How will the Kumamoto earthquake in Japan impact travel insurance?

Maurice Thach 29 April 2016

USNavy

48 people have been reported dead in Japan's largest earthquake since 2011.

Japan is still reeling after two major earthquakes hit the southern island of Kyushu on  6 and 14 April, killing 48 people, injuring 263 more and destroying 1,527 houses in the Kumamoto prefecture. Recorded at magnitudes 6.5 and 7.3 respectively, the earthquakes have caused the largest natural disaster Japan has seen since the earthquake and tsunami that struck in 2011, killing 22,000 people.

Natural disasters cause significant disruption for both locals and travellers. If you were planning to travel to Japan around the time the earthquakes occurred, whether you would be covered by your travel insurance would depend on when you purchased your policy.

If you take out travel insurance after an earthquake is a "known event", you will not be covered for any earthquake-related claims such as cancellations or trip interruptions. However, if you booked your trip and travel insurance prior to when the earthquake occurred, most insurers would cover your losses. (The same rule generally applies to other natural disasters such as ash clouds and floods, though insurers will often differ on the detail.)

You can find out which travel insurance providers have made official announcements regarding cover in Japan during the earthquake in finder's complete guide. The good news is that most providers will cover cancellation costs if you're planning a trip which is now disrupted, or assist with costs if your travel plans have been disrupted.

Picture: Shutterstock

More great ideas from finder.com.au

Get a life insurance quote
Get a life insurance quote

Find out what it costs to protect yourself and your family

More info...
Refinancing home loans
Refinancing home loans

Choose from offers with rates as low as 3.39% p.a.

More info...
Google Pixel
Google Pixel

Compare plans for Google's flagship Android phone

More info...
Christmas ideas
Christmas ideas

Visit our Christmas homepage for gift ideas, markets, travel & deals

More info...

Ask a Question

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Disclaimer: At finder.com.au we provide factual information and general advice. Before you make any decision about a product read the Product Disclosure Statement and consider your own circumstances to decide whether it is appropriate for you.
Rates and fees mentioned in comments are correct at the time of publication.
By submitting this question you agree to the finder.com.au privacy policy, receive follow up emails related to finder.com.au and to create a user account where further replies to your questions will be sent.

Ask a question
feedback