Have you ever Googled ‘Travel Insurance‘? I just did and I got something like 229,000,000 hits in 0.38 of a second! If you have heaps of time on your hands you may be able to wade through all these pages and find the one that best suits your needs is on page 1,546! But the reality is, most of us do not.
Many websites have search engines embedded in their home page, so shopping around is pretty easy. You can use ‘Get a Quote’ and in a matter of another nano second you have a good selection to read through. Think carefully about your needs as you only want to pay for what you will use in the policy, for the duration of your trip. There are basics like, luggage loss, sickness, cancellation fees that affect us all, but there can be savings if you read the fine print, and choose carefully.
Trip Advisor have a great forum that has many discussion threads about travel insurance companies and who pays up (and who doesn’t), so have a quick look there to help you decide once you have narrowed down your choices.
My suggestions are as follows and please feel free to add your two bobs worth if you have found one to be really reliable and actually PAY, should the need arise.
What to look out for…
1. Check the Excess you will need to pay if you make a claim. The higher it is, the cheaper your policy becomes. Just like any other insurance.
2. Make sure you have a reputable underwriter for the policy.
3. Cover for laptops, iPads, cameras etc are sometimes not included in policy and can be exclusions and you may be required to pay an additional premium
4. You may find some categories are irrelevant for you so read and choose carefully.
5. Read the reviews other users have written about that company, either on their site or in travel forums. Lonely Planet’s Thorntree Forum is a treasure trove for this and anything!
6. The Australian Government’s Smart Traveller website is a handy reference to cross check you have covered all bases
7. Check that it covers the countries you are going to visit
8. Make sure you disclose any pre-existing medical conditions
9. If you are planning a bungie jump in New Zealand, this may require an additional premium, so double check that with your insurer.
10. Some banks will provide Travel Insurance free as part of their credit card service. You may be lucky, but make sure it is a good fit for you.
The Insurance Council is also full of great information that could help you.
But just remember, you need peace of mind when you travel, so not having insurance is not an option! If you don’t believe me, read my lovely friend Mary Lou’s Wheel Chair Bound in New York City back in July…then you will!
Send this to any of your friends whom you think may be a little accident prone!!
Safe and Happy Travels!