be engaging in and what the terms and conditions of these activities are (e.g. if you are scuba diving, you may only be covered to a certain depth).
Cancellations: If I have to cancel my trip, do I want my money back?
Things don’t always go according to plan, and there may be some unexpected events that require you to cancel your trip. If you do, you’ll need to check that cancellation is part of your travel insurance policy. If you have the right cover, you may be able to claim lost funds from cancelled flights, accommodation, car hire, tour bookings and more. Your policy should tell you the maximum amount of money that you can claim.
Limits/Excesses: How much money do I want to pay before I can claim?
Most insurance policies can include excesses. This means that if your excess on lost baggage is $100, for example, you’ll be responsible for covering the first $100 of your losses before your insurance company will begin paying you. If you want to keep your excesses low; consider purchasing a higher level of cover or choose to waive your excesses altogether by paying a higher premium.
Exclusions: Do I understand what’s excluded from my policy?
Exclusions are a mandatory part of any insurance policy and reading your Product Disclosure Statement carefully before you purchase should give you a comprehensive view of what isn’t included in your cover. You should make note of any specific events or items that are excluded from your policy, as well as any circumstances or situations that automatically mean your losses will be excluded.
Read about common excluded circumstances and situations here
Keep in mind that this checklist isn’t meant to be a definitive list when deciding on which travel insurance is right for you. Instead, it should give you an idea of the main areas you need to be considering when determining and purchasing your policy. If you are uncertain about any area in your travel insurance package, make sure you read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) or contact our customer service agents before you buy to understand your options.