If you’re planning the trip of a lifetime, the last thing you want to think about is what could happen if you got injured or sick while overseas. But travel insurance is not just an optional extra. To put it bluntly, if you can’t afford a travel insurance policy then you probably can’t afford to travel.
In a foreign country, chances are your Australian health insurance will not cover you at all. That’s where travel insurance comes in. It provides protection for you and your family in case you get sick or suffer an injury. It can cover medical and hospital expenses, emergency evacuation, dental bills and a long list of other costs which can quickly add up to the tens of thousands.
But travel insurance may also provide cover in case of other unfortunate events. If you have to cancel a flight in an emergency, you could be covered. It can also cover your expenses in the event that your train is delayed due to severe weather. If your luggage is lost or stolen, or you are mugged, you could recoup some or all of your losses.
Many insurers offer benefits such as free telephone assistance worldwide, available 24/7 in case an emergency arises or you just need some help in a sticky situation. Whether it’s rebooking a flight you missed, helping you locate the nearest pharmacy or providing assistance in replacing a lost passport, many insurers will be only too happy to help.
Statistically speaking, while travelling, the chances of accident, theft or other unfortunate event are increased. Even if you take all the recommended precautions, wearing a money belt, dressing conservatively and staying alert, disasters can and often do still happen to ordinary people while they travel.
For peace of mind, be sure you have an adequate travel insurance policy before you leave home.