Are Australians the worst skiers in the world?
It all depends on the conditions and the level of cover.
Australian's have an affinity for sun, sand and surf. That's obviously apparent. However, many have a serious passion for snow sports too. Unfortunately the conditions down under are a lot different to those in the northern hemisphere and these contrasting environments can lead to accidents and injuries.
During warmer winter seasons, Australia's snowfields struggle to maintain a decent layer of cover for skiers and boarders. In Asia, Europe and the Americas, runs are usually coated in a thick, deep powder. These settings are starkly disparate and often cause problems for Aussies tackling these terrains.
Online Australian insurer Travel Insurance Direct revealed in the last 12 months it's received close to 200 claims related to skiing and snowboarding accidents, almost all of them for injury and medical expenses.
More than half of these claims were made in Japan, with the average cost of a claim totalling $4400.
The remainder of claims came from Australians holidaying in Canada, Europe and New Zealand.
For skiers, most claims were for injuries to the anterior cruciate ligament, lower leg and head. Boarders were more likely to hurt their wrists, knee, collarbone, ribs, teeth or suffer a shoulder dislocation.
Australians aren't just injuring themselves on the slopes. One claimant actually fell off a ski lift in Japan.
"It can be a very dangerous sport and Aussies by nature like to 'have a go' and throw themselves in at the deep end," Travel Insurance Direct travel safety expert Phil Sylvester said.
Satisfaction among Australian consumers with regards to insurance policies, particularly risk and life cover, continues to dissipate, according to the latest Roy Morgan Research customer survey findings.
Hoping to avoid injury and get in some skiing or snowboarding at home this winter? Find out exactly what you'll need to bring and don't miss our new guide to the best ski resorts and snowfields in Australia.
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