Compare the cheapest* travel insurance policies from Australian providers

Find affordable cover that won't leave you stranded. Receive quotes for basic cover from Australian insurers.

Have you ever had your holiday disrupted by an unexpected mishap? Perhaps you suffered a broken leg in a car accident, had all your baggage “disappeared” by an airline, or had your handbag and wallet stolen by thieves. More seriously, perhaps an overseas medical emergency left you with an extended stay in hospital and massive medical bills to deal with.

Though travelling is one of the most enjoyable things in life, the fact is that it’s a highly unpredictable beast. A whole host of unexpected circumstances can conspire to turn your trip into a disaster, from unexpected illnesses to flight delays and cancellations, and if you don’t have any protection in place you could end up significantly out of pocket.

This is why taking out travel insurance cover is essential for anyone planning a trip for business or pleasure. It offers crucial financial protection against an array of travel risks, ensuring that your wallet won’t suffer if something goes wrong while you’re travelling. With an increasing number of insurers offering travel insurance online, it’s easier than ever to take out cheap travel insurance cover.

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What is usually covered under budget travel insurance policies

With a wide range of travel insurance policies to choose from, the exact nature and level of cover offered varies from one policy to the next. However, it’s possible to take out basic travel insurance cover, which is generally a cheaper option and provides cover for:

Overseas emergency medical and hospital expenses

Basic travel insurance cover is sometimes referred to as ‘worst case scenario’ cover, as it offers protection against overseas medical and hospital bills. Medical repatriation back to Australia is also typically covered, while emergency dental expenses are often included as well.

Accidental death

Your beneficiaries will receive a death benefit if you die as a result of an injury you suffer while travelling.

Personal liability

This cover feature provides protection if you are legally liable for a third party suffering a bodily injury or property damage.

Luggage and personal belongings

Some basic policies will also include coverage for the loss, theft or damage of your luggage and selected personal belongings. This includes the repair or replacement cost for necessary items.

While basic policies generally offer the cheapest* travel insurance alternative, it’s also entirely possible to find comprehensive policies at affordable prices. These types of insurance plans will also cover:

Cancellation fees and lost deposits

If unexpected circumstances, for example the death of a family member or the loss of your job, force you to cancel your trip, your policy will ensure that you are reimbursed for any non-refundable deposits and cancellation fees.

Hospital cash allowance

You will receive an allowance for every day you are hospitalised while overseas.

Loss of income

If you suffer an injury during your trip and are disabled and unable to return to work for a certain period, you will receive a weekly benefit to replace your income.

Travel documents and credit cards

You will be covered if your important travel documents, credit cards, debit cards, traveller’s cheques that are lost or stolen.

Theft of cash

Most policies will cover you up to a certain limit for any money that is stolen from your person.

Luggage delay

If your luggage is misplaced or delayed by a travel operator for a certain period, you’ll receive funds to help you buy emergency clothing and toiletries.

Travel delay expenses

If your journey is delayed for at least six hours due to circumstances beyond your control, you’ll receive funds to help cover additional meals and accommodation expenses.

Alternative transport expenses

If you need to make alternative transport arrangements in order to get to a pre-arranged event (i.e. a wedding) on time, your policy will cover the cost of this.

Rental vehicle insurance excess

This provides cover for the rental vehicle insurance excess if your rental car is stolen or damaged.

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How do I get travel insurance?

When you’re shopping for travel insurance there are three approaches you can take, you can purchase cover from a travel agent, direct from an insurer or through a broker.

While purchasing cover from a travel agent has the advantage of convenience in that you can arrange all your holiday plans all at the one time, this can be the most expensive option. Travel agents often add a hefty commission on top of the travel insurance policies they offer, so buying from an agent is usually not a cost-effective method.

This means you’ll need to choose whether to buy cover direct or through a broker. With an increasing number of providers offering cover direct to consumers online, it’s easier and cheaper than ever to find the cover you need. Direct travel insurance is designed to be simple to understand, while most companies also provide a quick application process and fast approval.

However, if travel insurance policies and product disclosure statements all seem a bit daunting and confusing to you, buying direct may lead you to take out an inadequate level of cover. In this case, buying cover through an insurance broker is your best bet. Brokers have a wealth of experience at matching up people with the right insurance policies. They have an in-depth understanding of the insurance market and the policies available, and they will take the time to understand your insurance needs before helping you find the policy that suits your situation.

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How much is travel insurance?

