Photographer Insurance

Camera Travel Insurance

Find the best travel insurance for your camera and equipment while travelling overseas

Cameras are one of the world’s most highly travelled items. Thanks to smartphones and compact digital cameras, most people are now some kind of photographer, and overseas trips are one of the better times to take snaps.

Depending on your needs, the value of your equipment and how much you depend on photography, the right camera travel insurance is either a useful security blanket or an essential investment. Before deciding on a policy you will need to be aware of its limitations. The right policy will have high enough limits and payouts to cover the cost of your gear and a set of exclusions that won’t deny you cover. This article will explore how cameras are covered by travel insurance and the maximum that will be paid by different providers.

Compare camera travel insurance from 20+ brands

Find a policy that works for you and request a quote to compare options.

BrandCamera insurance maximum benefit for damage or lossApply
1-cover-new1$2,000 - $3,000 cover for individual cameras, computers and video recording devices, $750 per item limit for accessories, $5,000 total limit for possessions.Get quote
AMEX Travel Insurance$1,500 - $3,000 per item limit for cameras, computers and video recording devices, $750-$1,000 for accessories.Get quote
AIG$500 per item limit for cameras, computers and recording devices travelling domestically, $3,000 internationally, $500-$600 limit for accessories.Get quote
Budget Direct Travel Insurance$2,000-$3,000 limit for cameras, video cameras and laptops, $500-$750 limit for accessories, total maximum limit of $5,000-$7,500.Get quote
Citibank Travel Insurance$3,500 limit for video and electrical equipment including cameras, $500-$1,500 limit for accessories, $5,000-$30,000 total limits.Get quote
Columbus Direct$2,000 total limit for cameras, computers and recording devices domestically, $3,000 total limit for these internationally.Get quote
CoverMore$2,500 per item limit for cameras, video cameras and computers, $500 for accessories, with the premium policy.Get quote
Easy Travel Insurance$750 limit for cameras domestically, $4,000 per item limit for cameras and recording devices with an international travel insurance policy.Get quote
Fast Cover$3,000 limit for cameras, computers and recording devices, $750 limit for accessories.Get quote
Go Insurance$1,500 total limit for cameras and electronics with basic cover, $7,500 total limits with comprehensive policies.Get quote
InsureandGoUp to $3,000 per item limit for cameras and other devices with comprehensive policies, up to $8,000 total limits.Get quote
iTrek$5,000 total individual limit for all belongings including cameras, with the most comprehensive policy. $10,000 total family limit for belongings.Get quote
MultiTrip Travel Insurance$3,000Get quote
Simply Travel Insurance$7,500 total items limit for cameras, computers, recording devices and all accessories.Get quote
Skiinsurance.com.au$3,000Get quote
STA Travel Insurance$3,500Get quote
Tick Travel InsuranceNo cover for cameras and electronics with basic policies, up to $7,500 total limits with $3,000 sub-limits for cameras and electronics with comprehensive policies.Get quote
Travel Insurance Direct$4,000 maximum for cameras, video cameras and electronics, $700 for accessories.Get quote
Travel Insuranz$500-$2,000 total limit for cameras and electronics with basic-comprehensive policies.Get quote
Virgin MoneyRepair, replacement or compensation up to $3,000 per item limit for cameras, video recorders and computers, $750 for accessories.Get quote
Woolworths Travel Insurance$3,000 per item limit for cameras and electronics, $750 for accessories, up to a total of $5,000 additional cover available.Get quote
Worldcare Travel Insurance$3,000 per item maximum for cameras and electronics, $750 per item limit for accessories, up to $24,000 total limits.Get quote
youGo$2,000 per item limits for cameras, video cameras and laptops internationally, $300 limit domestically.Get quote

How does camera travel insurance work?

The most common form of travel camera insurance is a standard travel insurance policy. This usually includes a certain level of cover for damage, theft and other loss of belongings. One of the most important things to consider is limits. These are the maximum amounts that will be paid in the event of a claim. Expect both per item limits and total possessions cover limits.

  • Cameras, laptops and video recording devices usually have special limits of $2,000 to $3,000, while other items, including camera accessories, typically have per item limits under $1,000. Many policies offer extended cover options to increase these limits.
  • Accessories like tripods, detachable lenses, external flashes and similar are considered to be “other items” and usually have significantly lower limits.
  • Depending on the policy, external hard drives, spare batteries, spare memory and similar may be considered “electronics” and will have the same limits as cameras and laptops, or may be considered “other items” and have reduced limits.
  • Many policies will allow you to purchase extended cover options to increase the limits for particular devices, or overall. This can be invaluable for those who travel with a lot of photography or recording equipment.
  • In some cases insurers may choose to repair or replace your lost belongings at current market value. Limits still apply in this case.

