How to extend travel insurance

Extending travel insurance while you're abroad is possible; just make sure you do it in time.

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Important:

Travel insurance rules continue to change as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. We’re working hard to keep up and make sure our guides are up to date, however some information may not be accurate during the pandemic. It’s even more important to double-check all details that matter to you before taking out cover. Please know that some policies may not be available through Finder at this time. Here are some helpful tips:
    • If you're buying a policy today, it's unlikely that you'll be covered for any coronavirus-related claims
    • If your travel plans go against government advice, your policy will most likely be voided and you won't be covered
    Are you travelling and think you might have to extend your stay? Most travel insurance brands will allow you to extend your policy as long as it is a single trip policy and it hasn't already expired. Further to this, some brands have other conditions that you will have to meet to be eligible for the extension.

    While extending a policy is as simple as making a phone call or sending an email for us consumers, the process that insurers take to extend your policy can be more involved. Things that can make the process complex include group bookings, cover for pre-existing conditions, add-ons, etc. This is why it's so important to contact your insurer in a timely manner.

    Travel insurance with extension options

    Here are some brands that allow you to extend your policy after you've departed on your trip. Understand the conditions before choosing a brand so you don't get caught out without cover.

    BrandConditionsApply
    Budget Direct Logo

    Budget Direct

    You can pay to have your policy extended for up to 12 months as long as you provide two days' notice. For those aged between 66 and 100, you can extend your policy for a maximum of 90 days. Policies can only be extended once.
    Picture not described1 cover travel insurance logo

    1Cover

    Policies can be extended by contacting the call centre or logging into your Policy Manager. 1Cover recommends applying for extensions at least 7 days before your policy expires. Fees apply and you can only extend your policy once.
    Insureandgo logo

    InsureandGo

    Your policy type and age will determine the maximum length you can extend your travel insurance. You can only extend your insurance once and you'll need to pay the difference.
    Fastcover

    Fast Cover

    Policies can be extended by logging into your policy online or contacting Fast Cover via email to request the extension. You will need to pay the additional premium and receive written approval. Your total trip can't exceed 24 months on most policies (3 months on domestic policies). Pre-existing conditions that aren't automatically included can't be covered.

    Here are a few tips:

    Pen and paper

    • As soon as you know that you'll be travelling longer than expected, contact your insurer. Do this to avoid leaving the changes to the last minute.
    • Be aware of normal business hours back home. You might not be able to get your extension approved over the weekend. Some insurers ask for at least 7 days' notice to process an extension.
    • Consider how long you'll need to extend your policy. Most insurers will only allow you to extend your policy once, so you need to get it right.
    • Double check your paperwork and make sure your extension is approved. After you make the extension, you should expect a new or updated certificate of insurance. Make sure the expiry date on your updated certificate is correct; if it's not, let your insurer know as soon as possible.
    • Extensions will not be granted if your policy has expired. If this happens, it's not the end of the world – you'll just have to find another insurer that will cover you if you're already overseas.

    What is excluded when I extend my policy?

    • If you, your travel companion or a family member suffers a medical condition or injury in the first period of travel, this condition will be considered a pre-existing condition in the new (extended) period of insurance. You will not be eligible to claim for any losses related to these conditions.
    • Some insurers will have a maximum age limit applied for when requests for cover extensions can be made, for example 60 or 70 years old.
    • If there has been a change in your personal circumstances, it may impact the insurer's decision of whether to provide you with cover.

    What if I'm forced to extend my trip for reasons I can't control?

    Most insurers will let you extend the period of insurance free of charge if you are forced to extend your travels for reasons outside of your control. Such events may include:

    • Luggage or personal effects have been delayed on the bus, airline, shipping line or rail authority you are travelling on
    • Delay is for a reason that can be claimed under the policy (subject to insurer's written approval), such as if you're injured and can't travel or if there is a flight delay

    Get quotes for travel insurance with extensions available

    warning Finally, some good news! Domestic travel is picking up, so some insurers have started offering cover again 🦘
    Just remember, you won't be covered for any pandemic related claims if you do take out domestic travel insurance.
    International travel insurance is limited and sometimes unavailable at this point.

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