The cost of cover will obviously vary between providers, but there are a number of factors that can influence the cost of your travel insurance premiums. These include:

  • The sum insured. This is an obvious factor to consider. The higher the amount of cover you want to take out, the more you will have to pay for your premiums.
  • The type of policy. If you choose to take out a basic, no-frills policy, you can obviously expect to pay less for the lower level of cover than you would if you took out a comprehensive plan. In addition, it’s also possible to take out cover for singles, couples or families, while you can even choose from single-trip or multi-trip policies.
  • The cover you select. Many policies will let you add extra options for an additional price, such as cover for adventure sports or a higher level of cover for personal belongings. This will raise your premium price.
  • The length of your trip. Longer trips will obviously cost more to insure.
  • The destinations you are visiting. Some areas of the world are more unstable and risky than others, so this will be reflected in the price of cover.
  • Your age and your medical history. Older people are more susceptible to health problems and as such pose more of a risk to an insurer. In addition, those with a great medical history will be able to pay less than those who are smokers or have a history of illness.
  • Your excess. Many insurers will also let you choose a higher excess in order to lower your premiums.

To give you an idea of how much cover will cost, a Virgin Money travel insurance quote for a 30-year-old male taking a two-week trip to Asia ranges from $47.25 for Medical Only cover, to $79.80 for comprehensive cover.

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How to compare cheap travel insurance

Finding the right travel insurance policy is important, so you’ll need to do your research and shop around for a policy that suits your needs. Consider where you will be travelling and the activities and experiences you plan on having.

What level of cover?

You’ll need to take into account the level of cover you require and whether each policy offers that. Some policies will have higher benefit limits than others, so make sure you’re aware of the benefit amount of each policy. Also consider whether you can add extra cover options to your policy to provide an increased level of cover.

Read the PDS

Make sure to read product disclosure statements closely to guarantee that you know exactly what is and what isn’t covered. For example, each insurer will treat the cover for pre-existing medical conditions differently, so look for a provider who is willing to provide cover for any conditions you may suffer from.

Check the exclusions

Just like with any other form of insurance, travel insurance policies will also have a range of exclusions. Familiarise yourself with these so you don’t end up with a nasty surprise in the future, while it’s also a good idea to learn the excess you will have to pay in the event that you make a claim.

Compare Quotes

Once you’ve found a few policies you like the sound of, obtain multiple quotes to compare them against one another. However, remember to factor in the level of cover provided to help you determine the true value of each policy. Read all product disclosure statements closely and if you need help, seek out the services of a qualified insurance broker.

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Tips to find the cheapest* travel insurance online?

Buying travel insurance is online is quick, simple and convenient. This is an increasingly competitive market, which results in better and more affordable policies for consumers, and you can shop around for cover easily online. Sites like let you compare a range of policies with just a few mouse clicks, and you can do all of your shopping whenever and wherever it suits you.

Direct travel insurance brands also strives to make their cover easy to understand and apply for. Rather than going through a lengthy buying and application process, it’s often as simple as entering a few basic details about yourself and the trip you are planning, then clicking ‘buy’. Policies are simple to understand and the application process is quick, with approvals typically granted within seconds.

Buying cheap travel insurance online is convenient and easy, giving you the peace of mind you need to get out there and enjoy your travels.

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Cheap travel insurance tips: Find affordable cover that won't leave you underprotected

  • Governmental warnings. Check government travel advisories for areas you’re planning on visiting. If you travel to a country for which the government has issued a travel warning, chances are you won’t be covered.
  • Be careful when booking with travel agents. As mentioned above, travel agents often add a sizable commission to the policies they sell to you, so buying direct can save you a whole lot of money.
  • Not all policies are created equal. Just because two policies are underwritten by the same company doesn’t mean they offer the same cover. For example, two different insurance providers may both offer policies underwritten by Lloyd’s but make sure to compare the level of cover they offer. Both the cover and cost may differ.
  • Read the fine print. Yes, it may be a boring task but it’s just something you need to do. This is the best way to ensure you end up with the right level of cover.
  • Level of cover for personal effects. Check to see how much cover is available for your personal items. Expensive products like laptops and cameras are favourite targets for thieves, though many policies will only cover these items up to a minimal limit. Look for a policy that provides a more adequate level of protection.
  • Look at the exclusions. Make sure you’re aware of your policy’s exclusions. For example, some won’t pay out if your claim relates to an incident that occurred while you were under the influence of alcohol.
  • Documentation. Keep your receipts for items which are stolen, lost or damaged. If you report something to the police or an airline representative, get a written copy of any report. This could be essential for the processing of your claim.
  • Exclusive discounts. When you're shopping for travel insurance, be on the lookout for discount coupon codes. Many insurers will have incentive programs running and a quick search may land you 5-10% of the policy.
  • Multi-trip travel insurance.If you are a frequent flyer, try and get yourself a multi-trip travel insurance policy. While these policy do have a higher initial outlay, they will save you money in the long run, as you won't need to purchase multiple policies.

If you remember these tips and follow the rest of the advice in this article, you can find the cheap travel insurance you need to guarantee that your holiday will go off without a hitch.

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Compare quotes for basic travel insurance Policies

* There is no such thing as the cheapest travel insurance. The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products 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 'Cheap' and 'Cheapest' does not represent the overall value of the product subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your personal financial circumstances when comparing products.

Richard Laycock

Richard is the insurance editor at He is on a mission to make insurance easier to understand.

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