Learn more about travel insurance sub-limits and how they compare

When is my camera not covered?

Expect exclusions. These are conditions where your insurance policy will not pay out. Some of the standard exclusions you might find are:

  • No payout if your belongings were not properly secured. The definition of this will be included in the relevant product disclosure statement (PDS). Generally it refers to possessions needing to be in locked cars or rooms, out of plain sight, or properly under your care.
  • If you are using your camera in a professional capacity when an incident occurs, you will generally need to be covered for professional use. Many standard travel insurance policies will not cover cameras while they are being used professionally or for compensation.
  • Certain policies may require cameras to travel in your checked baggage, not carry-on, if you want to be covered against accidental damage in transit.
  • You are typically not covered if you were doing anything illegal at the time of an incident, were disobeying warnings or signs, or were undertaking a specific activity for which you are not covered.
  • Be aware of the fine print. Some policies may only cover cameras in transit and not while in use, while others offer more comprehensive security.

Learn more about standard travel insurance exclusions

Should I get specialised cover if I am a professional photographer?

If you are a professional photographer or videographer than you may need a more specialised camera travel insurance policy, and should consider a few extra things.

  • You may need to seek out a specialised camera insurance policy with an option for travel, rather than a travel insurance policy with an option for cameras.
  • If you are travelling for a photoshoot or otherwise planning on working for money away from home you should consider a policy which explicitly covers professional equipment use.
  • Loss of income may be a valuable inclusion for your policy. Typically this means you are covered for a certain amount of lost income if your camera or other equipment is damaged while overseas, rendering you unable to work when you get back to Australia.
  • Remember to think about vital accessories like tripods, camera cases and memory cards as well as your cameras when determining your required level of cover.
  • Consider the value of your gear, both on an individual item basis and in total. Both of these values will need to be considered when determining whether or not the limits of a policy are adequate for your needs.
  • Be theft-aware, and know your policy’s exclusions. For example, you may wish to travel with your camera on your person, but your policy might only cover it while it travels in checked baggage.
  • Check how your insurance policy differentiates between valuables like cameras and laptops, electronics and other items. This may affect your level of cover.
  • Keep cameras and other valuables in a locked hotel safe rather than out in the open. They are often only covered when placed in a safe.

Camera travel insurance for tourists

When deciding on a camera travel insurance policy to suit your needs as a tourist, consider the value of your equipment, the level of cover and whether you want insurance for other valuables like laptops and jewellery. Some of the other important factors to consider are:

  • The widely varying limits present in more basic and more comprehensive insurance policies. Personal possessions cover will typically change a lot depending on which option you select.
  • Whether a policy has adequate cover if you are travelling domestically. Maximum limits are typically considerably lower for domestic travel insurance compared to international travel insurance.
  • The conditions and exclusions of your insurance policy. It often pays to be aware of these and to keep your valuables locked in hotel safes when your room is unattended, out of sight when locked in cars and otherwise within the bounds of what is covered by your policy.
  • Travel insurance with camera cover, rather than camera insurance with travel cover, may be more likely to suit your needs. Consider purchasing extended or additional cover options if you find that the limits are too low.

Can you get specialised travel camera insurance?

Yes. There are a number of brands which offer specialised camera insurance with additional options for travelling. These are predominantly aimed at professional photographers and videographers rather than enthusiasts, and may include:

  • Options for income protection
  • Professional liability
  • Higher limits
  • More tailored repair and replacement options
  • Dedicated cover for accessories and related equipment

Travel and professional usage cover is more likely to be included as a standard, rather than an extra. Specialised camera insurance policies with built-in travel options will typically be more expensive than standard travel insurance, but may be much more suited to your needs as a professional photographer or videographer, or someone with a variety of high-value camera equipment and accessories.

Can I protect my camera with home and contents insurance?

Alternatively, you may wish to consider the merits of a bundled portable contents option with an existing home insurance policy. If you only want to cover a specific item like your camera and already have a home and contents policy, then specifying your camera for additional portable cover may be a cost-effective option. However, be aware that this will also include its own exclusions and conditions, might not be suitable for extensive travel and may not offer enough cover for professional equipment and camera accessories.

Compare how cameras are covered by different travel insurance brands

* The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking financial advice and consider your personal financial circumstances when comparing products.
Picture: Shutterstock

Andrew Munro

Andrew writes for finder.com.au, comparing products, writing guides, sniffing out deals and looking for new ways to help people get the most out of their money.

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