As we all know, when COVID-19 started circulating, the entire world found itself in an unprecedented situation, but no industry was hit quite the same as the travel industry. Travel agents had never had to cancel practically every booking, and it brought some gaps in insurance cover to light. While pandemics related medical costs were covered in some policies, most excluded them when it came to cancellations and amendments, and – let’s be real – it wasn’t something many travellers thought to look into, given that pandemics aren’t a common occurrence.
But the old pre-COVID saying is just as true now, when the world has begun to reopen for travellers: if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel.
There are plenty of horror stories about being injured overseas and racking up huge medical bills (especially in the US), or about having a bag full of camera equipment taken from you at a restaurant and needing to be replaced. You never think it’s going to happen to you but, of course, it can. Travel insurance can cover you for a range of situations, including medical costs, stolen items, cancelled flights, and lost luggage, and it’s particularly important if you intend to enjoy adventurous activities like skiing or skydiving.
With travel insurance, you can make a claim to recoup these costs relatively quickly and easily. A common misconception amongst Aussie tourists is that the Australian Government will help cover the costs of overseas bills, but this is definitely not the case – so, it’s crucial to cover yourself.
Just like any other type of insurance, policies come in all different shapes and sizes, and the more comprehensive the policy is, the more expensive it will be. With COVID-19 still part of our lives after more than a year (and showing no signs of disappearing any time soon), several travel insurance providers have added in additional COVID-19 benefits, strengthening travel and medical assistance for insured travellers.
Whether you’re travelling domestically or internationally, here are a few things to consider before booking your next holiday:
- Purchase your travel insurance as soon as you book your travel. This may also cover you for any cancellations or postponements of your trip.
- Be up front about your intended holiday plans with your insurance provider. If you know you’ll be participating in an adventurous activity such as skiing, make sure your policy covers you for that activity. Some policies specifically exclude these activities for general cover, so if you get hurt, you’ll be on your own.
- Many medical conditions are covered by travel insurance, so don’t panic if you have a pre-existing condition. Just let your provider know so they can get you on the right cover!
It’s always been a crucial step to get travel insurance before going on holiday, but now we have the added concerns of getting sick or getting stuck. The pandemic has added COVID and quarantine to every aspect of our lives and travel is no different, so make sure you’re well insured before you embark on your next adventure.
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